Useful resource for everyone all about labelling on the GTT national call last week.

All about labeling, and identification. 

November 11, 2015. 

There were 20 participants on this very lively and useful conference call.

I am always amazed and really enjoy all of these calls with all of the wonderful information that comes to us from all across the country.

Sometimes the blind/low vision community seems small and scattered but it feels larger and much more unified when we all Get Together.

I want to thank everyone for all of your participation and ideas.

Wherever you have a GTT, (Whether in person or on a call) thank you for all you give and share with others.

A huge thank you to Lorne from the Edmonton GTT group.

He provided me with many e-mail resources on this call which I include in the notes below.

Lorne Weber is blind. He is the accessibility specialist for Norquest College and a volunteer on the GTT Edmonton team.

Also Donna Jodhan sent along a blog post about locator dots which I have incorporated into these notes as well as it is very relevant to this topic.

Once again, thank you all for your sharing and generosity.



Albert talk about the Orcam. 

OrCam optical character recognition, face recognition head mounted device. 

The web site is

Camera is on the right arm of the glasses.  Behind it is a bone conducting speaker. Just around your right ear. There is a processing unit 6 inches long, a inch wide. 4 hours of continuous use.  One trigger button, up and down volume and power. 

Can set up menus with trigger plus volume. 

Face recognition.  Pretty accurate with face recognition. It was tested with the same person wearing and then not wearing glasses and it still picked them up.

It cannot pick people up from a distance. 

It is Light dependent and people have to be within 5 or 6 feet of the person in order for it to recognize them.  It cannot recognize them as they come into a room or across the room and your face/orcam would need to be pointing directly at them.

  If there is a certain  product you want to identify regularly,  take picture of it and every time that product is there, it will identify it. You can hold a book or piece of paper in front of you and it reads. Albert did a demonstration.  Can read books.  Cannot save the file and read later.  If want to read part of a sheet, hold your finger near your face point it at the sheet it will hopefully read.  

It was able to Read text of buttons  on a washing machine. 

Can it pick up text on a screen. Yes it does and on the iphone screen.  

Does KNFB reader work on a screen? Yes. 

how does the weight feel?  The weight is not heavy but the cable coming off the back is bothersome. 

There was talk about Google glass and possible similar products.

Google glass was banned for privacy reasons because people did not like others taking pictures of them without their knowing it.

It is interesting to think about this in relation to people who are blind and needing to take pictures of things in order to identify them.


Google glass has a head phone jack. 

We talked about how expensive iphones are and talked about people being able to now use ipod touches for almost everything.

The new ipod touch which came out in the summer has a camera which is as good as the iphone 6.  Also the processor is as good as the iphone 6 as well.

This means that for much less cost, you can now use an ipod touch for almost everything and you don’t need to incur the monthly fees of a cell phone.

Wherever there is a wifi connection you can use the ipod touch.

Use it for everything except making calls or GPS.

Fongo gives you a phone number for Ipod touch.

It is voice over internet calling service.

You can make free calls as long as you are within range of your wifi.

You can also use it for text messaging if you pay a small fee.

You can have a voicemail box too and it gives you a phone number.

Note: Kim signed up for fongo.  The app itself is accessible but the sign up process is not very accessible.  There are captias that are not accessible and also a few check boxes that were not readable with voiceover on the I device.

Kim is contacting the company to point this out to them.

The new ipod touch also reads well with KNFB reader but KNFB reader costs over 100 dollars.


Voice is a free alternative to KNFB reader. 

fopydo provides a fairly inexpensive stand to use with your phone or device for scanning pages and products. 

My fitness pal app for iphone is not necessarily designed to read bar codes but it does a good job for bar code reading.

Crowdvis is a new IOS app that is similar to bemyeyes in that it puts you in touch with people who can give you descriptions of things.

It is an app that is similar to a facetime or skype call in that you  are using your video camera and hearing audio of the other person who is helping you.


Pen friend is used for many purposes by many people on the call.

They include:


Labeling Seed packets and also labeling the markers for what is growing in your garden.

Use pen friend also for labelling food items.

Put a label on the top of a spice jar and keep the lid each time you replace the spice.

PUt Put the label on a card before putting it on something in your freezer.

Put a label on a magnet before sticking on a can.

For clothes Can buy water proof ones last up to 70 washes. 

Pen friend labeller can also label chords, label cd’s, and anything around the house, also labelling medications.

Possibly use double sided tape to stick braille labels on plastic bottles such as medications.


We talked about locator dots.

Futureaids has a pack of locator dots that come in all different shapes and sizes.

Donna Jodhan told us that she has used them for many purposes.

CNIB sells them. and look for the shop.

Futureaids has them very inexpensively and seems to have more variety.

 What do people  use the different shaped ones for?

One option is for marking stoves or appliances where there are arrows.

Use the triangular ones to mark the up and down arrows.

If you are at the gym or other place where you would regularly need to place locator dots on a machine that others use, (examples washers/dryers in  an apartment building, equipment at a fitness facility, etc, you might be able to create or have someone with sight create a sheet of plastic built with locator dots  so that you could put it over the panel. 

We talked about colour identifyers and colour identification apps.

The Colorino Color identeifyer unit has also a light detector and some said it is very good and easy to use and has lasted a long time.

Another person had the Colour reader by cobalt. 

There are a few apps that can work well but are not fool proof.

Aid colors is the one Kim uses.

She also uses the app called light detector for determining whether or not lights are on.

We talked about labelling clothes as colour identifier apps and systems do not always work well.

One good way of labelling clothes is to use Brass safety pins. They have to be Good quality. 

We talked about labelling stove tops and how some of the flat stove tops are not as accessible.

Someone suggested using a template to put over the stove top.

Solid state stove top is easier to feel. 

WE talked about the speed dots screen protectors for I devices.  No one on the call was using these.  Some people like them and others not so much.

Here are the excellent resources from Lorne Weber.

Additional Resources

GTT National Conference Call

November 11, 2015


iPhone technology that will puff out tactile buttons on the screen of your phone and then will flatten out again once the keyboard disappears is from a company called Tactus Technology,

they’re offering it in the form of a case you put your phone into (currently sold out), and it’s called Phorm (spelled with the PH). you can find out more

information if you go to the following website and go to the 4th heading down from the top where they have a frequently asked questions section:


A free app you can get that will give you a free local inbound and outbound Canadian phone number + voicemail, and will let you make unlimited long

distance calls across Canada is called Fongo, you can download the app here:


However be warned, if you sign up using the app on the phone there is a CAPTCHA. if you opt to sign up for the free pc or Mac option, then you can fill

out all the information on your computer using Jaws, etc., so you could use Firefox and the Web Vism plugin for solving CAPTCHAS.


Another app I suggested as a free alternative to the KNFB Reader app is called Voice – Take Pictures & Have Them Read/Spoken In Many

Languages with Fast OCR, and it can be found here:


and here is Applevis’s excellent page describing it:


and there is even a demonstration of it from Applevis:


We discussed the Six Dot Braille Labeller, a  new cheaper alternative to a full Braille Embosser for making braille labels, this is it:


it seems the PenFriend Labeller is quite popular with GTT groups.  CNIB is selling it for $199 here:


And here are some demos of it:



During the call we tried to remember the name of the cheaper alternative to the PenFriend labeller that Aroga sells. It’s called the AnyBook Reader, made by Franklin

Electronics, for $40, more info is here: