GTT Chilliwack Agenda, Selecting Products for Seniors with Vision Loss, November 26, 2018

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

 

Get Together with Technology (GTT) Chilliwack

 

You are invited to the next session of the Chilliwack GTT group, a group dedicated to the learning and sharing of information about assistive technology useful for those living with low vision, blindness or deaf-blindness.

 

Theme: Selecting Products for Seniors with Vision Loss

When: Monday November 26, 2018

1:30-3:30 p.m.

Where: Chilliwack Public Library, Community Room

45860 First Avenue, Chilliwack

 

First Hour:

Selecting Products for Seniors with Vision Loss, the focus will be on tasks for health and wellbeing, as well as daily living and cooking.

Second Hour:

Following a break, we will open a Get Together with Technology (GTT) discussion about what devices we might be having trouble with, or those great new gadgets we’ve recently discovered that we might want to show-off.  Bring along those gadgets you want help with, and those you want to show others.

 

For more information contact:

Ginny @ (604) 378-9676

 

CCB Backgrounder:

 

The CCB was founded in 1944 by a coalition of blind war veterans, schools of the blind and local chapters to create a national self-governing organization. The CCB was incorporated by Letters Patent on May 10, 1950 and is a registered charity under the provisions of the Income Tax Act (Canada).

The purpose of the CCB is to give people with vision loss a distinctive and unique perspective before governments.  CCB deals with the ongoing effects of vision loss by encouraging active living and rehabilitation through peer support and social and recreational activities.

CCB promotes measures to conserve sight, create a close relationship with the sighted community and provide employment opportunities.

 

The CCB recognizes that vision loss has no boundaries with respect to gender, income, ethnicity, culture, other disabilities or age.

The CCB understands in many instances vision loss is preventable and sometimes is symptomatic of other health issues.  For the 21st century, the CCB is committed to an integrated proactive health approach for early detection to improve the quality of life for all Canadians.

As the largest membership organization of the blind and partially sighted in Canada the CCB is the “Voice of the Blind™”.

 

 

CCB National Office

100-20 James Street Ottawa ON  K2P 0T6

Toll Free: 1-877-304-0968 Email: info@ccbnational.net URL: www.ccbnational.net

 

 

GTT Edmonton Summary Notes, VR Stream and General Discussion, November 12, 2018

Summary Notes

GTT Edmonton Meeting November 12, 2018

 

The most recent meeting of the Get Together with Technology (GTT) Edmonton Chapter was held November 12at 7pm at Ascension Lutheran Church 8405 83 Street in Edmonton.

20 people attended.

Reading Tip: These summary notes apply HTML headings to help navigate the document. With screen readers, you may press the H key to jump forward or Shift H to jump backward from heading to heading.

 

November Topics –VR Stream and General Discussion

Victor Reader Stream Online Functions

Gerry provided a demonstration of the Online functions of the Victor Reader Stream including Podcasts, Bookshare, Internet Radio, Wikipedia and Wiktionary References, and CELA Direct to Player.

 

Summary:

It is not possible to describe these features in length in these notes but here is a brief summary. Refer to the HumanWare resources below for more detailed instructions.

  • Online Button: You move back and forth between the SD card bookshelves and the online bookshelves by pressing the online button in the centre of the top row just above key #2. You press and hold this online button to turn airplane mode on or off. Airplane mode must be off to enable a wi-fi connection to the Internet which is required to access the online content.
  • You move between the online bookshelves by pressing key 1 multiple times.
  • Podcast Bookshelf. When you are on the podcast bookshelf you move back and forth between its books (podcast feeds) by pressing keys 4 and 6. You may add a new podcast feed by pressing the GoTo key multiple times to find the option to add a new feed. You open the list of episodes in a feed by pressing the Confirm key. You then move back and forth between the episodes by pressing keys 4 and 6. Prior to the first episode is the option to get more episodes.
  • Bookshare Bookshelf: You must contact the CELA Library to request that Bookshare access be added to your account and then add the Bookshare username and password to your Stream using menu key #7. You may search for new Bookshare books and download them. Bookshare books are DAISY text only meaning they are read by the Stream’s built-in speech. You navigate the list of books on this bookshelf with keys 4 and 6 and open any book by pressing the Play or Confirm key.
  • Internet Radio Bookshelf: You Press keys 4 and 6 to move back and forth between the Radio books (playlists). Press the Go To key multiple times to find the search option where you can type keywords to find new radio stations. Press the Bookmark key to add a radio station from the search results list to your Favorites playlist. Press Play key to play any station.
  • References bookshelf: You press keys 4 or 6 to move between the 2 books (Wikipedia or Wiktionary) on this bookshelf. In either case you use the GoTo key to search for a word in Wiktionary or an article in Wikipedia. A preview of the word definition or article will be heard. You press the Play key to listen and navigate the full article. You may save the article by pressing key 3.
  • CELA Direct to Player Bookshelf: You register for CELA service online or through your local library. You must then add the assigned user account number to your Stream using menu key #7. You navigate the books on this bookshelf with keys 4 or 6. You open a book by pressing Play or Confirm key. These are DAISY books, so you navigate them with keys 2 or 8 to select the level of navigation and keys 4 or 6 to move back and forth at the chosen level. You return a book to CELA with key 3 followed by confirm. Unlike Bookshare books, you cannot search for CELA books using the Stream. You must search the CELA library with your computer and when you find your book select its Direct to Player link to cause the book to download to your Stream. You may also ask CELA customer support (1-855-655-2273) to automatically select your books based on your reading interests. You may also ask customer support to subscribe you to magazines which will download to the Stream automatically when issued. There are 150 magazines to choose from.

 

Resources

The HumanWare training web page for the Victor Reader Stream has information on using the Stream online features including:

  • Connecting to a wireless network.
  • Using the multi-tap text entry method to enter text on the keypad.
  • Adding Bookshare accounts.
  • Searching for Bookshare books.
  • Searching for Internet Radio stations.
  • Playing Internet Radio stations.
  • Searching for and adding Podcast feeds.
  • Managing Podcast feeds and playing Podcast episodes.
  • Also, refer to the built-in User guide which can be accessed any time by pressing and holding key #1. To exit the User Guide press and hold key #1 again. While in the User Guide, you may navigate by chapter and section as it is a DAISY book. You may also search the User Guide. Press the Goto key at the top left until you hear, Search. Then type in your search keywords on the number pad and press the Confirm or Pound key. You will be positioned in the User Guide at the first occurrence of your search text. Press key #6 to find the next occurrence or key 4 to find the previous. Instructions on typing text on the number pad can be found at the same HumanWare training web page.

 

General Discussion

The second hour comprised a very good general discussion on many

technology topics. Here is a summary:

  • Screen Reader: JAWS remains as the most prevalent screen reader program but for those transitioning to a screen reader the free NVDA screen reader should be quite adequate especially if the environment is not work or school.
  • Touch Typing: It is important if you are losing your vision and cannot touch type that you
  • learn this skill as the screen reader will not type for you.
  • Braille: There are some who think braille is old fashioned in our modern high tech world, but the reality is that braille is more available than ever through the use of electronic braille keyboards and refreshable displays to access computers and smartphones. Also, braille remains the only way to read and maintain your literacy skills as a blind person.
  • Android vs. iPhone: The choice of which type of phone to purchase is always a personal choice as both have screen magnification and screen reader accessibility features. Advantages of Android include a wider variety of phone devices that are less expensive than iPhones. Advantages of iPhones are that they are thought to be less problematic with the access features and as there are many more iPhone users than Android, your chances to get iPhone support are better.
  • Retail Advice re: Smartphones: Generally, sales people in retail stores don’t understand accessibility. For example, if you are blind, they often show you the Siri voice assistant whereas they do not understand that VoiceOver, the built-in screen reader, is the essential tool. Be cautious with advice from retail people. They mean well but are not typically well informed on accessibility.

 

Next Meeting (Monday December 10 at 7pm)

  • As usual for our December meeting, we will be joined by Steve Barclay, owner of Canadian Assistive Technology. Steve will demonstrate and talk about blind and low vision assistive technology products that may be purchased from his company. Bring your questions! This is a terrific opportunity to meet Steve and benefit from his many years in the assistive technology business.
  • As always, for help with technology bring your devices and/or questions to the meeting.

 

Meeting Location and Logistics

  • Ascension Lutheran Church 8405 – 83 Street NW, Edmonton.
  • We meet in the basement hall. There is elevator access.
  • Enter the church from the back door. There is parking at the back and drop off space for taxis, DATS.
  • Meetings are every second Monday of the month at 7pm.
  • If you have someone helping you your assistant is welcome to remain for the meeting.

 

GTT Edmonton Overview

  • GTT Edmonton is a chapter of the Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB).
  • GTT Edmonton promotes a self-help learning experience by holding monthly meetings to assist participants with assistive technology.
  • Each meeting consists of a feature technology topic, questions and answers about technology, and one-on-one training where possible.
  • Participants are encouraged to come to each meeting even if they are not interested in the feature topic because questions on any technology are welcome. The more participants the better able we will be equipped with the talent and experience to help each other.
  • There are GTT groups across Canada as well as a national GTT monthly toll free teleconference. You may subscribe to the National GTT blog to get email notices of teleconferences and notes from other GTT chapters. Visit:

http://www.gttprogram.wordpress.com/

To subscribe, activate the “Follow”link at the bottom of that web page to enter your email.

 

National GTT Email Support List

CCB sponsors a GTT email support list to provide help and support with technology for blind and low vision Canadians.  To subscribe to the email list, send an empty email to:

GTTsupport+subscribe@groups.io

 

[End of Document]

 

 

Advocacy: The Americans with Disabilities Act and The boutique Avanti Hotel

I wonder if our Accessible Canada Act will allow for this level of action?  The article pasted below can be found at this link:

 

Nov. 11–The boutique Avanti Hotel is known for its poolside, dog-friendly rooms. Yet its website uses the valuable opening page not to highlight the Palm

Springs inn’s amenities, but to explain, in stark black letters on a plain white background, that the Avanti violated the Americans with Disabilities Act.

 

Like thousands of other businesses in the United States, the 10-room hotel on East Stevens Road has been sued because it hasn’t fully complied with the

1990 law that requires public places — hotels, restaurants and shops — to be accessible to people with disabilities.

 

But Avanti isn’t being accused of failing to build a wheelchair ramp or install handrails — common charges in the scores of ADA lawsuits in years past.

Instead, the lawsuit contends that the hotel’s website can’t be used by people who have problems seeing or hearing.

 

Avanti Hotel and others have been caught up in a recent wave of ADA lawsuits targeting websites across the country. The Trump administration’s decision

to stop drafting rules for website ADA compliance is widely seen as opening the floodgates to legal action.

 

Nearly 5,000 ADA lawsuits were filed in federal court for alleged website violations in the first six months of 2018, according to an analysis by Seyfarth

Shaw, a law firm that specializes in defending such cases. The firm predicted that the number of lawsuits will climb to nearly 10,000 by the end of the

year, a 30% increase from 2017.

 

With online sales, reservations and job postings now a huge part of modern commerce, advocates for the disabled say websites need to be as accessible to

everyone, just as brick-and-mortar stores, restaurants and schools are.

 

“We have been dealing with website issues for a long time,” said Jim Thom, past president and government affairs director for the California Council of

the Blind. “We want compliance. It is a serious problem, no question about it.”

 

For a website to be accessible to disabled people, the content must be coded so that screen-reading software can convert the words to an audio translation.

Video that appears on a website must include descriptions for the deaf. Also, all interactive functions must be operable through keyboard commands for

people who can’t use a mouse.

 

No formal government standards exist for private businesses to follow to ensure their websites comply with the ADA, although a consortium of web innovators

has created guidelines, known as the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, to make websites more accessible to disabled people. Government websites already

follow those guidelines, but private business websites, which are typically loaded with images and video, tend to be more difficult to overhaul to meet

the guidelines, experts say.

 

The cost of making sites accessible ranges from several thousand dollars to a few million dollars, depending on the complexity of the site, according to

trade groups and business owners.

 

ADA lawsuits, filed in federal and state courts, have targeted the websites of retailers (including Winn-Dixie Stores Inc. supermarkets), restaurants (including

Domino’s Pizza Inc.) and universities (including Harvard and MIT).

 

The Hooters restaurant chain was sued last year, even after the chain agreed to fix its website as part of a settlement of a previous lawsuit. A federal

appeals court ruled that Hooters remained vulnerable to lawsuits until it fixed the website under the previous lawsuit settlement.

 

Earlier this month, the American Council of the Blind announced that it had reached a settlement with the streaming service Hulu to make Hulu’s website

and software app more accessible to blind users.

 

The cost of defending such lawsuits can be burdensome for small businesses such as the Avanti Hotel.

 

Fixing the site would cost about $3,000, which hotel manager Jim Rutledge said he is willing to pay. But the lawsuit demands the hotel also pay damages

to the plaintiff, and Rutledge said his lawyers advise him that he may have to settle for between $8,000 and $13,000.

 

“I would really like to fight it, but it just comes down to finances,” he said, estimating that he could be forced to pay up to $25,000 in damages, plus

lawyer fees, if he fights the suit and loses. In the meantime, several pages of the hotel’s website have been replaced with plain type because “no access

is equal access for everyone, per the ADA requirements,” the site notes.

 

Some trade groups say the lawyers and plaintiffs who file many of these lawsuits are only interested in using the law to pocket hefty court-imposed damages.

 

“Simply put, for those who are abusing the system, it’s about money, not about expanding access,” said Peter Clerkin, a spokesman for the Asian American

Hotel Owners Assn., which is advising its members to make websites ADA-compliant and not wait to get sued.

 

Since it was signed into law by President George H. W. Bush in 1990, the Americans with Disabilities Act has been cited thousands of times in lawsuits

filed against hotels, restaurants and shops to remove physical barriers for disabled people.

 

As early as 2009, the act was cited in lawsuits that targeted the websites of businesses and universities, saying the online portals must be just as accessible

to disabled people as the buildings that house businesses and schools.

 

In 2010, the Justice Department began to draft formal regulations for websites to meet ADA goals. But last December, the agency announced it was withdrawing

its “rulemaking process,” at a time when the Trump administration was calling for a rollback of federal regulations.

 

The department said it was killing the regulations because it was “evaluating whether promulgating regulations about the accessibility of web information

and services is necessary and appropriate.”

 

In a June 20 letter, 103 members of Congress — Republicans and Democrats — urged then-Atty. Gen. Jeff Sessions to adopt website regulations, saying the

absence of such regulations “only fuels the proliferations of these suits.”

 

Lawyers who defend ADA lawsuits say the Justice Department’s actions to pull the plug on adopting new regulations may have instigated the latest surge

in lawsuits.

 

Business owners who are sued under the ADA complain that the law allows plaintiffs to demand huge payouts in damages without first giving the business

owner the opportunity to fix the websites.

 

California leads other states by far in ADA lawsuits filed over website accessibility, according to the Seyfarth Shaw analysis. That may be because a California

law sets a minimum dollar amount for damages of $4,000 plus attorney’s fees for each ADA violation, a minimum not imposed in most other states. The minimum,

according to lawyers who defend such lawsuits, makes suing in California more lucrative.

 

The lawsuit against Rutledge’s hotel was filed by Manning Law in Newport Beach. The plaintiff was Kayla Reed, who is described as a resident of Montana.

Manning Law has filed 355 ADA cases, primarily in California, in the last 12 months, according to court records.

 

In an email, Joseph Manning, an attorney at Manning Law, declined to comment on the case against the Avanti Hotel, but rejected criticism that his lawsuits

are intended to enrich him and his clients.

 

“This case will not be resolved without addressing the accessibility concerns in the complaint, of that I can assure you,” he said.

 

Reed, who is described in the Avanti lawsuit as visually impaired, is listed as a plaintiff on more than three dozen lawsuits in federal court and in state

courts in Ventura and San Bernardino counties, court records show. The defendants in her lawsuits include Kmart, Hugo Boss, David’s Bridal and CVS Pharmacies.

 

The Los Angeles Times couldn’t locate Reed, and Manning said she would not comment on her lawsuits. But he said that money is the “least important issue

for her in these cases,” adding that “private enforcement of these laws is also the means devised by Congress to enforce these laws without burdening the

taxpayer.”

 

Manning was listed as Reed’s lawyer in a Ventura County Superior Court suit against CVS in 2017, according to court records. In the suit, she is described

as a resident of Ventura County who was seeking $75,000 in damages, saying that the CVS website was not accessible to blind people.

 

The case was eventually transferred to U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. The case was dismissed Dec. 8, 2017, when the court was notified that a settlement

had been reached. The details of that settlement were not disclosed.

 

Manning declined to comment on the settlement.

 

Asked to comment, CVS issued a statement saying the company is “committed to compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act and other laws and regulations

related to assisting individuals with disabilities.”

 

___

 

(c)2018 the Los Angeles Times

 

Visit the Los Angeles Times at

http://www.latimes.com

 

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

 

PQB Low Vision Support Group Agenda, Dr. Adam Reid, November 22, 2018

Parksville Qualicum Beach Low Vision Support Group

 

Sponsored by the Canadian Council of the Blind

And CNIB

 

You’re Invited!

 

Please share this invitation widely to anyone you think will benefit from our collective knowledge.

 

Monthly low vision Support Gathering:

 

Theme: Dr. Adam Reid, Optometrist, Iris Optical

When:  Thursday, November 22, 2018, 1:30 until 3:00 PM

Where:  The Gardens, 650 Berwick Rd North, Qualicum Beach

 

Agenda:

Dr Adam Reid will present on the list of questions below, and he’ll field any additional questions from the floor.

  • Blatheritis
  • Other possible causes and appropriate treatments for irritation and itching of the eyes.
  • Is there any relationship between diet, sleep, stress etc. especially relating to the ability to focus?
  • What is the value of ‘no preservatives’ in eye drops including moisturizing drops such as Refresh?
  • What do we need to know about ‘Blue light’ versus ‘yellow light’, daylight, and tinting of glasses etc.that might benefit us?
  • Are there any new treatments, procedures, visual aids, transplants etc that we might find helpful?
  • Is there any relationship between vision loss problems and hearing loss within families?
  • With the graduated lens, glasses is it possible to have the bottom section strengthened for ease of reading
  • Is there a “right” time to have cataract surgery if one has ARMD ?

 

  1. Light refreshments will be provided.

 

To RSVP:

Please call Albert Ruel at 250-240-2343, or email at albert.GTT@CCBNational.net.

 

 

GTT Northern Ontario and Rural Conference Call Agenda, Apps for People with Vision Loss, November 15, 2018

GTT Northern Ontario and Rural Conference Call

 

An Initiative of the

Canadian Council of the Blind

 

You’re invited to the November 2018 monthly Northern Ontario and Rural Get Together with Technology (GTT) teleconference call.

 

Date: Thursday, November 15, 2018 at 7 pM Eastern Time.

Theme: Apps for People with Vision Loss

 

Hello everyone,

Thursday, November 15 at 7 p.m. is the monthly Northern Ontario and Rural GTT teleconference call.  The topic is Apps for people with vision loss.  We’ve done this topic before, but not for a couple of years.

 

Kim Kilpatrick and Brian Bibeault will be our experts and we look forward to hearing about new apps we may not be aware of.

 

The call in information is below:

1-866-740-1260

Access Code:  5670311

Everyone is welcome.  We hope to hear you on the call.

 

For more information please contact your GTT Coordinators:

 

Kim Kilpatrick or Brian Bibeault

1-877-304-0968,513

GTTProgram@Gmail.com

brianb.northbay@gmail.com

 

GTT National Conference Call Agenda, JAWS OCR and Narrator on the Windows Surface Pro Tablet, November 14, 2018

Get Together with Technology (GTT)

National Teleconference Call

 

Sponsored by the Canadian Council of the Blind

 

You’re invited to the CCB’s November 14, 2018 GTT National conference call meeting:

Theme: JAWS OCR and the Windows Surface Pro with Narrator

 

Albert Ruel and Kim Kilpatrick will present some interesting and unique features of JAWS for scanning printed material without the need for dedicated scan and read software, and just how well the Narrator screen reader works on the Windows Surface Pro.

 

If time allows we will discuss anything else technology related that participants may wish to raise, so bring your ideas, concerns and nuggets of brilliance to share with us.

 

You can participate by phone from wherever you are.

 

Date: November 14, 2018

Time: 4:00–5:30 PM Pacific Time, 7:00-8:30 PM Eastern Time

 

The call-in info is:

Toll Free: 1-866-740-1260

Passcode: 5670311#

 

To mute your phone while on the call please use Star 6, and to unmute use Star 7.

 

iPhone Users can copy and paste the below number and code into their Contacts list and dial directly:

 

1-866-740-1260, 5670311#

 

For more information contact:

Kim Kilpatrick, GTT East Coordinator

GTTProgram@Gmail.com

1-877-304-0968 Ext 513

 

Albert Ruel, GTT West Coordinator

albert.GTT@CCBNational.net

1-877-304-0968 Ext 550

 

CCB Backgrounder:

 

The CCB was founded in 1944 by a coalition of blind war veterans, schools of the blind and local chapters to create a national self-governing organization. The CCB was incorporated by Letters Patent on May 10, 1950 and is a registered charity under the provisions of the Income Tax Act (Canada).

The purpose of the CCB is to give people with vision loss a distinctive and unique perspective before governments.  CCB deals with the ongoing effects of vision loss by encouraging active living and rehabilitation through peer support and social and recreational activities.

CCB promotes measures to conserve sight, create a close relationship with the sighted community and provide employment opportunities.

 

The CCB recognizes that vision loss has no boundaries with respect to gender, income, ethnicity, culture, other disabilities or age.

The CCB understands in many instances vision loss is preventable and sometimes is symptomatic of other health issues.  For the 21st century, the CCB is committed to an integrated proactive health approach for early detection to improve the quality of life for all Canadians.

As the largest membership organization of the blind and partially sighted in Canada the CCB is the “Voice of the Blind™”.

 

 

CCB National Office

100-20 James Street Ottawa ON  K2P 0T6

Toll Free: 1-877-304-0968 Email: info@ccbnational.net URL: http://www.ccbnational.net

 

 

GTT Toronto Meeting Invitation, NVDA Open Source Screen Reader, November 15, 2018

GTT Toronto Adaptive Technology User Group

November 15, 2018

 

An Initiative of the Canadian Council of the Blind

In Partnership with the CNIB Foundation

 

*Note: Reading Tip: These summary notes apply HTML headings to help navigate the document. With screen readers, you may press the H key to jump forward or Shift H to jump backward from heading to heading.

 

You’re Invited!

 

Theme: NVDA Open Source Screen Reader

 

The Date & Time:

Thursday, November 15, 6:00 PM til 8:00 PM

The Place:

CNIB community Hub at 1525 Yonge St.

 

Hey Everyone!

Just a quick reminder that our next GTT Toronto Meeting will be held on Thursday November 15 from 6pm to 8pm at the CNIB Community Hub, 1525 Yonge Street, just north of St Clair.

 

This month, we’ll be looking at NVDA, the open-source screen reader, launched by two blind developers, that’s available as a free download.  NVDA currently owns about 31% of the screen reader market, has been translated into more than 43 languages, and is being used in more than 120 countries around the world.

https://www.nvaccess.org/download/

Jason Fayre will be walking us through the details on how NVDA stacks up.  So don’t miss it!

 

As usual, light refreshments will be available.

So bring your adaptive tech, bring your questions, and Get Together with Technology!

 

Oh, and just a reminder that the Hub space closes at 8pm, so if you’re arranging WheelTrans, you can book your pick up from the Midtown Gastro Hub right next door at 1535 Yonge Street for any time after 8pm.

 

And don’t forget, you can get the notes from our past meetings at

https://www.gtt-toronto.ca/

 

To visit GTT Toronto’s web page for meeting announcements and summary notes visit this link.

 

GTT Toronto Adaptive Technology User Group Overview:

  • GTT Toronto is a chapter of the Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB).
  • GTT Toronto promotes a self-help learning experience by holding monthly meetings to assist participants with assistive technology.
  • Each meeting consists of a feature technology topic, questions and answers about technology, and one-on-one training where possible.
  • Participants are encouraged to come to each meeting even if they are not interested in the feature topic because questions on any technology are welcome. The more participants the better able we will be equipped with the talent and experience to help each other.
  • There are GTT groups across Canada as well as a national GTT monthly toll free teleconference. You may subscribe to the National GTT blog to get email notices of teleconferences and notes from other GTT chapters. Visit:

http://www.GTTProgram.Blog/

There is a form at the bottom of that web page to enter your email.

 

GTT Toronto Summary Notes, Rogers Ignite, Smart TVs and the BrailleMe, October 18, 2018

Summary Notes

 

GTT Toronto Adaptive Technology User Group

September 20, 2018

 

An Initiative of the Canadian Council of the Blind

In Partnership with the CNIB

 

The most recent meeting of the Get Together with Technology (GTT) Toronto Group was held on Thursday, October 18 at the CNIB Community Hub.

 

*Note: Reading Tip: These summary notes apply HTML headings to help navigate the document. With screen readers, you may press the H key to jump forward or Shift H to jump backward from heading to heading.

 

October 2018 Topic: Rogers Ignite TV, Smart TVs and the BrailleMe

 

GTT Toronto October 18, 2018 Meeting Summary Notes can be found at this link:

 

Attendees (30)

Ian White (Facilatator, GTT)

David Isaacson(Presenter, Rogers)

Debbie Gillespie (Presenter, CNIB foundation)

Aamer Khan (Note taker)

 

Ian- opening Remarks & Open Questions

 

How to Access Help Menus?

For a lot of products (especially Humanware) products holding down the number “1” key can access the Help menu.

 

What kind of computer should I buy?

Suggestion were made to

  • member said the Intel NUC Series processors (computer chip) are good
  • Lenovo T series may be a good choice as known for its toughness
  • Look for solid state hard drive as it is significantly faster
  • Gaming laptop is likely overkill if not using for gaming

 

What’s up with JAWS and Chrome?

Member informed that there is a bug with JAWS 2018 and Chrom 70- keystroke of “alt+down arrow” must be used to open combo boxes

 

What kind of Tech is Out There to help with Hearing Loss?

  • Tom Decker described he uses CommPilot hearing aids which also come with a auxiliary cable which can be plugged into almost anything.
  • Audio conn are $2200 each for each ear
  • Bose is coming to the market with “hearphones” hearing aids with significantly cheaper product $500 USD

 

What kind of discounts are there for Cell Phones?

Most of the cell phone carriers have discounts for people with disabilities including the below mentioned by members:

  • Rogers Wireless and Telus have a $20/month discount for people with disabilities
  • Virgin Mobile and Bell offer 2 extra gigs of data to people with disabilities

BrailleME Presentation

Presented by Tom Decker

  • BrailleMe is a low cost Braille display that works on iPhone and android via Bluetooth as well as the PC via USB.
  • preconfigured for NVDA, Spanish, English, French and several other languages
  • Frontier Computing will be the Canadian distributor, however currently only available in the United States.
  • Questions about servicing (no info at this time)
  • Does not use pizo electric cells, runs on magnet
  • $700+ CDN for the unit
  • Durable, makes noise
  • Six cell Braille, cursor routing keys
  • Members are claiming Orbit Braille reader has a high failure rate

 

 

Smart TV Demonstration

Presented by Debbie Gillespie

 

  • Debbie describes the remote in detail specifically the Description of accessible button on remote
  • TV being demonstrated is a Samsung NU8000
  • Debbie will be playing Three sound Recordings
  • Sound clip-1: asking like SIRI
  • Can you change the speech rate-Yes
  • Be careful of claims of “accessible” or “Smart TV’s” some will offer large print, screen readers or just WIFI
  • Low fidelity user guide, cannot re read paragraphs, you can pause and start but can’t re read
  • It is not on by default, you can turn it on by pushing down on the button
  • Cannot change voice type
  • Cable box overrides, tv controls for audio description

 

Rogers On demand- TV won’t read it

It will read AppleTV, Netflix, Chromecast, DVD player

 

 

 

Rogers Ignite Presentation

Presented by David from Rogers

  • Rogers general information on Vision Accessibility Products/Options
  • Rogers Accessibility Desk (877) 508-1760 (will have all pricing information on Rogers Ignite. you can also dial *234 on any Rogers phone
  • As of October 21st, 2018 Rogers will be offering a 30% discount to people with disabilities (for example a CNIB card or other evidence will be required for the discount) If already subscribed to vision products, it will not roll over automatically (like if you have Braille bills)

 

The Ignite Box Demonstration

  • The Ignite Box has the same tech as the Comcast X1 box and has been enhanced with a new remote, voice commands and a screen reader
  • With the voice commands you can speak into the remote and search for shows whether they are on cable or Netflix or your PVR
  • You can search shows by which are audio described
  • The unit comes with its own wireless modem which is a very good one (members report it is resolving long standing wifi dead zone issues)
  • Base speed on modem is 150 MB (very fast)
  • Only one box in the household needs a coaxial cable (the cable from the wall)
  • New features include Restart button (to restart a show), record and a tone for when the menu has reached the end
  • New Enhancement of Volume control, separate for menu and TV is coming
  • You can press the  B button twice to active voice guidance on the remote
  • You can turn on “Voice guidance on” holding Accessibility button
  • All recordings stored in the  cloud:  200 Hours of recording comes with the base package
  • Base package also includes Apple App so you can watch shows through iPhone or iPad, max of 2 devices outside the home are allowed for viewing at a time. You cannot set a recording from mobile devices (must be done through the box)
  • You can also download the shows to your mobile device for travel or subway use
  • No AirPlay support for mobile devices (stream to chromecast, Bluetooth speaker etc.
  • Maximum of 5 boxes allowed per household
  • Rogers Wireless  has a $20 month discount for people with disabilities (cell phone
  • Question: Shaw- multiple boxes- each box has different settings? yes for rogers as well you can name your box it too
  • No support currently for Amazon Prime
  • No adult content
  • Flex Channels in the top tier packages you can  swap out called “Free for Me”  only channels u are paying for)
  • KidsZone, restricts children’s access based on your PIN

 

Updates

  1. Metrolinx- Triplinx app and website are more accessible now
  2. Presto App- update, you can check your Presto balance if you have an
  3. Android phone with NFC (Near Field Comms) technology
  4. Crosstown App- Can give you updates on construction sites- accessibility is still an issue
  5. Way Around-App- It works like the pen friend with barcodes and text/speech you can input to code, but no actual pen so no loss of data if you switch phones
  6. Next month’s meeting will be about  learning NVDA (free screen reader) : NVDA 1O1 Part 1.

Upcoming Meetings:

  • Next Meeting: Thursday, November 15 at 6pm
  • Location: CNIB Community Hub space at 1525 Yonge Street, just 1 block north of St Clair on the east side of Yonge, just south of Heath.
  • Meetings are held on the third Thursday of the month at 6pm.

 

GTT Toronto Adaptive Technology User Group Overview:

  • GTT Toronto is a chapter of the Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB).
  • GTT Toronto promotes a self-help learning experience by holding monthly meetings to assist participants with assistive technology.
  • Each meeting consists of a feature technology topic, questions and answers about technology, and one-on-one training where possible.
  • Participants are encouraged to come to each meeting even if they are not interested in the feature topic because questions on any technology are welcome. The more participants the better able we will be equipped with the talent and experience to help each other.
  • There are GTT groups across Canada as well as a national GTT monthly toll free teleconference. You may subscribe to the National GTT blog to get email notices of teleconferences and notes from other GTT chapters. Visit:

http://www.GTTProgram.Blog/

There is a form at the bottom of that web page to enter your email.

 

 

CCB Tech Articles, Donna’s Low Tech Tips, Privacy protection, November 12, 2018

November 12 2018

Privacy protection

 

Hi there!  It’s Donna and thank you for allowing me to come into your inbox.

Today, I’d like to introduce you to my tip on privacy protection.

 

Privacy protection

We are constantly striving to protect ourselves from scams and scammers, but most of all we need to ensure that our privacy, confidentiality, and independence are kept safe from prying eyes and those who thrive on destroying our right to these precious commodities.

 

You have mortgage papers to complete

Yes!  At the best of times, these papers are extremely tedious for anyone to complete let alone a vision impaired person.

So many personal details are required and yes!  Your date of birth is required.

Additionally, other personal details such as banking info.

Warning!  If your date of birth falls into the wrong hands then just imagine what the one who stumbles on it can do with it!

They can use your date of birth to help themselves to your personal details and there goes your privacy and independence.

 

You could ask your real estate agent to provide you with the necessary papers in an electronic format so that you could at least read it for yourself but when it comes to the completion of the necessary forms then here is where you would most likely need sighted assistance.

 

The safest thing to do would be for you to ask your real estate agent to read them to you and if not, you need to find a trusted person; friend or family member or neighbour.

 

That’s it from me for this week.

If you would like to become a member of  my CCB Mysteries chapter you can do so for the price of $10 annually and in return you will receive unlimited access to either of the following libraries.

Recipes –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-recipes.html

Audio mysteries for all ages –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-audio-mysteries.html

Or you can subscribe to both for the price of $20 annually.

Now you  can subscribe to “‘Let’s Talk Tips”‘ which is my monthly resource for the most current and reliable

informational tips available in the areas of Technology, Nutrition, Media,

Business, and Advocacy.

http://bit.ly/ADJSubscribe

 

To contact me, send me an email at info@sterlingcreations.ca and I’d be happy to respond.

Have yourselves a great day and see you next week.

Donna

pletion of an application for CPP or Old Age

Sure!  You are told that you can do this online but as of now the website is not user friendly enough for you to do this.

So what do you do?

 

You need to go to your nearest Service Canada office.

Take a trusted friend, family member, or neighbour with you.

Upon arrival, let the agent know that you wish them to assist you complete your forms.

They may ask the one accompanying you to assist but be firm and let them know that you wish them to help you.

Take your Social Insurance Number card so that you can show it to them and any other photo ID in case you are asked for this.

Take your cheque book along with you so that they can take the info from your cheque to complete the form.

You would need to provide a void cheque and ask them to assist you with this.

They are usually very good at rendering assistance.

 

As of now, the website may not be completely usable for those who are vision impaired and the forms may still  not be in electronic format.

 

Call 1-800-277-9914

CALL 1 800 O-Canada (1-800-622-6232), from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

 

If you would like to become a member of  my CCB Mysteries chapter you can do so for the price of $10 annually and in return you will receive unlimited access to any of the following libraries.

Recipes – A collection of hard to find recipes

Audio mysteries for all ages – Comfort listening any time of the day

Home and garden – A collection of great articles for around the home and garden

Or you can subscribe to all 3 for the price of $30 annually.

Visit http://www.donnajodhan.com/subscription-libraries.html

 

To contact me, send me an email at info@sterlingcreations.ca and I’d be happy to respond.

Have yourselves a great day and see you next week.

Donna

CCB Tech Articles, Donna’s Low Tech Tips, Apps Round Up, November 5, 2018

November 05 2018

Apps round up

 

Hi there!  It’s Donna and thank you for allowing me to come into your inbox.

Today, I’d like to introduce you to my apps round up.

 

  1. Dusk (iOS, Free)

Dusk is an all-new gaming experience, designed for the blind but playable by everyone.

Use your phone in ways you’ve never imagined and challenge yourself with a series of

mini-games that do not require the use of sight, or play with a friend to find out who’s

the best!

*          Each game uses a combination of movement sensors, vibration, sound and

other technologies for a totally immersive experience.

*          Full leaderboards and achievements support for singleplayer games.

*          Play your favorite games with a friend and another iPhone, thanks to the

multiplayer mode.

*          Fully compatible with VoiceOver.

*          Simple and minimalist high-contrast design to improve legibility.

(Please note that some games might not be available on older devices due to technical

limitations.)

 

Current Version: 1.0.1 (July 17, 2018)

 

Read Dusk’s AppleVis App Directory entry for more information

https://www.applevis.com/apps/ios/games/dusk

Visit Dusk’s App Store page

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/dusk/id1391020357?mt=8

 

***

  1. WakeUp Alarm, Guaranteed (Simple SleepCycle Alarm

(iOS, Free)

 

WakeUp Alarm, Guaranteed. Get it? This alarm clock app guarantees that you’ll wake up

rested every morning, with many methods such as auto sleep cycle calculation & shake

to stop alarm.

*This app is created by my 13 year old son, Wern Jie.

What is this?

*          This is a Guaranteed WakeUp Alarm.

*          Its a gesture-based UI alarm app.

How do I use it with gestures?

*          Drag left or right to set alarm time.

*          Drag up to activate alarm.

*          Drag down to deactivate alarm.

*          Shake to stop alarm.

Features:

*          Easy to use… to the point where anyone can use it!

*          Calculates sleep cycle stages to wake you up at light sleep.

*          NO NEED to place the phone near the bed… It calculates the sleep cycles

through the mean average of most humans’ sleep cycle patterns.

*          Only wakes you up at just the right time so you feel refreshed.

*          Records estimate sleep into Health app.

*          Sleep music: plays your favourite music to fall asleep.

*          No Ads! 🙂 .

*          The most lightweight alarm app ever! (8 MB in size).

*          VoiceOver fully supported.

Current Version: 1.0.1 (April 25, 2017)

 

Read WakeUp Alarm, Guaranteed (Simple SleepCycle Alarm’s AppleVis App Directory entry for more

information

https://www.applevis.com/apps/ios/utilities/wakeup-alarm-guaranteed-simple-sleepcycle-alarm

Visit WakeUp Alarm, Guaranteed (Simple SleepCycle Alarm’s App Store page

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wakeup-alarm-guaranteed-simple-sleepcycle-alarm/id1225015791?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D8

 

That’s it from me for this week.

If you would like to become a member of  my CCB Mysteries chapter you can do so for the price of $10 annually and in return you will receive unlimited access to either of the following libraries.

Recipes –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-recipes.html

Audio mysteries for all ages –

http://www.donnajodhan.com/library-audio-mysteries.html

Or you can subscribe to both for the price of $20 annually.

Now you  can subscribe to “‘Let’s Talk Tips”‘ which is my monthly resource for the most current and reliable

informational tips available in the areas of Technology, Nutrition, Media,

Business, and Advocacy.

http://bit.ly/ADJSubscribe

 

To contact me, send me an email at info@sterlingcreations.ca and I’d be happy to respond.

Have yourselves a great day and see you next week.

Donna