New smartwatch will put affordable braille e-reading on wrists

By Chris Meadows
August 3, 2015 // 1 Comment

A new smartwatch, the Dot, is coming out, with timepiece, navigation, fitness tracking, and other functions—but instead of the usual smartwatch display, this one is a set of rising and falling pins to display in braille. With a 10-hour battery life, the watch is scheduled start taking pre-orders [...]

Bookshare introduces new products for disabled readers

By libertyc
February 11, 2013 // 0 Comments

Bookshare has developed two new digital products to help those with disabilities. Bookshare’s Web Reader and Bookshelf were announced at the Assistive Technology Industry Association conference, held January 30 through February 2 in Orlando, Fla. The products were created to help those with [...]

The Hospital: Where paper—not tech—still rules

By libertyc
November 6, 2012 // 6 Comments

My mother is home at last after a week in the hospital recovering from major surgery. I’m glad she’s at last on the mend, but I was struck by how tech-free her whole recovery experience has been so far. From the time she checked into the hospital a week and a bit ago until I visited her [...]

Three users of Speak For Yourself apply to intervene in AAC app patent case

By libertyc
July 17, 2012 // 2 Comments

I’ve lately covered the legal situation surrounding the Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) iPad app Speak For Yourself, which is the subject of patent litigation from larger AAC companies. Concerned parent Dana Nieder, whose 4-year-old nonverbal child Maya uses the app, has blogged [...]

Apple will reinstate AAC app Speak For Yourself if its developers win in court

By libertyc
June 28, 2012 // 4 Comments

The Register reports that Apple will reinstate the AAC app “Speak For Yourself” if the speech therapists who made the app are able to win the patent lawsuit brought against them. Apple pulled the app several weeks ago as part of the ongoing dispute between two larger AAC device companies and [...]

Augmentative communication app Speak For Yourself pulled from iTunes store at patent plaintiff request

By libertyc
June 13, 2012 // 6 Comments

A few months ago I wrote about the patent situation surrounding an app called “Speak For Yourself” that allows autistic and otherwise nonverbal people to communicate with others. A couple of companies who make much more expensive AAC (augmentative and alternative communication) devices are [...]

Patent lawsuit threatens inexpensive iPad app to let autistic speak

By libertyc
March 28, 2012 // 8 Comments

The iPad can be great for letting people read, but it can be just as good for letting certain people speak. As I’ve previously mentioned, autistic, nonverbal, and otherwise disabled people who have trouble talking can make use of AAC (augmentative and alternative communication) apps to say the [...]

Law student says long wait for digital versions of textbooks is discriminatory

By Chris Walters
July 3, 2011 // 0 Comments

A partially sighted law student at the University of Victoria in British Columbia has filed a complaint against the school and six textbook publishers, reports the Times Colonist, over what he says is a discriminatory procurement system for students who need alternative textbook [...]

Digital and Higher Education

By libertyc
May 27, 2011 // 6 Comments

A study sponsored by the Pearson Foundation for Harris Interactive surveyed 1,214 college students and 200 high-school seniors heading to college.  More than two-thirds of them showed overwhelming interest in tablet devices, and believed that tablets would transform higher education. [...]

New choices and access methods for the print-disabled

By libertyc
December 22, 2010 // 0 Comments

From the press release: NFB-NEWSLINE®, a free audible newspaper service for blind and print-disabled people, and the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped of the Library of Congress (NLS) today announced the launch of an exciting new access method, the NFB-NEWSLINE® [...]

Elsevier Enables its e-Books to Read Aloud, Increasing Access for People With Print Disabilities

By libertyc
December 8, 2010 // 1 Comment

From the press release: Elsevier, the world-leading publisher of scientific, technical and medical information products and solutions, announced today that it has enabled the text-to-speech option on all of its ePub book titles. The text-to-speech function enables an e-book to read aloud. This will [...]

Speech therapy uses ereaders

By libertyc
November 25, 2010 // 0 Comments

Reading devices help people with strokes, neurological disabilities In the picture are Chrissy Akers (left), a graduate student in speech pathology, and Tina Puglisi-Creegan, a clinical instructor, who are helping Tom Calteux “relearn the reading process with the aid of a Kindle years after [...]

To disabled, iPads offer versatility, affordability as assistive devices

By libertyc
November 18, 2010 // 0 Comments

iPads may be great for a number of forms of reading, but it is turning out they also make great assistive devices for the disabled. The Unofficial Apple Weblog has a story about Owen Cain, a boy with a degenerative disease who is finding the iPad is improving his life considerably. Thanks to the [...]

DAISY to Epub converter announced by Don Johnston Inc.

By libertyc
November 3, 2010 // 0 Comments

From the press release: Don Johnston Incorporated, a company that develops assistive technology for individuals with disabilities, just announced a new software conversion tool, DAISYtoEPUB, during the 2010 ATIA (Assistive Technology Industry Association) conference in Schaumburg, IL. The [...]

UN-backed initiative to enable the blind to access published works

By libertyc
October 28, 2010 // 1 Comment

From the UN News Centre: In an unprecedented United Nations-supported initiative, people who cannot see and those who have other forms of visual disability will have access to published works through publisher intermediaries who will create accessible formats of publications and share them with [...]

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