The case was to investigate apps and tools that aid those with disabilities to use technology. The context of the case is that of the visually and hearing impaired. Why ? Because without the two senses, technological adoption is impossible.
Enter the eNitiate hawks – The image above should pique the interest of anyone who get’s to hold it. To the naked eye it’s a box of headache pills. Upon feeling, it’s a braille embossed box of headache pills. This particular brand of pain relief tablets has been part of many homes for decades. To note that recently Panado have made provision for the visually impaired, is a monumental.
Exhibit A :
“Ok Google” search…
The app uses voice commands through the microphone tool execute commands. The efficiency of the app goes beyond its multilingual nature, but it is in how it assists the visually impaired. Casually speaking one would have thought it’s only for those days when one did not feel like typing the search command.
The Google search about the subject yielded about 68 500 000 results in total.
The purpose of this discourse is not about the links to the apps and tools. It is about how it should be a given standard that lifestyle devices like phones, tablets and computers must have enabling tools for the disabled. So far Apple Inc. has been a market leader in vocalising their devices as market-ready to meet the needs of those with impairments. Siri is a feature that can normalise iPhone use for those who are able or disabled. According to Wikipedia the Siri feature uses a natural language user interface to answer questions, make recommendations, and perform actions. Therefore the app does technically qualify as an aid for the visually impaired.
Another phenomena that made the list is how motor vehicle technology is swiftly moving into the auto pilot space.
Self Parking Cars
The default accommodation for the physically disabled is modification – but to learn that cars like the Opel Corsa Adam has #selfparking feature is also a good feather in the cap of considerate manufacturers. Never the ones to be left behind, Apple has recently announced a new system called “iOS in the Car” aimed at integrating Siri and other iOS functions more fully into native in-car systems. Not to say that the visually/hearing impaired are sorted with self parking, voice recognising cars. But the point is that the topic is making it into main stream, especially online.
Google’s self driving car is the epitome of considerations for the visually impaired [ in the context of this article] – all that is needed are the coordinates of the destination! Obviously there will be trust and risk factors, but consider the latest reports from the California traffic department stating that there have been no serious accidents reported about these cars. All that is on record is no more than bumper bashing. While other reports have extended the pros & cons list, almost no paper tabled is advancing the motion for the benefits of those with impairments.
It is somewhat comforting to know that some boxes are being ticked to make provisions for the disabeld to have normalcy in their experiences of millennial lifestyle. This is a necessary matter of social responsibility!