A tactile character is a sign or symbol that can be identified through touch. It generally consists of raised dots, bars, and shapes that can be read by someone with a visual impairment. Tactile characters provide an accessible form of communication for the visually impaired, enabling them to make sense of signs and symbols in their environment. In addition to signs, tactile characters are also used on maps, computer keyboards, books, and other surfaces to provide additional information about location or function. They can also be found as part of a braille alphabet or code system. 

The use of tactile characters helps people with visual impairments interact more easily with their environment and access important information necessary for daily life.  Tactile characters are an essential tool for improving accessibility and allowing individuals to live more independent and fulfilling lives.  With the right tools, everyone can take part in their communities and gain the same access to knowledge and resources. Tactile characters are a key component of that process, providing an invaluable resource for all.

Tactile characters are created using several different methods. Some are embossed onto special paper, while others are made with raised lines on a variety of surfaces. There are also computer programs and other software that can generate tactile characters. No matter the method used, these symbols provide a way for people with visual impairments to understand what their environment is telling them. 

The majority of English speaking countries have adopted the Unified English Braille (UEB) standard developed in 2004. There are two main types: Grade 1 uncontracted Braille and Grade 2 contracted Braille. Both systems consist of raised dots or bars representing letters, words, numbers, punctuation marks and other symbols. Each type has its own rules and regulations; it’s important to become familiar with the one used in your country. 

Tactile characters are an essential tool for increasing accessibility and enabling people with visual impairments to interact more easily with their environment. With the right tools and knowledge, everyone can gain access to important information and resources necessary for daily life. Tactile characters provide a way for individuals to understand their surroundings and make sense of signs, symbols, letters, words, numbers and punctuation marks in order to bridge gaps between them and their environment.

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