Check out this link to find out how Google is making sure that their forms apps are accessible to people with disabilities. http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2012/09/greater-accessibility-for-google-apps.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+blogspot/MKuf+(Official+Google+Blog)&m=1
Tag Archive for 'Accessibility'
Recently in our Computer Skills Class, we have had more and more people who need training on keyboarding using one hand. We looked at a couple of solutions for this. First off, we just tried having a person use a DVORAK keyboard. Basically, the DVORAK keyboard is just like a normal keyboard, but the layout of it is done in an ergonomic way. Here is a picture of the DVORAK layout:
If you are already used to the QWERTY keyboard, learning this new way of typing can slow you down at first, but in the end you will save time as the layout is much better for typing, as the QWERTY layout was actually made to slow you down to stop the old typewriters from jamming when people were typing.
The nice thing about using a DVORAK keyboard is that any standard QWERTY keyboard can be turned into a DVORAK one. For a step by step way to do this, check out this how to page.
Another solution to typing with one hand is the Maltron single hand keybord. Here is a picture of the keyboard:
As you can see, this keyboard is laid out much different than the standard keyboard, but it has a lot of ergonomic value in the layout of the keys. The only downfall to this keyboard is that the price tag (I will let you find that) and the fact that it is such a specialized keyboard. If you learn to type with this keyboard, you have to always use this layout, and if you need a replacement, you will have to get the whole device. It is not as easy to replace if you would use a standard QWERTY or DVORAK keyboard.
One other solution that you can use is FGHJ method. In this, the typist puts their fingers on the FGHJ keys and types. This method works, but like anything, takes a lot of practice to get proficient in. The best advantage to using this method, is that no special keyboard needs to be purchased. A one handed typer using this method could use any keyboard and anyone could also use their keyboard. Here is a picture of the layout and a description of what fingers use which specific keys:
For further instructions on how to use this method, check out this link: http://www.aboutonehandtyping.com/howto.html.
One last method of how you can type, is the use of Dragon Naturally Speaking. Dragon is a program that you can use to type using your voice. Basically, you talk into a headset or microphone, and the program turns your voice into text. For more information on Dragon, see their website: http://www.nuance.com/dragon/index.htm
There are a lot of different methods that people with one hand can use to type. Each specific method has its ups and downs, so if you are trying to decide which method might be best for you, you are going to be best suited to talk to a professional in the field. The nice thing is that there is plenty of options for people with this certain type of disability. Technology can level the playing field for you, so take advantage of it when you can!
With every new operating system that Microsoft has made, the accessibility features seem to get better and better. Even if you do have an older operating system, you can still make things easier to see. Here are some great tips from the Microsoft At Home website that you can use to make your computer more user friendly for your eyes:
1. Enlarge your text
2. Customize your display
3. Increase icon size
4. Use the magnifier
5. Enlarge your mouse pointer
6. Improve your screen resolution
For instructions of how to complete each of these tasks, you can check out this page:
AI Squared (the creator of the popular accessibility program ZoomText) just posted a great article yesterday regarding one of Verizon’s cell phones, the Samsung Haven. The Haven has a multitude of options that make it the perfect phone for a low vision user.
Here is the link to AI Squared’s full story, which spells out a lot of the great features of the phone:
Here is another review on the Samsung Haven:
Of course, an iPhone or Android device loaded up with accessibility software would also be a great option, but if you are looking to be on more of a budget, the Samsung Haven might be a better choice.
I just came across something that could definitely help you or a person you know if they have trouble tying their shoes. GREEPER laces are made to just be tightened up everytime you use them, instead of going through the whole tying process.
Here is a video that shows how they work:
Here is there website if you are interested in ordering some or finding out more information:
The title of this post sounds quite dangerous, but the first car that can be driven by the blind is in its test phase already. The National Federation of the Blind (NFB) and Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, College of Engineering (Virginia Tech) have announced that they have partnered to demonstrate the first street vehicle equipped with technology allowing a blind person to drive independently.
The car will be demonstrated during the pre race activities for the 2011 Rolex 24 At Daytona.
For more information on this car, check out this link:
To watch a video of the first street vehicle in action, check out this link:
At Capabilities, we help people who are blind or have low vision issues work on computers, but it has been nearly impossible for those individuals to use hand held devices to check their emails and do other out of office tasks. Could the iPad change this for these people? Check out this article for a little more insight:
And yes, the iPad may not quite be a “hand held” device, but it sure could come in handy to use when a desktop or laptop is unavailable. Hopefully hand held technology can be rolled out to everyone!
Here is a great article from the Society for Human Resource Management (www.shrm.org) regarding how all recruiting sites for employment should be accessible to everyone- even people with disabilities. If you have a website that you use to recruit staff, you need to read this article.
Check out the article here: