Design and Evaluation of a Social Media Writing Support Tool for People with Dyslexia

ACM CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems

By: Shaomei Wu, Lindsay Reynolds, Xian Li, Francisco (Paco) Guzman

Abstract

People with dyslexia face challenges expressing themselves in writing on social networking sites (SNSs). Such challenges come from not only the technicality of writing, but also the self-representation aspect of sharing and communicating publicly on social networking sites such as Facebook. To empower people with dyslexia-style writing to express themselves more confidently on SNSs, we designed and implemented Additional Writing Help (AWH) – a writing assistance tool to proofread text produced by users with dyslexia before they post on Facebook. AWH was powered by a neural machine translation (NMT) model that translates dyslexia style to non-dyslexia style writing. We evaluated the performance and the design of AWH through a week-long field study with 19 people with dyslexia and received highly positive feedback. Our field study demonstrated the value of providing better and more extensive writing support on SNSs, and the potential of AI for building a more inclusive Internet.