Physical disability

Changing Lives of People with Disabilities in Ecuador- the CITTI Project

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM Pacific Daylight Time

 

Learn about how the CITTI (Community Inclusion Through Technology International) Project has brought AT, OT, SLP, and other professionals to meet with families and those who work with people who have disabilities in Ecuador. 

 

Bridgett Perry shares some great slides of low tech options using very low cost or free materials.

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Additional Keyboard Options for Your iPad

 

While the iPad has a nice large keyboard, it does not allow touch typing. While you can use Bluetooth keyboards and Apple's iPad Keyboard Dock, there are new alternatives. 

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A Good Place To Begin…When the Mouse is Difficult or Impossible to Use

The mouse, which comes standard with many desktop and laptop computers, can be difficult or impossible for some people to use.  Gripping, pressing, dragging, and other required physical movements can make a standard mouse impractical. This article offers a range of mouse options to consider, from changing mouse settings, to performing mouse functions without fingers, hands, and arms. 

Understanding the purpose of the standard mouse

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How Stephen Hawking Uses a Computer (Switches and Scanning)

You might wonder how Stephen Hawking can operate his computer and tell it what to say. He uses a single switch activated by the movement of a muscle in his cheek along with some specialized software that presents choices that narrow down to what he wants to say or do. This article discusses the range of switches and related software that allow anyone with a single consistent motion they can control to use a computer.

Switches

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Making Documents Accessible

Much information is available about website accessibility. However, documents in Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and PDF can also be inaccessible to blind users, as well as some users with cognitive and physical disabilities. This article summarizes the accessibility process for several versions of the Microsoft products, and discusses multiple ways to address PDF accessibility.

 

What is Document Accessibility?

A document is accessible if users with disabilities can read and understand all essential information that it contains, whether or not they use assistive technology. In particular:

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Assistive Technology for People with Limited or No Use of Their Hands

This article provides an overview of alternative strategies that people with physical disabilities can use to augment or replace use of their hands.

Optimizing Hand Use

Many people, even those with severe difficulty using their hands, prefer to maximize their manual capabilities rather than use alternative strategies. Fortunately, there is a wide range of assistive technologies that can help with this:

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Touchscreen Use and Accessibility Issues

Touchscreens are becoming ubiquitous in mobile devices: tablets, smartphones, e-readers, etc. However, individuals who have either visual or dexterity disabilities (or both) may have difficulties using standard touchscreen technology. This article covers the types of problems that people may experience, as well as innovations that attempt to address these barriers.

Vision

Traditional touchscreen use, like mouse use, requires good hand/eye coordination. If users cannot see the target, they cannot activate it. This affects opening applications, using the virtual keyboard, and most other touch screen functions. Recent touchscreens have built-in solutions for this problem:

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Selecting iPad/iPhone/iTouch AAC Software for People with Visual or Physical Disabilities or Language Barriers

While many augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) apps are available for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch, only a few meet the needs of people who have significant visual or dexterity disabilities, or who need to use languages other than English. This article summarizes these apps.

AAC Apps with an Audio-Only Option

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Accessibility and E-Readers

E-readers (portable devices used primarily for reading electronic books) and general purpose tablets with book-reading apps, like the iPad, are fast becoming popular choices for reading the growing collection of books available in electronic formats. Both types arrived with some accessibility advantages, and developers have been making their products more accessible to people with visual and dexterity disabilities. This article is a summary of the current accessibility state-of-the-art for the most popular of these devices, as well as information on using computers to access e-books. The field is evolving due to lawsuits against schools and libraries, by groups concerned with access.

Most e-readers have features that make them easier for some users, compared to printed books: lighter weight, buttons or screen gestures for page-turning, magnification, and good contrast in low light. Brands and models differ widely on these and more advanced features such as text-to-speech, easy-to-use controls, and screens that perform well in all lighting conditions.

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Using a Computer While Lying Down

Some people need to spend much of their time in bed for medical reasons; other find that sitting or lying in bed is more comfortable than using a chair or standing. In both cases, appropriate furniture and other hardware may be necessary to permit effective use of either a laptop or desktop computer. This article talks about some strategies and considerations for in-bed computer use.

Initial Considerations

  • Position the bed near an electrical outlet, surge protector, or uninterruptible power supply. Even if the user is using battery power, they will want easy access to the recharger.

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