Archives for September 2010

An Hour and a Half in Rehab

Okay, that is a pretty dramatic title.  It was low vision rehab.  Just like Lindsay Lohan, I don’t think my rehab will work either.  Today at Dr. Astorino’s office, Dawn had me try prescription glasses for distance, stand magnifiers, and contrast enhancing glare filters — basically sunglasses but with amber, orange, plum, and light gray lenses.  My vision was worse than normal today and my eye was watering quite a bit, so I was eager to see if anything would make a significant impact on my sight.

I was really surprised at the difference the glare filters made on both contrast and depth.  I tried about 34957285 different colors, with amber working out best.  I guess it really is the color of my energy…  Last week during my visit, Dr. Astorino put a few lenses together to help me see for distance.  Today, I tried them on to watch TV in her office, walking around her office, and then looking around outside.  Since the lenses were in one of those bulky lense holders, it was hard to get a good feel for them while walking around.  Watching TV and looking around outside it was slightly better.  At $205, I did think about not getting them since it was a slight difference.  In the end, though, I thought any improvement was better than nothing.

I go back tomorrow to have a look at portable electronic magnifiers, Kindle, iPad (like I need a doctor to tell me I need on of those,) and a couple other things.  I’m kind of excited to check out the Kindle, though you can’t reverse the screen to do white text on black which is about the only way I can comfortably read.  I’ve missed reading magazines and would love to read a book.  Of course, I can do that at my desk on my computer, but it’d be awesome to sit on the porch on a nice day and read.

While I was somewhat happy that there are things to help me out, it is only a small step forward.  Like my dad says when I tell him his stock was up a penny, “at least it didn’t go down.”  Forward is better than backward, but I want more.


My iPhone

It was time to upgrade our mobiles, so I’d been looking around to see what is the best option for me. I’ve felt left out by not being able to text (not an issue with my phone of course, an issue with me…) For the last few months I’ve looked at a couple of the Droids and the iPhone.  I always came back to the iPhone because of the reviews from blind or visually impaired users. I got my phone about two weeks ago. I’m now wondering if I’ve made the correct choice.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the idea of having it.  The ability to tweet, send and receive texts, shoot and upload images and videos is truly awesome.  Oh, and the ability to listen to Absolute Radio is well beyond that.  The learning curve for me has been huge.  I’m trying to be patient with it, but it has been frustrating.

I’ve been using the VoiceOver feature for the last week.  This feature reads the screen to me.  The feature works pretty well, but there are some issues (probably me not the device) that drive me a little crazy.  Today, for example, I wanted to tweet.  It wasn’t anything exciting, but I was sitting at Martin Main Line Honda and wanted to “practice.”  Since there was a little noise, I had trouble entering in the letters.  I could enter them, but there were times that I couldn’t hear what letter I had selected.  When using VoiceOver, to enter text, you’ve got to tap three times.  Once to hear the letter, then twice when you’re sure it is what you want.  If I was unsure of a letter, I would lose track of the word and if it was spelled correctly.

I probably should have tried the VoiceOver before I tried the large text and zoom feature.  When using the large text (which doesn’t work on menu items, by the way,) you use the iPhone just like normal people would, by tapping on an item once.  After trying the zoom feature for a few days, I ended up changing some settings because I couldn’t see what I had actually touched while trying to maneuver around the screen (while being zoomed in.)  You can’t use both the zoom feature and the VoiceOver feature at the same time.  I’m not sure why.

I know that I’ll get the hang of it sooner or later, but like anything else I do, I want to do it NOW.  It doesn’t help that I’ve been trying implement things I’ve learned at Affiliate Summit East, go live with a couple of affiliate marketing sites I’ve been working on, learn to use WordPress so that I don’t have to ask anyone for assistance to launch those sites and others, keep running (since that is where most of our revenue comes from,) process orders we receive through (we sell beauty stuff there too,) and move Jake into his dorm at Westtown.  Not to mention local beauty deliveries with Eliz and some Digital Graphics Design work.  I’ve been averaging about five and a half hours of sleep and I don’t see an end to that.