<![CDATA[Each Wednesday, we will be bringing you an article of interest as it pertains to the topic of accessibility and we hope you can use it to become more familiar with this particular area. This has become a rapidly growing and very important area and why? Because the number of consumers in this market is growing and will continue to do so for the forseeable future. Governments, corporations, and individuals are paying more attention. Please read on. The Sterling Creations team Follow us on Twitter @accessibleworld. +++++++++++++++ Contributed by Dan Thompson AReview of the New ScanJig Pro Scanning Stand Janet Ingber Of the Access World Magazine Staff from American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) May 12 2015 The ScanJig, a stand for holding documents for scanning, was reviewed in the September 2013 issue of AccessWorld . That earlier version of the ScanJig had many pieces and was not easy to assemble without sighted assistance. According to the developers, the new ScanJig Pro is easier for those with visual impairments to use. The manufacturer states that the ScanJig Pro is a simple stand that holds a document in the correct place for a focused scan that can improve text recognition. In addition, the makers of the ScanJig Pro tout the tactile positioning of the device. Optimal Set-Up of the ScanJig Pro When in use, the ScanJig should face a light source (ambient light is usually sufficient). For optimal scanning, a camera with a minimum of 5-megapixel resolution is recommended for use with the ScanJig Pro The following devices are suitable for use with the ScanJig Pro: Apple Devices iPhone 4S or later iPod 5th Generation iPad Air 1 or 2 iPad 3 or 4 iPad Mini 1, 2, or 3 Android Devices Galaxy Note 2, 3, or 4 Google Nexus 4 through 7 or 9 Galaxy S 2 through 5 Galaxy Core LG Optimus Windows Devices Nokia Lumia 900, 928, 1520, or 2520 Using The ScanJig Pro Instructions Though there are many references to users with visual impairments on the ScanJib website, the device instructions provided only in print and so are not accessible. Considering how much was said online about helping the visually impaired, I was quite disappointed to find a printed sheet with no suggestion for, or provision of, accessible instructions.. Physical Description The ScanJig Pro is a rectangular hard plastic box. On the back edge, the lid hinges up and back to become the document holder. The lid measures roughly 8.5 inches by 13 inches and hinges back approximately 20 degrees past vertical. The document holder has a raised right edge to help position the document. The bottom of the document holder is approximately .5 inch deep and therefore does not accommodate most books or large documents. Inside the box is a separate additional flat plastic piece, the device holder, roughly 8 inches by 9 inches, with a wire stand on the back that fits into slots toward the front of the box so that the device holder is parallel to the document holder. Several slots are provided for positioning of the small plastic ledge that supports the camera or device. The plastic ledge is inserted into the device holder via two pegs. The ledge is approximately 8.5 inches wide and 1 inch deep. Choose the set of holes that work best for your device. In a small plastic bag are four thick peel-and-stick pieces that, if necessary, can raise the device for better aim. Two thin peel-and-stick pieces are used to mark where the device should be positioned so you can easily return to the same position. Two clips are provided for the document holder to hold a document in place if necessary. The final item in the box is the previously mentioned inaccessible printed instruction sheet. It is necessary to test with your device in order to find the best height on the device holder. When transporting the ScanJig Pro, the device holder is removed from its slot and stored flat in the box. Therefore, when it is used again, you need to be sure to put the device holder back in the correct slot. It was easiest to use sighted assistance to set up the ScanJig Pro correctly the first time. Thereafter, properly positioning the camera was simple. When folded, the ScanJig Pro measures about 9 inches by 13.5 inches by 1.75 inches and weighs approximately two pounds. Although its portability is mentioned on the website, the ScanJig may be too bulky and/or heavy to move on a regular basis. When assembled, it is very stable. Scanning Items Three iOS OCR apps--Prizmo, KNFB Reader, and Abbyy TextGrabber--were used to scan three documents. Links for information about these apps are presented at the end of this article. Prizmo and Abbyy TextGrabber are mainstream apps, while the KNFB Reader is specifically designed for people who are blind or have a visual impairment. Scans were done with and without the ScanJig Pro. The first item scanned was the ScanJig Pro instruction sheet. When the KNFB Reader was used with and without the ScanJig, results were essentially identical. The same was true with Abbyy TextGrabber. With Prizmo, the ScanJig Pro helped significantly. The next item scanned was page four of a five-page stapled report. With the KNFB Reader, results were very similar with and without the ScanJig Pro. With Prizmo, the scan was significantly better with the ScanJig Pro. With Abbyy TextGrabber, the ScanJig Pro scans were more accurate but the scans without it were still good. The next scan was of a glossy page from a magazine. The entire magazine was placed on the ScanJig Pro. When the KNFB reader was used, once again results were very similar both with and without the ScanJig Pro. Both scans were good with Abbyy TextGrabber, but the scan with the ScanJig Pro was better. Prizmo did not give a good scan with or without the ScanJig Pro. When used with the ScanJig Pro, Prizmo kept focusing on the photo that was on the page rather than the text. Without the ScanJig Pro focus was improved, but the other two apps were significantly better. Suggested Improvements In order to improve the ScanJig and make it accessible to people with visual impairments, the instructions must be provided in an accessible format. For example, the Giraffe Reader has a video with description about assembly. The ScanJig Pro instructions would need to include detailed accessible descriptions--simply providing the printed sheet in braille or providing an audio file of someone reading the printed sheet would not be sufficient. Another improvement would be to reduce the weight and size of the ScanJig. Conclusion The ScanJig Pro is improved from its previous version. It is more stable and easier to assemble. Unfortunately the instructions are only available in print so I did require sighted assistance to initially assemble the unit. Consider whether you truly need a ScanJig or other type of stand. If using the KNFB Reader or Abbyy TextGrabber, the results may be good without a stand. Prizmo did work better with the stand for two of the tests. Both Prizmo and Abbyy TextGrabber are relatively inexpensive so you might want to try them before investing money in a stand. The weight and size of the ScanJig Pro should be considered if you'll want to transport it on a regular basis. Since the document is held in a vertical orientation instead of horizontal one, it may be difficult to scan a large document, even with the included clips. Books are nearly impossible to scan using the ScanJig Pro. Product Information ScanJig Pro Cost: $39.95 plus shipping. 133 East 45th Street, Suite 3F New York, NY 10017 firstname.lastname@example.org 800-390-1125 Fax: 800-390-1125.]]>
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- Artificial or attitude? I am still trying to figure this one out and I have to admit that I may never be able to do so. This so-called artificial/attitude barrier has been around much longer than I and this is what it is. Too often, whenever someone with a disability is accompanied by either a friend or family member, they are asked if the accompanying person is a care giver. Recently, I was asked this same question when my friend accompanied me to a lab to have some tests done. The lab technician could not seem to stop herself in asking this question and she was very surprised when both my friend and I said in unison that we were friends. Why should she have been surprised? Was it that she along with so many others around us really do not expect us to have friends who accompany us to appointments? Or is it that they think we need care givers to escort us? Or is it simply that they just do not know what to ask? I do my best to be patient but sometimes I become frustrated and simply tell them that I do not need a care giver. Or I may just turn the question back to them and ask why do they think that my escort is my care giver? 99% of the time there is no response. One of my favourite memories is the day when my mom accompanied me to a pre op appointment and the medical assistant asked if mom was my nurse! On this occasion I could not help but burst into peals of laughter. My mom was speechless! After taking a-hold of myself I gently told the medical assistant that she was my mom; not my nurse. And very recently my friend and I accompanied my mom to the dentist and lo and behold! They thought my friend was a care giver and asked me for her phone number. When I told the staff that she was not our care giver but our friend they were shocked but at least had the manners to apologize. Just my two cents for today. Image: Five blue accessibility logos, hearing impaired, sign language, wheelchair, restroom with wheelchair and guide dog. To learn more about me as a sight loss coach visit www.donnajodhan.com
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