digital talking books usa.com
enabling the vision impaired to be self-reliant . . . enabling libraries to easily serve their needs . . . with low-cost software & training
I purchased my first PC in 1984 when I first became self-employed, DOS was king and Windows was in its infancy. I tested beta versions for AutoCAD, PC Write, Microsoft Office, wrote a users' manual for a coordinate geometry software package and more recently, created my own database software. My years of computer experience have evolved right along with the industry.
About 6 years ago, a friend of mine asked me if I would be willing to teach the blind and vision impaired how to use computers. It didn't take me long to come to a decision. I became certified in the state of Virginia as a Technology Tutor to teach screen-reading software applications, namely, JAWS, ZoomText, Window-Eyes with Microsoft Office products, the internet, databases, calculus and various other college level classes. Being a teacher is one of the best ways to learn and I have learned so much from each of my students. In spite of their impairments, these students, ranging in ages from 19 to 93, want to learn all they can by every means possible.
The needs of the vision impaired are many. However, they aren't too different from 'highly mobile' individuals. Both groups receive information in the digital form. Great strides have been made in making information available to the vision impaired through the National Federation of the Blind and the American Federation for the Blind. Standards of the DAISY Consortium and the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS) continue to bring reading material in forms that are accessible to the blind and vision impaired. Unfortunately, the availability of books and publications falls several years behind the need of this population.
One of the major complaints that I hear when working with these individuals is that they have a lack of access to basic information. I strongly believe that getting information to them can help improve their quality of life. One way to accomplish this is to provide the means of expanding the information highway to the vision impaired through digital electronic publications.
I hope you will see the benefit of expanding your readership by allowing your work to be accessed by a much larger demographic at a minimal cost to you. I am proud to be able to serve the vision impaired. I hope you are willing to help meet their needs as well.
If you have any questions, please contact me.