Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Accessible All the Way

by Donna J. Jodhan

For the past few years, I have been witness to several technological evolutions when it comes to the development of accessible devices for blind and vision impaired persons. This includes such things as mobile devices, some hand held devices, and certain types of kitchen and utility devices. Accessible cell phones for blind and vision impaired persons have come a very long way. The same could be said for such things as GPS devices, PDAs, bar code readers, color detectors, and more.

We have seen the evolution of talking microwaves and timers, other kitchen devices, some remote controls, MP3s, iPhones, and so on. This is all good but there still needs to be more work done in order to make devices more user friendly and accessible to blind and vision impaired persons.

I do not doubt that if appropriately sensitized, developers and manufacturers will continue to make their products more accessible but there needs to be a greater push towards this trend; accessibility all the way.

We need to convince developers and manufacturers that there are huge benefits to be derived if they make their products accessible all the way. For not only would it benefit those who are blind and vision impaired, it would also benefit such groups as: The print disabled, those who are deaf/blind, and those with learning and cognitive disabilities and with a rapidly aging population these groups are only going to multiply in numbers.

We need to use these factors to our advantage and start pushing now for accessibility all the way. It is not too late and while we're at it we can expand our efforts to push for accessible pin number devices. In this instance, we can include the lobbying of banks and other financial institutions, and manufacturers of pin number readers, point of sale devices, and banking machines.

Who are the ones that are in the best position to push for accessibility all the way? Governments, consumer groups and associated organizations and agencies, and those agencies that work directly with those listed above. Can it be accomplished? My answer is a definite yes and in order to start the ball rolling we as consumers need to make our voices heard by governments, developers and manufacturers, and yes! The media.

I'm Donna J. Jodhan your friendly accessibility advocate wishing you a terrific day and encouraging you to go out there and tell the world that yes indeed! Blind persons can certainly enjoy things by using their sense of touch. If you'd like to learn more about me, then you can visit some of my blog spots at:
Donna Jodhan! Advocating accessibility for all:
Weekly Saturday postings on issues of accessibility:
blogs on various issues and answers to consumers concerns:

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