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Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday, December 31, 2020 - Volume 788

The Week's News in Adaptive Technology
https://toptechtidbits.com/

A Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication
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The Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday Email Newsletter is your #1 online resource for current news and trends in Adaptive Technology.

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Top Tech Tidbits is a sponsor and reader supported publication. Your sponsorships along with reader support are critical for us to be able to continue to provide free and unbiased adaptive technology news to thousands of blind and visually impaired professionals, educators and enthusiasts all over the world, each week. If you are already a sponsor, or have already made a contribution, thank you! If you are unable to sponsor or donate for any reason, please ignore this message. We are happy to have you here.

Top Tech Tidbits is a leading, not-for-profit Adaptive Technology publication that reaches over 6,500 Adaptive Technology professionals, educators and enthusiasts each week. Top Tech Tidbits offers a total of 12 Sponsorship Packages which are used to support the ongoing distribution of the publication. There are currently only 3 of these 12 packages still available. Secure one of these remaining packages today for just $325.00 USD for the next 3 months, or save $100.00 USD and join us for the year. All Sponsorship Packages are offered on a first-come, first serve basis. Please help us to support the ongoing distribution of this publication. Consider showing your support for Adaptive Technology over the next 3-12 months while enjoying some incredible benefits. Learn more at https://www.toptechtidbits.com/sponsorship-information.html or contact Aaron Di Blasi of Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. at sponsorships@toptechtidbits.com today.


Dear Tidbits Subscriber,


1) Top 3 Most Clicked Tidbits From Last Week

A.) Amazon Alexa Announces Two New Features: Call Captioning and Send My Shopping List: (13.6% of all clicks.)
https://www.toptechtidbits.com/3.html
B.) Microsoft Seeing AI App Updated with LiDAR Support Now Allows Users to Explore an Unfamiliar Space in 3D: (10.5% of all clicks.)
https://mspoweruser.com/microsoft-seeing-ai-app-lidar-support-space-in-3d/
C.) RealSAM Hub for the Visually Impaired Launches on Smart Speakers: (9.8% of all clicks.)
https://coolblindtech.com/realsam-hub-for-visually-impaired-people-launches-on-smart-speakers/

2) I Submit Stuff to Tidbits All the Time But it Never Gets Posted. How Come?

Our Publisher attempts to answer this question as definitively as possible for all of our content contributors:
https://www.toptechtidbits.com/4.html

3) GoodMaps Explore is now on Android

This is a popular iOS app for indoor and outdoor navigation. Now it's on Android:
https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.goodmaps.explore

4) iOS Access for All Book for iOS 14 Ready for Purchase

The EPUB and PDF versions of this large, comprehensive book are now available:
http://www.iosaccessbook.com/

5) RNIB's Technology For Life Special

This edition of RNIB Tech Talk features the RNIB Technology for Life team:
https://audioboom.com/posts/7755650-tech-talk-rnib-s-technology-for-life-special

6) Unboxing, Installing, Setting Up and Using an Amazon Fire TV Stick with the VoiceView Screen Reader
This is episode 90 of Mosen at Large:

https://mosenatlarge.pinecast.co/episode/c44788f239124cee/unboxing-installing-setting-up-and-using-an-amazon-fire-tv-stick-with-the-voiceview-screen-reader

7) Guide On Device And Data Access For Personal Safety

This PDF comes from Apple:
https://manuals.info.apple.com/MANUALS/1000/MA1976/en_US/device-and-data-access-when-personal-safety-is-at-risk.pdf

8) Facebook Groups for Hadley Discussion Groups

Each of Hadley's numerous blindness-oriented discussion groups has a corresponding Facebook group:
https://www.facebook.com/hadleyinstitute/groups

9) Blind Bargains Qast 220

The topic is mostly the free Spectrum Access app:
https://blindbargains.com/bargains.php?m=22052

10) Eyes on Success | December 30th 2020 | 2101 Inspirational Stories of the Visually Challenged

In her recent book, "Inspirational Stories of the Visually Challenged Plus Resources", Margaret Barnhart tells the stories of a number of visually impaired people she has known over the years. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Margaret about what inspired her to write the book, some of the people depicted in the book, and their journey with vision loss:
http://www.eyesonsuccess.net/show%20notes/show%20notes%202101.htm

11) RS Games Now Offers Windows Client as a ZIP File

This link seems to do better at not getting blocked by web browsers:
https://rsgames.org/downloads.php

12) Start 2021 with a New Coding Career with This Ultimate Set of Web Developer Courses

This is an ad, and while I'm sure they could never sell this package for what they claim it can sell for, it could be a viable set of courses nonetheless:
https://the-hookup.gadgethacks.com/how-to/start-2021-with-new-coding-career-with-ultimate-set-web-developer-courses-0384193/

13) How to Easily Batch Rename Files on Windows 10

This highlights one of the free PowerToys from Microsoft:
https://www.howtogeek.com/705534/how-to-easily-batch-rename-files-on-windows-10/

14) All The Windows 10 Tutorials You'll Ever Need

This vast collection from Gizmo's Freeware is kept up to date, and you can download a 125-page index which makes perusing the collection much easier:
https://www.techsupportalert.com/content/all-windows-10-tutorials-you-ll-ever-need.htm

15) Interactive Adventure and Escape Games with Alexa

Maybe you'll find something new from this list from APH:
https://www.aph.org/fun-with-alexa-interactive-adventure-and-escape-games/

16) Amazon Working on New System to License eBooks to Public Libraries

Amazon has indicated that it is deliberating licensing its digital titles to public libraries, though any concrete development has yet to be seen on the ground. It has however been confirmed that the Digital Public Library of America is in discussions with Amazon Publishing on this, though no one knows for sure how, when or if we can expect to see Amazon content available in public libraries:
https://goodereader.com/blog/digital-library-news/amazon-working-on-new-system-to-license-ebooks-to-public-libraries

17) Amazon Releases New Ways Alexa Can Help You Stay Connected with Loved Ones

These new features include Group Calling, Call Captioning, joining a video conference call with Alexa through Zoom and Amazon Chime on Echo Show 8 devices and the ability for kids to more easily connect with friends and loved ones via Fire Tablets:
https://coolblindtech.com/amazon-releases-new-ways-alexa-can-help-you-stay-connected-with-loved-ones/

18) ATIA 2021 Conference Registration Underway

Running January 25th 2021 through February 4th 2021, here you will find all official registration links including free, per seminar, individual, and group. The full registration package includes access to 150+ live and recorded education sessions with CEUs, networking activities, prize giveaways and more. Save 20% ($80) on the Full Conference registration package with the code "ATIA21HOLIDAYS". This code is valid through January 8th 2021:
https://www.atia.org/path-lms/?pathPage=%2Fatia%2Fcourses%2F22894

19) Amazon Kindle Unlimited on Sale in the USA

Amazon Kindle Unlimited is the paid monthly subscription program that gives users access to over one million audiobooks, ebooks, comics and magazines. Amazon is currently running a promotion where you can get some big discounts the longer you subscribe. You can get 20% off a 6 month plan, 33% off for 12 months and 40% off for two years. This promotion is only good for USA customers:
https://www.amazon.com/kindle-dbs/ku/retail-promotions-page?mode=digitalgift&tag=tbpre-20&ascsubtag=059L7W4lkvTaAp8lUfTxYzc

20) Tactile Atlas Helps the Blind 'See' Maps

A new atlas of Switzerland conquers the challenges of making maps designed to be read with the fingertips:
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2017/01/new-tactile-map-of-swiss-alps-for-the-blind/

21) List of Free AT Webinars | January 2021 | Adults, K-12 and AAC

Thanks to the Accessible Technology Coalition for compiling this listing of free webinars. Each is one hour unless noted. Pre-registration may be required:
https://at3centerblog.com/2020/12/28/free-at-webinars-january-2021/

22) Free Annual Full Day AT Training Sessions from The INDATA Project:

These full-day trainings are typically held at their Indianapolis facility and live-streamed via the Internet. Due to COVID-19, all 2021 trainings will be online only. Continuing Education Units (CEUs) are available for both online and in-person attendees. Training schedule includes January 19th 2021: Assistive Technology Tools and Supports for Remote Learning, April 8th 2021: Accessible Telehealth, June 10th 2021: Mobile Apps for Everyday Living, August 12th 2021: Remote Supports for Independent Living, November 4th 2021: Assistive Technology and Social Isolation:
https://www.eastersealstech.com/2020/12/16/2021-full-day-trainings-announced/

23) Webinar: New Year! New JAWS, ZoomText, and Fusion Features

Tuesday, January 12, 2021 | 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM EST or 4:30 PM to 6:00 PM GMT | If your holiday decorations are still up, they are not going anywhere. Leave the cleanup for another day and join Elizabeth Whitaker and the Vispero team to identify how you and your students can make use of the new features in JAWS, ZoomText, and Fusion in 2021:
https://aph.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_a5mVxelLRraLJA6wEUlBYg

24) Webinar: ZoomText: Web Browsing Tips for Students and Teachers

Friday, January 22, 2021 | 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM EST or 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM GMT | Conducting research on the internet and citing references is an essential skill for middle school and high school students. Students with low-vision can complete these tasks efficiently with tools built-in ZoomText. Join APH and Vispero for this virtual learning event and learn how to utilize ZoomText to effectively conduct internet research. Register here:
https://aph.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_cLlxijhQRECcyigVX-aV-A

25) Braille Literacy and Touchable Art. TouchPad Pro Assistive Technology is Developing the BrailleDoodle

While this product is not yet available, with its estimated retail price of approximately $65, it is already the cause of some excitement. What is it? The BrailleDoodle is a device about the size of an iPad but made in hard dark blue plastic. There is an array of hundreds of holes, placed tightly together, that covers the surface. Each hole contains a tiny element that can be pulled to the surface by a magnetic stylus and locked into place to create a touchable effect. The user erases a creation by pushing the elements back down with a satisfying "pop:"
About: https://coolblindtech.com/touchpad-pro-assistive-technology-has-developed-the-brailledoodle/
Indiegogo Link: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-brailledoodle-tppat-com#/

26) OrCam Named CES 2021 Innovation Awards Best of Innovation Honoree

OrCam received the award for its OrCam Read, a handheld device that has the ability to either read aloud either paragraphs or full pages of text from digital surfaces such as tablets or phones, or printed surfaces such as books or newspapers. It does not require internet connection, making it usable anywhere anytime. Submissions were reviewed by an elite panel of industry expert judges, based on innovation, engineering and functionality, aesthetic and design:
https://www.jpost.com/jpost-tech/orcam-named-as-ces-2021-innovation-awards-best-of-innovation-honoree-652546

27) Accessibility in 2020: How Did The Industry's Biggest Companies Perform?

Accessibility in technology improved across the board in 2020, but more must be done. In this detailed post from the Engadget blog they cover Zoom, Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Facebook, and Twitter along with how recommendations for how the industry can do better next year:
https://www.engadget.com/accessibility-in-tech-2020-150002855.html

28) Top Tech Tidbits Buy, Sell or Trade

No new products for sale this week. List your new, gently-used or refurbished item in FOUR (4) consecutive issues of Top Tech Tidbits for just $5.00 USD:
https://mvsltd.formstack.com/forms/buytidbitsclassified


Top Tech Tidbits Sponsor Classified Ads:


Sponsor: John Panarese

➜ This Week's Classified Ad:

Give the gift of accessibility to blind and visually-impaired students today. John Panarese invites you to change a life today by donating course time to someone that needs it. You may choose the recipient of your donation, and they may choose any course topic they like, or you may allow the course time that you donate to be allocated to those who are unable to afford it themselves. Either way, your support helps to keep blind and visually-impaired students connected, healthy and part of our community. Learn more today at: https://donorbox.org/macfortheblind.

MacForTheBlind.com logo.

Director, https://www.MacForTheBlind.com
Authorized Apple Business Affiliate
Apple Certified Support Professional
Apple Certified Trainer
Assistive Technology Consultant

Sponsor Since: June 4th 2020 Calendar icon.

Website: https://www.macfortheblind.com/ 🌐

Donate Course Time: https://donorbox.org/macfortheblind

Email: john@macfortheblind.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.


Sponsor: Donna Jodhan

➜ This Week's Classified Ad:

High profile educator, podcast commentator, and audio mysteries writer and producer! Donna Jodhan uses her expertise worldwide to ensure that persons with disabilities are not left out or left behind! Visit Donna at https://donorbox.org/author-donna-jodhan. Your donations will help to improve the lives of families with parents and kids with disabilities!

Author Donna Jodhan logo.

Author, Donna Jodhan Publications
President, Sterling Creations
President, Barrier Free Canada / Canada sans Barrieres

Sponsor Since: June 4th 2020 Calendar icon.

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.


Sponsor: Dean Martineau

➜ 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 topdot@gmail.com if interested.

Editor, Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday Email Newsletter

Top Tech Tidbits logo.

Sponsor Since: June 4th 2020 Calendar icon.

Website: https://www.toptechtidbits.com/ 🌐

About: Dean Martineau is the Founder and Editor of the Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday Email Newsletter.


Sponsor: Be My Eyes

➜ 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

Be My Eyes logo.

Sponsor Since: November 5th 2020 Calendar icon.

Website: https://www.bemyeyes.com/ 🌐

Download The App (iOS):
Be My Eyes for iOS - From the Apple App Store 📱

Download The App (Android):
Be My Eyes for Android - From the Google Play Store 📱

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.


Sponsor: Sprint IP Relay

➜ 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 deafblind@sprint.com. CART and ASL interpretation will be provided.

Sprint IP Relay logo.

Sponsor Since: October 22nd 2020 Calendar icon.

Website: https://www.sprintip.com/ 🌐

Email: scott.davert@t-mobile.com

Download The App (iOS):
Sprint IP Relay for iOS - From the Apple App Store 📱

Download The App (Android):
Sprint IP Relay for Android - From the Google Play Store 📱

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 scott.davert@t-mobile.com with any questions.


Sponsor: LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired
Adaptations Online Store

➜ 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!

LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired Adaptations Online Store logo.

Sponsor Since: October 1, 2020 Calendar icon.

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.


Sponsor: American Printing House (APH)

➜ 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/.

American Printing House (APH) logo.

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.


Sponsor: Barry Scheur

➜ 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 ☎; bscheur@scheur.com

Director, http://www.GuideLightsAndGadgets.us

GuideLights And Gadgets logo. The silhouette of a man with a cane in one hand and the harness of a trained guide dog in the other walk together through the grass at sunrise. GuideLights And Gadgets. Personal. Affordable. Responsive. Trusted.

Sponsor Since: June 25th 2020 Calendar icon.

Website: http://www.guidelightsandgadgets.us/ 🌐

For Gadgets and Leather Contact Barry at:
Phone: (617) 969-7500
Email: guidelights.and.gadgets@gmail.com

For All Things Dog Contact Kae at:
Phone: (781) 286-1696
Email: guidelightdogs@gmail.com

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!


Sponsor: A. T. Guys

➜ 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:
https://www.atguys.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=28&products_id=331

A. T. Guys logo.

Sponsor Since: June 11th 2020 Calendar icon.

Website: https://www.atguys.com/ 🌐

Phone: (269) 216-4798

Email: support@atguys.com

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 ☎.


Your Name Here
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The Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday Email Newsletter is a leading, not-for-profit Adaptive Technology publication that reaches over 6,500 Adaptive Technology professionals, educators and enthusiasts each week. Over the last 12 months our 100% legally-compliant opt-in subscriber list has had an Average Open Rate of 37%, an Average Click-Through Rate of 42% and an Average Bounce Rate of 2.8%.

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Any information for future issues of Top Tech Tidbits may be directed to our Editor, Dean Martineau, at: editor@toptechtidbits.com.


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