[nfbwatlk] Another device to help us "see"

David Andrews dandrews at visi.com
Thu Jun 25 00:47:33 UTC 2015

Personally I think, for the most part we should just take a deep 
breath, and smile, when these articles about new devices come out.

Any new technology is initially going to be expensive, clunky, of 
little use and maybe even a bad idea.  Scientists and engineers need 
to fund their work, hence the publicity angle with all the articles 
we see about our latest savior.

I think we work with people where we can, and ignore the rest.  Most 
of it will go away, or evolve into something more useful.

Remember the initial KNFB Reader, it was big, clunky, expensive, and 
had so-so performance.  But after  a couple versions it works well 
and costs under $100 for the software.


At 10:13 PM 6/21/2015, you wrote:
>I think we should create a "Wall of Shame" where these devices could be
>displayed.  There's the Sonicguide, the Mowat Sensor, the Stereotoner, and
>,oh so many more!
>Some devices that originally seemed useless have proven to have some
>benefits, but the underlying premise that technology can cause our other
>senses to somehow mimic sight is a flawed concept.
>The Sonicguide gave information about surrounding objects, but the info
>wasn't much better than the echo given back by a cane or a soft tongue
>click.  In fact, it was worse, because it was so loud and intrusive that it
>masked the subtle sounds that we use all the time.
>I believe scientists who develop these things start with the premise that,
>without sight, we are totally ignorant of our surroundings and need
>artificially created and unnecessarily amplified sensory replacement
>I don't know what to say to reporters who pass along this stuff
>uncritically.  How do you tell them that our environmental knowledge is so
>much richer than they believe?
>Good luck, Marci.
>-----Original Message-----
>From: nfbwatlk [mailto:nfbwatlk-bounces at nfbnet.org] On Behalf Of Marci
>Carpenter via nfbwatlk
>Sent: Sunday, June 21, 2015 6:01 PM
>To: NFB of Washington Talk Mailing List
>Cc: Marci Carpenter
>Subject: [nfbwatlk] Another device to help us "see"
>Here is an article from the June 18 issue of the Washington Post. I missed
>it on Newsline but saw a Facebook post about it today from an NFB member. I
>groaned at the time. Then I saw a KIN5 news story about it tonight. Of
>course they pretty much read the story word for word. I will call them
>tomorrow. I would appreciate your thoughts about what I might say and how
>you all feel about this.

         David Andrews and long white cane Harry.
E-Mail:  dandrews at visi.com or david.andrews at nfbnet.org

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