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Top Tech Tidbits - Volume 158

Distributed by Flying Blind, LLC

For questions and comments regarding Tidbits, please e-mail Dean Martineau at
Dean Martineau provides adaptive technology training by phone, online, and in person, with flexible arrangements, and at affordable prices.

1) Jim Kitchen has been producing free self-voicing accessible games for several years, and they have been getting more and more sophisticated. He will talk about his games on Tek Talk this week, GMT Tuesday 6 May at 00:00.

2) Blind Bargains lets us know about a seminar on the numerous accessible programs you can run on a phone that runs the Symbian operating system if you have one of the available screen readers.

3) For those who like to use software to track weather and get forecasts for here and there, a free program to use is Weather Pulse from Tropic Designs Software. Users report that the latest version is more accessible with JAWS and Hal.

4) EASI will present a free two-part webinar: Mass Production of Scanned Books for Students with disabilities, Thursdays 1 and 15 May at 18:00 GMt. Preregistration is required and gives you access to the recordings of the session.

5) CCleaner is a free PC optimization tool that provides registry cleaning and purging of unnecessary files. Unfortunately, if you download the main version, you install the Yahoo toolbar, which you may not want. Fortunately, on this page, you can grab the "slim" version which includes everything except the unwanted toolbar.

6) Here are two sites which may prove useful. The first is more blindness-oriented, while the second is a multi-disability information site:

7) Fred's Head Companion is full of information for online shoppers this time around. First, there's Farecast, a flight-search and comparison tool:
Then there's Destination Rx, where you can cut costs for prescription medicine.
Next, there's Grocery Guide, where you can compare prices for groceries locally and fine recipes and nutritional information:
Finally, have a look at ShotItToMe, Free personal shopper for sales on clothing and accessories.

8) As part of the latest update for JAWS, the USB version has been updated to version 9.

9) Here is a favorable review of the free (for personal use) antivirus program avast! Antivirus 4.8 Home Edition.

10) The March-April issue of DIALOGUE: A WORLD OF IDEAS FOR VISUALLY IMPAIRED PEOPLE OF ALL AGES, including an article on the advisability of upgrading to Vista and other technology news, is here.

11) Thanks to a grant from the National Science Foundation, the University of Oregon is creating a free tactile mapmaking program. They are looking for testers of the program, which already functions well but which they want to refine and perfect.

12) American Printing House is looking to hire two programmers.

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