Saturday, May 26, 2007


Every since I lost my sight, people have tried to figure out how in the world can I be so functional without any vision at all. In fact, there are some that believe that I pretend to be blind, simply because they cannot wrap their mind around the fact that blind people are capable of being functional, independent, and confident. (Now, why would anybody fake blindness is beyond me.)

Once I started losing my sight, I started my love affair with the computer. The computer gives me the power I need to document, communicate, and create. In fact, I don't know what I would do without my trusty computer equipment. Technology really did save my life. Much like my mother's pacemaker saves her life everyday, my computer keeps my heart beating.

Questions of how I use the computer always come up, especially now that I've started blogging. When I send people e-mails, those that have enough courage to inquire about how I do that, ask me how in the world do you send and read e-mails. People ask how I browse the internet. And as I afore mentioned, most people are amazed that I maintain blogs.

Well, let me clear up some of this mystery. I use JAWS for Windows. It's a screen reading program created by Freedom Scientific. This company makes great assistive technology for the blind. But the screen reading software is what I like the most. JAWS makes what is on a computer screen assessable to me. It allows me to pretty much use the computer like any other sighted person. Yes, the voice that comes blaring out of my computer speakers is a little annoying and hard to understand at times; but if it wasn't for JAWS I wouldn't be able to do anything on the computer.

I also use OpenBook. This product is also created by Freedom Scientific. OpenBook is a program that allows me to scan printed documents with my scanner, and OpenBook reads back to me what's on the paper. Isn't that fantastic? I wish I had this program when I was in undergrad. I probably would have had nearly a 4.0 GPA much like I do now, if I had this program back then.

Although there are a lot of great products out there on the market, JAWS and OpenBook are primarily the ones that I have found to be the most useful. Plus, these products are not very economical. I probably would have a lot more if I could afford the high prices on them.

Next week, I'll spend a little time posting some of the products that are on my wish list. Some of these products are not for computer use. Some are simply just to make life easier on someone that has a visual impairment. So, I'll gather a list of what I would love to have. And if some of you folks that's balling out of control want to hook a sister up, please feel free. I love to give. But I don't have any problem being on the receiving end of giving. LOL And I’m not kidding.

I hope I answered some of you guys' questions. If not, hit me up. I'll be glad to explain.

Much love,


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