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.

The Sprint Kyocera Kona talking feature phone

Blog Date: 
Monday, December 2, 2013

By Clara Van Gerven

Basic talking phones are few and far between, though the news of them manifests itself on the NFB tech line every few days. The Kyocera Kona is the first phone we've seen since the Samsung Haven that has full speech, and that makes it a very welcome addition to the market. It would be great if Sprint was a little less shy about letting people know about it. The documentation in the box is completely silent on the topic. Sprint Accessibility lists the phone as having good accessibility for the blind, but doesn't explain why. The entry for the Kona itself makes no mention of accessibility features other than hearing aid compatibility. The full user manual does provide details and setup.

The Prodigi Talking Magnifier

Blog Date: 
Wednesday, November 13, 2013

By Clara Van Gerven

The Journey Toward Braille: Potential and Limitations of using Braille with iDevices

Blog Date: 
Friday, September 27, 2013

By Jennifer Dunnam

Today, with the right resources and in the right circumstances, it is possible for a Braille reader to purchase a book the same day it is released by the publisher, at the same price paid by the print reader, and read it immediately on a mobile device in reasonably good quality Braille. If a book in another language is acquired, the Braille reader can quickly make some adjustments using the Braille display, and presto, the book is displayed in largely correct Braille for the additional language.  Likewise, it is now possible to write a document, message, or anything else using the six keys of a Braille display, and the words are almost instantaneously translated to print, ready for sharing with anyone. Apple has been one of the major forces in making these previously unimaginable developments possible within the past few years.

NLS Bard for iOS! A long awaited App

Blog Date: 
Thursday, September 26, 2013

By Amy Mason

 

Some news from Pearson Higher Education

Blog Date: 
Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Shared by Elaine Ober

Nothing quite takes the place of direct interaction with customers.  I was reminded of this in July, when a group from Pearson Higher Education had the opportunity to attend the NFB’s annual convention. There, we demonstrated the latest versions of some of our online products – MyMathLab and MyITLab -- and enjoyed talking with, and learning from, the folks who attended the session. The following day, in conversation with Anne Taylor, I mentioned that we’re expanding our list of accessible HTML eBooks to disciplines beyond Mathematics and Statistics.  Anne was thrilled to hear this and urged me to share some details with the community.

The Braille Edge: new firmware, new case, almost like having a new device

Blog Date: 
Wednesday, August 28, 2013

By Scott Davert

 

Talking digital magnifiers

Blog Date: 
Monday, August 19, 2013

By Clara Van Gerven

 

Gaming resources

Blog Date: 
Monday, July 29, 2013

By Amy Mason

 

Editor's note: this post is adapted from Amy's notes for a presentation to a group of game developers, and geared toward that group, but includes sources for accessible games as well.

This list is not all-inclusive, instead it is meant to act as a springboard for further research and learning.  It provides a mixture of different resources including guidance and developer documents, example games to give developers an opportunity to try non-visual gaming, and sites for further reading.  

Guidelines and Best Practices

Inclusive gaming is still a fairly young field, however, there are already a number of reference materials that should be beneficial to developers when working to build inclusive games.  

Grading Kindle Accessibility on iOS

Blog Date: 
Friday, May 3, 2013

By Amy Mason

 

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