Tech-Ease GTT Regina Summary Notes, Facebook, Aira, BeMyEyes and Meet Me In The Cloud, February 29, 2020

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

February 29, 2020


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


Attendance: Barry, Jerome, Wes, Donna, Sarenia, Blaine D, Michelle, Amber, Patti-Lynn (RPL), Doug (via phone), Camille


Regrets: Linda, Blaine R, Anna, Jessica


Facebook Groups:

  • Explained Facebook in general
  • Types of status updated, checking in, etc.
  • Explained privacy settings generally
  • Explained pages vs. Groups
  • explained different types of groups
  • Explained public groups and private groups
  • Advantages of FB Groups
    • Nice way to make friends you’ll never meet
    • Nice to have like minded friends



Joining FB group:


Find a Facebook group. Interest you. Type into in the search box.


The page will show up and if you keep swiping to the right or scroll down. There will be a “joined group” button where you can press after that is pressed the Box will turn to ” cancel join request”


some groups will automatically pop up two or three questions pertaining to the group that they want you to answer before your request is accepted.

Also, on that page you can look at how many posts in a day are put up on that page or how many people are in that page or how many of your friends or in the group. who the moderators or group administrators are.


Facebook should notify you when your request to join has been accepted by the group moderator.


If you want to leave the group at any time go to the group page the top right-hand corner has will be visual three dots beside the ” search” option. Is a “member tools button”


You will be presented with options like following options “share. ”

“Following.” “Notifications.” “Favourites. ”

“Add to home screen.” and “report” just keep swiping to the right until you hear.

” leave group button.” You will be asked if you are sure you want to leave group.


When you are approved to a group The General etiquette is to write a short post introducing yourself and the reason why you wanted to join the group in the first place…


Once you have joined the group. If you click on the title of the group name you will be presented with the group rules that are always good to read.


This will present you with additional information like how long the group has been running. how many members in the group how active the group is how many posts per day.

You can also see options like the group history and whether the group is private, secret, or public.

A public group means everybody can see posts in that group whether you’re a member of the group or not.


Private means people can find the group but only members in the group can see individuals’ posts.


Secret groups are groups that only members know about the group or know how to find it. Basically, with this group you have to be added by somebody already in the secret group in order to know about it.


Every time privacy settings are changed in a group generally group members will be given a notification sound in your regular Facebook notifications.

Members also have the opportunity to add their friends to groups. some groups have the ability for members to approve other members some it’s the moderators only that do the approving.


Typically, one of the rules is asking your friends before adding them to groups but interest you to make sure they are interested as well…

That’s just common sense but I thought I’d write it anyways.


Here’s how to find all the groups that you’re involved in…


Across the top of Facebook, you have “news feed”

“memories” “dating” “notifications” and then the far right-hand side of the screen there is “menu” option.

When you click on that you will have the first option is to view your personal profile. Then if you keep swiping to the right or scroll down you will have options


” memories”


“Marketplace” “videos on events”


“saved ”

“Nearby friends” “dating”

” gaming”


If you click on group you have an option for your groups.

If you are a moderator for any of the groups. They will show up first.

Under group you manage. Then under that will be “other groups.” and then the rest of your groups will show up in a list form.

you can also change these click on “the sort your other groups” button right next to other group button. on the right-hand side to show in alphabetical order. For most recent that you’ve posted to.

Etc. if that makes finding a specific group easier.


Moderators also along with you have the ability to shut commenting off on a post if the comments get to negative.


You click on your individual post and you have an option for turn commenting off.


If you would like to edit your post go to the right-hand side of your original post.


The right hand of your post is

” post menu”.

There you can see options like “copy link “ or “edit post”

If you edit the post more than once you can see the edit history which is a recent update with Facebook.

This is also where you can turn commenting off.

there are many different groups depending on your interest there are lots of groups for visually impaired or disability in general.  especially support groups. There are even groups like instant pot users or gardening. Funko Pop figurine groups.  Etc.


Aira Updates:

  • Aira equipment includes glasses (2nd generation), tether, controller (which is an Android phone w/ nothing else on it but Aira),  or you can use your phone,  and you can use a Bluetooth headphones
  • You can buddy full plans with Aira and now there’s is a 5 minute free call you can use unlimited
  • Plans: 30 min for $30 USD, 120 minutes for $99 USD, 300 minutes for $299 USD, they got rid of unlimited plan (it was downgraded to 700 minutes plan but only people grandfathered into it retina it)
  • You can fluctuate between the other plans as needs dictate, you can switch in the middle of the month and pay more or less if you go up or down in plans for remainder of the month
  • There are a lot of incentives to the plans – if you are looking for a job they will help you with job related job search tasks for 30 minutes for free added to account
  • If you are a JAWS user and a license holder of it and you call in they will help you with (or team viewer) they don’t charge for this help
  • They will help with quick books if it’s not reading well as well
  • The 5 minutes plan, someone can give someone else a referral code, which is 7 days unlimited access to play with it, the person referring gets 30 free minutes plus bonus minutes if the person buys a plan (referrer gets equal to what referee gets for free)
  • The Aira controller which is the android phone, there is a voice assistant named Chloe, she can help call an agent, check battery, she can check minutes available, etc.
  • Glasses have a connection port on them, in the middle of the glasses on the front is the camera, the camera has a 120 degree or so camera, they have frameless glasses as well if you wear glasses regularly
  • The glasses/controller are an add on for people with more than 30 minutes plans ($600 one time for the glasses/controller or $25 a month)
  • There are no controls on the glasses, only on the phone
  • Cord is a female to female cable connection
  • Glasses can see 5 feet more to each side than with phone camera, also can see further into the distance as it has a good quality camera
  • We did a demo with an agent, he said help with cooking directions, checking mail, described renaissance fair for someone, describe Super Bowl to someone, lots of different things, can call an Uber for you as well
    • Not allowed to help with anything involving nudity
    • Not allowed to comment on specific safety, can give visual info like when walking light is on, but it is up to someone to choose to cross the street



Aira discontinuing Horizon glasses and phone end of March 2020..

” Dear Horizon User,


The current Horizon Android smartphone no longer accommodates regular Horizon application updates. The current Horizon Android smartphone no longer accommodates regular Horizon application updates so that means our Aira tech team does not have much control to improve the experience. The model of smartphone that supports the Horizon system has been discontinued by Samsung so we must move on and find a new option.


As smartphones, like the latest iPhone, have transitioned away from physical buttons, finding a device to support a one-button access interface is a significant challenge. So what does that mean? It means that Aira’s smart glasses hardware solution is not meeting the Aira standard today and furthermore the Explorer experience with Horizon will continue to decline. Simply put, we need to find a new solution that better meets the demands of our Explorer community. With that, and after considerable analysis, I have decided that beginning on April 1, Aira will no longer support calls made from Horizon smart glasses. This change will allow our technical team to refocus on improving the core service. Below is a FAQ section if you want to learn more.


So the next question is naturally: If Horizon doesn’t meet the Aira standard, what will? We are aligning our hardware strategy with the mainstream devices that you all already use such as an iPhone, Android Smartphone and some new and emerging platforms. We would appreciate your help by sharing your thoughts on new devices and platforms, products and technologies that we should consider integrating into the Aira Explorer experience. Send them to and Customer Care will gather a list of potential smart glasses or other devices to utilize in our future.


Aira was founded on the idea of both creating and leveraging leading technology to bring you the Explorer a modern, useful and one-of-a-kind experience. Our passion for creating the leading experience has never been stronger.


Thank you for your continued support of Aira. Aira agents look forward to connecting with you soon.


We wouldn’t be here without you,


CEO of Aira”


Be My Eyes:

  • Specialized partners – Companies that can answer questions through the Be My Eyes app specific to their products:
    • Google, Microsoft, ClearBlue, Herbal Essence, P&G, Pantene, National Federation of the Blind, as well as some banks, but as none are Canadian I am not listing them


Next Meeting:

March 28 @ 2 pm

Topics: Windows 10 – the good, the bad and the ugly





Tech-Ease Drop In/GTT is a go! We are temporarily changing the format, to accommodate social distancing and civic service closures. Below is the information regarding tech-ease for this month, so you can join us from home!


Q: What if I don’t have zoom on my cell phone or computer?

A: Just follow the dial in information provided below.

Q: What if I have zoom on my computer?

A: select the link for the meeting posted below, and it will take you to the meeting.

Q: are there a list of shortcuts for zoom on the computer?

A: yes, these instructions will be sent in a following email with subject line of: “Zoom Computer shortcuts”

Q: What is one touch dialing:

A: this allows you to select the phone number and is supposed to automatically dial you into the call on your IOS device to the conference line without the need to enter ID numbers. I am unsure how this works otherwise.


Time: Mar 28, 2020 02:00 PM Saskatchewan

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 204 975 9341

One tap mobile

Please select one of the following Canadian phone numbers for one tap mobile access



Dial by your location

Please select one of the Canadian phone numbers below. Please note, Saskatchewan does not have their designated line. 1(587) is an alberta phone number if you choose to join through these numbers.

+1 778 907 2071 Canada

+1 438 809 7799 Canada

+1 587 328 1099 Canada

+1 647 374 4685 Canada

+1 647 558 0588 Canada

Meeting ID: 204 975 9341

Find your local number:




Some shortcuts that would be helpful for the Zoom Tech Meetings if you are joining the meeting with your computer and using a keyboard.


Alt+V: Start/Stop Video

Alt+A: Mute/unmute audio

Alt+Y: Raise/lower hand

Ctrl+Alt+Shift+H: Show/Hide floating meeting controls




Meet Me Accessibly is a three-hour audiobook, written and narrated by Jonathan Mosen. It takes you from the basics of attending your first Zoom meeting, all the way to content sharing of your video and audio from a computer or iDevice.


Just some of the things Jonathan shows you in Meet Me Accessibly include:


Attending your first Zoom meeting


Working with and configuring the Windows client


Working with and configuring the iOS client


Creating compelling and effective online meetings of up to 100 participants for discussions or webinars


Using Zoom to have a sighted person take control of your computer, even a Mac user can control a Windows PC and vice versa


Running visually attractive presentations using PowerPoint, or by sharing the output of any application on your computer


Using the high-quality, low-latency audio capabilities of Zoom for one-on-one conversations


Holding global Internet and telephone conferences


Taking advantage of the exceptional audio for use in a podcast, including creating separate audio files for every participant for use in a multitrack editor such as Amadeus Pro or Reaper


Recording meetings and podcast interviews on your iPhone, thanks to the Zoom cloud recording capability


Recording top-quality tech demonstrations thanks to the easy-to-use ability for Zoom to capture your computer’s sound


Sharing the screen and audio from apps on your iDevice


Enabling stereo audio


Turning off Zoom’s audio processing for pure, top-quality sound


Scheduling meetings


Holding instant meetings


Using your personal meeting ID


As you can see, there’s so much that Zoom can do, you’ll wonder how you lived without it.


In Meet Me Accessibly, Jonathan uses JAWS for Windows, the world’s most used screen reader when working with Windows. When discussing Zoom’s mobile offerings, he uses an iPhone running VoiceOver, the screen reader built into all iOS products. But the user interface of Zoom adheres closely to accessibility standards, so even if you use a different platform or screen reader, you should still be able to glean much from the demonstrations and descriptions.


Download Meet Me Accessibly free


To help any blind person who may need to telecommute during the COVID-19 outbreak, we have made Meet Me Accessibly free to download. You may distribute it for download anywhere, as long as the files are not modified in any way.


When you download, you get a zip file with the book divided into 19 MP3 files to make it easy to get to the sections you want. An included M3U playlist allows you to easily play the book from beginning to end. We’ve taken care to number the files sequentially, so the book imports beautifully into Voice Dream Reader on an iDevice.


Download Meet Me Accessibly free.


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GTT-TechEase Regina Summary Notes, Uber, Transit Stop Announcements, Food Delivery, May 25, 2019

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

May 25, 2019


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision



  • Uber and guide dog users – It is in the bylaws for city of Regina and City of Saskatoon that the Uber/cab company can be charged under bylaws and either the driver or the company can be charged if a handler is denied access due to their guide dog. The Bylaws are to protect guide dog users.
  • If the driver says they have allergies they have to have a letter on file with dispatch and they have to wait with you until new cab comes to complete your trip
  • Most handlers find it is easier to declare your guide dog ahead of time to avoid denied trips or delays while another cab/Uber is summoned
  • Many blind and partially sighted people choose to tell the cab company or Uber driver about their needs ahead of time so they get the best service. i.e. “I am legally blind so the cab driver will have to come inside to get me or lead me to my door when he takes me home”.
  • Capital Cabs has proven to be the best in Regina for helping people with all disabilities

Steps to access an Uber or Lyft

  • Download the app and put in your personal info including credit card info
  • Lyft takes $1 from credit card when it is first added to verify the card, it is not refunded
  • Once you have the app you type in where you want to go and the app gives you an estimate of both the amount you will pay and the time it will take to get the driver to you
  • There are different levels of Uber, one for individuals, one for groups (XL), one for special needs (Assist) and one for elite (Black) we do not have black or the one for special needs in Regina yet
  • We discussed safety features like you and/or the driver changing screen colour on their mobile and holding it up so you know you are going to the right car, adding notes to the driver notifying them of your needs, the app showing drivers face and make/model of car so you know you are choosing the right car
  • There is a “follow me” option in the Uber app that you can send to a friend so they can track your progress and know you got home safely
  • The apps take both PayPal & credit card
  • Driver use their own vehicles, they are not company cars
  • There is no conflict of interest policies so drivers can drive for many companies (Lyft in day, Uber at night) discussed this as possibly a safety hazard as drivers could become fatigued
  • You can rate the experience and the driver upon the completion of your trip, so you can also only choose to accept rides from 5 star drivers
  • Most handlers choose not to allow their guide dogs on the seats of any transportation (except their own) out of respect for the owner/company who may have to clean the vehicle after


Audibles on transit:

  • We encourage people to report transit issues, because if people aren’t reporting the city isn’t made aware and change/repairs won’t happen
  • If you have enough sight to tell on the buses the GPS panel is black if its not working and lit up if it is
  • Ask the driver to turn the audible on when your get on, If it isn’t working the bus is supposed to be put out of service so you can say you will call to have that done if its off, oftentimes if a driver is choosing to keep it off they will turn it on when you mention this


Skip the Dishes/UberEats

  • Discussed the process for ordering, choose a restaurant, choose your food, add them to your order, confirm your order, click checkout and wait for driver to arrive, app shows driver’s progress
  • You can pay with credit card or cash if it’s under $50 but the driver will not have change so you have to exact amount
  • When calculating at checkout the tip is included for in the price, the amount you add on is a tip for the driver not the restaurant


Parcel Pal/Postmates:

  • A service like Skip the Dishes or UberEats but they bring you things from stores or take things to places for you (mail to the post office, drycleaning to cleaners, etc.)
  • We have Parcel Pal in some parts Canada
  • They have Postmates in the USA but it is coming to Canada eventually


Luggage Dongle:

  • Tile is the brand
  • You can send a tone to it from your smartphone you can add it to anything you want, keys, luggage, etc. You turn off the noise from the phone once you have located the item you have attached the Tile to
  • You can tap on the tile and it can send a signal to your phone from it so you can find your phone with it as well
  • $44 each with taxes etc. at London Drugs
  • Radius is listed at 300 feet
  • You can have multiple Tiles hooked up to one app
  • They come in 2 levels, the other one is cheaper than $44 but the cheaper one is not that loud and the area is not as big
  • They only come in black
  • There is a premium app feature that notifies you when you get too far from your phone


VIRN and the future of GTT/Tech Ease:

  • Discussed option to hold digital meetings through zoom, they are already doing in Manitoba
  • Also discussed idea of doing YouTube during or after Tech Ease meetings


Topics for next time:

Recap of the year


Connect with us:



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GTT-Tech-Ease Regina Summary Notes, Accessible Games and Access2Entertainment Card, May 26, 2018

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

May 26, 2018


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


In Attendance: 9 members; Amber, Michelle, Doug, Barry, Wes, Jerome, Lori, Donna, Patti-Lynn


Access 2 Entertainment Card:

– 3 years for $20, 5 years for $30

– Through the Easter Seals Website or Access 2 Entertainment website

– Send in copy of CNIB card as proof to get an Access 2 Card

– The list of places that accept the card can be found here:


Notes from Michelle “Accees 2 card info. For GTT”

The Access 2 card is for people of all ages and types of permanent disabilities who require the assistance of a support person at hundreds of participating entertainment, cultural and recreational venues across Canada.


A support person is an adult who accompanies a person with a permanent disability to assist with services that are not provided by the employees at the participating venue, such as assistance with eating, administering medication, communication and use of the facilities.

The Access 2 cardholder (the individual with a permanent disability) presents the Access 2 card to a venue.


The Access 2 cardholder pays  regular admission price.


The Access 2 cardholder receives 1 FREE ADMISSION for their support person)

Movie theaters throughout the province are:

Cineplex..  Landmark cinima  .  Rainbow theaters.  Magic Lantern theaters.


Places in Regina:

Vendors. Royal Saskatchewan Museum. RCMP Heritage Museum..

Cineplex Odeon Theatres. Southland mall.  Galaxy Theater. Or whatever they’re called now. In Norman view Shopping Center.

Rainbow theaters Golden Mile..

Moose Jaw Vendors:

Tunnels of Moose Jaw. Western development Museum…


Saskatoon Vendors:

Fitness on 25th. YMCA.

Western development Museum Saskatoon..

Forestry farm and Zoo..


North Battleford:

Western development Museum.


How to Apply:



Complete “Section B – Applicant Information” (ensuring to check off the “New Card” box). The form can be found below.


Complete “Section C – Health Care Professional Authorization”. This section is to be completed by an authorized healthcare professional. Please refer to Section C for a list of accepted health care professionals…

For those that have a valid cnib  client. number. Just a photocopy attached to the application is sufficient.


Complete “Section D – Administration Fee Payment”.




Payment can be made online with a credit card, Visa debit card or PayPal account.


A cheque or money order can be mailed to our office.

Please refer to Section D of the application form for payment details. Paying online is highly recommended – as you will receive your card much faster.



$20 for a new 3-year card


$30 for a new 5-year card.





There are three ways you can submit your application: by mail, fax, or e-mail.

Submit Sections B, C, and D.

For all faxed or e-mailed applications, the  administration fee must be paid online before sending your application.

Mailed applications must include a cheque or money order along with the application, or they can be paid online before mailing.

There is a spot on Section D of the application form to indicate your payment confirmation code if paid online. This code is e-mailed to you after an online payment has been made.

Submit application online.


CNIB Photo ID Card:

We also discussed the advantages of showing your CNIB card if you ever go to Disneyland as they will allow you a fast pass for the rides.


Saskatchewan Identification card:

Issued from SGI:

– It is valid for 5 years and is $10

– It looks like a driver’s license but the colours are a bit different

– It acts as ID all the places a driver’s license would be asked for


Accessible Games (iOS, unless otherwise noted):

– Dice Games – across the world P2P, works with voice-over, Android & iOS

– Blindscape – an RPG, controlled with gestures on screen, is self voicing

– Blind Legend – an RPG – Medieval themed, kill off the royalty as a blind man with the help of your daughter, the king wants you dead because you are blind and you must live, free game

– Blindfold Games – vast list of games, so many are free and then you pay for them, the list of other games to download comes with the first game you download and you can click links from there to get the rest, Marty Shultz is the designer and he tries to keep things free, KidSolitaire is the company, examples of games in it include: ping pong, pool, car racing, bowling, solitaire, candy crush, etc.

– Audio Games Hub – iOS or Android – variety of different games, you pay $30 for unlimited access to the games, games include: Bombs Disarmer, Simon Says, Archer, Hunt, Fruit Ninja, Tetris, Labyrinth, Bejeweled, etc.

– Trivia Crack – is not designed specifically for blind but works well with Voice Over, iOS & Android, Trivia Crack Kingdoms we have not tested so don’t know how accessible it is

– Blind Cricket – hard to play, but accessible

– Cribbage Pro – is not designed specifically for blind but works well with Voice Over


Notes from Michelle “Some accessible games for GTT”:

– Crafting kingdom

– Dice world

– Blind fold series

– Black jack and solitare. .  By Mobility ware

– Zany touch. Or Zany Touch free

– Papa sangra  1 &2

– Blind  legend

– Audio defense

– Where’s my rubber ducky. Audio archery

– Mine sweeper

– De steno games

– Audio game hub

– Cribbage pro

– For almost a year now OSeyeris has been working on an Audio game for the blind and vision impaired


PC Games:

– RS Games – on PC or web based – P2P type games – Monopoly, Scrabble, Uno, etc.

– There are a variety of MUD & MMORPG text based games that are accessible by merit of being text based


Physical Games – Games that have tactile or Braille options:

– Braille cards

– Braille Uno

– Braille Monopoly

– Braille Scrabble

– Tactile MasterMind

– Jump a peg, tactile peg jumping game

– Cards Against Humanity has a Braille overlay pack through 64 ounce games, they also offer a blind pack with blind based cards

– Dominoes is always VI friendly due to it’s tactile nature

– Tactile Battleship

– Tactile Chess/Checkers


Announcement from the Library:

– The library now has a lending library of musical instruments, please ask at circulation desk to find out what’s available

– These will only be available 2 week loan at a time

– No mouth piece instruments are available


Next Meeting:

– June 23, last meeting before summer, we will meet again in September

– It was suggested we go for a coffee or snack as a group, location to be decided, after the meeting

– The topic of our next meeting will be “Year in Review” we will go over all the topics we have discussed since September, please review and bring any questions

– We will also discuss our favourite Podcasts, please send any info you want to share to Amber ahead of time to be read or please prepare shot descriptions of eadch Podcasts to share

– We will also discuss (time permitting) new and interesting technology for blind and partially sighted individuals

– Saskatoon is welcome to join via Facebook Messenger, we will mute the call until we are ready to get started as there was some confusion about that last time


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Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology Regina Drop-In Meeting Summary Notes, Accessible Shopping & Banking, April 28, 2018

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

April 28, 2018


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


In attendance: 11 Participants. Amber, Doug, Michelle, Kari (RPL), Camille, Wes, Donna, Lori, Anna, Barry, Jerome


Today’s topic: Accessible Shopping & Banking



Accessible Shopping:

We discussed pros & cons of online shopping in general

Pros: Fast, convenient, don’t have to go out and get help, don’t have to navigate new spaces or remember familiar ones, sometimes there are deals online that aren’t in the store, don’t have to haul things home from store or get a cab


Cons: Can’t see online pictures and descriptions aren’t always great, can’t try on clothes to make sure they fit, can’t feel fabrics, many only take credit cards, aren’t exactly sure what you’ll get


We discussed examples of online vendors that people in the room have used, the following is notes on each online vendor we discussed, I have tried to group them by type.


Online Only Vendors:

Amazon – $30 and then free shipping on all of their items, they have 3rd party vendors that should be avoided, can only use credit card at this time,  there is a disability support area you can contact if you need help due to accessibility and they are very helpful ( or ), they have a great return policy as you can just put box in mail return to sender, they also work with people when there are problems to resolve them, you can call their customer service as well for help: 1-877-586-3230 Online shopping in Canada – books, electronics, Kindle, home & garden, DVDs, tools, music, health & beauty, watches, baby, sporting goods & more Online shopping in Canada – books, electronics, Kindle, home & garden, DVDs, tools, music, health & beauty, watches, baby, sporting goods & more. Free two-day shipping with Amazon Prime.



Zulily – Mostly clothes, sizes tend to run small, great deals, good return policy, takes a long time to arrive as they come from Asian countries primarily


Facebook Ads that lead to vendors – Hit or miss, many aren’t checked, a few of us have never received products from these and been ripped off the money


Stores that have online options:

Chapters – They will deliver to your house or the store, if you choose the store and there is any problem with it they can return your money in store. If you go to the store to purchase something and they don’t have it they will assist you to order it in via the webstore, can use credit card or paypal


Toys R Us – They have a lot more options online, they will deliver to the house and you can return in store or by mailing back if there is any problem, there are often deals online they don’t have in store and better prices


Wal-Mart – Can deliver to you or to the store, they can return in store if there is a problem with anything, more selection online, online does tell you if the item is available locally but it is not always accurate


Costco – Good for a variety of products, you can return in store, they ship right to your house or the store, some good deals online, saves having to deal with crowds in store, you still need a Costco membership to shop online


Best Buy – The accessibility of the site is not great, the mobile version is better than web version, they will help in store with website if they don’t have product in-store you are looking for


Quarks – They have more selection and better deals online but it is better to go in to store to try on shoes for sizing before ordering online


Online Marketplaces:

eBay – Is wither an auction site or a buy it now site depending on how you have your preferences set, the auction aspect can be addicting, Hit or miss, depends on the vendor, generally good for small cheap products as they come from online stores in Asian countries, very hit or miss when dealing with individual sellers, always read ratings before choosing who to deal with, long wait times primarily for things to arrive (2+ months), can use credit card or PayPal


Etsy – Artisans marketplace primarily for buying crafts and antiques, depends on the vendor, always read their rating before dealing with them, hit and miss for how long items will take to arrive, some items are made to order so make sure you understand what you are buying before you purchase as the expected wait times may be 3+ months, you have to have PayPal to use Etsy


Local Grocery Options that Deliver:

A lot of people felt the best way to utilize delivery from stores is to buy the things that are heavy or non-perishable like pop and paper towels and go to the store for the produce themselves


Save on Foods – Order online, deliver to your door, it gives you certain windows for deliveries, need a credit card, there is a delivery charge approx. $10


Superstore – Does not deliver but does do Click and Collect where you can choose items on-line and then show up in window and they will hand your groceries to you, need a credit card


Lakeview Fine Foods – Delivers locally on certain days to certain areas, $14 (ish) delivery charge


Walmart – Delivers to your door through their website but not a lot of fresh food options are available online, free delivery on orders over a certain amount (either $30 or $50)


Local and Fresh:

– Local, fresh, seasonal produce, delivered monthly or more often, credit card online or debit at the door



– Delivers whatever you want, how much you pay is how much you have delivered and how long it takes them to pick it all up, groceries, fast food, liquor, etc.


Reach Regina:

– Delivers “convenience meals” pre-made meals on a weekly or monthly basis, made fresh and then frozen, just defrost, cook and eat, prices and plans vary

– They also have Good Food Box depots around the city to get local fresh, seasonal produce


Other notes about shopping:

  • PayPal – PayPal is a way to pay online, your PayPal account is linked to your bank account and/or credit card, it allows you to type in a username and password at checkout online instead of a credit card number, it is very secure and has been around for 15+ years
  • Both Safeway & Sobeys have commitments to help customers who are blind and partially sighted to shop, to take advantage of this the best plan is to call ahead or go during a down time (middle of the afternoon) and go to customer service to receive help with shopping
  • PC Points – offered through Superstore & Shoppers are a great way to earn free groceries, they have an app that goes on the mobile phone or a physical card, for the most part points are accumulated automatically but it is a good idea to check you received all the points you were entitled to after a shopping trip, this can be done online or through the app
  • In some cities Sobeys has a liquor store and it delivers, we don’t have this yet in Regina but it should be happening soon
  • In some cities Superstore delivers as well so keep an eye our for that option here in the future
  • In some cities (Moose Jaw, Saskatoon, etc.) there is a service called Mrs. Grocery that delivers, keep an eye out for this service coming here


Accessible Banking:

  • The main 5 banks have a commitment to accessibility: TD, Scotiabank, RBC, CIBC & Bank of Montreal
    • Because of this they have accessible ATM machines that have a place to plug in headphones so that the banking experience is audible
  • The mom & pop banks (like Conexus, Teachers, Affinity, etc.) do not have the same commitment but they often offer better customer service to help those with needs
  • All banks offer things like RDSPs, RRSPs and TFSAs, the bigger banks may not be as accessible in getting these things as the smaller mom and pop banks are.
    • Both RBC & Scotia have a phone line to help set up RDSPs
  • Some investment companies like Sunlife and Mackenzie group offer RDSPs, TFSAs, RRSPs, etc. and it may be advisable to go with one of these as the financial advisor will often come right tot your home


Some other items of note from today’s meeting:

  • The Regina Public Library has 18 Victor Stratus machines for loan, if you would like to borrow one please contact Outreach at the downtown library
  • By 2019  CELA will partner with Book share so even more titles will be available to CELA patrons
  • Sobeys is getting talking prescription labels, to find out more talk to your local Sobeys pharmacist


Nest Meeting:

will be Saturday May 26, we will also be meeting in June before our summer hiatus. The topic for the May meeting will be Accessible Games, mostly online, but also physical games will be discussed. We will also be discussing the Access 2 Entertainment card***


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GTT/Tech-Ease Regina Summary Notes, Travelling with a Disability, March 24, 2018

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

March 24, 2018


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


Attendance: 10 in person and 2 on the phone from Saskatoon.


topic: Travel with disability: Plane, Train, Car Airport procedures, reliefe etc:


Toronto subway system audible announcements very effective and functional, Calgry C train same, ETS(Edmonton) LRT accessible without question

Mexico City accessible transit system for subway for the VI community, other aspects of city less accessible


Most city transit systems have stop announcements, Regina recent and primarily functional most of the time, Saskatoon rarely functional currently in process of change.

Other cities have accessible systems in place


Dogs are trained for back seat, or floor in front. Front floor placement not recommended as airbags if deployed can injure the dog fatally.

It is illegal under ADA in the USA to disallow service (guide) dogs into cabs/ubers/lift services


Ticket booking:

WestJet is very accessible both on web base and application.

Does not provide discounted price for attendant for VI passengers

Document to receive this accomidation requires you to be declared basically unable to travel alone. Fear of issues if flying solo due to this documentation.

Disallows self checkin for those who have declared a service animal


Provides discount price for attendant for a Vision impaired passenger upon presentation of CNIB client number.

Disallows self check in if service dog is declared

Web base is not very accessible nor is application

Both airlines provide over the phone service for both medical desk and ticket booking.

Form for service dog, on both airlines requires all dimensions of dog, width/height/gerth/weight/length name, and breed.

Airport Navigation and special areas:

Upon request  assistance to security can be provided

Security may pull you aside and do your security check in another section of checkpoint for benefit of you.

Assistance from check point to your gate (via cart) in larger airports

Will assist you through customs

Do research before departing to find out the relieving areas at each airport you will be going to. Some may have internal relieving areas, some require you going outside the secure area. Vancouver for example has internal near International terminal.

There is an app  for iOS and android. That is free. Called working like dogs. Where to Go.

gives the general directions of use their indoor relief areas for United states airports . or directions to the nearest area outside the terminal.

Denver has a Special Needs room, for handlers and dog to relax in,  or disabled folks or seniors while not having to worry about flight or gate changes.


To catch  the Greyhound bus you are now travelling to Regina airport. And there is a tiny counter near the car rental counters. For grey hound bus service.

For  in the province travelling between cities.  In Sask. Right now it’s a 15 passenger van service called  rider  express..

if you tell the driver  or receptionist when you buy your ticket. that you have a disability .  you have the ability to get on  board first.  Service dogs ride free and are welcome. As stated on rider express website.

Also if you’re  vision impaired. And travelling with  a human companion.  Ask about the two-for-one discount on ticket.

Their physical office is located downtown Regina. 1517 11th Ave..  in other major cities there drop off places / pick up locations . are typically Tim Hortons  parking lots.  Saskatoon also has a 2nd pick up drop off location at Subway on  8 th Avenue. As well  The Tim Hortons on 22nd St w.

Please check  for more details.

Riders Express Transportation » Transportation to Estevan …

PLEASE NOTE: Our new office location is Unit #36, 1736 Quebec Ave, Saskatoon, SK. This location is the only location to pickup and drop off in Saskatoon effective April 11.



In the works with a different disability organization. Within the province ,. they are working on a wheelchair accessible transportation service. So hopefully that will not be restricted to just  a van . Maybe something bigger.


General discussion on airport and travel experiences

Brit mentioned that  purchasing a “burner” or prepay phone in country you are visiting is beneficial and sometimes much cheeper than using home countries phone


Discussion of next month topics.. thoughts were online banking / accessible banks. and shopping online on Amazon



Saskatoon/YXE Tech-Ease termination for summer. Attendence will be welcome via phone or Facetime

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GTT/Tech-Ease Regina Summary Notes, Ways To Get There, February 24, 2018

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

February 24, 2018


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


In Attendance Feb 24, 2018: 18 participants, Amber, Michelle, Camille, Lori, Donna, Darlene, Anna, Barry, Wes, Jerome, Tracy & Mitch, Kari, Linda & Blaine


Today we Talked about Ways to Get There



An app, paid or non-paid, for iPhone. It works off FourSquare (Swarm) maps as well as Apple maps. It helps people with no or partial sight navigate their environment by announcing places nearby as you walk, the places are announced within feet of your location so it is very well triangulated.

There are beacons that can be set up in building that have specific to BlindSquare information loaded on them by the building owner that provide the BlindSquare user additional information. For example, when you walk into the CNIB in Regina the beacon tells you have entered CNIB and the reception desk is to your left and seating is to your right. You can have multiple beacons in a space.

There are also BlindSquare specific QR codes you can put on doors to tell you about who or what is in that room. These can be scanned with the reader installed within the app.


BlindSquare has a free and paid version, the free version works with BlindSquare Events, the paid version works with maps and announces businesses, points of interest, etc as you walk. With Events it just announces information from beacons and lets you scan QR codes. The CNIB in Regina is set up as an event so you can go there and see how beacons work in real life.


The library is hoping to get beacons soon. Other places that often have beacons are places like malls, stadiums, downtowns, government buildings, etc.


Example of how it works:


Download BlindSquare here:


Google Maps:

Google maps comes installed on all Android devices, it can be downloaded on iPhones. It is a map program. It can help you navigate your environment by driving, walking, cycling or taking transit. It is rather accurate in it’s routes and finds the best routes for pedestrians or the fastest transit routes when those are chosen.


It is a very visual map but it does work well with Talk Back (Voice Over for Android). It shows locations and puts pins on the map to identify them. You can switch the view to satellite or street view for more information if you are partially sighted.


It does have voice navigation as a built-in option.


It works with Regina Transit and is very accurate.


Google Maps Tutorial (this is a sighted person explaining so apologies for no DVS):


Google Maps explained:


Download Google Maps for iPhone here;



An app for transit, it shows you the best routes for buses, it tells you when your bus will arrive (not GPS enabled so pretty accurate but not perfect). It will tell you how many stops until your stop and will tell you when to get off the bus. It also tells you how to walk to the place you are going from the bus stops or from where you are to the bus stops. It gives you multiple route options if multiple option exist.  Works well with Voice Over & Talk Back.


Moovit Tutorial (sighted person explaining so apologies for no DVS):


Download Moovit for iOS:


Download Moovit for Android:


Nearby Explorer:

(literally copied from description in app store as I have never used it)


Nearby Explorer is a full featured GPS app designed for use by people who are blind. Instead of just providing directions, it describes the environment in ways comparable to reading signage or observing road characteristics.

It uses onboard maps, so a data connection is not required, but if you have one, Nearby Explorer supplements the on board map data with crowd collected locations from Foursquare or Google Places. It includes complete maps for the United States and Canada which contain millions of points of interest. The onboard maps are over 4GB in size, so be sure the device you plan to use has enough available space before purchasing.

Nearby Explorer works with any device running iOS version 9 or later, but if the device does not contain its own GPS receiver, like most iPads and iPods, you must use an external GPS receiver. All iPhones contain GPS receivers.

Nearby Explorer works by letting you select from several different location related options about what to announce as you move. These include both typical items like street name and address and specialized options like approaching streets, intersection configurations, and nearby places and the distance and direction to them. (All announcements are optional.) All of this information is shown on the home screen and is available at any time, but typical use is to adjust the level of announcements, then lock the screen and put the device away. This keeps both hands free and let’s your preferred voice speak the characteristics of the environment as you move.

You may also use the devices position and orientation to obtain additional targeted details such as pointing the end of the device to scan for businesses, even in a moving vehicle, or tilting it vertically to function as a compass, including a listing of streets in the indicated direction. This all works with the device locked, so one need not fuss with the touch screen while moving. You may even mark a point, then use the position of the device to get haptic feedback about that point’s location.
Nearby Explorer includes a transit feature that provides detailed mass transit schedules for over 60 metropolitan areas in the U. S. and Canada. It treats transit stops just like favorites and points of interest by announcing their name and relative position as you move, but in addition, transit stops add next vehicle stop time, direction of travel, and route name to the announcements. You can use the transit schedules to look up times or even follow a route.

You may virtually move to any area in the U.S. or Canada and explore the road network, search, or use the transit maps for that area.

For complete details about Nearby Explorer, see


Download Nearby Explorer:


City of Regina has a transit line at 306-777-RIDE you can call to find out what bus to take or when your bus it going to arrive.


Trekker Breeze/Victor Trek:

Jerome was explaining how his Trekker Breeze works.

There is a device that goes on your shoulder (speaker) and another that clips to you belt (GPS & controller). You program in where you wan to go using the alpha-numeric keypad on the controller and it lets you plan a route. You can save favourite routes.


It announces streets/intersections as you get to them, 25 feet before. When you plan a route is saved it rings bell 25 feet before you reach your location.


You program in by addresses, not by GPS coordinates. You can put in waypoints and name them for future use. Once your route is entered you can preview in simulation mode so you have an idea of where you are going.


The city had an install of all the bus routes that added them as waypoints to the Trekker, but it hasn’t been updated in a few years.


It uses NavTech maps.


The new Trek can program in virtual routes. It knows the names of places. It can look around you and tell you points of interest around. It uses TomTom maps


The new Trek is also a Victor Stream so you can get your podcasts, e-books, internet radio, streaming things on it as well.


Cab Companies in Regina:

People have had varying degrees of luck with all these companies for accessibility, guide dog access and ease of use.

  • Co-OP Cabs & Regina Cabs are run by the same company apparently
  • Capital Cabs
  • Premiere Cabs, which also may be part of Regina Cabs


Advocacy with Cab Companies’ – It is always important that you report troubles with any of the companies to dispatch and if you don’t feel you are being heard take your complaints higher up to managers or owners of companies and if you still don’t feel heard to go Human Rights and file a complaint.



Very hard for a partially sighted or blind person to get permission to use unless they have another disability.


Your doctor needs to fill out a form to try to get access. The form is available on the City of Regina Website as well as the rules and conditions of use:


There are some people who have seasonal or special circumstance passes to ParaTransit.



Will be coming to Regina in the future. It is a ride share program. You can pay to have a ride by yourself or pay less to ride share with others going to similar destinations. It is all controlled by an app.


CNIB is working with the government across Canada to ensure that Uber & Lyft are accessible for guide dog users and person who are blind or partially sighted.


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GTT/Tech-Ease Regina Summary Notes, Online Shopping at Amazon, April 28, 2018

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

April 28, 2018


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


Since I know some of you  are frequent users of amazon or Online shopping in general. here’s a few things that I found regarding screen reader accessibility.


If you have any thoughts that you would like to add please feel free to add to the list.


I’ll send out a separate email regarding accessible online banking options. Just to keep the two topic notes separate.





We’re glad you’re here

Amazon’s vision is to be Earth’s most customer-centric company, and that includes customers with disabilities. We’re working hard to provide the tools, services, and devices that make it easy for you to enjoy everything Amazon has to offer.


Shopping Made Simpler

Customers who use assistive technologies may prefer the mobile version of our site, even when they’re using a laptop or desktop computer. The mobile site is optimized to work with screen readers, and provides an improved keyboard-only shopping experience. Try it today, and if it doesn’t work for you, simply return to the regular view by clicking the “ full site” link at the bottom of the page.


Mobile site.



Tips for using a screen reader on a laptop or desktop

Many pages on are packed with information, but you can skip what you don’t want and get to what you do want faster.

  • When you’re ready to buy, use your screen reader’s “Button” quick navigation hotkey to go to the “Buy Now” or “Add to Cart” buttons.
  • If you get stuck in a page section that continuously loads images, use your screen reader’s heading keys to navigate to a heading outside that section.



Navigating search results with a screen reader

Product search result titles are structured as headings. On a computer, use the heading keys or heading dialog to navigate your search results. On your mobile device, use the appropriate gestures to navigate the headings.



Frustration-Free Packaging

Frustration-Free Packaging is designed to alleviate “wrap rage” by avoiding plastic clamshell casings, plastic bindings, and wire ties—all materials that make it more difficult for customers to access items. Frustration-Free Packaging is available on the products in the Frustration-Free Packaging storefront, with more products being added every day…



Still need help?

Contact our specially trained customer service team.

Click to call

(. Send you to a series of drop-down boxes where you can select what you’re having problems with placing an order payment where your stuff is.  Etc .  And giving The support team the best way to contact you . )


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TechEase-GTT Regina Summary Notes, iPhone and iPad Gestures, January 27, 2018

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

January 27, 2018


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


In Attendance Jan 27, 2018: Camille, Amber, Ashley, Donna, Wes, Joanne, Jerome, Lori, Michelle, Barry


iPad/iPhone Gestures: (unless otherwise noted the gesture uses 1 finger)

  • To open apps manager, double Tap Home button  Swipe up with 3 fingers to clear all apps, to hear the apps swipe right or left, to open and app double tap after hearing its name
  • To open rotor  pinch and spin 2 fingers to the right
  • To configure the rotor, go to settings  General  Accessibility  rotor  then add the settings you want to it
  • Double tap and hold down and it can define words if that is set in rotor
  • To turn on screen curtain, 3 fingers triple tap, do the same to turn it off (this only works with voiceover on)
  • To turn speech off (like when listening to music or an audio book), 3 fingers tap
  • To pause speech, 2 fingers tap and to whatever the next gesture is un pauses it
  • To swipe to the next page (in any app or on apps screens), 3 fingers swipe to left or right
  • To go to homepage, click the home button
  • To delete, move or group apps, double tap and long hold and then you can do whichever
  • To answer or hang up a phone call, 2 fingers double tap
  • To copy/paste text, double tap and long hold
  • Turn off iPad, Hold down button opposite volume and double tap screen
  • To go home in iPhone X, use bottom of screen where home button was
  • To take a picture in voiceover, swipe right and then up to take the picture
  • With Braille input on  turn screen horizontal and then hold fingers as if on a Brailler and type


Other Notes about iPhone/iPad:

  • Grammarly is a great app to help with grammar in written documents on iDevices

The app:

  • Grammarly Keyboard on the App Store

Read reviews, compare customer ratings, see screenshots, and learn more about Grammarly Keyboard. Download Grammarly Keyboard and enjoy it on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.


  • You can ask Siri to spell a word for you if you are not sure

Voiceover  Settings  You can change the dictionary to pronounce words phonetically instead of mechanically, you can also add words phonetically

  • If you have a hand shake a stylus can really help with single swipes and single finger gestures
  • Seeing AI is a great free app  short text, long text, people, scenery, handwriting, currency, colour detector, light detector and products (on iPhone 6 and later)

Swipe up or down to move through channels (above choices)

Each channel has notes to let you know what the channel does that come on automatically the first time you use it

An overview of the app:

Seeing AI – Great App For VIP – The Blind Life – YouTube

Seeing AI – Great App For VIP – The Blind Life Seeing AI is a new app, currently for the iPhone, that offers a wide variety of accessibility features. App …


The app:

Seeing AI on the App Store

Read reviews, compare customer ratings, see screenshots, and learn more about Seeing AI. Download Seeing AI and enjoy it on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.


  • Advantage to using speech over sight for using iDevices  it affords the VI user privacy as most sighted people can’t understand the speed we can listen at, if you are not yet at a high speed/low volume with voiceover gradually adjust your settings over time (weeks) until you can


  • Learning to touch type is a real advantage as well, as Siri and voice to text can often get words wrong
  • Make sure to proof read anything you are sending, letter by letter, to ensure grammar and spelling are what you want them to be, especially for important texts or e-mails
  • If you connect a Bluetooth keyboard to an iDevice you can use Mac keyboard shortcuts on it and they will work on the iDevice

There are a variety of options out there for cord lengths and sizes (thickness) as well as external battery packs to enhance your device, check around and find the ones that work best for you


  • At the end of our meeting we connected with Saskatoon, the group there included: Doug, Melanie, Tina, Ray and Gary.


Next Meeting:

February 24, 2018 – Getting Around. (Listed below are some apps if you want to put them on your device to follow along)


  • Trekker, BlindSquare & beacons, Apple maps – Ashley


BlindSquare on the App Store –

Read reviews, compare customer ratings, see screenshots and learn more about BlindSquare. Download BlindSquare and enjoy it on your Apple TV.


  • Apples maps comes with iDevices
  • Google Maps – Amber

Google Maps:

Google Maps – GPS Navigation on the App Store

Read reviews, compare customer ratings, see screenshots, and learn more about Google Maps – GPS Navigation. Download Google Maps – GPS Navigation and enjoy it on your …


  • Moovit app – Michelle


Moovit: Public Transit App on the App Store

Read reviews, compare customer ratings, see screenshots, and learn more about Moovit: Public Transit App. Download Moovit: Public Transit App and enjoy it on your iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.


  • Regina Transit Live – Amber & Michelle

Website, not an app:

  • TransitLive

  • Always know where your bus is. … Leaflet | OpenStreetMap contributors | Regina Transit


  • Older Trekker – Jerome


  • ParaTransit & rules around it – Amber


  • Cab Companies – all, who do you use and why? – all


  • City of Regina & Audibles, how do you deal with issues? – all


  • Uber & Lyft coming to Regina soon – Ashley & Amber


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TechEase-GTT Regina Summary Notes, Screen Readers and Magnifiers, October 28, 2017

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

October 28, 2017


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


In Attendance Oct 28, 2017: Amber, Michelle, Wes, Lori, Kari, Barry, Jerome, Blaine, Anna, Donna, Jessica


SaskTel Accessibility Forms – To get accessibility credit go to this website:

and download the form under Wireless Accessibility Credit section (pdf and word available). Take it to a SaskTel store or e-mail it to the contact on the form.


Other notes before starting:

We had a logistics conversation as many were finding past meetings frustrating, we need to take turns and respect when others are speaking, the facilitators will enforce this. All were in agreement


GTT National is going to post our minutes to the National board. If you’d like the minutes of our meetings they will be e-mailed to you and posted on our Facebook group here:


Screen Readers:

The different types of Screen readers are: JAWS, NVDA, System Access, Windows Eyes, Window Narrator (comes with every copy of Windows) & Voiceover for Macintosh (comes with every copy of Apple iOS)


Mac Voiceover uses trackpad and/or keystrokes – ctrl+F5 turns it on

If you are using an iPad/iPhone you can connect an Apple branded Bluetooth keyboard and still use the keystrokes, they will not work with a Windows branded keyboard due to the lack of an apple key


Windows Eyes is no longer supported, so you can use it but there is no tech support for it


Here are two comparisons of NVDA & JAWS (the first from CNIB we listened to at our meting):


Screen Magnifiers:

The different types of screen magnifiers are: ZoomText, Windows Magnifier (comes with every copy of Windows) & Zoom for Macintosh (comes with every copy of Apple iOS)


ZoomText has 3 products under it’s umbrella: ZoomText Magnifier (just the magnifiers), ZoomText Magnifier + Narrator (magnifies and reads out loud) and ZoomText Fusion (which incorporates magnifier and JAWS branded narrator, to help people transition easier from ZoomText to JAWS)


Video on Fusion:


Voice to Text:

The different types of voice to text are Dragon Naturally Speaking and Dolphin Hands Free neither work well with JAWS or ZoomText but Dragon can be made to work with JAWS by also installing JSay interface


Next Meeting:

Please note there was a meeting scheduled for Nov but as no facilitator was available it was cancelled, we had previously cancelled the December meeting


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TechEase-GTT Regina Summary Notes, Regina Public Library Outreach, September 30, 2017

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

September 30, 2017


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


In Attendance Sept 30, 2017: Amber, Doug, Joanne, Darlene, Donna, Wes, Barry, Jerome


Further Notes from Last Month (Sept 2017) on Watching TV with DVS:


Blindy.TV has 5 channels of old shows audio only –> some of the channels are Brain, Comedy & Drama

Sero app has podcasts and blind resources on it

On SaskTel channels 3,4,5 & 7 are DVS

There is also AMI TV & Audio on both Access & SaskTel that are all DVS


Today we learned about Outreach Services and Regina Public Library in General:

Outreach is open Monday-Friday 9:30-5, there are 5 staff to help in various capacities.

They help people with print disabilities and people who have been homebound for 3 months or more.

They have audio books in .mp3 and Daisy Spoken word CDs.

There is extended borrowing period for Outreach patrons.

The ladies will be happy to help you find the books you are looking for, they will read the backs of books or suggest books by your favourite author or in your favourite genre.

There is a computer workstation in Outreach for public use, it is equipped with a large monitor, JAWS, ZoomText, a large print keyboard, a scanner and an acrobat reader CCTV.

There are also CCTVs available for public use at Bothwell (upstairs), Sunrise & Regent branches.

They have a small supply of Victor Stratus and Stream machines to lend out for a 3-month loan with the option of one renewal.

There is an audio book club that meets the last Wednesday of the month.

They help with GTT-Tech Ease as a co-host by supplying us a host and a space to meet. (thank-you)

There is Unique Like Us Blind Social Group that meets the second Tuesday at 7pm in the library.



Canadian Equitable Library Association.

Through CNIB and libraries that pay a subscription to them (SK does).

You can access through outreach with your library card and a referral from CNIB.

They have Daisy (works on .mp3 players), e-text w/ adaptive technology, Braille books and magazines as well as picture books with Braille overlay and DVS movies

These work with compatible devices as well as through apps like Dolphin, Voice Dream, Read 2 Go, Voice 2 Go & Direct to Player.

With a CELA membership you can get access to the American alternative known as Book Share.



National Network for Equitable Library Service.

Funded through provincial government at all SK libraries.

It is managed through the BC Libraries Co-Op.

Daisy & e-text formats.

Talk to Outreach to sign up, just need a Regina library card.

There is a wish list through NNELS to get titles made into accessible format.


Notes from Michelle about reading apps (thanks Michelle):

The Dolphin EasyReader app has recently been updated. The new version 1.3 of the app fixed many of the issues you might have experienced with the previous version. One of the improvements is that CELA patrons no longer need to add a “CELA_” prefix for logging in. You now only need to use your account number and password.


If you haven’t tried the new EasyReader app yet, head over to the Apple store and download it, free of charge. Need help setting it up? Check out our EasyReader quick user’s guide.


Next Meeting:

Oct 28, 2017 – Screen Readers & Screen Magnifiers


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TechEase-GTT Regina Summary Notes, Accessible Devices We Can’t Live Without, January 28, 2017

Tech-Ease/ Get Together with Technology

Regina Drop-In Meeting

Summary Notes

January 28, 2017


Sponsored by Vision Impaired Resource Network (VIRN),

Canadian Council of the Blind (CCB)

And the

Regina Public Library


Assistive Technology Peer Support by and for people who are blind/low vision


In Attendance Jan 28, 2017: Amber, Michelle, Doug, Linda, Wes, Donna, Camille, Nash, Anna, Jerome, Barry, Blaine, Joanne & Darlene


Today we all discussed our favourite products to make life easier:


Magnifier Built into iOS (Amber’s choice) – Turn on by going setting –> general –> accessibility –> magnifier –> turn it on by making toggle green

Then triple tap the home button to activate, use the camera on the iDevice to center a document, press the white button in the bottom middle to take a picture, you can then zoom in quite a bit, you can also adjust the contrast, brightness and colours by choosing the 3 dots button. Works almost as well as a portable CCTV and is build into iDevices for free. (You need iOS 10 and up installed)


Trekker Breeze (Michelle’s choice) – GPS device, you connect receiver & PDA to each other, walk around, it announces intersections, you can tag locations with names, even those in open space (like bus stops or garbage cans), some transit systems have uploads so all bus stops are noted. (Regina did a few years ago, haven’t updated).


Maestro Stream (Michelle’s choice) – Maestro version has PDA, notes, music player built in, had an external speaker and Bluetooth as external components. The voice reads pictures


Braille Display (Michelle’s choice) – hooks up to iPad and display text as Braille, can also input Braille as text to device


Pen Friend (Linda’s choice) – A device that comes with special stickers, you touch the “pen” to the sticker and it reads out whatever you pre-recorded on it. Good for organizing, especially things like cans, frozen goods, CDs, documents, clothes, etc.

Some tips, you can reuse the stickers (you can record on them many times) some ways to reuse the stickers are by putting them on round magnets and magnetizing to cans, putting them on index cards and securing them to a frozen food with an elastic, ironing the clothing ones onto small swatches of cotton and pinning them inside clothes with safety pins


Victor Stream, Pocket Linio Book Readers (Linda & Jerome’s choice) – can act as a voice recorder/note taker, plays .MP3 or Daisy files, newer ones can do direct to player from CELA website,


Milestone 312 (Jerome or Barry’s choice) – is a notetaker, book reader, plays mp3s, FM tuner (headphones are antenna), alarm, agenda


GoPro (Nash’s choice) – wireless video camera, straps to you in different positions to make extreme sports videos or first-person videos or as a typical video recorder, you can connect it wirelessly to your phone so you can see what it can see


Tap Memo (Jerome’s choice) – Voice Recorder, time, phone book, calendar, memo, alarm, date (talk to it and it reads things out loud)


Jerome shared an interesting podcast from Mystic Access that compared Amazon & Alexa speakers


There is an Open House for White Cane Week at the library Feb 28, 2017 at Outreach, CCB will have a display.


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