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Top Tech Tidbits for Thursday, November 9, 2023 - Volume 936

The Week's News in Access Technology

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1) Top 5 Most Clicked Tidbits From Last Week

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A.) The iPhone 15 Pro Brings Tangible Accessibility Benefits | SixColors

What makes an iPhone accessible? Mostly, it's the software: the operating system and apps that follow guidelines Apple has set for that purpose. If new hardware plays a role, it's often in the opposite direction. For some with hearing or vision disabilities, the loss of the Home button has made hanging onto an iPhone SE feel worth the struggle. But this year, there's another hardware story (and I'm mighty surprised to be writing this): What's inside Apple's Pro iPhones is giving an important boost to usability for people with disabilities:

B.) What's New in JAWS 2024 Screen Reading Software | Freedom Scientific

This page describes the new features and improvements available in JAWS 2024:

C.) Computer Scientists Program Robotic Seeing-Eye Dog To Guide The Visually Impaired | News Wise

Engineers from the Computer Science Department at Binghamton University, State University of New York have programmed a robot guide dog to assist the visually impaired. The robot responds to tugs on its leash:

D.) This USB-C Headphone Dongle Brings Back The Headphone Jack To The iPhone 15 — And Makes Your Music Sound Brilliant | iMore

The last iPhone to carry the headphone jack was the first generation iPhone SE, discontinued in 2018. For those that can do maths, that is now five years ago. Five years with no main-line iPhone with a headphone jack, and the only way to get one officially from Apple is with a $10 dongle that feels like it's only going to last around three minutes. From my experience, in fact, they can last even less time than that, with unreasonably thin cables. Now, with the advent of the USB-C port on the bottom of the iPhone 15 line, it's become easier to connect headphones with different dongles, and it's even opened the floodgates to a whole new idea for iPhones — USB-C Digital to Analog Converters (DACS):

E.) AI Suitcase Tested Outdoors To Guide Visually Impaired People

An artificial intelligence-powered suitcase being developed to guide visually impaired people is slowly moving toward taking over the roles of white canes and guide dogs, researchers said. They are now at the difficult stage of making the robotic suitcase on wheels usable in both indoor and outdoor environments. During an experiment in September, the smart suitcase guided Chieko Asakawa, director of the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation (Miraikan), to the nearest station from her workplace in Tokyo's Koto Ward:

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8) AI Updates

Skip this Tidbit to skip all updates on AI.

A) All The News From OpenAI's First Developer Conference | The Verge

Highlights: OpenAI is launching a GPT store later this month. OpenAI's "Copyright Shield" will defend customers from legal action. OpenAI turbocharges GPT-4 and makes it cheaper. OpenAI is letting anyone create their own version of ChatGPT. ChatGPT continues to be one of the fastest-growing services ever:

B) Say What? AI Can Diagnose Type 2 Diabetes In 10 Seconds From Your Voice | Diabetes.co.uk

Researchers involved in a recent study trained an artificial intelligence (AI) model to diagnose type 2 diabetes in patients after six to 10 seconds of listening to their voice. Canadian medical researchers trained the machine-learning AI to recognize 14 vocal differences in the voice of someone with type 2 diabetes compared to someone without diabetes. The auditory features that the AI focussed on included slight changes in pitch and intensity, which human ears cannot distinguish. This was then paired with basic health data gathered by the researchers, such as age, sex, height and weight. Researchers believe that the AI model will drastically lower the cost for people with diabetes to be diagnosed:

C) Seeing AI Advances | Ophthalmic Edge

Artificial intelligence (AI) has become a dominant force in technology, and it's encouraging to note that people with vision loss are benefiting. In August 2017, we first reported the new Seeing AI app from Microsoft, an intelligent camera that translates images into words for people with low vision or blindness. The app is part of an ongoing research project, founded and led by software engineer Saqib Shaikh, who also worked on the development of Bing search and the Cortana voice assistant. He well understands the needs of people with vision loss, having lost his own sight at the age of seven. It was a labor of love for Saqib, and it appeared to be an incredibly magnanimous gesture on the part of Microsoft. They created the app (so far exclusively) for Apple iOS. The app was, and remains, free on the App Store. As Seeing AI launched, they promised the "best was yet to come," and we'd have to say, that is true:

D) American Association of People With Disabilities: AAPD Statement on White House Executive Order on Artificial Intelligence

AAPD appreciates President Biden's Executive Order on Artificial Intelligence, which comes at a crucial time as artificial intelligence and related technology continues to evolve in ways that can be detrimental to people with disabilities. We admire the bold leadership of the Biden-Harris Administration in implementing necessary safeguards — for disabled people and all Americans — as the nation continues to grapple with the transformational power of artificial intelligence:

E) Legal Labyrinth: Balancing AI Innovation with Enforcement | Aaron Di Blasi | Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.

Recent days have been absolutely brimming with technological advancement, with significant buzz in the realm of artificial intelligence, focusing particularly on its governance. Notably, the President of the United States issued an Executive Order, alongside the emergence of the Bletchley Park Declaration — an articulate vision for the desired utilization of AI, endorsed by 27 nations:

F) Bridging the Accessibility Gap: The Ingenuity of AI and Human Collaboration | Charli

I wrote some rough-and-ready notes on how to create a new forum post on www.AppleVis.com for a friend. I assumed they were using JAWS on a Windows machine, so that's what I used to check my notes as I went. As usual, 'assume' made an ass of me. My friend only visits AppleVis on an iPhone which they access with VoiceOver. I didn't have time to rewrite my notes there and then, so I pasted them into ChatGPT and prompted it to "rewrite these instructions for a blind user using VoiceOver on an iPhone." Here are my original notes, written with JAWS on a Windows Laptop:

G) How 'Acoustic Touch' Technology Offers Vision Through Sound | Unite.ai

In an era where technological marvels emerge at a breathtaking pace, a remarkable breakthrough has surfaced from the labs of Australian researchers—'acoustic touch.' This pioneering technology promises to redefine the landscape of assistive devices for the visually impaired. Developed by an industrious team from the University of Technology Sydney, the University of Sydney, and the innovative minds at Sydney start-up ARIA Research, acoustic touch stands as a testament to human ingenuity and compassion. Acoustic touch does not just aim to assist those who navigate the world without sight; it seeks to transform their interaction with their surroundings, turning the ordinary into the extraordinary through auditory signals:

H) Elon Musk Unveils Grok, An AI Chatbot With A 'Rebellious Streak' | The Guardian

Elon Musk has unveiled Grok, an artificial intelligence chatbot with a “rebellious streak” inspired by The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy:

9) Apple Updates

Skip this Tidbit to skip all updates on Apple.

A) Apple Watch Double Tap: What I Like and Don't Like About It So Far | Lisa Eadicicco | CNET

Apple's new finger gesture represents an advance for the Apple Watch. But it's not perfect:

B) Best Password Managers To Protect Your Data On iOS And macOS | Apple Insider

Using unique and strong passwords for every website is a must for internet security. Too few people know how to do this, and that's where password managers come in and can make online life easier. There's no doubt about it, actually doing the work to stay safe on the web is hard — and getting harder. In order to be truly secure online, each and every login you use needs its own strong, unique password:

10) ZoomText Power Tip: How To Use The Inverted Mouse Pointer Scheme | Freedom Scientific

The Inverted pointer scheme is a new pointer enhancement available in ZoomText and Fusion 2024. When using other pointer schemes, the pointer is always a solid color. You can increase the size of the pointer to cover more of the viewing area on your screen. Inverting the pointer and background colors helps you quickly locate the pointer position. Being able to see under the pointer is extremely helpful at any magnification level. For example, when moving the mouse pointer over a black background on the screen, the pointer will change to white and vice versa. To choose the Inverted pointer scheme, follow these steps:

11) Sharkvember Shortcuts Weekly Roundup | Freedom Scientific

Here at Freedom Scientific, we have renamed the month of November Sharkvember, a month-long celebration of accessibility, creativity, and community. Visit the Sharkvember page for a list of events that will take place during this month. As part of Sharkvember, we are providing daily JAWS and ZoomText keyboard command tips, which we are calling "Sharkvember Shortcuts." Visit the Sharkvember Shortcuts page each day for a new tip. Each Friday, we will provide a roundup of shortcuts for the week right here on the blog. Here are the Sharkvember Shortcuts for this week:

12) How Do I Make Posts More Accessible To Blind People On Mastodon And The Fediverse? | Fedi.tips

There are a lot of people on Mastodon and the Fediverse who use screen readers to convert text into audio, including blind people, partially sighted people and those with many other disabilities. There are five easy things abled people can do to help screen readers work better with what they've posted:

13) How Your Smartphone Can Help If You Have Hearing Loss | Kami Funk | Accessibility.com

Eighty-five percent of people now own a smartphone. Smartphones are ubiquitous tools nowadays. But did you know they can also be accessibility tools for people with hearing loss or hearing-related disabilities? It's true! Let's take a look at the features that make your smartphone an excellent accessibility tool for hearing-related disabilities:

14) Here's Everything You Can Do With Copilot, the Generative AI Assistant on Windows 11 | Wired: Subscription Required

Microsoft's operating system just got supercharged with Bing, Dall-E integrations and more:

15) What To Do If Voiceover Stops Describing Images | Matt Vollbrecht | Tech-VI List

If you use VoiceOver Recognition features, such as Image Recognition, Text Recognition, and Screen Recognition, there is a possibility that after installing certain iOS 17 updates, images may no longer be described. You can test this by opening the Photos app, and allowing the VoiceOver Cursor to rest on any photo. You can also test this by placing the VO Cursor on an article in the News app, or a movie or show in the Up Next section of the TV app. If you have Image Recognition enabled, you should hear descriptions of images in these and other scenarios. If not, the following instructions will correct the issue:

16) This Cheap Hacking Device Can Crash Your iPhone With Pop-Ups | Dan Goodin | Ars Technica

Publisher (Di Blasi): The only cure for this hack currently is to turn off Bluetooth on your iPhone or iPad. So if this ever happens to you, in between pop-ups, go into the settings app and turn off Bluetooth. This will thwart the attack. Please note that using the Control Center to disable Bluetooth will allow the unwanted Bluetooth notifications to continue unabated.
Ars Technica: The Flipper Zero device is used to send Bluetooth pairing requests to all iPhones within radio range. This slim, lightweight device has been available since 2020, but in recent months, it has become much more visible. It acts as a Swiss Army knife for all kinds of wireless communications. It can interact with radio signals, including RFID, NFC, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, or standard radio. People can use it to covertly change the channels of a TV at a bar, clone some hotel key cards, read the RFID chip implanted in pets, open and close some garage doors, and disrupt the normal use of iPhones:

17) Audacity Multi-Track Editor: Accessibility Enhancement | Github

Compatibility: Minimum required NVDA version: 2020.4. Last NVDA version tested: 2023.1. This add-on adds extra functionality when working with Audacity multi-track editor: A script to report audio position, a script to report start and end of selection, a script to announce the state of the "Pause", "Play" and "record" buttons, automatic audio position changes report, automatic selection changes report (can be disabled), timer control editting support, use of spacebar to press a button, script to report playback/recording peak level, script to report playback/record slider level, script to report playback speed, script to display add-on user manual, script to display audacity guide written by David Bailes. This addon's version has been tested with audacity 3.2, 3.1, 3.0. Previous versions of Audacity are not supported:

18) Announcing OctoStudio: A Block-Based Programming App | Perkins School for the Blind

OctoStudio is a new block-based coding app that enables students to make simple animations and games using characters and sounds that they choose. OctoStudio was developed by the Lifelong Kindergarten group at MIT Media Lab and is available for free on iPhones, iPads, and Android smartphones and tablets. OctoStudio is a fun creative tool designed for students ages 7 and up to learn to create interactive projects by tinkering with code blocks, while developing their creativity and problem-solving skills. OctoStudio is a mainstream app that has been designed for all students — including students who are low vision and students who use a screen reader:

19) OneUI 6 With Android 14 Review | Accessible Android

Before we dive into the update adventure, I have to say that I'm now a happy owner of a Samsung S23, and the day after I received my phone, I received the Android 14 update. This is a nice coincidence. My friend Semih has an S23 Ultra. We both decided to sit down and update our phones to Android 14 together. So here's the OneUI 6 with Android 14 Review:

20) Gboard For Android Getting A 'Scan Text' OCR Tool | 9to5Google

Google is adding a new built-in tool to Gboard for Android that lets you "Scan Text" using optical character recognition (OCR):

21) Unveiling the Latest Features in Google Lookout's September 2023 Update | Daniel Dunne | National Council for the Blind of Ireland (NCBI)

Google Lookout, an Android app designed to help blind people and those with low vision is getting some new features. Launched in 2019, the app helps them accomplish everyday tasks like putting away groceries or sorting their mail. Google updated its popular Lookout App in September and has added some great new features. For iPhone users reading this — Google Lookout is quite similar to Seeing AI and some of the in-camera features that Apple has added to their Camera App:

22) A Beginner's Guide to the Types of Screen Reader Gestures on Android | Accessible Android

Sighted people may not be aware that when a screen reader is active, many things change, including how items are activated and the functionality of swiping gestures. The screen reader has its own focus that enables navigation and interaction with on-screen elements. Additionally, the operating system introduces specific onscreen gestures for the screen reader to utilize. Now, let's explore the various types of on-screen screen reader gestures available on Android:

23) Samsung OneUI 6 With Android 14 Review From Accessibility Point Of View | Accessible Android

The S23 series is the first to receive Samsung's Android 14-based OneUI 6 update, which brings performance improvements and visual changes to the way the status bar and notifications look. The update is around 3GB, so be careful if you're using your mobile data. Of course, the download time may vary depending on your connection speed. Before starting the update process, I decided to disable Jiesho and enable TalkBack instead, as I thought it might not work after the restart:

24) Turn Speech Into Text With Audio Hijack 4.3's New Transcribe Block | Paul Kafasis | Rogue Amoeba

Our flagship recording tool Audio Hijack can now act as your own personal stenographer! We've just released version 4.3, with a brand-new Transcribe block to turn spoken audio into a written text transcript. Read on for more details, or grab this free update immediately by selecting Check for Updates in the Audio Hijack menu or downloading right here:

25) New Leasey Update Coming | November 2, 2023 | Brian Hartgen

A new Leasey update will be available next week. This update corrects some problems found since the release of Leasey 8.1 for JAWS 2024 and earlier:

26) Best Microphones For Zoom, According To The CNET Staff Who Use Them

As remote work increases globally, online meetings are also on the rise. Having the best microphone for those meetings helps everyone communicate effectively:

27) Unreal Speech: A New Affordable Cloud Speech Engine for iPhone and Android

Just like its competitors, Unreal Speech delivers top-tier voice streaming via the internet. However, what sets it apart is its aggressive pricing. While the standard rate for many cloud speech engines hovers around $16 per million characters, Unreal Speech undercuts this by a significant margin, making it three times cheaper. Some premium providers like ElevenLabs even surpass this standard rate, but none have ventured to challenge it as decisively as Unreal Speech:

28) Appdome CEO Tom Tovar Talks His Company's Mission, Android Accessibility Service Attacks, More In Interview | Steven Aquino | Forbes: Subscription Required

In a press release issued in late September, Bay Area-based mobile security company Appdome announced so-called "new mobile anti-malware protections" which detect various kinds of Android Accessibility Service malware. According to Appdome, malware of this type is oftentimes used to "carry out large scale, distributed attacks on mobile banking apps, crypto wallets, and other financial services apps:"

29) An Evolution in Microsoft Office Accessibility | WebAIM

While Microsoft's ongoing efforts to focus on accessibility are to be commended, for many years there have been signs that increasing accessibility was not a comprehensive effort across the product team. When compared with the inherent focus on accessibility of the Accessibility Checker, accessibility updates to other parts of Office since the checker's introduction suggested a "siloed" approach for the product as a whole:

30) Freedom Scientific November 2023 Training Events


31) NC Access In-Process For November 6, 2023


➜ Featured Surveys

Submit your access-related survey for consideration within this section using this form: https://toptechtidbits.com/submit-survey.

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 17, 2023 | Blind And Low-Vision Adults Needed For Research Study On Audio Communication And Human-Robot Interaction

Hello! I am Audrey Balaska, a PhD student studying Mechanical Engineering and Human-Robot Interaction at Tufts University. As part of my dissertation, I am investigating differences in how people with visual impairments and people without visual impairment process audio communications from a robot. I am seeking participants who would be willing to take an hour to participate in my anonymous online study! Compensation is a $15 Amazon gift card. More information is included at the end of this message. If you have any questions, please contact me at Audrey.Balaska@tufts.edu 📧️. Otherwise, the study is completely asynchronous and screen reader accessible! Thank you! Summary. Who: Anyone with a computer! However, we are also specifically recruiting people who are blind and low vision! What: A study about audio communication in human-robot interaction. Where: Online study (computer/tablet recommended, not a smartphone). When: Any 1-hour time block that fits in your schedule. Compensation: $15 Amazon Giftcard for participating!" Email Audrey.Balaska@tufts.edu 📧️ with any questions/concerns. The study is contained completely within a screen-reader accessible Qualtrics survey. The link is:

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:

Submit your access-related Podcast Episode for consideration within this section using this form: https://toptechtidbits.com/submit-podcast-episode.

November 2, 2023 | Sight and Sound Technology Podcast Episode 79: Meet the Cadence Tablet

The Cadence tablet from Tactile Engineering is a pocket-sized device (about the size of a large mobile phone) with 48 cells of 8-dot refreshable Braille, in four lines of 12 cells each. Connecting four tablets into a desktop quartet provides eight lines of 24 cells each. The tablet features Perkins keys, a directional pad for navigation and control, and seven multi-use keys for selecting lines, accessing labels and menus, highlighting objects, and more. Joe Said from Tactile Engineering recently visited our head office in Northampton and Stuart took the opportunity to sit down with him and learn more:

November 3, 2023 | Ask Sharky: Using Gmail in Standard View with JAWS

Ron Miller from Freedom Scientific's very own training team demonstrates how to navigate Gmail in Standard View within JAWS. For more resources on using Gmail in Standard View with JAWS, you can reference our 2021 training on the same subject:

November 4, 2023 | Blind Android Users Podcast Episode 152: 2023 4th Quarter App Bonanza

This is the final app bonanza of the year in which we demo lots of apps:

November 7, 2023 | That Real Blind Tech Show: Episode 141: Fahrvergnugen Humanity

It's an all new That Real Blind Tech Show where we discuss the Apple Scary Fast snooze fest, our current concerns with VoiceOver on the Mac, why we have not updated to Sonoma, we recap the Laugh For Sight comedy benefit that was just held for the 16th year in New York City, and have a few laughs along the way. It is another epic episode that you will not want to miss. Sorry for the singing, some of us can't help it:

November 8, 2023 | Eyes on Success Episode 2345: Tutorials for Using Band-in-a-Box with JAWS

Band-in-a-Box is a program that can be used to create complete professional arrangements of songs in almost any style by just typing in chords. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Gudrun Brunot about the tutorials she and Roy Robinson developed to help users navigate the myriad of features and enable them to effectively use the program with special JAWS scripts:

November 9, 2023 | Top Tech Tidbits Podcast for Thursday, November 9, 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 access technology today, as voted on by Top Tech Tidbits readers:

Submit your access-related Webinar, Training Course or Event for consideration within this section using this form: https://toptechtidbits.com/submit-event.

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

Discover the transformative power of earning money while in school for students with vision loss! This compelling presentation will unveil the benefits of cultivating strong money management habits and seeking accessible part-time work to foster independence. Learn how to save for the future while safeguarding government benefits and find out how families can play a pivotal role in this empowering journey:

November 14, 2023 | How Beginners Can Easily Test for JAWS Screen Reader Accessibility | TPGi

Presenter: Charlie Pike, Platform Success Lead. JAWS Inspect enables rapid JAWS testing without the complexity of the end-user product. Using transcripts of JAWS speech you can quickly pinpoint accessibility and usability issues. This demonstration will walk you through some simple JAWS accessibility tests that can be run quickly even by novice accessibility testers and provide a good indicator of accessibility levels as well as an introduction to the challenges assistive technology users face. Testing with assistive technologies. JAWS compatibility testing. Introduction to accessibility testing. Understanding the user experience. Register today:

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

This webinar is part two of the Tactile Graphics Literacy for Students with Visual Impairments: 4 Part Series. Join this webinar to discover how to teach touch and exploratory skills to developing tactile learners. Learn how the development of exploratory skills serves as a foundation for braille readiness and meaningful tactile graphics experiences for students with visual impairments:

November 14, 2023 | Power of Experiential Giving | Richard Rueda | APH ConnectCenter

Consider gifting experiences this holiday season. Discover unique gift ideas for digital enthusiasts and fashion that all can enjoy:

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
After the approval of WCAG 2.2, you may be wondering about the impact on your accessibility testing and certification processes. Join Michael Parker from Access Ingenuity to learn what changed with WCAG 2.2 and how it impacts the accessibility of your digital content. Learning Outcomes & Zoom Webinar Information. Overview of WCAG 2.2. Accessibility benefits for users with disabilities. How to test for the new criteria:

November 15, 2023 | Diving Into Braille Displays From Humanware In Collaboration With Eye.T

Announcing a new addition to Eye.t Screen Reader Curriculum, "Diving into Braille Displays", sponsored by Humanware! Topics include choosing the right braille display for you, connecting your display to your computer and editing using your new display! Humanware will be hosting a webinar for our brand new course on November 15 at 2 PM EST, giving everyone who attends a FREE license to the course. Register to secure your spot:

November 15, 2023 | Power of Experiential Giving, Part 2 | Richard Rueda | APH ConnectCenter

Consider gifting experiences this holiday season. Enjoy a touch tour at a museum, make dinner then watch an audio described film with your family member or friend who is blind or low vision. Hear from presenters about unique gift ideas that all can participate in and enjoy:

November 16, 2023 | Accessible Word Documents Webinar | ADA Great Lakes Center

Description: In this informative presentation, we will delve into the world of accessible Word documents, exploring the key principles, techniques, and tools needed to make your documents inclusive and user-friendly. This presentation is designed for individuals and organizations that want to make a positive impact on their audience by ensuring that their Word documents are accessible to all. Join us and take the first step towards creating content that is inclusive, compliant, and enhances the user experience for everyone. Individuals will be able to submit questions for the speaker in advance during the registration process. This session will have human generated real-time captioning provided. Continuing Education Recognition Available. Certificate. Credit hours ACTCP: 1.5. Certificate of Attendance: 1.5. Speakers: Gaby de Jongh, IT Accessibility Specialist, UW-IT, Accessibility Technology Services, University of Washington:

November 16, 2023 | Unveiling the Latest BrailleNote Touch Updates: A KeySoft Showcase

Join Peter Tucic and Andrew Flatres as they unveil the latest enhancements to the BrailleNote Touch Plus. With the recent launch of HumanWare's KeySoft, this informative webinar will highlight the features and advancements released. Notably, we'll delve into the introduction of the new onboard Dictionary, and will also explore the braille-centric KeyCode coding application. Join us for a comprehensive overview of what's hot and happening in the world of BrailleNote Touch Plus. As always, we look forward to hearing from you during a questions and answer portion of the webinar. Time permitting, we'll address any questions or insights you'd like to share. Register now and be part of the conversation:

November 16, 2023 | New Features of JAWS, ZoomText, and Fusion 2024 | Freedom Scientific

9AM PT, 10AM MT, 11AM CT, 12PM ET, 4PM GMT
Do you want to learn more about the enhancements in JAWS, ZoomText, and Fusion 2024? Want to see some of the features in action? Join us Thursday, November 16 at Noon Eastern time for a live webinar, "New Features of JAWS, ZoomText, and Fusion 2024." Objectives: We'll demo new features, plus discuss how to download and install the software. Features include: Face in View: This new feature in JAWS and Fusion helps you focus your camera before participating in a video call. Split Braille: This JAWS feature enables you to split a line of content on your braille display into two halves, one on each side of the display so you can view content from two different applications or locations such as buffered text and annotations. Inverted Mouse Pointer Scheme: A ZoomText and Fusion feature that inverts the pointer and background colors, making the pointer easier to locate. Single Wedge Cursor Enhancement: A ZoomText and Fusion feature that displays a single triangle below the cursor, making the cursor easier to locate. ACVREP credits will be available for those who attend the live webinar. Register:

November 21, 2023 | Accessible Music Publishing Round Table | RNIB, DAISY Consortium

Introduction: The international DAISY Consortium and the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) invite music publishers, composers, and music-setters/engravers to take part in our upcoming online Round Table on Accessible Music Publishing. The event aims to explore and understand various sector requirements, through presentations and discussions between: Mainstream music publishers (including exam boards). Braille and other accessible format producers. Blind, partially sighted, and print-disabled musicians. Music setters/engravers. Music notation software producers. We will discuss steps that the global sector can take to ensure equitable access to published scores, in response to legislation and to take advantage of technological advances, with the aim of establishing a sector Working Group and trialling some solutions:

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
This webinar is part three of the Tactile Graphics Literacy for Students with Visual Impairments: 4 Part Series. Participate in this webinar to learn instructional strategies pertinent to effective graph reading and tactual perceptual skills. Explore methods for creation of tactile graphics and resources for evaluating tactile graphicacy capabilities of students with visual impairments.

November 28, 2023 | Tech It Out | Monthly Hadley Discussion Group

4th Tuesday of every month at 7:00 PM CT. Learn a few tips about everyday technology from a technology expert, ask your questions, and share your experiences.

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
The ONYX family of video magnifiers combines ease of use with powerful yet portable features to help people retain their independent lifestyle — reading, writing, viewing photographs, and engaging in hobbies. Did you know there are three different ONYX models? The ONYX Deskset and ONYX OCR offer larger screens and can adapt to multiple environments and tasks for productivity at school, work, and home. Modern cameras produce high-definition images with color-coded controls and adjustable magnification. The ONYX Pro combines portability with the Surface 7 tablet, providing the ultimate tool for mobile magnification and reading tasks. During this webinar, we discuss the features and benefits all the ONYX models can give in specific situations. Join Ian Ramos and Joe McDaniel from Vispero as they dive deep into these powerful tools to help those challenged by vision loss. Note that everybody is welcome and can benefit from this presentation. Teachers of the visually impaired (TVI) can earn ACVREP continuing education credit by attending this approved presentation. Learning Outcomes & Zoom Webinar Information: Features of all ONYX models. How to determine which model fits your needs best. How adding speech capability can take you further. Benefits of portable, powerful visual tools:

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 2, 2023 | Succeed Without Sight Summit | Thriving Blind Academy

Thriving Blind Academy's 4th Annual Succeed Without Sight Summit is The Ultimate Game Changer for the Blind and Low Vision Community, Igniting Success-Driven Mindsets like No Other Event! Imagine a world where vision knows no bounds, where limitless potential thrives in the absence of sight. This groundbreaking summit is your ticket to an inspiring convergence of resilience, innovation, and boundless determination. Join us as we unlock the secrets to achieving success beyond sight's limitations, featuring incredible stories, expert insights, and powerful strategies. Don't miss your chance to be a part of this transformative event. (FYI, it is a heck of a lot of fun too!):

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

Sight Tech Global is the first global, virtual conference dedicated to fostering discussion among technology pioneers on how rapid advances in AI and related technologies will fundamentally alter the landscape of assistive technology and accessibility:

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
This webinar is part four of the Tactile Graphics Literacy for Students with Visual Impairments: 4 Part Series. Join this webinar to learn about the skills and background knowledge a student requires to benefit from the use of a multi-line, graphics-capable, refreshable braille display like the Monarch.

December 26, 2023 | Tech It Out | Monthly Hadley Discussion Group

4th Tuesday of every month at 7:00 PM CT. Learn a few tips about everyday technology from a technology expert, ask your questions, and share your experiences.

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:
ADA-OSU@osu.edu 📧️

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Sponsors may submit or update their Classified Advertisement at any time by submitting this short form: https://toptechtidbits.com/submit-sponsor-classified.

Fable logo.

➜ Classified Advertisement: Learn Management Skills For Free. Get The Job You Want.

Everyone deserves equal access to the internet which is why Fable works with people with disabilities who use assistive technologies like switch controls to improve the accessibility of websites and apps. Fable Pathways, a free, accessible, and on-demand skill-building program, is an extension of Fable's mission. Fable Pathways provides new opportunities for people with disabilities to gain the skills they need, from experts like Judy Heumann and Kelly Ford, to contribute to improving digital accessibility.

Sponsor Since: June 30th 2022 Calendar icon.

Website: https://fablepathways.com/ 🌐

Email: community@makeitfable.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/.

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➜ Classified Advertisement: Looking For Blind Job-Seekers Wanting To Advance Their Salaries, Careers And Digital Accessibility For The Blind

Are you interested in learning new tech skills and working remotely while earning a competitive salary? At Clusiv.io we have created the world's first digitally accessible e-Learning platform built by the blind, and built for the blind. Visit the link provided and request Clusiv through your Vocational Rehab counselor for lifetime access to our e-Learning platform with courses such as Business Applications, JAWS, and more:

Sponsor Since: June 9th 2022 Calendar icon.

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.

Person Looking To Enroll In Clusiv Courses

Vocational Rehabilitation Counselor Looking To Learn More About Clusiv For Their Clients

Employer Looking To Hire Clusiv Graduates

Sponsor: Access Tech Live

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Sponsor Since: December 23rd 2021 Calendar icon.

Website: https://accesstechlive.com/ 🌐

Email: feedback@accesstechlive.com 📧️

YouTube: https://youtube.com/@accesstechlive

Apple Podcasts: https://bit.ly/3BQmUTl

About: Formerly Double Tap TV, Access Tech Live is a weekly tech show on AMI-TV, (also available on CBC Gem in Canada and YouTube).

Join hosts Steven Scott (@blindguytech) and Marc Aflalo (@marcaflalo) each week as they help viewers better understand how technology can assist them in their everyday lives.

Its tech from an accessible point of view! The show features interviews with some of the biggest names in consumer tech and features up and coming companies and services.

Facebook: https://facebook.com/accesstechlive

X (Formerly Twitter): https://twitter.com/accesstechlive

Instagram: https://instagram.com/accesstechlive

LinkedIn: https://linkedin.com/accesstechlive

HIMS, Inc. logo.

➜ Classified Advertisement: Braillesense 6 Notetaker By HIMS Inc.

The BrailleSense 6 is a cutting-edge assistive technology that combines the functionality of a notetaker, braille display, and accessible tablet into a single, compact unit. Its robust suite of features includes web browsing, email, document creation, and media playback, making it a versatile tool for education, work, and daily life. With built-in connectivity options such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, users can seamlessly access online resources and connect with other devices. Currently compatible with Android 10, but will soon be upgrading to Android 12! Two sizes are available, the BrailleSense 6 with 32 cells, and the BrailleSense 6 mini with 20 cells.

Sponsor Since: September 30th 2021 Calendar icon.

Website: https://hims-inc.com/ 🌐

Shop All Products: https://hims-inc.com/shop-all-products/ 🛒

Phone: (512) 837-2000 📱️

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5R9NjA1nfWo

Sales Email: sales@hims-inc.com 📧️
Support Email: support@hims-inc.com 📧️

About: HIMS, Inc. is a global manufacturer and distributor that has provided braille, magnification and accessible healthcare devices since 1999.

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➜ Classified Advertisement: Attend the Screen Reader User Tester Training Program at the Carroll Center for the Blind

Launch your career in the digital accessibility field! The Carroll Center for the Blind's new 7-week intensive Screen Reader User Tester Training program allows participants to learn and grow their ability to professionally explore, test, and report findings regarding the accessibility of websites, mobile applications, and digital document files using screen readers. Want to learn more? Start your journey to becoming a Screen Reader User Tester by visiting:

Sponsor Since: August 5th 2021 Calendar icon.

Website: https://carroll.org/ 🌐

Phone: (617) 969-6200 📱️

Fax: (617) 969-6204

Shop: https://carroll.org/store/ 🛒

Donate: https://carroll.org/donate

Social: Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | LinkedIn | Instagram

About: The Carroll Center for the Blind is the foremost leader in vision rehabilitation services for individuals confronted by the challenges of vision loss. Our mission is to empower those who are blind or visually impaired to achieve independence and to lead a fulfilling life. Established in 1936, the renowned Carroll Center for the Blind has been serving those with vision impairment for over eight decades; we are known nationally as a premier Vision Rehabilitation Center. Located just outside of Boston on a sprawling campus in Newton, Massachusetts, we proudly serve ALL ages and ALL stages of vision loss. With the ongoing promise of improving the lives of people with vision-related problems, The Carroll Center for the Blind has pioneered many innovative services allowing people who are blind or have low vision to learn the skills to be independent in their homes, in class settings, and in their work places. Our services include vision rehabilitation, vocational and transition programs, assistive technology training, educational support, and recreation opportunities for individuals who are visually impaired of all ages. For over 80 years, the expertise of Carroll Center staff has provided help for thousands of blind and visually impaired persons with diverse opportunities for success and independent living.

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➜ Classified Advertisement: Experience Meetings And Webinars The Way They Were Intended With Scribe For Meetings: The Only Accessible Conference Presentation Viewer! Free For Attendees, As Little As $10 For The Host!

Experience next level meeting/webinar accessibility like you've never seen before! Meet Scribe for Meetings, the robust solution that provides instant access to a meeting's slide deck! Grant your visually impaired attendees unparalleled access to your slides in mere minutes! Register your meeting, upload your slide deck, and drop the link in your invite - it's as easy as 1 2 3! Before you know it, the same slides seen by everyone else will be presented in accessible format to your attendees in perfect sync with your screen-share! And that's not all! You can let your attendees download a copy of your deck in many accessible formats - Word, HTML, and much more! Scribe for Meetings is fully equipped to handle any Zoom or Teams meeting, with more platforms on the way! Attendees can get in free of charge, and presenters can grant attendees this unparalleled access for as little as $10 for a single meeting! Scribe for Meetings: Ensuring no visually impaired attendees are left behind!

Sponsor Since: June 3rd 2021 Calendar icon.

Website: https://pneumasolutions.com/ 🌐

Email Newsletter: Click here to receive periodic news via email concerning Pneuma Solutions products for business, consumers and education.

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.

Freedom Scientific logo.

➜ Classified Advertisement: Freedom Scientific Focus Blue 5th Generation Refreshable Braille Displays

Our world-class refreshable Braille displays deliver efficient Braille input and outstanding output for your PC or mobile device. The robust Bluetooth® connectivity provides seamless use with Windows®, Mac®, iPhones®, iPads®, and Android TM smartphones and tablets. Ergonomic navigation features allow quick, natural hand movements for greater productivity. When used with JAWS® screen reading software, they support our popular Braille Study Mode, an interactive tool for teaching and learning Braille. Learn more today:

Sponsor Since: April 15th 2021 Calendar icon.

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

Email: info@vispero.com 📧️

Phone: (800) 444-4443 📱️

Facebook | Twitter | YouTube (Training)

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.

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➜ Classified Advertisement: BRAILLIANT Renewed! The NEW Brailliant BI X Series is here!

The wait is over! A redefined family of Brailliant refreshable Braille displays has arrived! The NEW Brailliant BI X Series will help you stay connected, download books from many participating online libraries and share information easily with your peers. You will enjoy the intuitive, seamless user experience of KeySoft Lite, the HumanWare flagship accessibility suite designed to make you more productive. Including the Brailliant BI 40X and the Brailliant BI 20X, this is the Brailliant idea you need!

Sponsor Since: February 4th 2021 Calendar icon.

Website: http://humanware.com/ 🌐

Phone (Asia): +61 2 9686 2600 📱️
Phone (Australia): +61 2 9686 2600 📱️
Phone (Canada): +1 888 723-7273 📱️
Phone (Europe): +44 1933 415 800 📱️
Phone (International): +44 1933 415 800 📱️
Phone (Ireland): +01 8307033 📱️
Phone (New Zealand): +027 700 1674 📱️
Phone (United Kingdom): +01933 415800 📱️
Phone (United States): +1 800 722-3393 📱️

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.

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➜ Classified Advertisement: We're Already Thinking Ahead For The Holidays!

Our Victor Stream Bundle, with leather case, bone conduction headphones, and 256 GB SD card; $625, including shipping; SensePlayer OCR Bundle; same accessories as above; $875, incl. shipping. All 3 accessories for less than the Exec Products case alone! Leather Stream or SensePlayer case, $35; Telescopic Locking 60 and 54 inch titanium canes; $70 and $65, plus shipping; Hands free no-bounce leather pouch, $35; or our original 3 pocket hands-free leather pouch for Be My Eyes or AIRA, $30. Talking Medical Bundle with Leather case; $140 incl. shipping. Zip-around RFID Italian leather wallets; $35.00. Call or email Barry at: (617) 969-7500 📱️ or barry.scheur@gmail.com 📧️. Call or email Kae at: (781) 286-1696 📱️; or guidelightdogs@gmail.com 📧️.

Director, http://www.GuideLightsAndGadgets.us

Sponsor Since: June 25th 2020 Calendar icon.

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

For Gadgets and Leather Contact Barry at:
Phone: (617) 969-7500 📱️
Email: bscheur.gadgetsandtech@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, affordable, and, whenever possible, fun! Our inventory is constantly changing, so a visit to us is never the same experience twice!

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➜ Classified Advertisement: Pluggable USB-C 7-in-1 Hub

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 Pluggable USB-C 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 Calendar icon.

Website: https://www.atguys.com/ 🌐

Phone: (269) 216-4798 📱️

Email: support@atguys.com 📧️

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: The Accessibility Guy

The Accessibility Guy logo.

➜ Classified Advertisement: Expert Document Accessibility Remediation: Compliant, Multilingual, & Inclusive

Unlock the power of inclusivity with our specialized document accessibility remediation services. With over 100,000 documents transformed and compliant with standards such as Section 508, WCAG 2.1 AA, HHS, AODA, and PDF/UA, we are your go-to accessibility experts. No document is too complex!

What To Expect:

Screen Reader Testing: We test all documents with industry-leading tools like JAWS, NVDA, VoiceOver, CommonLook Validator, and PAC3.

Turnaround Time: Our standard time is 5 business days. Expedited options are available.

Forms Handling: We specialize in making static PDFs accessible to screen readers.

Languages Supported: Offering remediation in over 50 languages.

File Types Supported: Word, PDF, PowerPoint.

Custom Reports: Available for an additional fee.

Learn More: https://theaccessibilityguy.com/document-remediation/

Sponsor Since: August 3, 2023 Calendar icon.

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: Glidance

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Sponsor Since: July 20th 2023 Calendar icon.

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
Glide will guide you to your destination or just keep you to a safe path and leave it to you to steer the way, giving you full autonomy and independence.

Portable, Light And Versatile
Glide uses advanced technology to help you safely and smoothly weave your way among obstacles and people, and make your way to a near by door, steps or a park bench.

Easy To Use
Smart technology for effortless mobility.

No fancy back flips, just what you need to get back out there.

Quick To Learn
Our friendly design means you'll be up and running in no time.

Feel Confident
Without hesitation, anxiety, or getting lost.

Get started with Glide today at: https://glidance.io/.

Sponsor: Echobatix

Echobatix logo.

Sponsor Since: July 20th 2023 Calendar icon.

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.

Ayes.ai logo.

➜ Classified Advertisement: Every Traffic Light Accessible With The OKO Application

AYES is happy to announce the launch of our new application OKO. OKO uses artificial intelligence and the back camera to recognize the pedestrian traffic light and inform the user of the walk, don't walk and the countdown state. We bring this state back to the user with three types of feedback, visual overlay, vibrations and audio feedback.

The application does not rely on any adaptations to the traffic light and runs locally on the smartphone, this means that it works at every intersection.

We always recommend to hold the phone at chest level with the camera pointing towards the direction that you want to cross. You can then rotate your chest between 10 to 15 degrees to locate the pedestrian traffic light. The moment we see that light the software immediately reacts. This helps to orient in the right direction and also stops you from veering off into traffic because the moment you veer off the feedback stops, you reorient and receive feedback to continue in the right direction.


Sponsor Since: March 16th 2023 Calendar icon.

Website: https://ayes.ai/ 🌐

App: Download the OKO App from the Apple App Store here.

Email: hello@ayes.ai 📧️

About: AYES was founded by three experienced AI engineers that are defining autonomous navigation for blind and visually impaired people.

AYES.ai is the creator of the OKO App.

OKO App logo.

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.

Sterling Adaptives, LLC logo.

➜ Classified Advertisement: Limited Time Introductory Pricing On The New Victor Reader Stream 3!

With the NEW Victor Reader Stream 3, it's so easy to take your books, music, and more wherever you go. Imagine being able to listen to the latest novels, magazines, or your favorite music, podcasts, and your own voice recordings, all in the palm of your hand. With its sleek, compact design and easy-to-grip edges, the digital media player gives you hours of listening wherever you are and a superior text-to-speech experience in multiple languages.

Take advantage of our introductory pricing on the NEW Victor Reader Stream 3! Order today or call (415) 878-2922 📱️. Use promo code TOPTECH for Free Shipping!


Sponsor Since: March 9th 2023 Calendar icon.

Website: https://sterlingadaptives.com/ 🌐

Shop: https://sterlingadaptives.com/collections/vision-products

Phone: (415) 878-2922 📱️

Email: info@sterlingadaptives.com 📧️

Hours: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday, Pacific Standard Time

Social: Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | Instagram

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!

Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc. logo.

Sponsor Since: December 29th 2022 Calendar icon.

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.

WayAround logo.

➜ Classified Advertisement: Have You Tried The Best Way to Label Things if You're Blind or Have Low Vision?

WayAround is a smartphone-based labeling app that works with your preferred accessibility settings. You just need the free mobile app and some WayTags ® to label items in the kitchen, garden, closet, office & more. If you want to label something that's inside, outside, wet, dry, hot, or cold, there's a WayTag that will attach securely. WayTags come as stickers, buttons, magnets, and clips. Each of the different styles of WayTags work exactly the same. Simply choose the WayTag that's best for what you want to label.

➜ Label your kitchen, clothing, or medication.
➜ Tag specialty items and tools for hobbies.
➜ Organize lots of information about one thing on a single WayTag.
➜ Scan each WayTag 100,000 times or more.

Keep adding more WayTags! Use any style of tag, in any order. There's no limit to the number of WayTags you can use. So you can rely on one system to label all your things. Try our Starter Pack to experience ALL of the different types of WayTags!

Sponsor Since: January 5, 2023 Calendar icon.

Website: https://www.wayaround.com/ 🌐

General Sales & Support: (888) 898-4465 📱️

Business Sales & Support: (888) 898-4465 📱️

Email: connect@wayaround.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

Aira logo.

Sponsor Since: August 4th 2022 Calendar icon.

Website: https://aira.io/ 🌐

Download the App: Apple App Store | Google Play Store

Plans and Pricing: https://aira.io/pricing/

Phone: NA: +1.800.835.1934 📱️ | AU: +1.800.765.096 📱️ | UK: +0.800.046.5668 📱️ | NZ: +1.800.425.451 📱️

Text Message: NA: +1.858.242.4457 📲 | AU: +61.488.839.767 📲 | UK: +44.149.320.2474 📲

Email: support@aira.io 📧️

Social: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | YouTube | Instagram

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.

Top Tech Tidbits is the world's leading not-for-profit access technology publication that reaches over 17,000 blind, low vision, deaf, hard of hearing, deafblind, neurodivergent and/or disabled professionals, educators and enthusiasts, all over the world, each week.

Access Technology: Broadly encompasses technologies that enable access to information and communication systems for a wide range of users, including those with disabilities. It's about making existing systems like computers and the internet more accessible.

Adaptive Technology: A subset of Access Technology, specifically tailored or modified for people with disabilities. It's designed to assist individuals in performing tasks that might otherwise be challenging due to their particular disabilities.

Assistive Technology: This term is often used interchangeably with Adaptive Technology but can have a broader scope. Assistive Technology includes any device, software, or equipment that helps people work around their challenges. While Adaptive Technology is primarily focused on modifications for disability-specific needs, Assistive Technology can also include tools and devices used by the elderly, those recovering from injuries, or individuals with temporary impairments. Examples include hearing aids, wheelchairs, and voice recognition software. The key aspect of Assistive Technology is its role in enhancing functional capabilities and improving quality of life for individuals facing a variety of challenges.

Top Tech Tidbits offers a total of 24 Sponsorship Packages which are used to support the ongoing distribution of the publication.

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: sponsorships@toptechtidbits.com 📧️. 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 Options: When available you can secure one of these packages for just $100.00 USD per month, $300 USD per quarter or $1,200.00 USD per year.

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.

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Support: In tandem with Our Sponsors, these are the people that make the ongoing distribution of Top Tech Tidbits possible.

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➜ Top Tech Tidbits News Team

Publisher: Aaron Di Blasi (Volunteer)

Photo of Aaron Di Blasi.

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

Publisher (2020-Present)
Top Tech Tidbits
The Week's News in Access Technology
https://toptechtidbits.com 🌐

Publisher (2022-Present)
Access Information News
The Week's News in Access Information
https://accessinformationnews.com 🌐

Sr. Project Management Professional (2006 - Present)
Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
Innovative ideas. Solutions that perform.
https://mvsltd.com 🌐

Email: publisher@toptechtidbits.com 📧️
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A Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication: https://mvsltd.com

Editorial Contributor: John Hanlin (Volunteer)

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.

Editor (2020-Present)
Top Tech Tidbits
The Week's News in Access Technology
https://toptechtidbits.com 🌐

Editor (2022-Present)
Access Information News
The Week's News in Access Information
https://accessinformationnews.com 🌐

Board of Trustees (2006 - Present)
Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
Innovative ideas. Solutions that perform.
https://mvsltd.com 🌐

Email: editors@toptechtidbits.com 📧️
Subscribe: https://toptechtidbits.com/subscribe
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A Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication: https://mvsltd.com

Editorial Contributor: Jenna Lang (Volunteer)

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 advocacy foundation.

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

Editor (2020-Present)
Top Tech Tidbits
The Week's News in Access Technology
https://toptechtidbits.com 🌐

Editor (2022-Present)
Access Information News
The Week's News in Access Information
https://accessinformationnews.com 🌐

Project Management Professional (2022 - Present)
Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd.
Innovative ideas. Solutions that perform.
https://mvsltd.com 🌐

Email: editors@toptechtidbits.com 📧️
Subscribe: https://toptechtidbits.com/subscribe
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A Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication: https://mvsltd.com

Editorial Contributor: Stephen (Alex) Marositz (Volunteer)

Photo of Stephen (Alex) Marositz.

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

Editor (2021-Present)
Top Tech Tidbits
The Week's News in Access Technology
https://toptechtidbits.com 🌐

Accessible Technology Coordinator
California State University, Dominguez Hills
https://csudh.edu 🌐

Email: editors@toptechtidbits.com 📧️
Subscribe: https://toptechtidbits.com/subscribe
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Editorial Contributor: Ben Moxey (Volunteer)

Photo of Ben Moxey holding Ferris, Guide Dog in Training.

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!

Ben Moxey

Editor (2022-Present)
Top Tech Tidbits
The Week's News in Access Technology
https://toptechtidbits.com 🌐

Access and Technology Advisor
Guide Dogs, New South Wales, Australian Capital Territory (NSW/ACT)
https://nsw.guidedogs.com.au 🌐

Email: editors@toptechtidbits.com 📧️
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A Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication: https://mvsltd.com

Editorial Contributor: David Woodbridge (Volunteer)

Photo of David Woodbridge.

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
Mastodon: woody@dragonscave.space
iSee Podcast: https://davidwoodbr.podbean.com
Vision Australia Radio Talking Tech: https://omny.fm/shows/talking-tech-vision-australia-radio

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.

David Woodbridge

Editorial Contributor (2023-Present)
Top Tech Tidbits
The Week's News in Access Technology
https://toptechtidbits.com 🌐

Editorial Contributor (2023-Present)
Access Information News
The Week's News in Access Information
https://accessinformationnews.com 🌐

National Commercial Assistive Technology Advisor (1990 - Present)
Vision Australia
Live the life you choose. We're here to support all Australians who are blind or have low vision.
https://www.visionaustralia.org/ 🌐

Email: editor@toptechtidbits.com 📧️
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A Mind Vault Solutions, Ltd. Publication: https://toptechtidbits.com

➜ Subscription Information


Founded in 2004, Top Tech Tidbits is the world's leading not-for-profit access technology publication that reaches over 17,000 blind, low vision, deaf, hard of hearing, deafblind, neurodivergent and/or disabled professionals, educators and enthusiasts, all over the world, each week. Subscribe here. Review the most recent issues here. Access Technology broadly encompasses technologies that enable access to information and communication systems for persons with disabilities. Adaptive Technology is a subset of Access Technology designed to assist individuals in performing tasks that might otherwise be challenging due to their particular disabilities. Assistive Technology includes any device, software, or equipment that helps people work around their challenges. 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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