What is DAISY?

Printable Version

DAISY stands for Digital Accessible Information SYstem. The DAISY/NISO Standard is the Digital Talking Book (DTB) specification for accessible digital textbooks. It is a multimedia standard that supports traditional presentation of images and text, as well as audio, content navigation, video, and animation. The 2005 DAISY specification is based on an application of Extensible Markup Language (XML) and is formally known as ANSI/NISO Z39.86 Specifications for the Digital Talking Book. DAISY formed the basis for the National Instructional Materials Accessibility Standard (NIMAS).

The DAISY Consortium was selected by the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) as the official maintenance agency for the DAISY/NISO Standard. As such, it handles development and implementation of the specification and related DAISY standards. Founded in 1996, its membership represents organizations around the world that are committed to equitable access to information for people who have a print disability. Their vision is that all published information be available in an accessible, highly functional, feature rich format at time of release to the general population and at no additional cost.

For more information on NIMAS and DAISY consult the DO-IT Knowledge Base articles What are the NIMAS Development and Technical Assistance Centers?, What is NIMAS? and What is the DAISY modular math extension? For additional information on XML consult the AccessIT article Is XML accessible?

Last update or review: January 24, 2013