Saturday, July 3, 2010

Thoughts from the Tech God on Humanware and the Alva BC640

During the last few weeks of getting settled in Denver, getting a handle on my new job, and attempting to start up/maintain a social life here I have not had lots of time or energy to write on this blog.

However, with the announcement by Humanware about their most recent product the VoiceNote Apex and the interesting announcements I believe will no doubt be coming forth this week at National Convention, I simply had to add in my two cents.

I believe the product by Humanware is a step backward from the strides they have been making towards transforming themselves from an outdated company producing overpriced products to a modern one providing goods that the blind population can afford without a personal loan and their first born being sacrificed. Why do we need another notetaker when a netbook/laptop and a Braille display would work just as well? Why spend time, energy, and resources developing yet another blind ghetto product and then tease us about it? I find it rather like a date who teases you all night and then chops off your personals. Great surprise.

As I gaze about the AT landscape the only bright and shining star I see is Serotek. Freedom Scientific did a good thing by knocking down the price of it's Focus 40 Blue, but they did a far worse thing by locking down their drivers. I appreciate Freedom's seeming support for Braille in its products, but question how supportive they can really be when they force Braille display manufacturers to annually pay to play in their sand box.

A bright note for me personally is the obtaining of the Alva BC640. This will allow me portable Braille access through System Access which will be wonderful.

Can't wait to get to Nationals next year in Florida. Wishing all my friends at Nationals a very good time. Have one for me.

The National Federation of the Blind

Braille For Everyone