The Social Security Administration has developed a program to provide automatic reading for people who need it when researching information on their Website. We know that SSA has become committed to providing accessible accommodations to individuals with vision loss. Therefore, as they improve and move more closely to becoming more conscious, let’s give them some appreciation for this great innovation.
BrowseAloud is an assistive technology purchased by SSA. It was purchased for the public to download a plug-in that makes SSA’s website (www.socialsecurity.gov) talk.
In order to use BrowseAloud, you have to:
- 1. Go to www.socialsecurity.gov and click on “Web accessibility” at the middle of the bottom of the homepage under Policy
- 2. Click on “Learn more” under “BrowseAloud” in the middle of the left side of the page.
- 3. Click on “Download BrowseAloud” on the bottom of the left side of the page.
BrowseAloud has been approved by the Office of General Counsel and Security. It can be used by people with various challenges:
Mild visual impairments - the text can be enlarged as the voice speaks
Dyslexia - a highlighted “ruler” guide moves as the voice speaks
Low reading skills - the reader listens to the voice as it reads the text/paragraphs
Helpful to the public who use English as a second language
BrowseAloud also translates words on a website into French, Spanish, Italian, and German, making content easier to understand, Converts text to MP3
BrowseAloud is available to publicize for outreach and PR activities. Many assistive devices cost thousands of dollars. (JAWS, etc). SSA offers this FREE to the public.
Who uses a talking dart board?
- Blind and visually impaired people who wish to play an active game.
- People who like to play darts, but don't know the
rules or scoring.
- Schools for the blind and visually impaired.
- Dart Leagues who may have some members with
- Audio Dart Leagues using English Mark Darts.
- People who would like a game that is more fun
than a circle of cork on
Games and Game Options
(double in, double out,
league, 25/50 point bull)
(double in, 25/50 point
(Quick / Classic cricket /
Cut-throat, double in)
Around The Clock
Five Dart Golf
(9 hole / 18 hole)
(3/5/7/9 lives, double in)
13005 34th Ave N.
Minneapolis MN 55441
Fully accessible talking dartboard
- Speaks every action and everything
displayed in a human voice.
- Help key explains every option, every button and every game.
- Contains a synthesized speechinstruction manual and rules for
- Sonic ping option identifies the location of the board
- Full displays for sighted users.
- Games and options to make playing fun for beginners and experts.
- Easy 4-key menu interface for all options.
- History (un-throw dart) feature
- Optional spoken name for each player. (Keeps 19 names)
- League option (Blocked).
- Ten level volume.
- Calls 'inside' and 'outside' hits.
- 25 or 50 point double bull's eye.
- Optional 'clock position' called for
- Abbreviated voice output for people
who know how to play.
- External speaker jack for loud
speakers or communication aids.
- Arachnid patented dart head.
Pricing subject to change. Call to confirm.
Audio Dart Master, 499.00
Dartboard, power supply, three sets
of darts, mounting hardware, toe
board and a computer CD with
instructions (also available on the I
board and web site.)
A portable frame that allows the
dartboard to be used against a wall
without putting screws in the wall.
(Can be made free-standing as a
Audio Customization 100.00
We can customize the greeting for you and record the name of eight
players in a human voice. (You can
add as many players as you wish
with a robot voice.)
Determined by location.
The Audio Dart Master uses
standard soft-tipped darts,
available at sporting goods stores. The darts have a flexible
nylon tip that bends, if it hits a
hard surface. Though some
kind of accident may be possible,
this type of dart has been used in
homes and recreational facilities
for years without any known problems.
Except for maybe helping to find lost darts, there is no need for a
sighted person to mount, configure or play the Audio Dart
Master. All the rules are spoken,
and the menus are simple.
Learning the skill of throwing
darts is the sole challenge for new players. This makes the
game perfect for recreational
areas where people congregate during idle time. Sighted and
non-sighted players can play
together on nearly equal footing,
with the most experienced players having the advantage.
Here are tips on bowling both as a totally blind bowler and as a partially sighted bowler.
Bowling blind or as a partial
For blind bowlers, it's all about confidence
Bowlers don't let blindness hurt scores
By Dave Baity
For The Sun News
Participants in the Carolina Bowling Alliance tournament this past weekend demonstrated that you don't have to be able to see the bowling ball to roll a respectable score.
About 100 alliance members from the Carolinas, Virginia and Florida - people without some or all of their sight - took part in the Sportsman Shoot Out, a head-to-head elimination event held on the Grand Strand for the first time.
Bowlers from the Carolinas bested those from Florida.
Lonnie Cunningham of Greensboro, N.C., placed first in the men's partially sighted division with a score of 176.
Shirley Williamson of Durham, N.C., placed first in the partially sighted women's division with a score of 147.
James Benton of Raleigh, N.C., placed first in the blind division with a score of 102.
In the fully sighted division for volunteers or relatives who wanted to get in on the fun, Sandy McDaniel of Daytona Beach rolled 147 and second place winner Mike Stitly of Daytona Beach rolled 138 - neither score as high as Cunningham's.
Benton, the alliance's outreach coordinator, said he was lucky to have scored better than John Hardin of Daytona Beach, Fla., who took second, with a score of 69.
"He'd competed in several sets and just got tired," Benton said with a chuckle.
"If he hadn't, I would have been in trouble."
Like many alliance bowlers, Benton got hooked on the sport while at school in Raleigh.
He agreed the game is sight-driven, but hearing the sound of 10 pins tumbling when a bowler throws a strike is a thrill.
"To hear a strike is as good as seeing it," he said.
And playing the game is a great confidence builder, Benton added.
Being able to aim a ball down a lane and knock out pins helps build self-esteem.
"The confidence you build allows you to take on things that you want to do," he said. Benton said he learned that lesson from his grandfather who lost his sight because of a World War I injury.
"He didn't let that stand in his way," Benton said.
"He always said that if you want to do something, just do it. We have taught people to bowl and as they gain confidence in the game, that confidence changes their lives."
The confidence Benton has gained led him to compete for the N.C. School for the Blind, attend St. Augustine College for three years, study computer technology and work for 10 years with a national hotel firm.
Now he works for a Raleigh community rehabilitation program for visually impaired workers.
Ginger Rush, the Carolina Bowling Alliance's secretary, is married to a man who was born blind.
But Mike Rush has been a bowler since his high school days in Colorado.
Like others, the confidence he gained from his game allowed him to move beyond basic education.
He took advantage of technology that opened the use of computers to the blind. After working in the reservations department for two national hotel firms, he's now employed by Sears in the department that routes repair technicians to appliance and other equipment service calls in Southeastern states.
The alliance members might not be able to see perfectly - or at all - but their bowling scores look just like anyoneelse's at your average bowling alley, ranging from 40 pins to as high as the 170s, Benton said.
"In fact, one of our members, Hubert Evrette of the Raleigh Outlaws team, scored a 227 yesterday," he said.
Visually impaired bowlers need little extra equipment to enjoy the game. Metal rails act as guides so bowlers can find the center of the lane and the foul line.
Just like with sighted bowlers, Ginger Rush said, "You see a variety of bowling styles."
The only difference is that instead of watching to see how many pins go down, these players are listening.
You can tell the player scored a spare or a strike because his or her shout is louder than the pins falling, she said.
Lawrence Carter, 53, was born with congenital glaucoma, and when he was 2, had to have his right eye removed because of blindness and painful internal pressure. He graduated from the N.C. School for the Blind despite undergoing corrective surgery that preserved sight in his right eye.
He attended North Carolina's A&T State University, learned to drive and worked a variety of jobs.
Though he has since lost all of his sight, he hasn't lost his zest for the game.
"I love to come out to these tournaments," Carter said.
Early on, he figured out mourning for his loss of sight was the easiest way to chase off friends and acquaintances he had made throughout his life.
He just tries to count his blessings.
"I have a wife who loves me, a 25-year-old daughter that I'm proud of, friends, family, a house I can say is mine and not the bank's. Life is good. If you're not happy with things like that, you might as well grab some dirt and cover yourself up," he said.
And Sunday, he was hoping to count his winnings, too, having won $125 last year.
"Maybe today is my lucky day," Carter said. "I figure I might just be able to do it again."
Want to start a blind bowling league or team?
Carolina Bowling Alliance is affiliated with the American Blind Bowlers Association that was founded in 1951. It promotes bowling for the blind and visually impaired in Virginia, Tennessee, Georgia and the Carolinas.
For information on how to get involved, visit the organization's website:
The Raleigh Outlaws website at
or the national organization's website at
Or call James Benton at 919-755-0700 or 919-740-2398.
Link to the story:
Accessible Prescription Label Program Now Free For Blind Americans
Normal, IL 3/15/11 - En-Vision America, Inc. has announced a new program to
aid the blind and visually impaired in obtaining accessible prescriptions.
Under their Pharmacy Freedom Program, eligible individuals may obtain a free
ScripTalk Station patient reader that will allow them to access their
prescription label information. Participating pharmacies attach a small RFID
label to each prescription, containing all printed information. This
provides a safe, private and independent way for the blind and visually
impaired to manage their medication regimen, as well as helping pharmacies
to comply with ADA regulations in serving their patients. Interested
individuals may contact En-Vision America to get their free reader and
provide pharmacy details. Pharmacies concerned with meeting the needs of
their special needs patients may also contact the company for more
information about the program.
ScripTalk Station is a cutting-edge technological solution for prescription
medication information access. It has been adopted by the Veteran's
Administration for use in their facilities across the country. ScripTalk
utilizes RFID (radio-frequency identification) and TTS (text-to-speech)
technologies to allow those that cannot read their prescription labels a way
to access the information. It is the only product on the market to provide
full label information in a manner that meets ADA, FDCA and HIPAA
David Raistrick, Vice-President, says "We are pleased to be able to offer
this new program to sight impaired folks in the U.S. Now safety and peace
of mind are free for patients when taking potentially dangerous
En-Vision America, Inc. is a company providing high-tech products aimed at
solving problems for those with visual or print impairments. Located in
Normal, Illinois, En-Vision America has successfully introduced several
voice-enabled products such as i.d. mate Summit, the talking bar code
reader, and ScripTalk, the talking pharmaceutical reader. Originally founded
by Philip C. and David B. Raistrick in 1996, the cornerstone of the company
was based upon one single premise: To provide customers with greater
independence through technology.
For additional information contact:
1845 Hovey Ave.
Normal, IL 61761
Design and Content of this web site C 2007-2011 En-Vision America, Inc.
"i.d. mate", "i.d. mate Summit", "i.d. mate OMNI", and "ScripTalk" are
Registered Trademarks of En-Vision America, Inc.
Here is where ABBA members can be updated about our felow members who may be sick, getting married or any special achievement.
Even Webmasters are blessed from time to time.
a day I thought would never come. God blessing me with a wife for eternity. Yes, your webmaster was married, August 17, 2013. Unlike those who have ball & chain I instead have a blessing from God. For in our case love is not a prison but the first step to heaven.
Listen to Wedding service
Virginia Hawkinson, age 87, mother of Jeff Hawkinson, President of Midwest Blind Bowlers Association (MBBA) passed away on Sunday, October 6, 2013. She died of kidney failure. Funeral arrangements will be held in the Minneapolis area Cards & condolences can be sent to:
4945 Columbus Dr.
Oak Lawn, IL 60453
February 5, 1930 - September 29, 2013
Richard H. Erkilla, age 83, of Minneapolis. Retired supervisor, Mpls. Schools Building & Grounds. Preceded in death by his wife, Margaret; daughter, Pamela Persons; infant son, Robert; sisters, Joyce Hampton and Hope Hampton, as well as parents, Harold and Mae Erkilla. Survived by wife, Janice; daughter, Penny (Scott) Sonntag; Janice's children, Bill (Dotty) Trueblood, Linda McClary, Joyce Brom and Jayne Trueblood; grandchildren, Jennifer Sonntag, Michael Sonntag, Bethany Trueblood, Nathan Trueblood, and Jared Trueblood; great-grandchildren, Jakob Sonntag, Michael Sonntag, Jr., and Kennadi Sonntag; brother, Jack Erkilla; nephew and special friend, Robert Hampton; other nieces, nephews and friends.
Morris Nilsen Chapel
Funeral service Monday, October 7, 2013 at 12:00 Noon at
6527 Portland Ave. S.
Interment at Ft. Snelling National Cemetery. Visitation is Sunday, October 6, 2013 from 3:00 - 6:00 PM, and one hour prior to the service.
Memorials to the Minnesota Lions Eye Bank.
remembering Charles Walker
On Friday September 20, Charles Walker transformed in to another
His funeral arrangements are incomplete at this time.
has been a member of the Greater Cleveland Blind bowling league for over ten
Charles leaves behind his Wife Claudia and a son and a
Flowers and cards can be mailed to:
E. Boyd and Sons funeral
25900 Emery Road
Cleveland Ohio 44128