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Live on the Edge, or have an Ultra Lifestyle? An In-depth review of HIMS and Baum Braille Displays


by Scott Davert

Some of today's braille displays do a lot more than just display braille, but which one is right for your needs? In this in-depth article, I compare the VarioUltra (VU) from Baum and the Braille Edge from HIMS. I chose These 2 units because they both have 40 cells of braille and are what the market seems to now call "smart displays", a term given to devices which do not perform all of the functions of a traditional notetaker such as playing music, GPS navigation, downloading email directly to the device, or browsing the internet. At the same time, these devices are able to accomplish more than just connecting to an external gadget such as a computer, tablet, or smart phone. While these braille devices are in the middle in terms of functionality, they're also in the middle in terms of their price point when compared with other categories of braille devices. This article will examine both the Braille Edge and VarioUltra for their connectivity, support while connecting with some external devices, their internal applications, and physical appearance.

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Posted Wednesday, 22-Feb-2017 1:34 PM ET in Articles     2 comments

Apple Rundown: The “Don’t Throw Away The Gift Receipt” Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

The holidays are usually a fun and happy time. You sing carols around the Festivus pole or holiday tree. You countdown the hours until midnight during New year's Eve with that shiny new Apple Watch. And you reflect back on the year that was with a sense of reverence. Um, yeah, that is how it is meant to be unless you factor in the party pooper of all years 2016. Not even the company Steve Jobs built was immune to the harshest of years as you will see in the stories below. Moreover, and I cannot underscore this enough, I had to quit capturing links for this edition because it was frankly making me depressed. Dogpiling, kicking you when you are down or even opportunistic doesn t begin to summarize the wide array of sadness that comes from Apple watching these days. Here s hoping that 2017 brings us an Amazon Echo competitor, foldable iPhones plus self driving iCars!

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Posted Monday, 09-Jan-2017 4:44 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Blind Bargains Qast 2016: By The Numbers Listener Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

BEFORE YOU READ THIS!!!!!

The Blind Bargains Qast can t thank enough our friends, fans and cast of Regulars. Chancey, Jeff, J.J., Joe, Liam, Patrick, Scott, Shelly and Ricky all work hard to bring you information and entertainment that we think our Community will enjoy. Our Sponsors deserve a huge round of applause as well, as their support allows us to bring you event coverage. However, and most importantly, you, the listener, matter most of all. Submissions, emails and social media mentions have enabled us to grow our download numbers by 30% over 2015 s download numbers. We can t wait to see where we will go in 2017, however, we can t go anywhere without your feedback. Please feel free to send us your ideas and suggestions to feedback@blindbargains.com or leave comments in the section below. Or, as you will read shortly, click on those shows and interviews that interest you the most. Your input shapes BBQ even if all you do is pass along a link to our content.

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Posted Saturday, 31-Dec-2016 7:41 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Cooking with J: Dead Simple Chicken Tikka Masala in the Instant Pot


by J.J. Meddaugh

A cooking column? This may be one of the last things you'd expect me to embark on but here we are. First of all, let me be completely honest. I am not a chef, nor do I know a lot of the intricacies of gourmet cooking. I do know that I like good food and meals which are simple to create. With these things in mind, I was enamored with the idea of the Instant Pot pressure cookers for their ease of use and the possibility of making all sorts of delicious dishes using only one pot. To learn more about the basics of the Instant Pot, check out Blind Bargains Qast 78 where Ricky Enger and myself discuss and demo the appliance in depth. And if you wish to purchase one, check out this page on Amazon which usually has the best prices.

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Posted Thursday, 15-Dec-2016 12:00 AM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Okay Google… Find Me First Impressions of Google Home


by Joe Steinkamp

It seems like we are going to have yet another first mover advantage debate in our community. Yep, Windows versus Mac is new again. Android versus iOS was over before the war even started. Now we can add Amazon Echo versus Google Home into the fray as many out there have started to form factions on which Digital Assistant they would like to use for asking everything from How far is the Taco Bell on 3rd street? to ordering an Uber to take you to get a crunchy taco on 3rd street.

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Posted Monday, 07-Nov-2016 2:48 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

The Apple Rundown: The Command Triple Click Home Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

September 19th seems so long ago.
Back in those halcyon days of a month and a half ago, when I knew another Apple event was on the horizon, I mused that I would have little to post other than the iPod turning 15 years old. Maybe a few articles on the new mac OS would be in order. And, if it made the street date, I'd have some things to post about iOS 10.1. Sure, there would be the 4th quarter earnings report to ponder. And I'd end the article with something funny in regards to the headphone jack.

then 2016 happened with its ability to upend everything you know and expect in a rational universe.

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Posted Monday, 31-Oct-2016 5:36 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Apple Rundown: The Scratched Jet Black Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

Perhaps you are sitting patiently with a tracking number in hand waiting for the delivery of a shiny new product that has winged its way from China, designed by Cupertino of course, and will be the greatest thing you have ever owned ... until the next Apple keynote, in which you will start the buying process all over again like so many salmon swimming upstream. It is the "Circle of iLife" in perpetual motion. Or, you might be clicking in to see what links I've compiled for launch day based upon my previous posts under this banner. in either case, welcome to a few stories from around the net that deal with the subject of Apple.

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Posted Monday, 19-Sep-2016 5:18 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Sling TV offers new users a 32GB Apple TV for $89


by Michael McCarty

One of the mentions in Monday's Apple WWDC keynote was the addition of Sling TV, a subscription service that brings over 20 popular channels to your device for $20 per month. With this news came the announcement of a promotion that new subscribers can receive a 32GB Apple TV for $89 when three months of service is paid for in advance ($60). This is a $209 value as the device itself sells for $149. You're basically receiving a free three month trial with a purchase of an Apple TV.

Sling TV offers over 20 channels in its base package that includes ESPN, HGTV, TBS, TNT, and more. You can add up to an additional 65 channels such as HBO, Cinemax and more. If you ve been looking to cut the cord, this is a great way to get started. Use the provided link to take advantage of this offer. Note some users report having accessibility issues with this app as it currently stands.

Posted Thursday, 16-Jun-2016 09:16 AM ET in Articles     3 comments

A Mock Election: We Tested 3 Modern Voting Machines for Accessibility


by J.J. Meddaugh

Recently, I had the opportunity to test three of the latest voting machines equipped with accessibility features. The Michigan Bureau of Elections held a Mock Election which allowed testers and poll workers to experience each of the machines and tabulate votes for both disabled and non-disabled voters. From my testing of the three machines, it was apparent that the usability of each system ranged from pleasant to downright frustrating. Below are some initial impressions of each machine, presented in the order they were tested.

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Posted Friday, 20-May-2016 10:44 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

Review: Which is it: the iPhone SE or iPhone 6S?


by Scott Davert

Among the announcements at Apple's latest event, was the introduction of the iPhone SE. IT has most of the same features as the current flagship 6s and 6S Plus models, but was much smaller. After learning of this announcement, I became intrigued. As an iPhone 6S user since September of last year, one of the few complaints I had about the 6S was its size. While I could get used to the larger phone, and kind of did, it always felt a bit too big for my liking. While an increase in battery life with the 6S Plus models were something I wanted to have, and having more real estate to work with Braille Screen Input is a nice feature, I could buy a battery case for less than the cost of the difference in price. TO add to that, Braille Screen Input isn't something I make very heavy use of. These were the things I considered when weighing the 6S against the 6S Plus.

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Posted Wednesday, 13-Apr-2016 11:07 AM ET in Articles     4 comments

The Blind Bargains Guide to Attending #CSUN16 on a Budget


by J.J. Meddaugh

It's once again time for what has become a bit of an annual tradition around here. Every March when we talk endlessly about CSUN, the largest assistive technology conference for the blind, we hear from people who would love to go, if only it was within their budget. With room rates over $200 a night, a nearly $500 registration fee, plane tickets, meals, and other expenses, the cost often seems prohibitive. With this in mind, we've updated our list of tips for enjoying the conference on a budget.

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Posted Thursday, 03-Mar-2016 7:03 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

How to Turn Any Wired Speaker Set Into Bluetooth Wireless Speakers


by Michael McCarty

The Logitech Bluetooth Audio Adapter connects to any PC powered speaker, home stereo system, or AV receiver with a RCA or 3.5mm jack and essentially turns the system into a Bluetooth speaker setup that is capable of receiving audio streamed from any device that features the Bluetooth chip. The adapter comes with integrated long range wireless , meaning that audio can be streamed from approximately 50-feet away from the device, a perfect range for the average house.

The Logitech Bluetooth Audio Adapter also ships with the ability to pair multiple devices at once, meaning simultaneous pairing of a smartphone and a tablet is possible. That pairing is also made extremely simple with an easy pairing feature, and automatic re-pairing when the device is switched on. Given how useful this little device is, and given the fact that there s no requirement to tinker with wires and altering existing audio setups for wireless compatibility, it s pretty much a no-brainer purchase for anyone looking to make a set of speakers wireless.

So if you have an old stereo system that you just don t use much because of the need to connect your audio source to it using a wire, this $27 investment will give your system a whole new lease on life.

Posted Monday, 08-Feb-2016 9:51 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Record Phone Calls with Your iPhone Case? Now You Can


by Michael McCarty

Have you ever wanted to record a phone call? If you've ever thought that recording a call on an iPhone is something that could be of benefit to you, then you might want to check out this new iPhone case.

Available for $29 as part of an Indiegogo campaign that s hoping to raise $30,000 in order to get started, the Just In Case call recording iPhone case is actually a self-contained device that doesn t connect to your iPhone at all, and that s what makes it so useful.

While obviously providing somewhere to keep your iPhone, the Just In Case iPhone case has a well-placed microphone that is capable of capturing both your voice and that of the other caller and then saving the call as an MP3 to the included 2GB SD card. Buyers can, of course, put their own, larger card in there, but given the fact this is audio, we expect 2GB to be plenty for most.

The case not only records audio but also timestamps it for later retrieval, and the JIC only has two buttons, making it super easy to use. One button is the start/stop recording button, while the other is to initiate playback through a speaker on the back of the case. There s a rechargeable battery included that is said to be good for 8 hours of use. That $29 is early-bird pricing, so if you think this is something that you may want, now would be a good time to get your order in before the price goes up. JIC is available in red, black, blue, white, yellow, and green. It's designed for iPhone 5 and above, and will start shipping in May 2016.

Posted Wednesday, 27-Jan-2016 8:26 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2015: 4. A Perfect 10?


by Joe Steinkamp

The ballots are in and the votes have been tallied. It's time to count down the top 10 biggest and most influential stories of 2015. This year's panel included Jeff Bishop, Shelly Brisbin, Ricky Enger, Chancey Fleet, J.J. Meddaugh, Jamie Pauls, and Joe Steinkamp.
Each panelist gave us their opinions on the biggest stories in assistive technology and we've compiled their votes to create our annual list. We'll reveal a new story each day on the way to number one and announce the winner on the next Blind Bargains Qast. The 4th biggest story of the year may not impact you just yet, however, its footprint could be felt for years.

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Posted Thursday, 14-Jan-2016 12:01 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2015: 5. The Year of the Helpful Cloud


by J.J. Meddaugh

We're about halfway through the Blind Bargains annual look at the top 10 biggest and most influential stories of 2015. This year's panel included Jeff Bishop, Shelly Brisbin, Ricky Enger, Chancey Fleet, J.J. Meddaugh, Jamie Pauls, and Joe Steinkamp. You can go here for our previous stories
Let's go to panelist Chancey Fleet for our number 5 story.

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Posted Tuesday, 12-Jan-2016 7:07 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2015: 6. These Are The Droid Apps You Are Looking For


by Joe Steinkamp

The ballots are in and the votes have been tallied. It's time to count down the top 10 biggest and most influential stories of 2015. This year's panel included Jeff Bishop, Shelly Brisbin, Ricky Enger, Chancey Fleet, J.J. Meddaugh, Jamie Pauls, and Joe Steinkamp. You can go here for our previous stories
Each panelist gave us their opinions on the biggest stories in assistive technology and we've compiled their votes to create our annual list. We'll reveal a new story each day on the way to number one and announce the winner on the next Blind Bargains Qast. Our 6th story of the year may prove to be more relevant than some might initially think when the word "Android" is mentioned.

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Posted Monday, 11-Jan-2016 2:11 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Updated! The Unofficial Guide to Changing Braille Displays and other Adaptive Technology into UEB


by Scott Davert

As the time has come to begin transitioning to Unified English Braille (UEB) in the US, I thought it would be a good idea to briefly discuss how to change various adaptive technologies to UEB from US English braille. Many pieces of assistive technology already support the UEB code, it s simply a matter of enabling them. Below is a list of the more common devices and how to make these changes. note that stand alone braille displays such as the Focus, Smart Beetle, Brailliant BI, etc, do not have specific settings for UEB, as these devices only receive input/output from the device they are connected to. Also note that these instructions apply to the latest version of the hardware/software listed, your results may vary on older models or versions of software. It is also assumed you know how to navigate and select various options for the hardware/software listed. A comprehensive guide to each device is beyond the scope of an article. Please consult user documentation for further support as needed.

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Posted Monday, 11-Jan-2016 12:27 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2015: 7. The Time for Repentance is Now


by J.J. Meddaugh

We're almost halfway through the Blind Bargains annual look at the top 10 biggest and most influential stories of 2015. This year's panel included Jeff Bishop, Shelly Brisbin, Ricky Enger, Chancey Fleet, J.J. Meddaugh, Jamie Pauls, and Joe Steinkamp. You can go here for our previous stories
You can go here for our previous stories Number 7 involves an unexpected screen reader surprise.

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Posted Sunday, 10-Jan-2016 6:18 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2015: 8. Apple Watches iOS 9 Like a TV Pro


by Joe Steinkamp

The ballots are in and the votes have been tallied. It's time to count down the top 10 biggest and most influential stories of 2015. This year's panel included Jeff Bishop, Shelly Brisbin, Ricky Enger, Chancey Fleet, J.J. Meddaugh, Jamie Pauls, Joe Steinkamp.
Each panelist gave us their opinions on the biggest stories in assistive technology and we've compiled their votes to create our annual list. We'll reveal a new story each day on the way to number one and announce the winner on the next Blind Bargains Qast. You can go here for our previous storiesWe continue on with our 8th big story of 2015.

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Posted Thursday, 07-Jan-2016 10:44 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2015: 9. NVDA Gets a New Voice, and More


by J.J. Meddaugh

We've started counting down the top 10 biggest and most influential stories of 2015. This year's panel included Jeff Bishop, Shelly Brisbin, Ricky Enger, Chancey Fleet, J.J. Meddaugh, Jamie Pauls, and Joe Steinkamp. You can go here for our previous stories For number 9, NVDA gets a new voice and much more.

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Posted Thursday, 07-Jan-2016 10:11 PM ET in Articles     2 comments

Blind Bargains Top 10 Stories of 2015: 10. A Fusion of Screen Access Flavor


by J.J. Meddaugh

The ballots are in and the votes have been tallied. It's time to count down the top 10 biggest and most influential stories of 2015. This year's panel included Jeff Bishop, Shelly Brisbin, Ricky Enger, Chancey Fleet, J.J. Meddaugh, Jamie Pauls, and Joe Steinkamp.
Each panelist gave us their opinions on the biggest stories in assistive technology and we've compiled their votes to create our annual list. We'll reveal a new story each day on the way to number one and announce the winner on the next Blind Bargains Qast. Let's start out with number 10.

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Posted Tuesday, 05-Jan-2016 12:10 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

The Apple Rundown: The iPhone 7 Is Only 11 Months Away Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

So you updated all the iDevices to iOS 9.02, the Macs all have OS 10.11 downloading, and you just unsubscribed from Apple Music. With all that done, and no new Apple TV to buy just yet,
what is an Apple fanboy or fangirl to do? I mean we are still like six months away from a second version of the Apple timepiece and only a short 11 months before we know all about the iPhone 7 through all the rumor sites. Dark days my friends are now upon us... dark days indeed. I guess we'll just have to pass the time with a metric ton of information, tip articles and those odd Apple related stories we find in the Apple Rundown.

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Posted Wednesday, 30-Sep-2015 9:13 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Quick Take: Fintie's $12 iPad Air Case Offers Protection for the Budget-conscious


by J.J. Meddaugh

I recently upgraded to the iPad Air 2, and with upgrades comes the need for yet another case. There are some cool case designs on the market, but I really wasn't interested in spending $50 to $100 on a case for a device that I'd likely only have for the next year or two. I wanted an affordable case that would still offer basic protection for my tablet. Turns out, the $11.99 iPad Air 2 case from Fintie fit the bill.

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Posted Wednesday, 23-Sep-2015 8:08 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

One Month Later: Revisiting Windows 10 Resources


by Joe Steinkamp

Our first resource post on Windows 10 debuted shortly after the initial launch of the new operating system one month ago.
With 75 million devices now running Windows 10, and Windows Insider builds back on the fast ring for the bleeding edge crazy testers,
Microsoft is ramping up the hype machine for the launch of Office 2016. That release might garner its own fanfare, however, we thought we would revisit Windows 10 with another list of informative links and resources. We've broken out the topics again for those who want to just drill down to the "How To" section. Enjoy!

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Posted Thursday, 10-Sep-2015 11:55 AM ET in Articles     Post a comment

APH Halts Hardware Development of Braille Plus 18, Evaluating Input from Users


by Kevin Andrews

The American Printing House for the Blind recently announced they have paused hardware development of the Braille Plus 18 notetaker. This is the second generation in the Braille Plus line of products, currently running Android version 2.3.

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Posted Tuesday, 11-Aug-2015 6:08 PM ET in Articles     2 comments

Quick Take: Bose SoundLink Mini II Bluetooth Speaker with TTS is a Worthy Successor


by J.J. Meddaugh

I've been a happy owner of the Bose SoundLink Mini, a powerful Bluetooth speaker that's small in stature. So when I learned that its successor, the SoundLink Mini II, included text-to-speech and a speakerphone, I figured it would be worth the upgrade. And for the most point, I'm not disappointed in my decision.

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Posted Thursday, 06-Aug-2015 3:48 PM ET in Articles     2 comments

For The Early Adopter In All Of Us, Here's A Whole bunch Of Information On Windows 10


by Joe Steinkamp

For The Early Adopter In All Of Us, Here's A Whole bunch Of Information On Windows 10

Microsoft launched the next version of Windows on July 29th.
And the likelihood of you not hearing about this in the media, on the web or from that family member who calls you up at the most inopportune time to ask that tech question is virtually nill. MS hopes to have rolled out the new desktop operating system to one billion, that is billion with a big letter B, devices during the initial phase of the "Upgrade Your Life" blitz. The reviews for the new OS have been mostly positive and you might be wondering if you should take a dive with all the insane people who like loading new software on Day 1. To that end, and on Blind Bargains Qast 25, we offer a plethora of links to help you make that decision on whether to stay or to jump on, or off!, the electronic bandwagon. We even broke them out into sections in case you wanted to just read about Cortana or see what some of the Assistive Technology companies have on tap.

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Posted Thursday, 30-Jul-2015 10:35 AM ET in Articles     Post a comment

The iPod 6: an upgrade worth having?


by J.J. Meddaugh

The following was submitted by Scott Davert.
It's been 3 years since Apple has released a new iPod touch, and it's an update I've been hoping for and mostly given up on seeing. There were rumors of a new iPod to be announced last year which proved to be untrue. At which point, many thought the iPod 5 was the final model. While I understand the need for iPads, and certainly the value they bring to some users, I really didn't see the point in having a larger touch screen for myself. It's less portable and I'm totally blind, so really the only advantage would be more text on each page of the screen when reading books that used to require page turning with braille displays. However, with iOS 8, this is no longer an issue, as VoiceOver now has the option to automatically turn pages when using a braille display. Although I had an iPod 5 for quite some time to offset the use of my iPhone, it was starting to get a little sluggish with iOS 8.0, particularly with regard to braille keyboard input, requests submitted through Siri, and the carrying out of functions such as OCR using the KNFB Reader. With some dismay, I had almost accepted that I may have to use an iPad Mini, when Apple announced the new iPod 6.

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Posted Monday, 27-Jul-2015 10:22 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Review: Jet.com Aims to Change How you Think about Online Shopping


by J.J. Meddaugh

Jet.com is a different kind of online shopping experience that aims to change the mindset of how people shop online while giving some great deals to its customers. As a user during the beta test period for the store, I've been able to put the site through its paces and so far, there's a lot to like.

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Posted Thursday, 23-Jul-2015 3:59 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Nifty Navigation in the 21st Century with Sendero PC Maps


by Kevin Andrews

Whether it's locating the nearest pharmacy to the workplace or exploring a route from the living room couch, blind navigation enthusiasts have a myriad of GPS solutions available at their fingertips. Sendero Group is known for their GPS solutions for the iOS mobile platform and BrailleNote products from HumanWare. Sendero PC Maps, which has been around for a few years, receives periodic updates and enhancements, making it a viable solution for those seeking accessible and fully functional virtual navigation software for the Windows desktop environment.

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Posted Tuesday, 21-Jul-2015 5:27 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

Quick Take: Playing with The Bem Speaker Wrist Band


by Kevin Andrews

We recently acquired a new speaker in the office from Bem Wireless, the Bluetooth Speaker Wristband. I've always been a bit of a techie so naturally I was really excited to tare open one of these things and check it out.

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Posted Thursday, 18-Jun-2015 1:59 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

Amazon Launches Free Shipping On Small Items


by Michael McCarty

According to USA TODAY, Amazon has introduced free shipping for small and light products that weigh under 8 ounces and cost less than $10. The low-cost fulfillment service means no minimum order is required and customers do not need to be members of Amazon Prime to get the free shipping. The new program is officially called Fulfillment by Amazon Small and Light. Items will take four to eight business days to arrive.

Posted Wednesday, 03-Jun-2015 4:25 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Amazon Launches Free Same-Day Delivery For Prime Members


by Michael McCarty

Amazon is now offering free-of-charge same day delivery to those who are subscribed to its Prime service. If you were lucky enough to already be using the same day delivery, the standard $5.99 fee that used to be applied has been dropped for those who currently subscribe to Prime.

Items on the Amazon website will be marked as being available for same day delivery. Customers need to checkout and pay for their order before 12 noon to get the item the same day; otherwise it will arrive the next working day. Qualifying orders must be more than $35 in total and delivery has to be in one of the 14 metropolitan areas that are part of the same-day delivery network.

Use the provided link and enter your zipcode to see if your city is included in the new service. Be sure to check back from time to time if your city is not part of the network, they'll be adding new cities as the program expands.

Posted Saturday, 02-May-2015 12:10 AM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Quick Take: Apple Watch Guideline May Have Unintended Consequences for Deaf-blind


by J.J. Meddaugh

A simple sentence added to Apple's App Store Review Guidelines may have unintended consequences for deaf-blind users. The one sentence section 10.7 reads "Watch Apps whose primary function is telling time will be rejected". There's a fringe use case that Apple may not have thought of however.

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Posted Wednesday, 29-Apr-2015 3:07 PM ET in Articles     2 comments

Fashion Sense with Jywanza:: All about Scent


by Jywanza Maye

Scent is one of the most powerful of our five senses. It can warn us of danger and trigger precious memories. According to the consumer market research firm NPD, 80 percent of men use some kind of scented product and 54 percent of men report using a fragrance on a daily basis. It can be overwhelming when purchasing cologne. You can't walk into a department store without being besieged by a barrage of competing scents. Below is some general information about fragrances which should help you when deciding on cologne.

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Posted Wednesday, 29-Apr-2015 2:46 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

The Apple Rundown: The Apple Watch Watchers Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

A warning to you gentle reader, this post contains nothing but Apple Watch links. If you are tired, bored or just plain don't want to hear any more about the thing... you may want to skip this one. Some people are already on "burn out" at this early stage of the product's life cycle. After collecting more than 100 links on this accessory, I can honestly say, I'm a bit on overload about the subject myself. Therefore, the next edition will contain no Apple Watch news. Well, unless the devices turn peoples arms blue or allow them to become superheroes or something. Fat chance I could ignore stories like those. So, barring supernatural origin stories of the comic book variety, this post will have to do for those wanting news about Apple Watches. Oh, and listen to BBQ 14 because we talk about it in that show as well. Happy reading!

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Posted Wednesday, 29-Apr-2015 2:42 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

The Weekly Apple Rundown: How To, Volume 2


by Joe Steinkamp

Brain hurts... too ... many Apple ... Watch ... links! Can't type sentences without ... ellipses. Can only post ... How Tos!

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Posted Thursday, 23-Apr-2015 10:31 AM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Apple Rundown: Brother Can You Spare 100,000 Dimes Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

You could say that the world was on watch last week for news about the new updates to iOS and Mac OSX. Of course, some may be excited about the upcoming WWDC in June. However, let us just get the other news out of the way and then we'll jump into the linkapalooza about the new Apple timepiece. That way those who want to skip, avoid or ignore those stories can while leaving those who pine for their pre orders the ability to drool until the bauble arrives in their local Apple store.

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Posted Wednesday, 15-Apr-2015 7:39 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Fashion Sense with Jywanza: Developing your Style


by Jywanza Maye

Before I get to this week’s colum, I would like to answer a question and reply to a comment I have received. Louis D asked my opinion about Old Navy. I am not a huge fan of Old Navy. Old Navy’s quality isn’t up to par compared to The Gap and The Banana Republic. If you want your clothes to last for years to come, I wouldn’t shop at Old Navy. That being said, Old Navy is a great place to shop for trendier items. I had a comment regarding this column’s intended targeted audience…. I am a male and while I try to provide some general information in each column that isn’t gender specific, this column’s intended targeted audience is men. Please keep the questions and comments coming and I will try my best to answer them. Now to this week’s column.

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Posted Friday, 10-Apr-2015 4:29 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Is Your TV Your Next Windows Computer?


by Michael McCarty

The Intel Compute Stick, a snazzy $180 dongle that can turn anything with an HDMI port into a full-fledged Windows computer, made a bit of a splash when it touched down at CES 2015. Now, it's landing for real, preorders have started at Amazon.

The device features a Quad-core 1.33GHz Intel Atom processor with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of solid state storage, running Windows 8.1. It will be available on May 6th, and we can't wait to mess with one to see if it can run with NVDA. Imagine having a computer connected to your TV with a screen reader and everything! If it works, it's exciting to think about all the things we'll do with it. Sighted assistance will be needed to get NVDA started, but that's the only negative thing I can find about it at the moment.

Posted Tuesday, 07-Apr-2015 7:41 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

The Weekly Apple Rundown: Happy Birthday iPad Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

The collective internet has the general opinion that some news comes along in pairs or even threes. Today, on the 5th birthday of the iPad, we'll take a look at a few stories that either directly conflict, or conversely, complement one another.

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Posted Saturday, 04-Apr-2015 1:39 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Fashion Sense with Jywanza: Just the Basics


by Jywanza Maye

In my last column, I showed you how to find inexpensive clothes for a good price. Now, I will discuss two basic fashion guidelines and one basic thing we all should know about our skin.

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Posted Tuesday, 31-Mar-2015 6:19 PM ET in Articles     1 comment

The Weekly Apple Rundown: No Boot Camp For You Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

It's been a little more than a week since we last dove into the whirlpool of Apple news and events. And you would think, with pre orders for the Apple Watch still weeks away, it would have been quiet during that time. Well, um, not so much it seems.

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Posted Thursday, 26-Mar-2015 9:42 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

Fashion Sense with Jywanza: Shopping Tips and Tricks


by Jywanza Maye

I love finding a bargain. Who doesn’t? If you shop wisely, you don’t have to break the bank to feel and look marvelous!! Before I go on, let me tell you the difference between cheap and Inexpensive clothes. To me, cheap clothes are poor quality. They typically fade, shrink, pill up and don't last. However, Inexpensive clothes are good quality clothes that will last. Please don’t be fooled….. There are some designer brands that make cheap clothes. My clothes are relatively Inexpensive. I can't afford to buy cheap clothes.

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Posted Tuesday, 24-Mar-2015 1:38 PM ET in Articles     3 comments

4 Strategies for Managing the Clutter in your Email Inbox


by J.J. Meddaugh

Yes, I'm one of those people. Leave me a message in my voicemail box and I might check it once or twice a day. Send me an Email message however, and it's quite possible I'll read and reply to you within 5 minutes. I'm definitely not the world's most organized person, and yes, sometimes messages and requests do slip through the cracks. But over time, I've developed a few strategies for managing the pile of messages that end up in my in-box. Here are a few of these.

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Posted Wednesday, 18-Mar-2015 4:51 PM ET in Articles     2 comments

Introducing a New Column, Fashion Sense with Jywanza


by Jywanza Maye

Hello, my name is Jywanza and I have been blind since the age of 15. I was born and raised in New York City but currently reside in Indianapolis, Indiana. My interests lie in reading, traveling, dining out and I especially love clothes and beauty products and learning about them. I own over 500 tops, over 200 pair of pants, over 90 pairs of shoes, 15 sport jacket/blazers, 8 suits, over 100 pair of socks and underwear and countless beauty products. When I moved from NYC in January 2006, all of my clothes weighed almost 1800 pounds, Yes, almost 1800 pounds..... That's equivalent to moving 6 new-born baby elephants. I always care about what I am wearing and how I look no matter where I am going and always look put together.

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Posted Monday, 16-Mar-2015 4:26 PM ET in Articles     3 comments

Apple Rundown: The Apple Edition Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

It's a post Apple event week and we're going to examine how the Kool Aid buzz wore off faster than expected in the press. So I'm warning everyone upfront that this week's links will be more negative than positive, as the stock market analogy of buying and selling on hype applies to what gets clicks for Apple news stories. Except in the rumor department that is... Pink iPhones anyone? Yeah, that might be a thing now that gold is starting to lose its luster.

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Posted Monday, 16-Mar-2015 4:10 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

The Weekly Apple Rundown: How To Do Stuff, Volume 1 Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

Problem:
Weekly rundown needed after CSUN 2015 coverage. Lack of motivation and energy precludes this from happening.
Solution:
Take all those "how to" links and non-time-sensative resource articles, bundle them all up and add a review from Jan Brown. Poof, column achieved!

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Posted Monday, 09-Mar-2015 11:53 AM ET in Articles     Post a comment

The Weekly Apple Rundown: Spring Forward Edition


by Joe Steinkamp

Let's see... there was the official return of VLC to the iOS app store, iAssociate saw some updates and, oh I know, some small mention of an event in March for news this past week. An event I say? Yeah, nothing major I'm sure considering that we have a launch of a new product in April. I doubt anyone will be covering it really. But, and this is a mighty big but, if you are interested in hearing Tim and co go on and on about time pieces you will want to catch the stream of the event on March 9th at 10 AM PT.

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Posted Monday, 02-Mar-2015 4:33 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

The Blind Bargains Guide to Attending #CSUN15 on a Budget


by J.J. Meddaugh

It's time for what has become a bit of an annual tradition around here. Every March when we talk endlessly about CSUN, the largest assistive technology conference for the blind, we hear from people who would love to go, if only it was within their budget. With room rates over $200 a night, a nearly $500 registration fee, plane tickets, meals, and other expenses, the cost often seems prohibitive. With this in mind, we've updated our list of tips for enjoying the conference on a budget.

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Posted Monday, 23-Feb-2015 3:52 PM ET in Articles     Post a comment

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