Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport
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Policy Bureau
General Principles of Universal Design Policy
III. Specific measures

9. Application of IT and other new technologies

   Systems that use "Ubiquitous Location Information System" based on ubiquitous network technology that consists of IC tags *17 and other communication equipment and of portable information terminals etc., to help elderly people and handicapped people move freely and independently and to provide sightseeing information to foreign tourists visiting Japan by supplying users with information such as "travel routes," "transportation methods," and "destination" and other information by voice, by a letter, and in multiple languages are, with cooperation with regional governments and so on, expanded throughout Japan based on the results of corroborative testing.
   The conversion of geographical information into electronic form is promoted, information provision systems incorporating GIS technology are constructed, and map guidelines based on the concept of universal design to create tactile maps for visually handicapped people for example are prepared, so that anyone can easily and effectively use geographical information.
   Standardized IC card systems *18 that allow a user to use a single card to travel on railways, busses, and other transportation modes will be introduced nationwide to improve convenience to users, diversify services, and improve information provision.

(Specific cases)

  A "Ubiquitous Location Information System" that is a new social infrastructure that uses revolutionary ubiquitous network technology to supply needed information "at any time, anywhere, to anyone," will permit elderly and handicapped people to move freely and independently to places they wish to go. And it will provide needed sightseeing information to towns first visited by foreign tourists coming to Japan. Corroborative testing of free mobility assistance and sightseeing information provision are now being carried out in Kobe, Asakusa, and at the site of the Aichi Expo 2005, and , this system will be prepared for introduction nationwide,with cooperation with regional governments and so on, based on the knowledge obtained through the corroborative testing.
  IC card systems will be introduced nationwide as, for example, in the Kanto (7 prefectures) where common IC cards are scheduled to be gradually introduced by bus companies and railway companies starting in 2007, a transfer fee discount system and a point premium system based on links with commercial and cultural facilities will be introduced and measures taken to use common IC cards to enhance the convenience of users will be promoted.

*17 IC tag: An electronic tag housing an IC that is attached primarily in order to provide advanced real time control of the state of movement of objects and of people. Also called wireless tags and RFID tags, each is a module consisting of a wireless communication IC and antenna, and their special features are that they are compact, light and their information can be rewritten. (ICT = Integrated Circuit Tag).
*18  IC card system: A system using cards, each housing an integrated circuit. They can record far more data than an electromagnetic card and provide enhanced security.
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