A few months ago, we mentioned that many of the US airlines were examining changes to their policies about air travel for service animal customers. We asked Jenine Stanley
to come on the show and provide us with the status of these changes at the time of our recording. We also have a tip, a few suggestions and the trusty food-related content for the "Last Word".
Our friends at Google are working hard to create great technology products for everyone. They re inviting you to participate in Google user research studies, where you can help shape the future of accessible products and features and get rewarded for it. head to google.com/userresearch.
In the News:
Interview: Guide Dog Travel Suggestions
Jenine Stanley, Consumer Relations Coordinator for the Guide Dog Foundation and America s VetDogs, talks with Joe about the latest rules and changes proposed to the Department of Transportation that could impact Service Animal travelers on domestic US air flights. The pair discuss some of the recent self-imposed guidelines some air carriers have implemented, why these changes are being considered and offer some tips for those considering any upcoming air travel. To learn more about the ACAA, and other elements mentioned, visit the DOT website
Tip: Multiple Language Support For Google Home
Google has recently added the ability for users to talk to the Google Assistant in more than one language at a time. To do this with your Google home, first open the Google Home app for iOS or Android, then head to the "more Settings" option under the Menu section. From there it is simply a move down to your "Preferences" and then to the new language settings. You will find a picker that will let you add your additional language. The new setting is saved automatically, and you can begin using the two languages right away.
'Lydia Alverson reminds us about another way to play with crosswords.
Dear BBQ team,
When you mentioned web-based crossword puzzles, it made me think of Blindfold Crossword by Kid Friendly Software. and I do have to admit, I'm hooked. Not only does it exercise your brain, but it's a pretty good time waster as well. I already solved thrree of the puzzles so far. I decided to buy all three packs that are offered via in app purchase. Oh, and as JJ was demoing the APH crossword, I couldn't help but sort of play along by guessing the answer. This is the best podcast to brighten up my day thus far. Great job once again. I wasn't a big fan of crosswords, but now I think I'll get back to them. Again, keep those demos coming.
P.S.. Hey Joe, please let Ricky know that I said congratulations on getting the job at Hadley.
Sent from my iPhone:
Rebecca Skipper has some thoughts about an email from episode 155's "Sound Off"...
Thanks for the great game demos.
However, I d like to encourage someone on the team to review Lost Cities, a really fund card game similar to Uno that is completely accessible.
I first heard about it on Cool Blind Tech.
I d like to address the discussions you had on price of gaming and the comment from a listener in the Philippines about wealthy blind people.
I m glad I took some time to let my initial defensive reaction pass before writing this email.
Wealth is a very subjective term.
I do not need to remind you that Assistive Technology is expensive, but I am grateful for the efforts of all those who are trying to make devices more affordable.
I would encourage international listeners and even people in the US to do their research rather than just complain.
I bought one of my Braille displays used from Flying Blind.
When the state refused to purchase a new BrailleNote for me after my favorite device, the BrailleNote PK, died, I financed a BrailleNote Apex BT18 back in 2011.
Believe me, it took me years to pay that off!
I was employed at the time.
I m self-employed now, but I still buy my own tech, and it is empowering to know that I m acting like any other consumer.
For those who need help buying tech and do not have support from a local VR agency, there are plenty of resources.
NVDA is great!
If you are in the US, computers for the Blind has partnered with VFO.
VFO has announced partnerships with other countries to make JAWS freely available to all blind citizens.
If you are employed, you can get JAWS for home use, I think based on the fact that you are using JAWS at work though when I was employed, I was always encouraged to use my own JAWS authorization key at work.
I commend VFO for partnering with APH.
I get annoyed at people who get angry over a game s price.
If we want to be treated as equals with our able bodied counterparts, then we should not expect everything to be free.
Do I wish there were more accessible games that cost 0.99 cents or were free?
However, it is more important to me to support developers who make accessible games.
This is why I bought Ten Pin Alley for about $25.00 several years ago and still enjoy it.
I also support Blindfold Games.
What we buy as consumers says a lot about our values.
I do have limits, however.
I really like my Orbit Reader 20 and my iPhone SE.
I m not willing to pay $1,000 for an iPhone!
This isn t because I m blind!
It is because as a consumer, I do not want to pay that much for a phone.
I m not going to get angry at Apple.
Well, they are still supporting the iPhone SE.
We still have options.
To close, I wish people would take more time to reflect on what they are about to say or post.
I usually don t like to get political, but notice how both parties liked the late Senator McCain for his civility and willingness to work with the other side.
This should be an example for all of us.
Fall in the US means two things. Pumpkin Spice is everywhere and the annual State Fair. The latter is the inspiration for our internet oddness of the week.
Gird your arteries: 2018's wacky-but-delicious State Fair foods
Man eats 5.2 pounds of cheese curds in six minutes en route to victory at the Wisconsin State Fair
Episode 157 will dissect the September Apple Event. Then, in October, we'll do the same for the newly announced October 9th Google Event. Crack open those piggy banks, it s the fall hardware season.
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Joe Steinkamp is no stranger to the world of technology, having been a user of video magnification and blindness related electronic devices since 1979. Joe has worked in radio, retail management and Vocational Rehabilitation for blind and low vision individuals in Texas. He has been writing about the A.T. Industry for 15 years and podcasting about it for almost a decade.