Enabling Technology – Welcome to the Enabling Technology July 2018 Newsletter!

Welcome to the Enabling Technology July 2018 Newsletter!

As always, we hope that you will find something of interest in our newsletter but if not, or if you have any comments or questions, just drop us a quick email and let us know. We’d be delighted to hear from you.
You can email us at: info@enablingtechnology.com or call on 01785 243111. Mark.

 

This month we take a look at:

Dates for your DiaryAnd finally..

 

 

Can the wonderful octopus help make wheelchairs obsolete?
Powered trousers, electrified chainmail and artificial muscles inspired by octopuses are on the brink of creating a mobility revolution. There’s a lot we can learn from the octopus. Scientists working in the field of soft robotics have been devising smart materials, smart skins and artificial muscles which move and work in novel ways – all taking a cue from how octopuses move. And by better understanding octopuses, engineers could soon transform the technologies available to people with disabilities.

http://www.wired.co.uk/article/can-the-octopus-help-us-to-make-wheelchairs-obsolete

SuperNova v17 is released!
SuperNova 17 now includes support for the Google Chrome Browser and Windows 10 Mail app, plus a number of other improvements:

  • Support for Google Chrome Browser
  • Support for Windows Mail – Support for the native email client included with Windows 10 is now included in SuperNova 17.
  • Product support related questions can now be sent direct from SuperNova 17 to Dolphin’s support team. Alternatively any SuperNova user can now direct their more general SuperNova questions to the new Dolphin Forum linked to from SuperNova 17’s Help menu.
  • New Accessible Book and Newspaper Libraries.
  • Compatibility with the newest braille displays – for braille readers, the Humanware Brailliant BI14 & the Harpo BraillePen14 are both now supported in SuperNova 17.
  • Windows 2016 64bit Server – Organisations needing to deliver magnification, speech and braille display support from their Windows 2016 64bit Server can now adopt version 17 of SuperNova’s Enterprise edition. New settings in the SuperNova Enterprise Configuration Tool also streamline installation and ongoing support for network administrators.
  • ‘Connect & View’ with the LVI MagniLink – View and magnify documents or the whiteboard with SuperNova’s Connect & View feature – now with support for the portable MagniLink video magnifier range from Low Vision International.
  • SuperNova Notifications – Received directly to your SuperNova control panel.
  • New setting to add a short delay to the announcement of ‘Read Text Under Mouse’.
  • New setting to disable spaces being announced.
  • The SuperNova 17 installer now has larger text instructions to accompany the audio instructions, ensuring installation is fully accessible for all sight requirements.
  • The Book Reader now includes options to control the audio speed of audio only books.
  • In Microsoft Excel 2013 and 2016 the speech announcements when using Window’s standard navigation keys inside Excel’s edit areas are now performing as expected.

We recommend SuperNova:

  • If you use a touch screen with magnification.
  • If you use multiple monitors (set-up is much, much simpler!).
  • If you need to access multiple PCs (hot desking or mobile working/studying) then SuperNova USB offers a unique advantage in mobility.
  • If you need to access printed material with a scanner or camera.
  • If your employer is using remote desktop services, Citrix or SAP systems. (SuperNova is the only magnifier officially approved by both – Citrix Ready and SAP Certified).
  • If your organisation/school has more than one user with different visual needs – all can be managed centrally.

For more information, please see our website, contact us on 01785 243111, or email info@enablingtechnology.com

ModMath – A free iPad app that helps kids with dyslexia and dysgraphia do maths.
The first free math iPad app to help kids with dysgraphia just got better. Like the original version, you can still use the touchscreen and keypad to set up and solve math problems without ever picking up a pencil. But in addition to basic math problems, Mod Math now handles complex algebraic equations too—from multiplication and long division to variables and quadratic equations. Dysgraphia affects kids with dyslexia, ADHD, autism, dyspraxia and other disabilities. Mod Math helps to level the playing field.

ModMath Features:

  • Provide students with a virtual piece of graph paper, where they can set up math problems in a format that’s easily legible.
  • Provides students with a pencil-free platform for doing  basic arithmetic, including addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.
  • Allows older students to complete  more complex math assignments, including fractions, square roots and algebraic equations.
  • Print out the work pages to turn in at school,  upload to Drop Box., or send worksheets via e-mail, or text.
  • Move completed equations to various points not he page.
  • Save assignments in a searchable document library.

for more information, visit the ModMath website: http://www.modmath.com/

How Technology Helped Me Cheat Dyslexia
How innovations in brain research and AI-fueled assistive technologies could level the playing field for those with language-based learning disabilities.

By Lisa Wood Shapiro Dyslexia, my constant companion, occupies a taboo place in my personal narrative. Like my breath, I often forget it’s there. Sometimes I delude myself into thinking I’ve outgrown it. When I told friends that I was writing this article, several advised me to back out of the contract. One didn’t even believe me when I told her I was dyslexic. How could I be a writer? They were concerned this assignment might be my last.

But I’ve never thought of myself as having a disability. Instead, I see it as a glitch, and one I’ve gotten good at masking. I’ve been able to hide my dyslexia for decades simply because I live in an age of technological wonders. Microsoft Word spell-checks most every syllable I write. When my dyslexic mind mangles a word so much that it’s rendered un-spell-checkable, I’ll deploy an arsenal of workarounds. I might reverse-engineer a word by typing an easy synonym into the thesaurus, or I might paste my best attempt into my browser bar and let the search engine offer the correct spelling as a suggested query.

These “cheats” are ingrained in my writing process; I hardly notice doing them anymore. But something happened a few months ago to break me out of my familiar routines. I began writing with the help of an AI-powered browser plug-in so adept at correcting my linguistic missteps, it ended up sending me on a quest to discover what life might be like in a technologically enabled post-dyslexic world.

Read Lisa’s fascinating full story here: https://www.wired.com/story/end-of-dyslexia/

Government open to new GCSE in British Sign Language following campaign
The government is “open to considering” a new GCSE in British Sign Language following a campaign.

The National Deaf Children’s Society has hailed the policy change as “a fantastic step in the right direction” after 35,000 people signed a petition calling for the subject to be taught in schools. Schools minister Nick Gibb originally said there were no plans to introduce a new qualification in secondary school as he argued “not everything that is taught in schools needs to be a GCSE”. During a debate in the commons earlier this year, Mr Gibb warned MPs that a “huge number of steps” would have to be gone through to get a GCSE approved.

But now the minister has said that the government is willing to consider new proposals from exam bodies interested in developing the qualification in the future.

Read more on the Independent newspaper website: https://www.independent.co.uk/news/education/education-news/british-sign-language-gcse-government-nick-gibb-campaign-school-a8377466.html

Disability Pride events ‘allow disabled people to celebrate who they are’
Organisers of some of the growing number of Disability Pride events being held across the country have explained why they are so important to disabled people. On Saturday 14 July, the second Disability Pride Brighton will take place, followed two months later, on 16 September, by a Disability Pride celebration in Norwich. They follow Disability Pride events that took place last December in York and Bromley, south London, both organised around the UN’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPD).

The first Disability Pride Brighton took place last year, and was founded by disabled campaigner Jenny Skelton, who decided to hold an awareness-raising event in the city after one of her three adopted disabled children was thrown out of a pub because of her impairment.

Skelton said: “I think it is essential that disabled people can have pride in who they are and that disability discrimination awareness continues to be raised.”

Read the full story here: https://www.disabilitynewsservice.com/disability-pride-events-allow-disabled-people-to-celebrate-who-they-are/

 

Don’t forget - we have a huge range of assistive hardware and software available to buy online at very competitive pricing on our website. We offer free trials for most of our software, and also the services of our professional, friendly and highly experienced fully DBS checked assistive technology trainers. We also offerWorkplace Strategy Trainingwhich is highly effective in increasing productivity, particularly for Access to Work clients. http://enablingtechnology.com
Dates for your Diary… 

Sight Village Central – The UK’s leading exhibition for blind and partially-sighted people and for those experiencing age related sight problems.

Sight Village Central new venue address:

Cranmore Park Conference and Event Centre Cranmore Avenue, Shirley, Solihull B90 4LE

Sight Village Central exhibition dates and times: Tuesday 10th July: 9.30am – 5.00pm Wednesday 11th July: 9.30am – 3.30pm

Free to attend, Sight Village is an unmissable event for people who are blind or partially-sighted, for professionals supporting and advising VIPs and for all businesses and other organisations wishing to better meet the needs of their vision impaired customers.

Sight Village Central will be taking place across two days in July.

To pre-register for Tuesday 10th July, please click the link below (NOTE: this link will open a new web browser tab.) https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/sight-village-central-tuesday-10th-july-tickets-42312050482?aff=es2

To pre-register for Wednesday 11th July, please click the link below (NOTE: this link will open a new web browser tab.) https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/sight-village-central-wednesday-11th-july-tickets-42312356397?aff=es2

For more information, please call Queen Alexandra College on 0121 428 5041 or email sv@qac.ac.uk

.

Swansea Special Festival 2018

When: 10 July until 11 July Cost: From £4 Where: Special Events Department, Room 153, Guildhall, Swansea, SA1 4PE

Do you, or someone you know, have a learning, physical or intellectual impairment?

Whether you are a competing athlete, or are looking for a fun and relaxed way to get involved in sport, the organisers have a range of different race and competition categories, making Swansea Special Festival suitable for all.

10 July – Swimming competition, Wales National Pool 11 July – Athletics competition, Swansea University International Sports Village

There are also plenty of opportunities to socialise both on and off the running track, with a variety of entertainment in the evenings of 9, 10 and 11 July, including 10-pin bowling, a live music act and a karaoke evening!

http://www.activityalliance.org.uk/get-active/events/3998-swansea-special-festival-2018

 

And finally…
Amazing animal rescues – by other animals! https://youtu.be/NTcw012d2ag 

See you next month!

 

For more information please follow the link – https://mailchi.mp/d15a7178124e/enabling-technology-newsletter-may-3310461?e=4bda97b2c0

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