Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday, October 26, 2023 - Volume 934
The 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.
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Ongoing Weekly Distribution Made Possible By Support From: A.T. Guys, GuideLights And Gadgets, HumanWare, Freedom Scientific, Pneuma Solutions, Carroll Center for the Blind, HIMS, Inc., Access Tech Live, Clusiv, Fable, Aira, WayAround, The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc., Sterling Adaptives, LLC, AYES.ai, Echobatix, Glidance, The Accessibility Guy and Wordvoyance.
Dear Tidbits Subscriber,
1) Top 5 Most Clicked Tidbits From Last Week
A.) Some iOS VoiceOver Bugs and Workarounds | Pam Coffey | Tech-VI List
As I am writing this, we are on iOS 17.0.3. These are some of my reflections on the new operating system, and a few workarounds for dealing with a few bugs and changes. This is by no means an exhaustive list, as there are numerous apps I have never used, and others I haven't used since the update; however, it will hopefully be of some assistance to those yet to update, as well as for less experienced users:
B.) I'm Totally Blind. Artificial Intelligence Is Helping Me Rediscover the World | Milagros Costabel | Slate
If someone told me, a couple of weeks prior, that I would be taking pictures of everything that crossed my path, I would have laughed in their face. But there I was, sitting on the sidewalk, looking to capture the perfect shot that would allow me to learn a little more about the world I am a part of: the expression of the guide dog who is always by my side; the bustle of a busy street full of buildings, cars, and signs; the box of desserts I just bought, wondering whether it looked appetizing enough to bring to a family dinner. I can't see these things, which are so easy to take for granted, with my own eyes. But A.I. has now brought me as close to being able to do so as I'll probably ever be:
C.) Passkeys: What They Are and Why You Need Them ASAP | PC Mag
We tell you what passkeys are, how you can get them, and where you can use them to log in securely without exposing your email address or creating a password:
D.) How to Create Audio Description for YouTube Videos | Rebecca Klein | 3PlayMedia
More than 1 billion hours of videos are watched on YouTube each day. 71% of people with disabilities leave a website immediately if it's not accessible. You don't have to be a mathematician to understand these stats and their implications. If you want your YouTube videos to reach their full potential, you need to make them accessible with captions and audio description. But how? Until 2023, YouTube didn't support audio description in the same way it supported captions. For captions, users could upload an SRT file with their video, but there was no similar solution for audio description. This meant that if a user was going to add audio description, it had to be embedded into the video and uploaded as one version. However, YouTube recently launched the ability to add audio description tracks to videos — a win for media accessibility! While the audio description capabilities are not available to all users yet, YouTube indicates that they will continue to roll this feature out to more creators:
E.) Demonstration And Hands on Overview of the Monarch Graphics Braille Tablet From HumanWare / APH | David Woodbridge | Editor | Audio Only
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7) AI Updates
Skip this Tidbit to skip all updates on AI.
A) Generative AI: A Guide For Beginners | Aaron Di Blasi | Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
Navigating the world of generative AI can feel overwhelming, especially for those just taking their initial steps into this burgeoning field. A question I am frequently asked is, “So, where do I start with generative AI? What's the first step? And which tool should I use?” The tool you choose will be contingent upon your specific needs and objectives. Do you wish to distill vast amounts of text? Craft compelling narratives? Or create stunning visual artwork? To assist you in making these decisions, I have compiled this introductory guide:
B) You Can Replace Siri With ChatGPT On Your iPhone, Here's How | BGR
Publisher (Di Blasi): This article was originally published on March 12, 2023, but with the recent release of GPT-4V, and a continued silence from Apple on the subject of AI, it may now be even more relevant than it was before.
C) Use A Picture Of Yourself To Make AI Write Like You | Medium: Subscription Required
Here's how to capture your personal writing style with a photo and ChatGPT-4V:
8) Apple Updates
Skip this Tidbit to skip all updates on Apple.
A) iPhone 15 Pro Max Review: The Action Button Defines Apple's Most Accessible iPhone To Date | Forbes: Subscription Required
The 15 Pro Max truly is the most accessible iPhone yet for two primary reasons: the titanium body and the Action button:
B) iPhone 15 Pro Max zoom Camera Is A Big Win For Accessibility — Here Are Three Ways How | iMore
Apple launched its iPhone 15 series on September 22, 2023 and one of the big highlights was a new lens in the 15 Pro Max:
C) Hands On With HomePod & HomePod Mini's New Features In Software Update 17 | Apple Insider
The HomePod and HomePod mini didn't get as much love in Apple's recent OS updates as the rest of the lineup, but the recently-released 17.0 update still brought along some new features for us to test out:
D) Here Are Six Products Apple Plans To Improve With AI | iMore
Apple has always been a forward-thinking company but its unwillingness to embrace AI has been considered a "pretty big miss" internally. Now, it is trying to catch up by pumping millions of dollars a year into AI development and a few of its use cases have been revealed:
E) Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2: Double Tap is Here | CNET
Now you can tap away to your heart's content to control the Apple Watch:
9) JAWS Power Tip: How To Use Speech and Sound Schemes
JAWS speaks all text using the same voice by default. Speech and Sounds Schemes enable you to distinguish between different types of information using a different voice or specified sound. This includes: Different fonts. Bolded, italicized, or underlined text. Foreground or background colors. Indented text. Choose from existing schemes or create your own scheme for further customization. Here's how:
10) Table of Contents in Word for Accessibility — Create in 4 Easy Steps | The Accessibility Guy
Here we dive into the essential skill of creating a Table of Contents in Microsoft Word. This simple yet powerful feature not only organizes your documents but also enhances accessibility. Before we jump into the how-to, make sure your document contains heading styles. These styles are the foundation for generating an accessible Table of Contents:
11) How To Use Libreoffice Accessibility Check To Ensure Your Documents Are Readable By All | ZDNet
How do you ensure that your documents are easy to read and accessible to those who use assistive tech? If you use LibreOffice, there's now a built-in tool for that very purpose:
12) Dictation Not Working on iPhone/iPad? Try These 10 Fixes | Switching2Mac
Whether you're jotting down notes, sending a message, or drafting an email, Dictation takes the tedium out of typing on the iPhone by converting speech to text in real-time. Starting iOS 16, it's also faster, works for longer, and functions without an internet connection. However, the feature isn't without issues:
13) If You Prefer Classic Notepad To The New Tabbed Version | Brian Vogel
To restore truly classic (non-tabbed) Notepad under Windows 11, do the following: 1. Open Settings, Apps, Advanced App Settings. 2. In Advanced App Settings, activate the App Execution aliases option. 3. In App execution aliases, locate Notepad in the list. Note: The list is not alphabetically ordered. Throw the toggle to the Off position. That should be it. When a text file is opened with Notepad, the classic version of the program should open rather than the new tabbed one.
14) How To Switch Back To The Old Notification Sounds On iPhone | Cult of Mac
In iOS 17, many of the default sounds for notifications, alarms and timers have been changed — but how do you get back the old sounds if you don't like the new ones? This article shows you how:
16) JAWS, Zoomtext and Fusion 2024 Have Been Released
Below are links to what's new in each release:
16) Leasey 8.1 Has Been Released | Hartgen Consultancy
Leasey 8.1 for JAWS 2024 and earlier is released! This is the first public build. The next one is already being worked on to be released in November. https://www.hartgen.org/leaseydemo. New in Build 8107. Completely compatible with JAWS 2024. It is hoped that the majority of difficulties with the new Results Viewer have been overcome. When in the Placemarker Dialog Box, ALT+A should activate the Add button. Pressing the Leasey key then ALT+K should route the JAWS cursor to the focused area of the web page and left click. ALT+Windows+Grave Accent starts Microsoft dictation. Within Microsoft Outlook, and you press the Leasey key then ALT+Windows+N, you should now be able to create a new Leasey Note. The following keystrokes are available when Face in View is active. These keys are pressed by themselves: O: Close Face in View. D: Face in View description. L: Face in View brightness. P: Face in View Picture Smart. U: Face in View change confidence threshold.
17) Orbit Writer — Firmware Update
We have a firmware update now available for the Orbit Writer. The package (vB0.00.00.01r08) is now available. For instructions to upgrade the Orbit Writer please refer the section 15.2 of the User Guide (v1.5) available on the website. This firmware upgrade now allows you to use the voice record feature in iMessage and WhatsApp when using the Orbit Writer. This works while using the Keyboard-HID protocol to connect with your smartphone. When the focus is on the Voice record icon of WhatsApp or iMessage, if you long-press the Select key, it will enable the recording. Press the space key to stop the recording. This is the only change in this version and if you do not wish to use this feature, an upgrade is not necessary:
18) 10 New Windows 11 Features In The October 2023 Update To Try Now | Computer World
Windows 11's big update for the year isn't only about artificial intelligence. There are lots of other updates to check out, including the return of many users' favorite taskbar option:
19) Windows 11 Will Add Bluetooth LE Audio Support For Hearing Aids | Windows Central
Microsoft just released Windows 11 Preview Build 25977 to Insiders in the Canary Channel. The update adds Bluetooth LE Audio support for hearing aids. Windows Location controls have been improved as well in the latest build:
20) New Free Update Now Available To Supernova & Dolphin ScreenReader Users Running Version 22
This update to the SuperNova software range and ScreenReader to version 22.04 includes:
21) Pixel 8 Pro Review | Accessible Android
This is a Dual Pixel 8 Pro Review by John Dyer and Warren Carr. The Pixel 8 Pro is undoubtedly a great device. Google continues to enhance the Tensor chip, and with the Tensor 3 powering the Pixel 8 series, we are in for a treat. This detailed written review, from an accessibility point of view, has all the things you need to know about the Pixel 8 Pro:
22) Accessibility Options in Virtual Reality Gaming: A Case Study with Myst | Meryl Evans | Equal Entry
There's no such thing as 100% accessibility. There will always be at least one person who prefers something different from the majority. If there's one thing video games are known for regardless of the platform, it's providing gameplay options. The options go beyond accessibility. Game developers want to let players customize their settings to ensure they have the best gaming experiences. When it comes to virtual reality, providing options can be a tricky proposition. This is because virtual reality has a unique vocabulary that not everyone knows or understands:
23) New Trials Aim to Restore Hearing in Deaf Children — With Gene Therapy | Wired: Subscription Required
For the first time, researchers are testing an approach that involves replacing a mutated gene in the inner ears of children with severe hearing loss:
24) Activator Braille Display | Easter Seals Tech
Help Tech is a world leader in the design and manufacture of Braille devices. The company offers quite a variety of different Braille displays, keyboards, and more. One of their available devices is the Activator Braille Display. According to the device's description: "The Activator extends the proven features of Help Tech's Braille displays — such as the concave Braille cells and the patented ATC technology for automatic switching — with forward-looking innovations from unprecedented hardware and software solutions in a modern design. Combining the potential of the iPhone, the Activator offers a next-generation Braille experience..." One neat feature of the Activator is its patent-pending folding keyboard with Braille input. With just one flick of the wrist, this ergonomic Braille keyboard becomes a "fully-fledged computer keyboard" with tactile-switching characteristics:
25) Digital Inclusion Resources from the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) | APH ConnectCenter
Your child may come home with a school iPad, Chromebook, or laptop, and you may be aware of increased digital instruction and activities. If you recognize accessibility issues, you may need resources to help your child's team with accessible technology. The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) conducted the Access and Engagement research series during the pandemic and the Barriers to Digital Inclusion study last year, finding education is still one of the top areas of accessibility concerns. AFB has created valuable resources for parents, students, and professionals to help with this rising issue:
26) Adthos Creates AI News And Information Service For Radio Stations | Radio Today UK
AI Audio platform Adthos has showcased its latest product by generating personalized and localized audio news content for radio stations across the US. Adthos for News allows broadcasters to produce a variety of news content in multiple languages using advanced synthetic voice and AI technology:
27) Proton CAPTCHA: New Privacy-First CAPTCHA Defense Against Bots
Proton CAPTCHA has already been deployed to millions of users, completely replacing traditional CAPTCHAs for sign-up and login processes. According to the company, their goal is to continually refine CAPTCHA technology, reducing inconvenience for genuine users while making it increasingly formidable for attackers. Users with visual impairments can still verify themselves through computational proof of work, offering an alternative to traditional CAPTCHAs:
28) NVDA 2023.3rc2 Available For Testing
29) Refuge In Blogs And The Indieweb | Robert Kingett
After some thoughts about the IndieWeb, a movement to bring back personal websites and blogs, this blind writer lists some indie accessible blogging platforms and accessible RSS readers as well as ways to find blog feeds other than search engines:
30) Why Not Just Move to Windows? One Perspective | Paul Martz | AppleVis
In 2008, despite my failing eyesight, my Windows laptop with ZoomText empowered me to operate my own software development business. I had partnered with Bob, a Mac user. We both had prior Unix experience. With Windows, Mac, and Unix covered, we were a cross-platform development powerhouse. At a customer site, while Bob was doing a presentation on cache optimization, I mistakenly dumped a binary file in a console window, and my system speaker beeped for every unprintable character. At maximum volume. For thousands of characters. To silence the ensuing cacophony, I put the laptop to sleep by closing the lid. "Get a Mac," Bob said, eliciting a few chuckles from our clients. I laughed along too. After all, the comment was intended as humor. But there was a lot buried in those three words:
31) The Death of The Home Phone? AT&T Lost 416,000 Home Phone Customers In Just 3 Months | October 19, 2023
Today, AT&T reported results for the third quarter 2023 and announced that in just three months, it lost 416,000 home phone customers from both voice internet protocol services and its traditional phone service. AT&T also lost 28,000 DSL customers as it transitions away to fiber and 5G home internet. This all comes as AT&T plans to shutter around half its copper network by 2025, offering customers voice over internet protocols (VOIP), or phone over the internet, as an alternative. AT&T customers can keep their DSL for now, but the company is starting to push alternatives to get them to switch, including its new 5G home internet service called AT&T Internet Air:
32) NV Access In-Process For October 19, 2023
33) October Accessibility Newsletter from TPGi
➜ Featured Surveys
Closing: Ongoing | Surveys From APH
Surveys help inform APH of the greatest needs in the community so they can gear their efforts toward making sure those needs are met. Ongoing APH surveys can be found here:
Closing November 3, 2023 | Participants Needed for AFB Research Study on Website and App Accessibility | APH
Researchers at the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) are conducting a study to document the accessibility challenges that blind, low vision, and deafblind people experience while using websites and mobile apps in daily life. We are looking for participants to fill out a series of daily diaries sharing your experiences with websites and mobile apps in real time. We are asking interested individuals to fill out this brief interest form, and we will select 20-25 people to complete the diaries to get a balance of experiences. If you are selected to complete the diaries, you will be asked to spend 5-10 minutes each evening answering questions on a short online survey for 10 consecutive days in November 2023. Those who are selected and complete all the diaries will receive a $40 gift card:
Closing November 23, 2023 | Use of Cell Phone Apps to Assist with Street Crossings | Brooke Kruemmling
We are doing a study to find out how reliable select cell phone apps may be for certain street-crossing tasks. This survey is designed to learn more about ways in which people who are blind or visually impaired may be using select cell phone apps to get assistance with street crossings. This survey does not include questions about GPS apps. This study is being conducted at Pennsylvania College of Optometry at Salus University. Completing the survey should take less than 10 minutes:
➜ Featured Podcast Episodes
October 12, 2023 | Tek Talk Welcomes John Gassman And Myrna Votta Of The Tek Talk Planning Committee To Discuss Reading Kindle Books
Kindle has over 6 million titles in its US Kindle Store. These books can be read using personal computers, Braille devices, smart phones, and Amazon Echo devices. John and Myrna will provide an overview of using these devices to read Kindle content:
October 12, 2023 | White Canes: Fears, Stigmas, and Uses | Hadley Presents: A Conversation with the Experts
Lots of questions, concerns, and stereotypes connected to use of the white cane. In this episode, we address several of them from past discussions on the topic:
October 18, 2023 | Google & XBox Accessibility Updates, VirtuaWalk at CES & The End for Sunu Band | DoubleTap
Today on the show, Steven and Shaun discuss the sad news of the closure of the company behind Sunu band, a mobility aid that used sonar and was worn on the wrist to help someone navigate their surroundings while using a cane or guide dog. We feature a statement from their founder. Also, there's a slew of accessibility updates to talk through, from Google and Xbox. Read more from Paul Thurrott's blog. And there's a chance to learn about a new treadmill that lets you walk and turn safely within a virtual reality setting. Steven caught up with the CEO of the company VirtuaWalk:
October 19, 2023 | "Holding On to Hope" | Insights & Sound Bites Podcast | Hadley
Today we hear from Ed who shares how the source of hope for him has changed with time:
October 20, 2023 | An In-Depth Look at the Microsoft Office Ribbon and JAWS | Freedom Scientific
Are you looking for ways to navigate Microsoft Office applications more efficiently? Want to know where to locate commands when you need them? Listen in to our podcast, "An In-Depth Look at the Microsoft Office Ribbon and JAWS." Objectives: We'll provide an overview of the ribbons in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook, plus show you how to: Navigate the ribbon tabs and locate commands Customize the ribbon Add frequently used commands to the Quick Access Toolbar:
October 21, 2023 | Blind Android Users Podcast Episode 150: One UI Part7 Modes and Routines and Android 14 QPR1 Beta 2.1
We first talk about the rebuilding of the Blind Android Users website so it becomes easy for our listeners to listen to all episodes and get show notes for all episodes. Our partner, Accessible Android has crossed 100 written articles and guides on the site, check them out. In our Android Basics section, we talk about modes and routines of Bixby in Samsung OneUI. We also talk about Android QPR 1 beta 2.1 released. In our spotlight segment we have a dual audio review of Pixel 8 Pro:
October 25, 2023 | Eyes on Success Episode 2343: Skateboarding With A Pop, Grind, And Flip
Justin Bishop was fully sighted when he started skateboarding at 10 years old. Despite losing all of his useful sight in his 20's, Justin's dedication to skateboarding has been unwavering. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Justin about his passion for skateboarding and what accommodations he makes to enable him to excel at this active sport:
October 26, 2023 | Top Tech Tidbits Podcast for Thursday, October 26, 2023
Tune in each week as we announce the Top 5 Most Clicked Tidbits of the week. These 5 news items represent the most popular news and trends in adaptive technology today, as voted on by Top Tech Tidbits readers:
➜ Featured Webinars, Training Courses and Events
October 27, 2023 | Orbit Research October Zoom
9AM PT, 10AM MT, 11AM CT, 12PM ET, 4PM GMT
November 1, 2023 | ParentConnect: A Family Support Group Offered In Partnership With The Virtual Parent Support Group Chicago Lighthouse For The Blind | APH ConnectCenter
4:30PM PT, 5:30PM MT, 6:30PM CT, 7:30PM ET, 11:30PM GMT
November 1, 2023 | Making PDF Tables Accessible | Access Ingenuity
10AM PT, 11AM MT, 12PM CT, 1PM ET, 5PM GMT
November 2, 2023 | Career Conversations: Interview With A Blind Audio Engineer | Richard Rueda | APH ConnectCenter
3PM PT, 4PM MT, 5PM CT, 6PM ET, 10PM GMT
November 6, 2023 through November 10, 2023 | Accessing Higher Ground | Association on Higher Education And Disability (AHEAD)
Accessible Media, Web and Technology Conference. Hilton Denver City Center, Denver, Colorado:
November 8, 2023 | ZoomText, JAWS & Fusion: Latest Features | Assistive Technology Webinar | Access Ingenuity
10AM PT, 11AM MT, 12PM CT, 1PM ET, 5PM GMT
November 9, 2023 | From Classroom to Cash Flow: How Earning in School Can Shape a Brighter Future For Blind And Low Vision Students | Richard Rueda | APH ConnectCenter
3PM PT, 4PM MT, 5PM CT, 6PM ET, 10PM GMT
November 14, 2023 | How Beginners Can Easily Test for JAWS Screen Reader Accessibility | TPGi
8AM PT, 9AM MT, 10AM CT, 11AM ET, 3PM GMT
November 14, 2023 through November 17, 2023 | The Design + Accessibility Summit By CreativePro
Join us at the 3rd annual Design + Accessibility Summit, the essential HOW-TO event for design professionals who need to master accessibility, coming to a device near you November 14-17, 2023. It's no secret that accessibility is a hot topic. In fact, ensuring your documents are accessible is not just a good idea: it's the law. Whether you're extending your company's DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) focus, expanding your market to include the estimated 25% of the population who have disabilities, or safeguarding your company against legal risks, it's important to make accessibility a business priority. Creative professionals must learn how to design documents that are accessible for people with vision and hearing impairments, mobility challenges, cognitive, and other disabilities. And those who ramp up their knowledge and expertise in accessibility will find themselves in high demand supporting their business' efforts; while those who don't will risk falling behind. At The Design + Accessibility Summit, you will learn practical techniques for building accessible documents with InDesign, Acrobat, PowerPoint, and other tools widely used by creative professionals:
November 14, 2023 | Access Academy Part 2: Teaching Touch and Exploratory Skills to Prepare for Tactile Graphics Learning | APH
1PM PT, 2PM MT, 3PM CT, 4PM ET, 8PM GMT
November 15, 2023 | What's New in WCAG 2.2? | Digital Accessibility Webinar | Access Ingenuity
10AM PT, 11AM MT, 12PM CT, 1PM ET, 5PM GMT
November 28, 2023 | Access Academy Part 3: Strategies and Resources for the Instruction and Evaluation of Tactile Graphicacy Skills | APH
1:30PM PT, 2:30PM MT, 3:30PM CT, 4:30PM ET, 8:30 PM GMT
November 28, 2023 | Tech It Out | Monthly Hadley Discussion Group
11AM PT, 12PM MT, 1PM CT, 2PM ET, 6PM GMT
November 29, 2023 | ONYX Family of Magnifiers: Portable & Powerful | ACVREP CE Approved, Assistive Technology Webinar | Access Ingenuity
10AM PT, 11AM MT, 12PM CT, 1PM ET, 5PM GMT
December 1, 2023 and December 2, 2023 | Blind Health Expo 2023 | Exhibitor and Attendee Registration Now Open
The Blind Health Expo is the largest virtual event of healthcare information, products, services, and medication for individuals in the blind, low vision, and disability communities. Exhibitors can: Register for free. Interact with thousands of attendees. Showcase their products and services:
December 6, 2023 and December 7, 2023 | Sight Tech Global — Shaping New Technologies to Create a More Accessible World for People with Blindness and Visual Impairments
December 12, 2023 | Access Academy Part 4: The Monarch: Tactile Access to Digital Learning | APH
1:30PM PT, 2:30PM MT, 3:30PM CT, 4:30PM ET, 8:30PM GMT
December 26, 2023 | Tech It Out | Monthly Hadley Discussion Group
11AM PT, 12PM MT, 1PM CT, 2PM ET, 6PM GMT
February 20, 2023 through February 22, 2023 | Axe-Con 2024 | Deque Systems
Why attend axe-con? Building accessible digital experiences requires a team effort, across design, development, management, testing, accessibility experts, and of course, legal. Axe-con is the first of its kind, dedicating topics to each of these key players. This is not an assistive technology convention. Talks at axe-con will include case studies from enterprise companies leading in large-scale accessibility efforts, as well as best practices and updates from technology leaders around the world. Attendance of axe-con sessions can also be used towards continuing education (CE) towards IAAP certification. Topics of focus will include accessibility in development, accessibility in design, organizational success with accessibility, and a wildcard track. If you'd like to learn more about previous sessions and speakers, you can view last year's schedule here. Join us to learn how to build, test, monitor, and maintain digital accessibility:
April 8, 2024 and April 9, 2023 | 24th Annual Multiple Perspective On Access, Inclusion & Disability Conference | The Ohio State University — Columbus, Ohio
To be on the mailing list for the conference, send email to:
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Sales: (866) 202-0520 ☎
Support: (650) 249-1000 ☎
About: Backed by two decades of creating award-winning accessible cloud technologies for people with visual impairments, Pneuma Solutions is the global leader in accessible cloud-based solutions. Pneuma Solutions was founded by long-time accessibility developers Mike Calvo and Matt Campbell. For more information on their individual profiles, click on their respective bio pages. We're proud to be the first company to develop cloud-based accessibility at the network level. Our tools provide organizations, like yours, a way to deliver secure, accessible information right from your network or from our secure servers. You can provide your print disabled consumers, students, employees, and citizens with a multitude of accessible options. Additionally, we offer a suite of cloud-based applications to blind and print disabled consumers directly from our website. Our consumer products are designed to make the day-to-day lives of blind and print disabled individuals more accessible and simpler to manage. Access to information is not a privilege, it's a right. It's also your right to obtain affordable, accessible cloud solutions to serve your end user. When organizations like yours implement our tools, together we help make it a more inclusive world for people with disabilities. Want to know more about how we can help you become more inclusive?
Contact us here. We'll be happy to discuss how our tools can help with your accessibility needs.
Sponsor Since: April 15th 2021
Website: https://www.freedomscientific.com/ 🌐
Email: email@example.com ✉
Phone: (800) 444-4443 ☎
About: Freedom Scientific, a Vispero brand, is a leading worldwide brand of assistive technology products for those with vision impairments. We offer products designed to promote independence, allowing blind and low vision individuals the same access to information as their sighted peers. World-renowned JAWS (Job Access With Speech) screen reading software and ZoomText screen magnification software provide users the independence and ability to seek education and obtain or maintain a career after vision loss. Our expansive product line includes both low vision and blindness technology for all aspects of daily living. The wide range of RUBY, TOPAZ, and ONYX desktop and portable video magnifiers are designed for their ease of use and assist with daily activities. Our impressive line of blindness hardware products include refreshable Braille displays and scanning and reading devices, offering many options tailored to fit individual needs.
Sponsor Since: February 4th 2021
Website: http://humanware.com/ 🌐
Phone (Asia): +61 2 9686 2600 ☎
YouTube Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRWVYiggn-w 🎥
About: HumanWare is the global leader in assistive technology for people who are blind or have low vision. HumanWare offers a wide range of innovative products, including the BrailleNote Touch, first Google certified braille tablet, the iOS compatible Brailliant braille displays, Victor Reader®, the world's leading family of digital audiobook players, the unique Prodigi® family of desktop and portable vision and reading systems, and the ultra-portable explore line of electronic handheld magnifier.
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, affordable, and, whenever possible, fun! Our inventory is constantly changing, so a visit to us is never the same experience twice!
Sponsor Since: June 11th 2020
Website: https://www.atguys.com/ 🌐
Phone: (269) 216-4798 ☎
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ✉
Skype: atguys ✆
X (Formerly 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 ☎.
Sponsor Since: August 3, 2023
Website: https://www.themisgames.com/wordvoyance/ 🌐
About: Wordvoyance is a multiplayer crossword-building game similar to Scrabble and Words With Friends.
It has been carefully crafted to be playable by everyone, and it includes multiple accessibility features for people with blindness and other disabilities.
For players with unhindered sight, the game will play exactly as you expect. You can drag and drop tiles to form words on the board and rack up points.
For everyone else, the game is fully compatible with popular screen readers and can be played with a number of different input methods including keyboards, assistive technology, and even game controllers.
Play Game (Web Browser): https://www.themisgames.com/wordvoyance/menu
Play Game (iOS App Store): https://apps.apple.com/us/app/wordvoyance/id1672135719
Play Game (Google Play Store): https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.exceptionullgames.wordvoyance
Play Game (Other): For iOS users outside of our soft launch regions you can download the app via Apple's TestFlight Store at: https://testflight.apple.com/join/UsNLOulZ
Game Manual: https://www.themisgames.com/wordvoyance/manual
Sponsor Since: August 3, 2023
Website: https://theaccessibilityguy.com/ 🌐
YouTube: https://youtube.com/@TheAccessibilityGuy 📹
About: My name is Shawn Jordison and I love helping others learn the ins and outs of digital accessibility.
I have made over 100 thousand documents accessible, provided hundreds of trainings in the areas of accessibility and document remediation, and reviewed many websites and mobile applications for accessibility.
I have developed and reviewed VPATs, LMS courses, and other pieces of training. I am the accessibility Swiss army knife. Let me be your personal accessibility expert.
➜ Over 13 years of experience in the field of accessibility.
➜ Passionate about providing equal access to information for everyone.
➜ Wide range of project experience, including document accessibility, training, and more.
➜ Expertise in captioning, assistive technology, and accessibility best practices. I'm here to help you create a more accessible world.
The Blog: This blog covers topics like making Word, PDF & PowerPoint files accessible, Closed Captioning, assistive technology, and other important accessibility topics.
Training and Consulting: Offering customized training and consulting for implementing accessibility best practices.
Accessible Document Service: Providing top-tier document remediation services for all types of files, ensuring compliance with WCAG, 508, and PDF UA standards.
Sponsor Since: July 20th 2023
Website: https://glidance.io/ 🌐
About: Fun and easy, you'll just love going out. You walk with confidence, and Glide will simply guide you where you want to go.
Just Grab Your Glide And Walk With Confidence
Portable, Light And Versatile
Easy To Use
Quick To Learn
Get started with Glide today at: https://glidance.io/.
Sponsor Since: July 20th 2023
Website: https://echobatix.com/ 🌐
App: Download the Echobatix App from the Apple App Store here.
About: Echobatix develops accessibility products and indoor navigation systems for the blind, deafblind, and those with low vision. Our technology complements the use of a cane or guide dog and your existing Orientation and Mobility (O&M) skills. Our first app is an accessibility tool for printed text, touch screens, kiosks, and signage. Read what's at the end of your finger. Speak to search for a word.
Sponsor Since: March 16th 2023
Website: https://ayes.ai/ 🌐
App: Download the OKO App from the Apple App Store here.
Email: email@example.com ✉
About: AYES was founded by three experienced AI engineers that are defining autonomous navigation for blind and visually impaired people.
Simply point the back camera of the phone towards the intersection that you want to cross and the OKO application will instantly detect the traffic light and inform the user through audio and haptic feedback.
The OKO application can provide multiple services for your company, city or your country, all independent of physical infrastructure. This can increase your accessibility to 100%, overnight. OKO provides an accessible traffic light at every intersection. And, best of all, all OKO data is completely anonymized, ensuring your personal privacy at all times.
The OKO app is fully independent from infrastructure and does not require a Wi-Fi or Cellular connection to operate at full capacity. The algorithm runs locally on your device, meaning that it works consistently and reliably every single time. The application has been trained on more than 150,000 images and continues to improve. Download the app today.
Sponsor Since: March 9th 2023
Website: https://sterlingadaptives.com/ 🌐
Phone: (415) 878-2922 ☎
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ✉
Hours: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday, Pacific Standard Time
About: Based in California, Sterling Adaptives supplies the most technologically advanced equipment and software currently available. We serve those who are blind or have visual impairment and also others with disabilities.
We have a showroom in Santa Rosa and can also meet in the comfort of your home. We supply a full range of computer hardware, software, peripherals, and assistive technology products. We are able to provide demonstrations, installations, troubleshooting, and ongoing product training.
We work with private individuals, non-profit agencies, private organizations, educational establishments, and commercial enterprises. We help our customers fully realize their potential.
We are known for providing you and your clients with the standards of service that you demand and that result in the right product at the right time and with the right backup service.
We look forward to hearing from you and being afforded the opportunity to show you just how Sterling our service is!
Sponsor Since: December 29th 2022
Website: https://lhblind.org/ 🌐
Phone: (800) 914-7307 ☎
Fax: (206) 329-3397 ░
Contact Us: https://lhblind.org/contact-us/
About: The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. is a private, not-for-profit social enterprise providing employment, support, and training opportunities for people who are blind, deafblind, and blind with other disabilities. The Lighthouse has provided employment and support to people who are blind in our community since 1918.
The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. is a successful manufacturing organization with over 60 years of experience in precision machining. We produce an array of machined parts and plastic injection molding for various aerospace manufacturers, as well as a host of office products and hydration equipment sold to the Federal Government and the U.S. Military. We also own and operate stores on military bases along the West Coast. Our products and services include:
• Manufacturing: We are a successful manufacturing organization committed to making jobs accessible to individuals who are blind. Our manufacturing operations center on making quality products for the Federal Government under the AbilityOne Program and producing parts for aerospace manufacturers.
• Managed Services: The Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. offers a variety of services to our commercial, federal, and military customers. These include Contract Management Support (CMS) services for government contracting offices.
• Base Supply Centers: We operate 12 AbilityOne Base Supply Centers (BSCs) that offer easy customer access to Lighthouse products, direct feedback and communication with customers, and employment opportunities for individuals who are blind in geographic areas not served by larger nonprofit agencies.
Sponsor Since: January 5, 2023
Website: https://www.wayaround.com/ 🌐
General Sales & Support: (888) 898-4465 ☎
Business Sales & Support: (888) 898-4465 ☎
Email: email@example.com ✉
About: WayAround is the app for your smart device that provides on-demand details about everyday things. The simple tag-and-scan approach lets you quickly and easily identify things around you. It also provides extra details, like how something works or when it expires. The result? Doing more of the things you want, with more confidence and more independence.
All the information you want with just a tap of your phone. No more waiting around to ask someone. You need just two things to get started: The free mobile app for iOS or Android and some of our smart WayTags®.
Accessible labels for the blind, deafblind, and anyone with vision loss. Your biggest problem isn't poor eyesight. It's that so much of the information in the world is visual. But you shouldn't have to wait around for someone else to get the information you need. Or carry around a bulky, outdated device. There is a better way to get accurate and complete information every time. So you can reduce stress and gain independence.
Download The App (Apple): https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wayaround-tag-and-scan/id1294361140?mt=8
Download The App (Android): https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.wayaround.wayaround
Sponsor Since: August 4th 2022
Website: https://aira.io/ 🌐
Plans and Pricing: https://aira.io/pricing/
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ✉
About: Aira's mission is to remove barriers and make the world more accessible with visual interpreting.
We provide a live, human-to-human professional assistance service, an accommodation or productivity tool, that enhances independence by delivering on-demand, skilled and reliable visual interpreting for just about any task. Using the powerful combination of a camera and the Aira app on someone's device of 'choice', a professionally-trained agent will assist by visually interpreting what is in the camera's view or on screen, from describing to reading, from explaining to navigating - just about anything, safely and securely. Aira supports a growing range of devices including smart and tactile button phones, desktop computers and soon, wearables.
Whether you are involved in the work of business, the work of school or the work of life, Aira enhances everyday efficiency, engagement, and independence. Used by employees and customers of hundreds of organizations including airports, banks, the largest software companies, financial firms, retailers and universities, we invite you to join the community, access the Aira app today and try it for free.
Step One: Subscribe and Download. Pick the plan that lets you explore on your terms and on your time, sign up in a few minutes, and download the Aira app to your smartphone. Plans shown are for the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom. Add or cancel at any time.
Step Two: Connect with an Aira Agent. On the first call, connect with one of our certified, specially-trained Agents and learn how everything works.
Step Three: Real-time Assistance. At the touch of a button, Aira delivers instant access to visual information, when and where you want it.
Sponsor Since: June 30th 2022
Website: https://fablepathways.com/ 🌐
Email: email@example.com ✉
Phone: (888) 212-3532 ☎ Extension 810
About: Just like curb cuts help everyone get on and off sidewalks, designing digital products with accessibility in mind helps make the internet more accessible for everyone. Fable is an accessibility platform powered by people with disabilities. Fable connects people with disabilities to accessibility managers, user researchers, designers, and developers to build incredible and accessible user experiences.
➜ Fable Pathways: Fable Pathways is a free skill development program for people with disabilities interested in working in the tech sector. Sign up to take your career to the next level. Courses include "Getting started in web development" taught by Kelly Ford, a screen reader user, and Senior Program Manager at Microsoft, and "Becoming a manager" taught by Fable's Head of Accessibility Innovation, Kate Kalcevich. Instructors are subject matter experts in their fields and have lived experience with disability. Pathways courses are free, self-paced and assistive-technology-friendly. Sign up now at https://fablepathways.com/.
➜ Fable's Community of Accessibility Testers: Work from home to contribute to real changes in digital accessibility and make the internet a more accessible place for everyone. Ever leave a website because it was too hard to navigate? Because it was missing button labels? Because it didn't respond to voice commands? Us too. Our community of testers who use assistive technologies work from home and contribute to real changes in digital accessibility with recognizable brands. Earn money to share your feedback on websites and apps of your favorite brands and work with companies that care. No experience required and no resume required. Fable is looking for assistive technology users in the USA and Canada to work the hours that they want, from the comfort of their own homes. Learn more at https://fablepathways.com/community/.
Sponsor Since: June 9th 2022
Website: https://clusiv.io/ 🌐
About: As there are many challenges people in the blind community face in employment and education, Clusiv has built the world's first e-learning platform designed for the blind to provide the training, tools, and resources needed to remove barriers to the modern workforce. Our courses teach you occupational and technology skills you need towards employment. Plus, we are working to connect our graduates to internship and job opportunities. Our courses are remote, self-paced, and we provide support throughout your whole journey through our student success team, and even provide lifetime access to our courses so you can keep up to date as technology evolves. You can request Clusiv training through your vocational rehabilitation counselor and fill out the form in the link below on our website. If you are a counselor wanting to learn more about Clusiv for your clients, or an employer looking to hire Clusiv graduates, click the respective link below and fill out a form to get more info.
Top Tech Tidbits is the world's leading adaptive technology news publication that reaches over 10,000 blind, low vision, deaf, hard of hearing, deafblind, neurodivergent and/or disabled professionals, educators and enthusiasts, all over the world, each week.
Adaptive Technology Information refers to items that are specifically designed for people with disabilities. Adaptive Technology is a subset of Assistive Technology. Adaptive Technology often refers specifically to electronic and information technology access.
Top Tech Tidbits offers a total of 24 Sponsorship Packages which are used to support the ongoing distribution of the publication.
➜ Availability: There are currently 4 of 24 Sponsorship Packages available. All 24 Sponsorship Packages are offered on a first-come, first serve basis.
➜ Waiting List: If you would like to become an Top Tech Tidbits Sponsor but there are no sponsorship packages currently available, we encourage you to join our waiting list by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org ✉. Once you have joined our waiting list we will notify you the next time a current sponsor decides not to renew. You will then have 72 hours to secure your sponsorship before it is offered to the next sponsor on the list.
➜ Payment Option Benefits: Monthly Sponsors receive Zero (0) Featured Advertisements. Quarterly Sponsors receive One (1) Featured Advertisement per quarter. Annual Sponsors receive Five (5) Featured Advertisements per year. All other benefits remain the same.
➜ Top Tech Tidbits Supporters
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3.) Pshon Barrett
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1.) Howard Goldstein
2.) David Goldstein
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➜ Top Tech Tidbits News Team
Volunteer Publisher Since: June 4th 2020
Location: Mayfield Heights, Ohio
Time Zone: Eastern Standard Time (EST/EDT) (GMT-5/GMT-4)
In addition to serving as Publisher for Top Tech Tidbits Aaron also serves as Publisher for the Access Information News Publication and is also the President and Senior Project Management Professional for Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
As Publisher Aaron oversees the weekly distribution of Top Tech Tidbits as a not-for-profit project on behalf of Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
Aaron also serves as a Volunteer Editor to Top Tech Tidbits.
Aaron Di Blasi, PMP
Sr. Project Management Professional (2006 - Present)
Email: email@example.com ✉
Volunteer Editor Since: June 4th 2020
Location: Boulder, Colorado
Time Zone: Mountain Standard Time (MST/MDT) (GMT-7/GMT-6)
In addition to serving as an Editor to Top Tech Tidbits, John also serves as an Editor to the Access Information News Publication and is also an attorney-at-law specializing in long-term disability claims for blind and visually impaired persons.
John is also a long-time contractor and member of the Board of Trustees at Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
John Hanlin, Esq.
Board of Trustees (2006 - Present)
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ✉
Volunteer Editor Since: June 4th 2020
Location: Des Moines, Iowa
Time Zone: Central Standard Time (CST/CDT) (GMT-6/GMT-5)
In addition to serving as an Editor to Top Tech Tidbits, Jenna also serves as an Editor to the Access Information News Publication and runs her own Digital Marketing Firm.
Jenna also serves as a certified Project Management Professional (PMP) for Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
Jenna's son was born blind and she is always seeking new and innovative ways to empower him through technology.
Jenna Lang, PMP
Project Management Professional (2022 - Present)
Email: email@example.com ✉
Editor Since: October 7th 2021
Location: Los Angeles, California
Time Zone: Pacific Standard Time (PST/PDT) (GMT-6/GMT-7)
In addition to serving as an Editor to Top Tech Tidbits, Alex is also an Accessible Technology Coordinator for California State University, Dominguez Hills. He has worked in accessibility in higher education since 2005, is certified by the International Association of Accessibility Professionals, and in his spare time plays for the San Gabriel Valley Panthers Beep Baseball Team. He can be reached on twitter at: @samarositz.
Stephen (Alex) Marositz
Accessible Technology Coordinator
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org ✉
Editor Since: January 1st 2022
Location: Newcastle, Australia
Time Zone: Australia Eastern Standard Time (AEST/AEDT) (GMT+10)
In addition to serving as an Editor to Top Tech Tidbits, Ben is also an Access and Technology Advisor for Guide Dogs, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory (NSW/ACT).
Hi, Tidbits readers, my name's Ben Moxey and I'm based in Newcastle, Australia. I'm really happy to be part of the Tidbits Team and look forward to supporting this valuable publication.
A bit about me and how I came to work in the BVI area. I grew up with very low vision in one eye due to retinal issues and relied on magnification and speech throughout school. They also tried to teach me Braille, but let's just say that I wasn't the best student! I was determined to use my remaining vision, no matter how impractical it was becoming.
When I was 20, the other retina came off and I've now been totally blind for about 21 years. This is when my love for assistive technology, and technology in general, really kicked in. I'll be honest, I was a bit of a computer nerd anyway, but I could quickly see how technology was my key to enhanced independence and lifestyle. I embraced screen readers, early smart phones and mobility aids. I even finally realised the huge value of Braille and finished off the course, though I'm still pretty slow!
Long story short (not one of my strong points), I've worked in the BVI area for 12 years with much of that spent reviewing, recommending and teaching assistive technology that suits the individual. I'm currently a proud employee of Guide Dogs NSW/ACT where I was the Practice Lead for the assistive technology service, and I've now moved into an Access and Technology Advisor role. Basically, this involves a strong focus on accessibility and technology innovation.
Feel free to look me up on LinkedIn, but I'll warn you in advance that I haven't given my profile the recommended attention!
All the best and happy reading!
Access and Technology Advisor
Volunteer Editorial Contributor Since: February 6, 2023
Location: Central Coast, New South Wales, Australia
Time Zone: Australia Eastern Standard Time (AEST/AEDT) (GMT+10)
In addition to serving as an Editor to Top Tech Tidbits, David also serves as an Editor to the Access Information News Publication and is also the National Commercial Assistive Technology Advisor for Vision Australia where he has worked since 1990. Over this time he has assisted people who are blind or vision impaired in their home, education, and work settings to take advantage of the benefits of using assistive and main stream technology.
In the last seventeen years, he has also been involved with evaluating technology for use by people who are blind or vision impaired covering both low and high tech equipment (including Microsoft, Samsung, Google, Amazon, and Apple). David is also one of the key spokespersons for Vision Australia relating to technology.
He has been an Apple Ambassador for Apple Australia since 2009 with a group of other Ambassadors / Apple Distinguished Educators (ADE)'s covering the range of Apple's Accessibility solutions throughout Australia.
David produces a range of podcasts (since 2011) covering Apple and other technologies which are distributed on his own podcast (http://davidwoodbr.podbean.com). In addition, he also has a regular Talking Tech program (since 2013) which can be heard every Tuesday at 4:30 Eastern Summer Time on Vision Australia Radio Melbourne (available online) or via https://omny.fm/shows/talking-tech-vision-australia-radio
David also runs a weekly Tech Monday where people can chat about assistive and main stream technology, share information, and any tips and tricks.
David lost his sight when he was 8 years old and had to learn Braille. Since then, he completed high school, went to Sydney University receiving a Social Work degree, spent 4 years drug and alcohol counselling, and then moved into his current job.
As a person who is blind, David believes that as a user of the technology that he recommends to others, that he is well situated to look at the strengths and shortcomings of the assistive technology that he comes across in both his professional and personal life, in particular, mainstream technology that is accessible.
X (Formerly Twitter): @dwoodbridge
In addition to his weekly contributions to Top Tech Tidbits and Access Information News, David's regularly occurring activities are his weekly tech radio show, bi-monthly exploring tech webinars for Vision Australia, his iSee podcast when something of note grabs his attention, and the weekly Tech Monday chat sessions.
Editorial Contributor (2023-Present)
Editorial Contributor (2023-Present)
National Commercial Assistive Technology Advisor (1990 - Present)
Email: email@example.com ✉
➜ Subscription Information
Top Tech Tidbits is the world's leading adaptive technology news publication that reaches over 10,000 blind, low vision, deaf, hard of hearing, deafblind, neurodivergent and/or disabled professionals, educators and enthusiasts, all over the world, each week. Sign up here. Review the archive here. Adaptive Technology refers to items that are specifically designed for people with disabilities. Adaptive Technology is a subset of Assistive Technology. Adaptive Technology often refers specifically to electronic and information technology access. Top Tech Tidbits is a Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication. Publisher: Aaron Di Blasi. Contributing Editors: John Hanlin, Jenna Lang, Stephen (Alex) Marositz, Ben Moxey, and David Woodbridge. Top Tech Tidbits is a sponsor and reader supported publication.
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