Many people often wonder how blind people interact with others online. On YouTube you will hear blind people say that sighted people think they’re faking their blindness. They think there’s no way they can do certain tasks without sight. When I see people talking about this in videos, part of me can’t help but laugh. To be frank, I find it ridiculous and a little funny (as in a little weird) people think other people are faking blindness. I mean do you fake your sight? Why would anyone with a good head on their shoulders fake a disability?
How does a blind person text or reply to comments on Facebook and Twitter? Maybe you have wondered this for a while yourself. Many people find those who are blind difficult to get used to, so I’ll help answer a couple questions. I currently use an iPhone with VoiceOver. VoiceOver is built in on Apple devices. It can be found under the accessibility setting on iPhones, iPads, etc. Fun fact: You have the choice which voice you’d like to use with VoiceOver. I chose Alex. VoiceOver reads text on my screen. I can swipe around with my fingers and it will tell me what Apps are on my phone. It will read me emails and text messages. It also reads the emoji’s! I can either type my responses and VoiceOver will read back what I have typed, or I can use dictation. I found dictation has gotten worse with later IOS updates though. Word to the wise, although this is only my personal opinion. I believe when you are writing important emails, never use dictation because it makes too many mistakes. I can also use a wireless keyboard which connects to my phone via Bluetooth. I can use this keyboard to reply to emails and text messages. These methods allow me to reply to people on Facebook or Twitter. I can compose my own tweets or Facebook updates etc. I also have an older model of a Braille display from Freedom Scientific that is called a 40 Focus Blue Braille display. Like the keyboard, my display connects to my phone through Bluetooth. I like that my display allows me to have access to texts and emails (or anything really) right at my fingertips. Wonder why Braille is still important in today’s day and age? Perfect! I wrote a post you can find a few posts back about sharing my thoughts on why Braille is absolutely necessary even with all this great technology. Check it out and let me know what you think.
I also use a laptop computer with a screen reader from Freedom Scientific called Jaws. This program does not come with the computer, but once it is installed, I can respond to emails, go on Facebook and Twitter and write documents in word. Jaws also gives you the option of different voices to pick from. So there you have it, a quick little post about some of the ways I use technology as a blind person living in a sighted world. Questions? Feel free to reach out! Are you using any technology? Let me know. Anything you’d like me to blog about? Please let me know.
Thanks for reading my latest post.