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1531 Learning Ally (Jul. 29, 2015)
Many blind students and professionals rely on textbooks and other specialized material recorded by Learning Ally (formerly Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic – RFB&D). Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Kristen Witucki, community coordinator for students who are visually impaired, about Learning Ally, what services and resources they offer, and whom they serve.
1530 Accessible Games for iOS Devices (Jul. 22, 2015)
No matter what type of games you enjoy playing, you’ll probably find it in the book “Anyone Can Play! Accessible Games for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch”. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Judy Dixon, the book’s editor and co-author, about accessible app versions of word games, board and card games, role playing and adventure games, and much more.
1529 Accessible On-Line Games (Jul. 15, 2015)
A number of on-line board games and card games are hosted by RS Games. They are all accessible using a screen reader and can be enjoyable as well as being a great way to connect with friends or meet new ones. Host Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Michael Forzano, a founder and developer of RS Games about how it works and how you can participate.
1528 Sailing Expeditions for the Blind (Jul. 8, 2015)
Imago Maris Foundation hosts sailing expeditions each year, with half the participants being visually impaired and the other half sighted. Each participant does everything from working the ropes to kitchen duty. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey speak with Julia Krawczuk, a volunteer with Imago Maris and Robert Zarzecki, a blind sailor. Both participated in a 2014 voyage.
1527 HIMS Blaze Multi-Players (Jul. 1, 2015)
The Blaze ET and EZ Multi-Player devices can play audio and text books in many formats, and also be used to directly download books over WiFi, subscribe to and listen to podcasts, and much more. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Dave Wilkinson, HIMS’ business development manager, about these features as well as the OCR capability using an internal camera.
1526 Becoming and Being a Blind Judge (Jun. 24, 2015)
Last week Michigan State Supreme Court Justice Richard Bernstein, blind since birth, talked about employment issues faced by the visually impaired. This week, hosts Peter and Nancy Torpey talk with him about the academic and professional path that led him to his position, including some of the challenges he’s faced and accommodations he’s made to be successful.
1525 Employment Issues for the Visually Impaired (Jun. 17, 2015)
Blind since birth, Michigan Supreme Court Justice Richard Bernstein is passionate about improving employment for the visually impaired. This week, hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with him about challenges faced by blind individuals seeking employment and some new initiatives to employ the blind. Next week he will talk more about his own personal experiences.
1524 Sonar GNU Linux (Jun. 10, 2015)
Sonar GNU Linux is a version of the Linux operating system that has accessibility for people with many types of disabilities built into it. Hosts Nancy & Peter Torpey speak with Jonathan Nadeau, its lead developer, about its many features and capabilities, about how and why it was developed, and about how you can get involved.
1523 Composing and Performing Music (Jun. 3, 2015)
Rachel Flowers is a talented young blind musician. Hosts Peter and Nancy Torpey speak with her and her mother, Jeanie Flowers, about how Rachel learned to play the myriad of instruments she’s mastered including participating in a marching band. Rachel also talks about how she currently performs, composes, arranges, and shares music with others.
1522 CakeTalking, TypeAbility and Academy of Music for the Blind (May 27, 2015)
This week, hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with David Pinto, a musician and music educator who founded and runs the Academy of Music for the Blind. He also developed the TypeAbility program to teach blind youth how to type and navigate a computer and the CakeTalking scripts to enable access to Sonar, a sophisticated audio production program.
1521 Blind Golfing (May 20, 2015)
Hitting a small ball into a slightly larger cup that is hundreds of yards away might seem like an unlikely activity for a blind person. With minor modifications to the rules it becomes an enjoyable sport for many people. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey will talk with Ty Thompson, avid blind golfer and past board member of the US Blind Golf Association.
1520 Creating Accessible Graphs and Charts (May 13, 2015)
Richard Ladner is a professor of computer science whose research is directed at enhancing the accessibility of documents and web sites. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with him about his work to make textbook graphics accessible to the blind. The project is aimed at automating the creation of tactile graphics with the embedded text converted to Braille or speech.
1519 Informal Advocacy (May 6, 2015)
If you have special needs, sometimes you need to request adaptations. For years, Kelly Pierce has engaged in informal advocacy resulting in improved accessibility. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey speak with him about his varied experiences with the Chicago transit system, movie theaters, voting system, ATM’s, etc., usually without engaging legal support.
1518 Global Reach of Benetech and Bookshare (Apr. 29, 2015)
Last week, hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talked with Jim Fruchterman, the founder and CEO of Benetech about his early work in OCR and starting Bookshare. This week we talk with him about Bookshare’s global reach and how it has helped to influence mainstream publishing. He also describes a number of other initiatives being pursued by Benetech to improve access.
1517 Jim Fruchterman - Social Entrepreneur (Apr. 22, 2015)
Jim Fruchterman is the founder and CEO of Benetech, which operates Bookshare. This week hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with him about how he became interested in OCR, the founding of Arkenstone, and the inspiration behind Bookshare. Next week we speak more with Jim about the global impact of Bookshare and some of Benetech’s other social initiatives.
1516 J-Say, J-Dictate, and Leasey (Apr. 15, 2015)
J-Say and J-Dictate are designed to make it possible to use the Dragon Naturally speaking speech recognition program with JAWS. Leasey offers novice PC users an intuitive interface and set of tools for performing routine tasks using JAWS. Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Brian Hartgen, developer of these tools, who will talk about his work and demo these tools.
1515 Blind Cricket (Apr. 8, 2015)
G K Mahantesh is the General Secretary of the Cricket Association for the Blind in India and the Vice President of the World Blind Cricket Council. He is also one of the founders of the Samarthanam Trust for the Disabled. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with him about how the blind play cricket as well as about the mission of his organization.
1514 Beep Baseball (Apr. 1, 2015)
Beep Baseball is a variant of American baseball that has been adapted to be safe for its blind participants. Hosts Nancy and Pete Torpey speak with Blake Boudreaux and Stephen Guerra of the National Beep Baseball Association about how the game is played, what special equipment is used and the upcoming World Series of Beep Baseball.
1513 The National Braille Press (Mar. 25, 2015)
The National Braille Press promotes literacy of blind children through Braille and provides access to information that empowers blind people to actively engage in work, family, and community affairs. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Brian MacDonald, president of NBP, about resources available from NBP as well as about some new initiatives including the B2G.
1512 Preparing for Vision Loss (Mar. 18, 2015)
Many sighted people have a hard time imagining how they would tackle life if they couldn’t see. Losing your vision, however, doesn’t mean the end of the world. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk about how you can prepare for eventual vision loss by preparing your home, using adaptive aids, becoming aware of your other senses, accessible technology and more.
1511 Reading MathML with JAWS (Mar. 11, 2015)
The ability to read mathematical expressions in documents and on the web is crucial for those learning math and for professionals in the sciences. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with Rob Gallo, a software developer at Freedom Scientific responsible for implementing support for MathML in the JAWS screen reader. Also hear a demo of JAWS reading MathML.
1510 Chemistry Camp for Blind Youth (Mar. 4, 2015)
Learning about science can be fun and exciting. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey speak with Hoby Wedler, a blind graduate student in Chemistry, about a Chemistry Camp for blind teens that he founded and runs annually to share his love of science with youth. We’ll review some of the highlights of each session, including some unexpected things attendees learn
1509 Working With Computer Hardware (Feb. 25, 2015)
Modern screen readers make computer programs and software readily accessible to the blind. But what about working with hardware? Mobeen Iqbal has years of experience repairing both desktop and laptop computers and has even built several computers. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with him about how he achieves each required task in spite of being totally blind
1508 Blind Parenting of Sighted Children (Feb. 18, 2015)
First time parents have many questions. But what if one of the parents is blind? That is the case with Ron and Denise Miller who are raising 2 year old Russell. They talk with hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey who raised two sighted children with one parent being blind. They discuss a variety of topics including feeding, playing, reading, and driving.
1507 Interpretype Deaf-Blind Communication System (Feb. 11, 2015)
The Interpretype Deaf-Blind Communication System enables deaf-blind Braille users to communicate in a variety of situations including telephone communications, texting, instant messaging, internet, VRS and face-to-face conversations. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey speak with its inventor, Ken Gan, about this portable yet powerful tool. transcript of show 1507
1506 Working from Home – Part 2 (Feb. 4, 2015)
This week, hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey continue last week’s conversation with Ron Milliman, a blind retired professor of Marketing, about working from home, this time from the employer’s perspective, which is good to know so you can present prepared points in your request to begin or continue working from home. We’ll also hear from several people with experience working at home.
1505 Working from Home – Part 1 (Jan. 28, 2015)
Ron Milliman is a blind retired professor of Marketing who has spent years working in and teaching about various employment situations. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey talk with him about the pros and cons of working from home from an employee’s perspective. Next week we’ll explore the employer’s perspective and hear from several people who have experience working at home.
1504 Research on Eye Surgery Equipment (Jan. 21, 2015)
Advances in technology have dramatically impacted how modern eye surgery is performed and what procedures are now possible. This week hosts Peter and Nancy Torpey talk with David Hertweck, a blind senior engineer at Bausch and Lomb. He describes some of the new tools he and his team helped develop and how some modern eye surgeries are performed.
1503 Cochlear Implants for Blind People (Jan. 14, 2015)
Blind people rely on their hearing for navigation, orientation, social cues and much more. For a blind person who has also lost much of their hearing, cochlear implants can restore significant function. Hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey speak with Keith Wiglesworth about being blind, losing his hearing, and how a pair of cochlear implants has expanded his horizons.
1502 Product Development at Humanware (Jan. 7, 2015)
Bringing new products to market involves time, planning, and feedback from customers. This week, hosts Peter and Nancy Torpey talk with Dominic Labbé, Product Development Director for blindness related products at Humanware. He describes how the process works at Humanware and how products such as the Victor Reader are shepherded from concept to the marketplace.
1501 Sociology of Disability (Dec. 31, 2014)
Individuals with disabilities including visual impairments have all had experiences interacting with the majority non-disabled society. This week, hosts Nancy and Peter Torpey speak with Tom Behler, a blind professor of Sociology about his studies of how people with disabilities are treated by society in general and how this has been evolving.
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