Monday, December 5, 2011

Kindle that Reads Aloud Not Usable by Blind?

One of my kind sisters tried to get me a Kindle with the "text to speech" feature on sale the afternoon of Thanksgiving Day, online. It would have cost $85 and would have allowed me to take an audio book around the house, to a Dr.'s office (using earphone) to Listen to books being read. Cool, hu?

For a totally blind person it's about as cool as a touch panel on a microwave without any tactile markings. As my sister said, "You know it works, but you don't know how."

You see, the Menus Don't Speak. To get "text to speech" one has to Visually read the menu, (look at little arrows maybe? don't know.) and Visually Choose the command for the thing to start reading. How much more expensive would it be to either use tactile markings with an audio cassette of instructions, or to make the Menus talk Too!

I may have to save up for a $300 machine if I want to listen to the latest audio books anywhere besides Sitting in the room With my computer! Gurrrrrr!

There is a state branch of NLS for Mo. and I am Very Greatful for their services! I have an Excelent reader/advisor who sends me books through the mail. But I often read more than one book at a time. Usually I'm reading a non-fiction book like "The Filter Bubble" which takes concentration with a fiction book from which I also hope to learn, but which draws me in, instead of me choosing to concentrate on it. I can clean house, wait on a Dr., sew or bead or work in the garden while listening to these books because whatever my body is doing, my mind is mostly in the book. For an intense, true story I recommend "The Hungry Tide" by Amitaz Ghosh. For fun and Christmas spirit I recommend "Skipping Christmas" by John Grisham.

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