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Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday, December 24, 2020 - Volume 787The Week's News in Adaptive Technology
A Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication
Top Tech Tidbits. The world's #1 online resource for current news and trends in adaptive technology.
This Week's Featured Advertisement: A Big Year-End THANK YOU to our Sponsors! From all of us here at Top Tech Tidbits, we salute you. Without your support, Tidbits would not be here today. If you enjoy reading Tidbits each week, please join us in extending a big year-end thank you to each of the sponsors and supporters that have made Tidbits possible this year:
The publication and distribution of Top Tech Tidbits was made possible this year by sponsorship support from: Dean Martineau, Donna Jodhan / DonnaJodhan.com, John Panarese / MacForTheBlind.com, A.T. Guys / ATGuys.com, Barry Scheur / GuideLightsAndGadgets.us, American Printing House / APH.org, LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired Adaptations Online Store / Adaptations.org, Sprint IP Relay / SprintIP.com and Be My Eyes / BeMyEyes.com.
The publication and distribution of Top Tech Tidbits was made possible this year by individual support from: Gary Lee, Anonymous, Howard Goldstein, David Goldstein, Steven Wettlaufer and Shaun Everiss.
From all of us here at Top Tech Tidbits, including myself, Aaron Di Blasi, Publisher, Dean Martineau, Editor, as well as every one of the Mind Vault staff that donate their time to consult on each and every new section and Tidbit submission, we THANK YOU. We thank you for saving Tidbits in 2020, and we look forward to growing it with you in 2021!
Dear Tidbits Subscriber,
Substitute Editor This WeekOur editor, Dean Martineau, is out this week, so I, your normally behind the scenes publisher, along with team here at Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd., will be attempting to fill the gap with a range of Tidbits that have been submitted and which we have collected over the last week. We sincerely hope you enjoy reading them as much as we did. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year from all of us here at Top Tech Tidbits!
1) Top 3 Most Clicked Tidbits From Last WeekA.) Birth of a Universal Translator? How Alexa's New Live Translation for Conversation Works: (8.3% of all clicks.)
B.) Envision Announces Official Launch of AI-Powered Smart Glasses for The Blind and Visually Impaired: (8.0% of all clicks.)
C.) Overview of the BlindShell Classic Smartphone: (7.4% of all clicks.)
2) New Email Address For Top Tech Tidbits Content Contributors in 2021If you are a Top Tech Tidbits content contributor please be certain to use our updated email address for all content submissions in 2021:
3) Best Smartphones with a Physical QWERTY Keyboard 2020We take a dual approach to this request for information from both DigitalTrends and AndroidAuthority:
4) Microsoft Seeing AI App Updated with LiDAR Support Now Allows Users to Explore an Unfamiliar Space in 3DThe Microsoft Seeing AI app received a major update yesterday in the Apple App Store. This Version 4.0 update brings support for the LiDAR sensor available in the latest iPhone 12 Pro and iPhone 12 Pro Max. With this support users can now explore an unfamiliar space in 3D, using spatial audio. Here is the full change log:
5) 2020 Annual Aira Explorer SurveyThis annual survey is available from Tuesday, December 22nd until Thursday, December 31st. It is expected to take no longer than ten to fifteen minutes to complete. If you would like to use an Aira agent to complete the survey, an Aira Access Offer is available under "Promotions". The survey itself is anonymous unless you choose to share your identity:
6) RealSAM Hub for the Visually Impaired Launches on Smart SpeakersJust launched, the new RealSAM Smart Speaker solution is a dedicated hub for the blind and visually impaired, offering subscribers access to thousands of books, newspapers, podcasts, radio stations and information from a range of UK sight loss charities:
7) Amazon Alexa Announces Two New Features: Call Captioning and Send My Shopping ListThis week Amazon Alexa announced two new features, including Call Captioning and Send My Shopping List:
8) Studiously Recording. 3 Part Training Course on Using Studio Recorder from APHThis £50/$62 three-part course from Hartgen Consultancy starts on Wednesday, January 20th 2020 at 19:00 GMT. The training course uses JAWS as the screen-reader to work with Studio Recorder. Learn more here:
9) Free Zoom Workshop Series From HadleyLearn how to join a Zoom conference call no matter your level of vision. Workshops cover the basics of a Zoom invite, how to join by phone, computer or smartphone app, as well as how to participate during a session:
10) Wired Magazine's Tech Predictions for 2021In this lengthy annual post from Wired Magazine their Gadget Lab takes a stab at what the new year might just have in store for us all. Prognostications include an Apple TV with a better feature set, new smart home tools for energy efficiency, air purification, homeschooling setups, and connected fitness, some new home/office gear, and a whole lot more:
11) "Accessible Christmas" Application Developed in Madrid Allows Blind People to Enjoy Christmas LightsA research group at the Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) has developed and validated a mobile application that allows people with visual impairments to enjoy Christmas lights in the city of Madrid:
12) University of Washington on Creating Accessible VideosSome useful information for anyone wishing to create more accessible videos:
13) Job Opening | Zoom Seeks Accessibility SpecialistIn this role you will define the accessibility requirements for Zoom native and web applications and identify areas of improvement for accessibility, among many other tasks. Learn more and apply on LinkedIn at:
14) Job Opening | Full Time | Remote | Manager, Accessibility Services, Western Governors UniversityMinimum Qualifications: Master's Degree. Deadline to Apply is December 30th 2020 at 0:00 GMT:
15) Top Tech Tidbits Buy, Sell or TradeWe have one product for sale this week. Review it below or on the Tidbits website at:
Top Tech Tidbits Sponsor Classified Ads:
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:It's Boxing Day and Donna Jodhan; world-renowned audio mysteries writer and producer has the perfect gift for you to give to parents and children with disabilities! Santa's Secret Toy Shop! Filled to overflowing with mystery, wonder, hope, and joy! Let's help those most affected by those Covid challenges! Visit Donna at https://donorbox.org/author-donna-jodhan. Your donations will be used to provide important tips on scam and privacy protection for families of parents and kids with disabilities.
Sponsor Since: June 4th 2020
Website: https://www.donnajodhan.com/ 🌐
Donate: https://donorbox.org/author-donna-jodhan ❤
About: My name is Donna J. Jodhan and I have been blind all my life, but that has not prevented me from living independently as someone who takes care of my own home and garden, travels regularly for my job, and runs my own business. I am an entrepreneur, blogger, author, audio mystery writer, advocate, podcaster, and law student. I enjoy cooking, ice skating, playing chess, composing on my electronic keyboard, and communicating with nature.
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:Would you like to learn to control your computer with your voice, or to create documents using your voice rather than the keyboard? There are several tools to accomplish these objectives. I can provide training in their use. Write to me at email@example.com if interested.
Sponsor Since: June 4th 2020
Website: https://www.toptechtidbits.com/ 🌐
About: Dean Martineau is the Founder and a Contributing Editor to the Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday Email Newsletter.
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:Accessible Pharmacy, the new, home delivery pharmacy with a blind founder, is bringing its full range of support and services to Be My Eyes. Users of the Be My Eyes app can now call Accessible Pharmacy directly to get support with medication, medical devices, and even home delivery COVID testing. With a fully trained and discreet pharmacy staff on call from 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM Pacific, Accessible Pharmacy is the new way for blind and low vision consumers to get an easy, frictionless pharmacy experience. Call today — and you'll never have to take an Uber to the drugstore again. https://www.bemyeyes.com/blog/accessible-pharmacy-joins-be-my-eyes.
Lead Contact: Will Butler, VP of Community
Sponsor Since: November 5th 2020
Website: https://www.bemyeyes.com/ 🌐
Download The App (iOS):
Download The App (Android):
About: Be My Eyes is a free mobile app that allows anyone who needs video support to get assistance from a dynamic range of volunteers and company customer support professionals from around the world. With more than 4 million volunteers and dozens of companies offering on-demand visual interpretation and support, Be My Eyes is a free, unlimited way to bridge gaps and get access to whatever information you need — 24 hours a day, seven days a week, in any language. Download the app today from the Apple App Store or Google Play.
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:One challenge someone with a combined vision and hearing loss must address is accessing the phone system without adequate vision or hearing. Individuals with no hearing but vision can access the phone system using a videophone. Those with no vision, but who have hearing can use the phone as it was intended. How would someone with vision and hearing loss continue to call doctors, contact emergency services such as 911, arrange for medical appointments, contact businesses, or friends and family who do not text? One solution, for those living in the U.S. with a form of hearing loss, is Sprint IP Relay. Come learn more at our webinars, specialized for the DeafBlind community. 11/10 at 10 AM EST, 11/12 at 4:30 PM EST, 11/17 at 1:00 PM EST, or 11/19 at 1:00 PM EST. RSVP by November 6th 2020 to firstname.lastname@example.org. CART and ASL interpretation will be provided.
Sponsor Since: October 22nd 2020
Website: https://www.sprintip.com/ 🌐
Email: email@example.com ✉
Download The App (iOS):
Download The App (Android):
Accessibility Customer Care: (800) 676-3777 ☎
About: Sprint IP Relay allows people who are Deaf, Hard of Hearing, DeafBlind or with a Speech Disability to make or receive phone calls using an internet connection, a computer, tablet or smartphone. Simply type what you want to say to the operator, the operator relays the message to the person you called and then types the caller's response back to you. This process is all done through text, so a user with a braille display, for example, would not need to see the screen or use their voice to communicate with the hearing caller. The Sprint IP Relay service is available at no charge for those who are eligible. Registration is required to verify an individual's identity and residency. If you are a person who is deaf, hard of hearing, DeafBlind or have a speech disability, you will qualify to register for the Sprint IP Relay Service. The user can call anyone at any time within the United States and its territories. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:Featured Products: Revolution Cane Tip: Standard Roller Tip: $14.50 | Locator Dots: Small Pack of 6 (Clear or Orange): $2.00 | NFB Metal Cane Tip: $3.00 | TMAP - On Demand Tactile Street | Map (set of two maps): $25.00 | Ambutech Aluminum Folding Cane: $35.00 | NFB Chris Park Telescoping Cane: $45.00 | BoldWriter 20 Pen (Individual or 6-pack): $2.00 | Bump Dots: Mixed (50 count): $7.00 | Braille Apple Catalina VoiceOver Guide OSX 10.15 (3 volumes) - Latest Manual: $52.00 | SpeedDots iPhone Tactile Screen Protector, Phone Layout: $12.00 | NFB Chris Park 7-Piece Folding Cane: $50.00 | Visit https://adaptations.org/ to learn more today!
Sponsor Since: October 1, 2020
Website: https://adaptations.org/ 🌐
Toll Free: (888) 400-8933 ☎
Local: (415) 694-7301 ☎
About: Founded in 1902, San Francisco's LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired promotes the independence, equality and self-reliance of people who are blind or have low vision. Adaptations is your online go-to for tools, technology, and accessible solutions for blind and visually impaired people.
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:APH's Braille Trail Reader LE refreshable braille display will start your students' braille journey with a positive technology experience that allows them to discover the joys of reading and writing. This 14-cell braille display features a Windows app for easy file transfer between teachers and students. Also perfect for the working adult: users can take notes, and create, edit and read text and braille files. Learn more at https://www.aph.org/product/braille-trail-reader-le/.
Website: https://www.aph.org/ 🌐
Toll Free and Customer Support: (800) 223-1839 ☎
Phone: (512) 895-2405 ☎
Fax: (512) 899-2284 ░
YouTube Video: https://youtu.be/WENRlCNDsxQ 🎥
Free Apps & Actions from APH: https://www.aph.org/free-apps-from-aph/ 📱
About: Since 1858, the American Printing House for the Blind has operated in Louisville, Kentucky as the world's largest nonprofit organization, creating accessible learning experiences through educational, workplace, and independent living products and services for people who are blind and visually impaired. APH believes that the future belongs to everyone. By offering innovative products and services, APH opens up a door of opportunities for lifelong independence and success.
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:GuideLights And Gadgets: End of Year Pricing. New! BN Touch Plus Form Fitting Leather Case; $60. Inquire about half price and closeout bag deals! Mystery Gadget and Doggie bags; Through Dec. 31, we will double your choice of $25 or $50 gadgets-leather or "all-things-dog" grab bags; minimum $50 or $100 of items. New! Evo 10 Portable Daisy Player with Internet Radio, Podcatcher, timer, lots more; Ivona Joey and Sally; Mystic Access tutorial, leather case, SD card; $225! Leather Orbit Writer case; Braille on the go; $30. Accurate Non-Contact Talking Infrared Thermometer; $55 w/shipping. Call Barry: (617) 969-7500 ☎; email@example.com ✉
Sponsor Since: June 25th 2020
Website: http://www.guidelightsandgadgets.us/ 🌐
About: Our Scope of Products: We specialize in 3 lines of products, all intended to assist in access to adaptive electronics, enhance experiences for guide dog teams, and offer practical solutions for organization and travel with a variety of leather bags, pouches, and backpacks. Then there are the random products that are included, just for fun! We enjoy working with our customers 1-on-1 to their money is well spent and not wasted on something they may not use. In thinking about our customers and whether we will carry a product our guiding motto is that it must be: practical, affordable, simple, tested, and accessible (the pasta principle) and it seems to work very well.
What We Do: We bring our business either via zoom, phone, or to your conference or convention, to give each customer a chance for questions and where possible, "hands on" evaluation of the merchandise. Kae and I test and use each product as blind users before we put it in our catalog. In the case of products for guide and service dogs, our own three guides, Thor, Debra and Melody, are engaged in the process of evaluating the usefulness, durability, and/or fun of the product. We want each of our products to be useful, accessible, afforable, and, whenever possible, fun! Our inventory is constantly changing, so a visit to us is never the same experience twice!
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:If you're like me, you probably have more things to plug into your computer than available ports. That's why we've now added the Plugable USBC 7-in-1 Hub. Plug it into your laptop and you will get 3 USB ports, SD and Micro SD card slots, a USBC charging port, and an HDMI video port. It's available now for just $29.95:
Sponsor Since: June 11th 2020
Website: https://www.atguys.com/ 🌐
Phone: (269) 216-4798 ☎
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ✉
Skype: atguys ✆
Twitter: https://twitter.com/atguys (@atguys) ✍
Facebook: https://facebook.com/atguys ✍
About: ATGuys.com. Your access technology experts, home for cool gadgets, accessories, and more. Our products are all tested to work great for blind and visually impaired users but also work just as well for anyone. If there's an item you're looking for, or if you have a question, please don't hesitate to send us a message or call (269) 216-4798 ☎.
➜ This Week's Classified Ad:There is still time to put that special package under the tree! And John Panarese world renowned Apple trainer and consultant is ready to help you! Purchase one of his gift certificates and help families of parents and kids with disabilities! Bring knowledge to their fingertips from the comfort of their homes! Visit: https://donorbox.org/macfortheblind to learn more.
Sponsor Since: June 4th 2020
Website: https://www.macfortheblind.com/ 🌐
Donate Course Time: https://donorbox.org/macfortheblind ❤
Email: email@example.com ✉
About: Macfortheblind.com is a place specifically for blind people who are either users or potential users of Macintosh computers or iOS devices, such as the iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, iPod Nano, Apple Watch and Apple TV. I am a blind individual who has used the Mac ever since VoiceOver became available in OS 10.4 Tiger, and I own an iMac, Mac Mini, Mac Book Pro laptop computer, an iPhone 6S, an iPad Air, an Apple Watch and an Apple TV 4th Generation. In addition, I am an Authorized Apple Business Affiliate, and as an Apple Certified Support Professional and an Apple Certified Trainer, I offer training and technical support for individuals, agencies and organizations on the mac and all iDevices, as well as offering assistive technology consulting.
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email@example.com ✉ or (262) 344-6233 ☎ | Description: Perfect condition. This embosser is in pristine condition. It has been used a few times for testing. Includes extra braille paper. In its original box. This device also has printing and industry-leading graphics. Am willing to negotiate on price. I will cover the cost of | this short 10-step form ✔ to secure your Buy, Sell or Trade Classified Advertisement today. | Learn More: https://www.toptechtidbits.com/buy-sell-trade.html 🌐 |
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POLLS:Answering Questions: Are you an experienced or proficient user of AT (Assistive Technology)? Do you represent a company or organization that serves and / or operates within the AT (Assistive Technology) space? If you are, or if you do, we would love to hear your opinions on any of our many AT-related Polls. Weigh in and view the results for any Top Tech Tidbits Poll on the Top Tech Tidbits website at: https://www.toptechtidbits.com/polls.html:
Asking Questions: Do you have an intriguing AT-related question that you'd like to see posed to the Tidbits community? While we cannot guarantee that all submissions will be utilized, we promise to choose the very best of them to be included in future issues. Available Poll Types are: Multiple Choice, Checkboxes, Drop-Down List, Scale of 1 to 5, and Ranking in Order of Preference. You may send your AT-related questions to: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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