In 2006, two Australian programmers — Michael Curran and James Teh — released a free open-source screen reader called NVDA. This was a huge win for accessibility, because at the time, screen readers could cost more than the computers on which they ran. (Many screen readers remain very expensive.) The high cost of screen readers made the Internet inaccessible to millions of people with disabilities. Michael and James, who are both blind, decided to do something about it, and now, anyone who wants a screen reader can use NVDA for free.
Thanks to free tools like NVDA, more people have access to computer technology than ever before. NVDA has been translated by volunteers into more than 40 languages, and is used by people in more than 120 countries. Because the software is open-source, the code is available to everyone, and developers from around the world can contribute to making NVDA even better. People can also support NVDA by making a donation.