Future Reflections        Winter 2012

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Tactile Graphics

Tactile Graphics Guidelines
After extensive planning and research, the Braille Authority of North America (BANA) has issued a manual called Guidelines and Standards for Tactile Graphics. The manual is now available as a free download. Topics include criteria for including a tactile graphic, design principles, production and duplication methods, Braille formats, mathematical and scientific diagrams, standardized tests, and much more.


2011 National Employment Seminar
The morning and afternoon sessions of the 2011 Employment Seminar held at the NFB convention in Orlando, Florida, are now available as audio files. The recordings are also available in CD format from Peter Donahue at [email protected].  Topics include the use of technology during a job search; strategies for starting a small business; fun, well-paying jobs that blind people do; and much more.

Good Listening

Living Books for the Ears
This site is a trove of vintage radio broadcasts available as free, downloadable MP3 files. Offerings include dramatizations of classic novels such as Little Women, Robinson Crusoe, and David Copperfield, as well as episodes of Big John and Sparky and other old-time children's radio series.

New Book

The Blind Advantage: How Going Blind Made Me a Stronger Principal and How Including Children with Disabilities Made Our School Better for Everyone
by Bill Henderson
Harvard Education Press
ISBN: 1612501095
Bill Henderson, who received the 2010 Distinguished Blind Educator Award from the National Federation of the Blind, was a pioneer in inclusive urban school leadership. In his new book he provides a practical guide about what it takes to make inclusion work.

Health Records

Keeping track of family health records can be a challenge, especially if you have a child with complex medical issues. Here are a few resources that may help to make life easier.  Note: We have not tested them for accessibility to blind parents.

Minerva Health Manager
The Minerva Health Manager lets you keep track of all health-related appointments and stores information regarding immunizations, medications, and health records. Minerva can be accessed from a computer, iPad, iPhone, or Android or through a portable flash drive.

My Medical
This smartphone application allows users to input healthcare information for the whole family, including doctor's visits, health records, and prescriptions. It is available for iPhone, iPod Touch, and Mac.

Mayo Clinic Health Manager Software
This free software keeps the family's health records in a secure place. It provides interactive tools to help the user evaluate family health and can send email reminders for upcoming appointments.


Learning Ally Audio Tutorial
[email protected]
Learning Ally has developed an audio tutorial to help users learn to download titles from its extensive library of educational materials. Each audio clip provides detailed instructions on how to download, install, and use the online bookshelf features. The clips are accessible while a screen reader is in use to download a book. In an effort to provide greater support, Learning Ally has set up a mailbox that goes directly to the product support coordinator, Kristen Witucki, a long-time Learning Ally member who is blind. You can reach her at the email address above.

Adaptive Products

Blind Mice Mart
16810 Pinemoor Way, Houston, TX 77058
(713) 893-7277
Blind Mice Mart offers a wide variety of adaptive products for the blind and visually impaired. Departments in the "mega mall" include cooking and baking, hardware, labeling, home and office, and toys and games. The Movie Vault contains thousands of audio-described movie soundtracks that can be downloaded free as MP3 files.

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