Tommy Edison, the blind film critic last featured here demonstrating an "accessible" ATM explains the inaccessible design of US money and the difficulties it presents for people with vision problems. Read the rest
This video shows the process that a blind man goes through in using a particular ATM for the first time; the machine he selects is one that has a ton of assistive features that are aimed at making use easier for visually impaired people, but it's apparent that this guy -- blind film critic Tommy Edison -- has to go through a heroic effort to get through a technological ritual that most of us take for granted. I also felt for Edison in light of the advice to shield your PIN from potential hidden cameras, a task that seems to add transcendent difficulty to an already tricky task.
"You have got to be kidding me. I honestly felt that those two agents did not know what they were doing," Mandy told us.Dr. David Mandy: Special Needs Son Harassed by TSA at Detroit Metropolitan Airport (Thanks, lizditz!) Read the rest
Dr. Mandy claimed they asked Drew to place his feet on the yellow shoe line, something he didn't understand. They proceeded to pat his pants down, questioning the padding which was his adult diapers. When the agents asked Drew to take his hand and rub the front and back of his pants so they could swab it for explosives, his dad stepped in and tried to explain that Drew was mentally challenged.
"They said, 'Please, sir, we know what we're doing,'" Mandy said.
The TSA agents saw Drew holding a six-inch plastic hammer.
"My son carries his ball and his hammer for security. He goes everywhere with (them)," said Mandy.
A 26-year-old man in Austria who lost the use of his right hand in a motorcycle accident ten years ago has decided to undergo "elective amputation," after which he will be fitted with a bionic hand controlled by nerve signals from his own arm. German prosthetics company Otto Bock makes the bionic hands; BBC News reports the prosthetics can "pinch and grasp in response to signals from the brain that are picked up by two sensors placed over the skin above nerves in the forearm."
This will be the second such surgery performed by Professor Oskar Aszmann, of Vienna.
A 24-year-old Austrian man named Patrick was the first patient in the world to choose to have his hand amputated, again by Professor Aszmann, and a bionic replacement fitted. He lost the use of his left hand after being electrocuted at work.More here, and there's video of the bionic hand in use by Patrick, here.
The combination of the soft recommendation and the monitoring and delay in action advocated by the European Commission and the USPTO is widely seen as a face saving way for the Obama Administration and the European Commission to kill the treaty, or at least to delay it so long its proponents can no longer maintain their advocacy efforts.15 April European Union proposal: 3 to 5 year delay in negotiations on a copyright treaty for blind persons Read the rest
At this point, advocates of the treaty will be looking for help in changing the positions of the European Commission and the US government -- the two groups now blocking action on the treaty.
* Within the US government, the USPTO head David Kappos and the White House have dug in against the treaty. * In Europe, the European Parliament has held two large public meetings on the treaty, sent several letters and questions to the Commission, and plans a vote on the treaty proposal. * The US Congress has yet to show any support for the treaty.
Out west in scenic California the land and times were much, much different than today. Appleton's guide takes visitors on a botanical tour of "cacti of the most curious sort," and it also explains why I saw so many Eucalyptus trees while living there in 2000-2004: "But the people plant a little shoot of the Australian blue-gum (Eucalyptus globulus), and in two years it becomes a shade-tree 15 or 20 feet high." Fashion and comfort were obviously not commodities in the near horizon if Eucalyptus shade-providing trees were the amenities.Appleton's illustrated hand-book of American winter resorts for tourists and invalids (Thanks, ButIfAndThat, via Submitterator!) Travel posters for comic book cities - Boing Boing Michael Palin's travel books online for free - Boing Boing Read the rest
Be sure to head north to Santa Barbara and buy a horse for only $20 so you can tour the beaches. Cure your rheumatism at the Hot Sulphur Springs with sulphureted hydrogen, iron, aluminum, and potash. The dry air the guides associated with relief for consumptive illnesses was and is the same dry air responsible for horrendous wildfires that we see in the news every summer.
Case Study: Leveraged Freedom Chair, by Amos Winter and Jake Childs Steampunk Professor Xavier wheelchair - Boing Boing Guinness Record for wheelchair backflip - Boing Boing Wheelchair gunman surrenders to police robot Boing Boing BBC to debut new "Wheelchair dancing" reality competition show ... Thought-controlled wheelchair - Boing Boing Voice-controlled robot wheelchair - Boing Boing Boing Boing: Small wheelchair car you drive with a joystick Kenguru: Drive-In Car for Wheelchairs - Boing Boing Read the rest
The Lewiston Sun-Journal reports that Rep. Sheryl Briggs has introduced LD 126, entitled "An Act to Allow a Person With One Arm to Possess Certain Kinds of Prohibited Knives." The bill would provide that Maine's "dangerous knives" law, which restricts switchblades, would not apply to the "possession or transportation of a knife . . . by an individual who has only one arm." This exception would allow single-armed Americans (male or female, of course, but probably male) the same access to folding knives that is enjoyed by the fully limbed.Read the rest
According to the report, Briggs was asked to propose the legislation by a one-armed lawyer in her district, who pointed out that current law "utterly fails to accommodate" people who cannot use two hands to open a folding knife and who, I guess, have a need for that kind of knife rather than a regular one with a sheath or something for safety reasons. He also pointed out that a similar exception is already part of federal law.
And at first, Molly's father visited often, until Fairview's staff advised him to stop, because Molly would become inconsolable after he left.Read the rest
But Jack Daly found an ingenious way to continue seeing his daughter . . .
"He did go back," said Jeff. "It was only a way that I suppose my dad could have figured out. He went back as a clown."
Jeff's father - an executive at the Bumblbee Seafood Company - founded a troupe called the Astoria Clowns in 1957, the very year Molly was sent away. The troupe traveled around Oregon, marching in parades and entertaining children wherever they went.
And they visited Fairview.
"He was able to have this relationship with Molly in disguise: Painted face, an orange wig, wearing the clown outfit," said Jeff. "But he was able to still get back there and see his daughter."
By profession, Jeff was a freelance cameraman who sometimes worked for CBS News. Now, he's made a film called "Where's Molly" about the search for his sister. He hopes his story encourages others to reunite with siblings lost because of the wisdom of earlier times.
Here's a Kickstarter project from the EyeWriter team -- EyeWriter being a set of free/open libraries and hardware for doing eye-tracking for input and robotic control. EyeWriter has its inception with TEMPT1, a famous Los Angeles graffiti artist who was paralyzed by ALS (Lou Gehrig's disease) but who has been able to go on working thanks to the EyeWriter tools.
Now TEMPT1 and the EyeWriter folks are raising $15,000 to "create a new collection of original TEMPT1 artwork and merchandise using the EyeWriter 2.0 software, robotic technology, traditional print-making techniques, as well as his community of friends, fans and peers. Supporting this campaign will not only allow TEMPT1 to continue to make art and express his ideas, but it will give him a chance to again become a professional artist, independently support himself and his family, pay for his medical bills, and make a contribution to the contemporary art world."
Video link. There's a whole genre of ASL (American Sign Language) music videos, exemplified perfectly by smokin' hot hottie-hot Jennie Batchelder in her fantastic interpretation of Michael Franti's "The Sound of Sunshine." Michael's had ASL interpreters at his shows for 11 years, so come check out more at the Power to the Peaceful Festival in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park on September 10-12, 2010. Read the rest
Susannah Breslin is a guestblogger on Boing Boing. She is a freelance journalist who blogs at Reverse Cowgirl and is at work on a novel set in the adult movie industry.
(Self-portrait by Sarah May Scott)
At Mayday Productions, blogger Sarah Scott writes about life with a spinal cord injury. Her writing is searingly honest, brutally revealing, and wickedly self-aware.
The after is where it really gets grand, gets epic, gets to where one memoir could never be enough. Truly epic shit doesn't start to go down until the very moment you decide to start living again, to start crawling your way back into the light and out of the darkness. I know enough to know now I'll never fully leave the darkness completely, but the reprieves at this point seem to be enough to keep me going for now. sometimes. But no one wants to hear about the after, because it doesn't arc as much as it shakes and shudders in fits and spurts until eventually you recognize an ersatz normalcy has filled the void you left somewhere in all the fallout.
I interviewed her for Boing Boing about life in a wheelchair, if she considers herself a cyborg, and her plans on becoming a female Hardiman.
SB: Tell me your story.
SS: The story that everyone wants to know from the start is why I use a wheelchair. I was 29, one minute racing my road bike, and the next "tits up in a ditch" and a paraplegic. Read the rest