Future Reflections        Convention Report 2012

(back) (contents)

Odds and Ends


Weather Alerts on NFB-NEWSLINE®
(866) 504-7300

NFB-NEWSLINE®, in partnership with AccuWeather®, now provides emergency weather alerts on the NEWSLINE service. Instant access to emergency weather is given for your zip code when you make a call to the service. If weather alerts exist in your area, notification of the alert is given immediately after you log into NEWSLINE.

ICanConnect Campaign
Perkins School for the Blind, Watertown, MA
Contact: Marilyn Beyer, (617) 972-7478 or (617) 513-5569
[email protected]

The Perkins School for the Blind, the Helen Keller National Center, and FableVision have combined forces to launch the ICanConnect Campaign. The campaign attempts to provide information about the National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program, mandated by the Twenty-first Century Communications and Video Accessibility Act. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is providing support for the local distribution of a wide array of accessible communications technology. Free communication technology and training are now available to low-income individuals with combined vision and hearing loss.


2012 Toys R Us Guide for Differently Abled Kids
Contact: Samantha Xenis, (973) 617-5983
[email protected]

This catalog, updated annually, is available online and is free of charge at all Toys R Us and Kids R Us stores. The catalog is not arranged on the basis of specific disabilities; rather, it emphasizes particular skill sets and/or areas of strength. Categories include auditory, creativity, fine motor, gross motor, language, tactile, and more. Within each category you can search by age and gender.

Fun and Function

Fun and Function designs and develops products for children with special needs, particularly children on the autism spectrum and children with sensory processing disorder (SPD). The company creates toys and other products that are cool, kid-friendly, and affordable. Sold online and in toy stores, products include language and social skills games, dress-up materials, foam scooters and inflatable toys for active play, a space tunnel, and more.


International Children's Digital Library (ICDL)

Books in the ICDL include titles for children ages 3-13 selected and digitized by the Library of Congress as well as children's books selected by international librarians and new books from publishers and authors. Billed as "a library for the world's children," the ICDL was established in 2002. Today 4,643 children's books, written in sixty-one languages, are available free of charge on the website. Languages include English, Spanish, Arabic, French, Mandarin, Thai, and Italian. The library's mission is to share books that help children learn about life in other countries and cultures and help them to understand and appreciate the diversity in our world. No e-reader is required; the books can be read directly online.

The Politics of Blindness: From Charity to Parity
by Graham McCreath
Granville Island Publishing
ISBN: 1-8946-9481-3

Blind author Graham McCreath describes the systemic issues that have led to the high unemployment and impoverishment of blind people in Canada. The book is available from Bookshare.org and in paperback from Amazon.com.

Luna and Floyd Visit Their Grandparents: An Interactive Book
by Lauren Levine, Illustrated by Eric Ebbeson
Jabberwocky Press
ISBN: 1-935204-40-8

In this read-aloud book for very young children, the story is enriched through interactive games between the reader and the child who is listening. In addition to the text and illustration on each page, there is a suggested activity that goes along with the story. For instance, when Floyd washes his face, the child touches his/her face and names the features. This is a fun book that can encourage movement and concept development.

Blind Ambitions Magazine
101 Kinross Dr., Newark, DE 19711
Contact: Christine Chaikin, (302) 294-1312 or (855) 849-6027
[email protected]

Blind Ambitions is a new magazine featuring the achievements of blind people and offering information about resources and support groups. To receive a free copy, email Christine Chaikin. In the subject line write: How can I receive a free copy of the new magazine called Blind Ambitions Magazine?


Coyote's Inkwell
Contact: Michael Lang, (603) 969-5913
[email protected]

The Coyote's Inkwell invites listeners of all ages to let their imaginations take flight on the wings of fables, folktales, and other stories from around the world. Blind writer and storyteller Michael Lang crafts stories to entertain, educate, and inspire. Lang offers fun and engaging storytelling programs that can be tailored to suit almost any audience, theme, or event. Curriculum-based storytelling programs can enrich and enhance the educational experience.


Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability
(415) 405-3528
[email protected]

Part think tank, part cultural center, the newly established Paul K. Longmore Institute on Disability at San Francisco State University introduces new ideas about disability and disabled people. The institute is beginning a series of projects at the intersection of disability history, the arts, education, and policy.

Anagnos-Sullivan-Keller Correspondence
Perkins School for the Blind
Contact: Marilyn Beyer, (617) 972-7478 or (617) 513-5569
[email protected]

A landmark collaboration between the Perkins School for the Blind and the American Antiquarian Society has created a new online archive of the correspondence between Helen Keller, Annie Sullivan, and Perkins director Michael Anagnos. The original handwritten letters, penned between 1886 and 1896, are available as image files. Each letter is also transcribed in text format, making it accessible to screen readers.


Braille Plus 18, Second Generation
American Printing House for the Blind, Inc.  (APH)
1839 Frankfort Ave., P.O. Box 6085, Louisville, KY 40206
(800) 223-1839 or (502) 895-2405

The Braille Plus 18 combines a Braille keyboard and refreshable Braille display with an advanced mobile platform and accessible software. This device is the first Android smartphone designed for blind students and professionals. A five-megapixel camera can convert menus, papers, and books into Braille or speech. The Braille Plus 18 can also be used to read books from NLS, Learning Ally, and Bookshare.

Digital TV/Radio
Oehm Electronics
2194C Galveston Ave., San José, CA 95122
Contact: Richard Oehm, (408) 971-6250
[email protected] or [email protected]

This digital TV/radio tunes in the audio from all digital TV channels from 2 to 69 and decodes all ATSC-formatted broadcasts. A front panel keypad allows the selection of any available TV channels and alternate audio programs available at the user's location. User's instructions come in Braille or audio format.

Worksheet Wizard
Premier Assistive Technology
440 Quadrangle Dr., Suite D, Bolingbrook, IL 60440
(815) 927-7390
[email protected]

Worksheet Wizard allows the user to scan documents directly into the application. It includes tools that assist with the composition of text, ensuring that written text is the best it can be. Users can hear worksheets read aloud, can edit them as necessary, draw within them, and highlight sections.

Media Share

(back) (contents)