Widgit working with LoganTech as Exclusive distributor of LoganTech’s ProxTalker & ProxPAD

Widgit are excited to announce that we are now the EXCLUSIVE distributor for LoganTech’s ProxTalker brand of products, including ProxTalker and ProxPADin the UK. Our easy to use resource making products including InPrint 3 and Widgit Online can be used to create labels and overlays for use with the Logan ProxTalker and ProxPAD.

Click here to access their news in detail

Karten-Network

Have you heard about the organisation? Started by Ian Karten MBE who is sadly deceased this trust extends across the UK running centres where assistive technology can be assessed, tried and used by people attending or accessing the centre.

For more details of their work and what they do click here

Immersive Reader now an icon!

Immersive reader ( Learning tools from Microsoft) has now been made available for a number of office applications like Word, OneNote, Outlook. Before you had to call up the feature from the help section, now you just go to view and you see this:-

immersive reader

What does Immersive Reader do?

The following access editions are now available:-

  • text to speech – with highlighting of each word spoken at a speed of your chosen
  • choice of male or female voice
  • Syllable mode allows words to be split into syllables which is helpful for teaching phonic construction of words
  • Also highlights nouns, verbs adjectives – useful for teaching grammar construction
  • Focus mode – lines of text can be viewed in a bar whilst taking out distracting elements. Useful for tracking lines of text which is a problem with many dyslexics.

In fact Immersive Reader is very useful for the Dyslexic which is now available for integration into office products for free. You do need an educational account for all the learning tools but Immersive Reader appears to be free for those like myself who have Office 2016 and an Office 365 basic account.

ASK – Alexa Skills Kit

So much to learn. ASK has just made a change that might make skill creation a little easier. There are webinairs and skill building days jn the state and international cities like Berlin. But you can make the most of access to their videos start with this webinair:-

Alexa Developer Webinair

Combining and Integrating Technologies

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“All I want to do is search the internet and watch my films”

AbilityNet Client

Sounds straightforward? But in practise when you are:-

  • totally blind
  • no hand/finger function

It is incredibly difficult to do!

I have been working with this client for over 18 months now. We have looked at a variety of solutions. Echo Dot has been successful in giving the client a leisure activity playing music and accessing books and games using her voice to control . The Amazon Fire Stick is the next project to integrate with the Echo Dot to extend the range of programs with audio description available. It does have a menu that is spoken but requires the remote to scan the menu- not possible with no hand/finger function.

So it was a joy when using Dragon Dictate 13 and Sero (samobile.net) and found that simple commands such as “SEARCH” “PRESS ENTER” and “TAB” could navigate and select items on Sero that the client used to be able to do.

I now have the task of trying to get the laptop to start up and switch down. Once the on button is pressed the client can control all the computer’s functions at startup. One solution is to never the shut the laptop down. Have it go into hibernation and then wake it up with a command. This is my next goal along with making the Amazon Fire stick do more than “stop” and “play” a channel using the Echo Dot as input.

Simple questions like the one this post started with often have quite complex answers which frustrates the client/user. In an ideal world we would just love the tech to just work and integrate seemlessly with each other. Ah well…. role on Artifical Intelligence which does offer that possibility!

This guy deserves a quote!

This came through my LinkedIn and thought the website and the article really makes a lot of sense. So  Dave Mac this is your call out! I love this article presentations tips that are BS.

I think teachers / administrators and just about anyone who puts someone through a boring powerpoint presentation. When it’s the speaker and what they have to say that counts. Personally speaking its your personality that counts – and of course your hard won wisdom. Put them together and no matter what you put on the screen your audience will be engaged.  Of course, it’s important to be designed competently but that it’s really it. You either have it or you don’t have it!

So thank you Dave Mac for pointing this out to us! I salute you!

Find my iPhone

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I had occasion to use this feature that is on all iOS mobile devices. I walked to a client’s house with my backpack with (I thought) my iPad in the backpack. I then had to travel on bus to a nearby town to see my daughter.

It was while I was there that I found there was no iPad in my backpack! I retraced in my mind where this could be . At the client’s house? On the bus?  It was then I realised this feature “Find my iPhone” and to give peace of mind I checked the map to see that the iPad had never left my home!

There are other apps that do a similar thing such as “Find my family” which helps to track your children’s whereabouts via their iOS device. This is good for knowing when your partner, child, etc are  about to arrive home as an alert occurs when they drive up the home’s road!

There is an Android equivalent ” Find my Phone” so this means that the commonly produced smartphones have this feature.