Hines Alumni Tech Teleconferences for July

This is an announcement for the Hines Alumni tech teleconferences for July. These are open forum discussions for Veterans with visual impairments to learn more and share their experiences related to tech. The Hines Alumni tech teleconferences will occur:

  • iDevices and GPS Users
  • Tuesday, July 4

  • 1000 AM Central Time
  • (800) 767-1750, ext 44125
  • Windows Computer Users
  • Thursday, July 6

  • 1000 AM Central Time
  • (800) 767-1750, ext 44125

If you have any difficulties entering the conference room, please dial 0 for the Operator.
The conference call will begin promptly at 1000 (10:00 a.m., and you are asked to start entering the conference room at 0950 (9:50 a.m.). The conference call will conclude at 1120 (11:20 a.m.). This is Central Standard Time.

Please direct your questions or answers to the Moderator of the call so the Moderator can properly identify you for the continuation of your questions/answers. You are asked to not speak over or interrupt a fellow Blinded Veteran who is providing a question or providing an answer to a question. Participants are asked to limit their questions to 2 and with time permitting at the end of the conference call, you may ask additional questions. You are also asked to do a star 6 to mute out any and all background noise, then if you have a question star 6 again and give your name to the recognized moderator.

Blind Tech Assistance For Veterans

Hines Alumni and Blind Not Alone compile and maintain this list of tech and assistive tech resources for visually impaired Veterans. Please send any corrections or additions through the Contact Us page.

Conference Calls

  • Blind Vet Tech Monthly Tech Talk meets the third Thursday of each month at 1900 Central Time
  • Blind Vet Tech Monthly MacOS Talk meets the second Thursday of the month at 1900 Central Time
  • Blind Vet Tech Monthly Narrator Talk is coming soon
  • Hines iOS, GPS conference call meets the first Tuesday of every month, 10 AM Central time
    • Join by calling (800) 767-1750,44125#
    • Contact Rick Olson for more info at rwoverna2@gmail.com
  • Hines computer conference call, meets the first Thursday each month, 10AM Central time
    • Join by calling (800) 767-1750,44125#
    • Contact Kevin Jackson for more info at kmjacksonsr@att.net
  • Blinded Vets & Friends – Homepage meets every Tuesday at 7PM Central time using TC Conferencing. Contact Jerry Hogan at Jerry Hogan jerryhogan5gearthlink.net

One on One Coaching

Hines Alumni and Blind Vet Tech are proud to offer on demand coaching sessions. If interested, send an email indicating what you wish to receive coaching on, your computer’s set up, and available times to presidentofThehinesalumni@gmail.com or info@blindnotalone.com. Both provide coaching and mentoring for using iPhones and iPads, while the Hines Alumni focus on Windows based computers and Blind Vet Tech on Apple MacOS computers.

If you are a VA Blind Rehab Services VIST or BROS interested in securing assessment or AT training for a Veteran, contact info@blindnotalone.com, for details about our VA contracting services or additional resources.

For an informal group discussion, we have a ‘virtual bar’ that meets on SKYPE. The group meets whenever the need arises. Any drinks from coffee to tequila are permitted.

Websites to visit

Help Desks

  • Microsoft Accessibility Desk, (800) 936-5900
  • Apple Accessibility Desk, (877)204-3930
  • Amazon Accessibility Desk, (888) 283-1678
  • VFO Accessibility Desk (727) 803-8600

Podcasts

If you are using a Victor Reader, Hims Blaze, or any podcasting app, just search the name and add to your play list.

Youtube

Blind Vet Tech Monthly Tech Talk for June 15

This is an announcement for the Blind Vet Tech Monthly Talk for June 15. June’s call will start off with a presentation and question and answer session with Amy from AIRA. AIRA, the visual interpreter for the blind, is a novel method to do anything from reading documents to walking around your community. AIRA consists of a headword camera with a earphone that enables a professional human assistant to guide you throughout your requested task. I have heard of Veterans using this for shopping, navigating convention settings, reading documents, and computer troubleshooting whenever JAWS fails. The second part of the call will feature a discussion about social networking and and any questions participants may have about safely diving into a social networking platform.

This calls participation details are:

  • Thursday, June 15
  • 1900 Central Time
  • (866) 820-9940

Stay Informed

Stay up to date with the latest news and announcements from the Blind Vet Tech team, by doing one of the following:

If you have any questions, comments, or requests, feel free to send us an email here. All of our podcasts and other information related to Veterans, blindness, acceptance of a disability, and other resources may be found at BlindNotAlone.com

Don’t miss another Blind Vet Tech teleconference, click here to see a list of our teleconferences and others we support.

Blind Vet Tech News Update: Rise of the Accessible Microsoft Machines

Welcome to this installment of the Blind Vet Tech News Update. In this episode, Terry and I discuss the evolving accessibility culture filtering through Microsoft, our thoughts on Narrator as a stand alone screen reader, the accessibility and usability of One Note and other Microsoft Office products, and why machine learning to recognize objects and text excites us. The combination of these items truly demonstrates what happens when a company, like Microsoft, takes the stance to integrate universal design within its core beliefs.

For those skeptical about Microsoft’s commitment to accessibility, watch this Youtube video. It outlines exactly how accessibility is no longer a buzz word where Microsoft passes the responsibilities to fix inaccessible platforms onto third party solutions. Rather Microsoft takes the lead with integrated accessibility tools, accessibility checkers in Office products, and even promoting universal design amongst its partners.

Visit these links if you wish to learn more about how to use the Microsoft integrated accessibility tools or produce completely accessible Office documents.

Regarding Narrator, we both agree its a wonderful screen reader to use. Placing our screen readers where our mouth is, we both have made the commitment to adopt Narrator as our primary screen reader on Windows in the upcoming year. Currently a lack of end user guides exist, but Microsoft released a terrific user guide for those willing to take part in our challenge. Its from this guide we have started to produce the Blind Vet Tech Quick Guides and Tutorials Narrator series.

The final segment quickly reviews machine learning and how its recognizing the world around us. As blindness tech advocates, these complex systems needs to be promoted by our community. Its up to us to share how machine learning to recognize objects works, what type of descriptions would benefit us, and dispel myths about computers rising up against us to take over the world.

Stay Informed

Stay up to date with the latest news and announcements from the Blind Vet Tech team, by doing one of the following:

If you have any questions, comments, or requests, feel free to send us an email here. All of our podcasts and other information related to Veterans, blindness, acceptance of a disability, and other resources may be found at BlindNotAlone.com

Don’t miss another Blind Vet Tech teleconference, click here to see a list of our teleconferences and others we support.

Blind Vet Tech Monthly MacOS Talk for June 8

This is an announcement for the Blind Vet Tech Monthly MacOS Talk for June 8. This call enables individuals to learn more about MacOS and how integrated features like Voice Over and Zoom may be applied to achieve computing goals. The session will be open for participants’ questions and encourages open exchanges.

This calls participation details are:

  • Thursday, June 8
  • 1900 Central Time
  • (866) 820-9940

Stay Informed

Stay up to date with the latest news and announcements from the Blind Vet Tech team, by doing one of the following:

If you have any questions, comments, or requests, feel free to send us an email here. All of our podcasts and other information related to Veterans, blindness, acceptance of a disability, and other resources may be found at BlindNotAlone.com

Don’t miss another Blind Vet Tech teleconference, click here to see a list of our teleconferences and others we support.