By Douglas Wallce, District Sales Manager, Latin America and the Caribbean (except Brazil and Mexico) at Pure Storage
Digital inclusion is driven by technologies that make digital experiences accessible to people with visual and hearing disabilities. But that is not enough, for this technology to fully comply with inclusiveness, it must also have accessible data.
Data is supposed to be an enabler of knowledge, success, research, among many other things. It is also behind enhanced digital accessibility, which translates into web-based content, services and products that are accessible to people with disabilities, be they cognitive, visual, hearing or motor. Emerging technologies are making advances in digital accessibility possible, and the results are quite exciting.
How accessible data enables better digital accessibility?
The World Web Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) was created for people to discuss, dialogue and learn about this topic linked to digital inclusion. From our point of view, there are many ways to approach accessibility in the digital environment, and the most widespread, as highlighted by GAAD, is the need to adapt technological tools to people with different abilities.
Data processing helps create accessible technology. With artificial intelligence and natural language processing, we can build faster, more accurate text-to-speech and closed captioning systems. Computer vision can improve the way images are processed and described, creating more meaningful text descriptions for people with visual impairments. The adaptive hardware will allow people with motor disabilities to use eye movements to navigate their devices. And the list goes on. The AI models behind it (and the data they are trained on) will allow these technologies to get smarter over time.
The smart technology storage connection
As with all of these high-performance computing-based technologies, success comes down to data. Although it sounds redundant, creating accessible experiences digitally requires accessible data. Slow insights translate into bottlenecked AI data pipelines, which in turn means lagging technology. These huge gains require faster and more powerful data storage.
At Pure, we also view data insight as an access issue. Data storage and analysis was once the province of people and organizations with very deep pockets and very complex technology. But thanks to advances in data storage and availability, this accessibility gap between industries and segments of the economy is closing.
The trend is not just about looking for more cost-effective solutions for data storage, but also about features that make access to data and information available beyond a small group of corporate analysts and technology administrators. Health and scientific research organizations, nonprofits, and NGOs have a critical need for data processing to drive breakthroughs in fighting disease, understanding climate change, or addressing the refugee crisis, to name a few. examples.
When highly accessible insights lead to breakthroughs
We see examples every day of the benefits of increased accessibility of data warehousing and analytics solutions. In genomics research, where researchers will generate up to 40 exabytes of data per year by 2025, organizations that perform sequencing and analysis need massive data pipelines, as well as a data architecture with access for a wide range of applications and use cases. .
The Australian Center for Genome Research (AGRF) provides critical genomic data services to researchers and clinicians around the world in the biomedical, clinical, agricultural and environmental fields. As its data needs grew, AGRF’s legacy disk-based storage systems could not meet customers’ needs for real-time genomic data. The organization replaced its legacy disk storage with Pure Storage® FlashBlade®, reducing prescan times from 18 hours to just 3 hours and checksum processes from 10 hours to 23 minutes.
Simplifying data access for everyone
GAAD points out that people with disabilities are among those most neglected by today’s digital products. One billion people around the world have a disability, and it is up to the developers and technologists behind these products to improve their accessibility. We are taking big steps.
A student in a dorm room, a startup focused on wildlife conservation—no matter what their data needs, there is a wide swath of people and organizations that deserve the benefit of easier access to it. As the state of the art of data storage and analysis improves, advances and insights will proliferate, and we will all benefit.
Pure Storage (NYSE: PSTG) makes data storage simple, forever. Pure offers a cloud experience that enables all organizations to get the most out of their data while reducing the complexity and management expense of the underlying infrastructure. Pure’s commitment to delivering true storage-as-a-service gives customers the agility to meet changing data needs at speed and scale, whether they’re deploying traditional workloads, modern applications, containers, or more. And with a certified customer satisfaction score in the top one percent of B2B companies, Pure’s ever-expanding list of customers is among the happiest in the world. For more information, visit purestorage.com.