ABL   Alliance for Braille Literacy

A young blind owl clutching a closed book, looking eager to learn

What Is ABL?

The Alliance for Braille Literacy is an organization seeking to develop braille standards that promote the use of braille for the general and technical reader. For the blind to compete in education and employment in the world today, braille must keep pace with the inevitable changes that accompany the use of computers, mobile phones, and other technologies. The Alliance for Braille Literacy recognizes that the best standard in the English-speaking world today to accomplish this goal is the Nemeth Uniform Braille System (NUBS).  While other approaches via other braille codes do exist, they fall far short of what is needed by all braille readers and those who transcribe and educate in the field of braille today.

The primary architect of NUBS was Dr. Abraham Nemeth. He worked as a blind professor of mathematics for decades and formulated a pioneering braille math code (The Nemeth Code for Math and Science) that he had developed in 1946 or 1947 for his own use and that was first published in 1952 and in various refined forms in 1956, 1965, and 1972. The point is that in North America, his system, which today everyone calls simply "Nemeth," has been the only code for math and science for over six decades, a familiar legacy that a shift to UEB will wipe out.

Today, NUBS represents an all-purpose code for all braille readers. Dr. Nemeth devoted the last 20 years of his life to perfecting this code. Through the Alliance for Braille Literacy, we are providing the tools for learning and using this code. It is the logical next step to what was begun in 1952 and has proven its merit in the hands of hundreds of literacy-enabled blind scientists, mathematicians, and engineers, but now it is a unified code for all literature.

This website contains all the information needed to learn about and use NUBS.  Code rules, training manuals, samples of key materials, papers discussing NUBS, and comparisons with other braille codes are all available here. Look through this site to get acquainted with all we have to offer. Or better still, join our organization. Please note the "Critical Resources" lists for parents, educators, transcribers, and braille readers.

If you have questions or wish to talk with someone about braille and/or NUBS, please subscribe by sending an email message to abl-join@moblind.org to get started. No text is needed in the message. You will receive a response asking you to confirm your subscription. Respond as directed in that message and you are all set.

Copyright 2016 by Alliance for Braille Literacy, all rights reserved