Access Technology Blog

Welcome to our Access Technology Blog section! The NFB Jernigan Institute Access Technology team is always on the lookout for new and better ways to give blind people access to technology, as the ever-growing International Braille and Technology Center attests. In these tips we want to share some of the pointers manufacturers and developers share with us to help you learn about new applications and new programs, and to help you find new functionality in familiar products. The Access Technology team works with the relevant manufacturers and developers to obtain the tips listed here, to make sure that you get the best and latest about anything new in the world of non-visual access technology.

 

If you have any feedback please contact Clara Van Gerven at cvangerven@nfb.org.

Nook App for iOS

Blog Date: 
Wednesday, November 28, 2012

by Amy Mason

 

Barnes and Noble NOOK on iOS! Real, Usable Access to the Nook catalog for the First Time Ever! (at least mostly).  
The Barnes and Noble Nook app is Accessible to VoiceOver users on iOS!!!  Those of us who have been dancing impatiently in our chairs waiting for books to be made available that aren't presently offered on Blio or iBooks are understandably excited by this announcement.  It's been wending its way around Twitter all day.  It's the biggest news since all the Black Friday/Cyber Monday/Giving Tuesday tweets of the last week.  

Nook Tablet, the Sequel: The Plot Thickens

Blog Date: 
Friday, November 16, 2012

By Amy Mason and Clara Van Gerven

 

A note from Pearson Higher Education

Blog Date: 
Thursday, November 15, 2012

By Elaine Ober

Note from the editor: Accessibility in higher education is a critical issue, and Pearson has worked hard to address it - so make sure Elaine gets your feedback!

Dear Readers,
It is a pleasure to be writing this guest post for the NFB’s AT blog.  I’m Elaine Ober, and I’m part of Pearson’s Higher Education division (www.pearsonhighered.com). In addition to working with our editorial teams on accessible content, I monitor an email mailbox specifically for college students and instructors who are blind or who have disabilities that impact access to our products — disability.support@pearson.com.

Kindle Paperwhite

Blog Date: 
Wednesday, November 7, 2012

By Clara Van Gerven

The Kindle Paperwhite arrived here today, and my review will be very, very brief. Unsurprisingly enough, it’s completely inaccessible. Other than having adjustable fonts in the books (not the menus), the device has nothing to offer a low vision or blind reader. It’s a shame, as, unlike the Nook Tablet reviewed earlier, the Kindle Paperwhite is a simple, seamless experience packaged in nice, simple hardware. A real shame.
 

A Somewhat Scathing Review of the Nook HD

Blog Date: 
Tuesday, November 6, 2012

By Clara Van Gerven and Amy Mason

Microsoft Surface RT

Blog Date: 
Monday, November 5, 2012

By Amy Mason and Clara Van Gerven

 

So we decided it was time to try something new in the world of the Access Technology Blog.  That’s why, when we got our newest shiny in the mail we decided to do an official Unboxing Video.  The video really hits the highlights of our first impressions of the device, and gives you a glimpse at both the technology, and the people behind the blog, so we hope that you will give it a watch, but in case you are short on time, or just want a quick glance at the talking points and the highlights, we have a handy list of The Good, The Bad and The Ugly of the new Microsoft Surface RT, but first…

In-flight wi-fi

Blog Date: 
Wednesday, October 17, 2012

by Scott Davert

 

In 2010, when I took a 3 hour flight from Detroit to Denver, I was told that wi-fi was available for a small fee during our flight. How cool would that be? I could browse my email on my laptop, send out some messages bragging of my ability to do this over social networks, check out what my friends were up to, and maybe even get some research done for a tech article I was writing. With a great degree of excitement, I connected to the wi-fi network and began to sign up process using my web browser. And then, at the end of the page, I found every Braille and screen access software user's least favorite part of using registering for services online: a CAPTCHA.

What do you think?

Blog Date: 
Monday, October 15, 2012

by Clara Van Gerven

 

The International Braille and Technology Center for the Blind has long been the quiet mainstay of the Access Technology team, the mighty giant quietly chattering away behind my office. This year, as we put the finishing touches to the updates (the new computers, the new embossing area) we want to put the IBTC in the spotlight, and we want to invite you to visit, and to share what you’ve learned from the IBTC and how it’s helped you. So many feet have come through the IBTC – we’d like to hear some of your voices. Please email the editor about your experience, stories and anecdotes about the IBTC at cvangerven@nfb.org, and we’ll share some of your stories on our new IBTC site.

Thank you!

E- text pilot

Blog Date: 
Friday, October 5, 2012

By Clara Van Gerven

 

Recently, Dr. Maurer and Anne Taylor were interviewed about some of the e-text pilots going on in higher education, and the NFB’s reaction to the accessibility barriers in them. The article is up at Campus Technology and is a fascinating read, looking at both sides of the story. You can find it at http://campustechnology.com/articles/2012/10/02/national-federation-of-the-blind-takes-on-etext-pilots.aspx

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