It’s been raining all day, ever since I first woke up this morning.
God, I think I could go right back to sleep, even though it’s almost five in
the evening.
I have to get up at O’Dark:30 all this week, because I’m working from 07:00
to 15:30.
Admittedly, getting up will be difficult, but I’ll like the fact that I’ll
be getting home early enough to watch a couple of episodes of Star Trek TNG
in the afternoon.
I love that show.
It’s the best of the Star Trek series.

Radhika Panjwani Mississauga News – Ontario, Canada Nov 9, 2006

The digital world has not kept pace with the needs of the disabled, and some
Mississauga advocates are calling on the technology giants to catch up.

Yesterday in Brampton, at the Region of Peel’s 3rd annual Day of the
Disabled Person, many in attendance said that today’s fast-paced society is
passing them by.

Visually-impaired Rabia Khedr said assistive technology for the disabled is
outdated and expensive, which makes it frustrating for users such as
herself. For instance, she said, the computer software she uses to help her
read, although useful, has limitations.

Khedr wants big companies such as Microsoft to remember people like her.

“Technology that is there to enhance access is usually behind the times,”
Khedr said. “It (assistive technology) is always trying to catch up. We need
accessibility in the age of information technology. It is built-in to a
degree, but it is not enough.”

A recent survey by the Canadian Association of Independent Living Centres
(CAILC), an organization that supports the disabled, revealed more than
369,000 people with disabilities in Canada use or require augmentative and
alternative communication systems, such as larger computer screens, special
keyboards, voice recognition software and other systems. However, finding
money to buy the technology is also a huge roadblock.

The survey revealed that, unlike other forms of technologies such as
personal computers, the cost of assistive devices and software is
prohibitive.

Jutta Treviranus, director of the Adaptive Technology Research Centre at the
University of Toronto and yesterday’s keynote speaker, said software
companies and other digital stakeholders must address issues of
E-accessibility at the onset of creating their software or product. They
must take into account the needs of the disabled.

She suggested companies develop more technology that is useful for all
segments of society.

Treviranus pointed to the introduction of closed captioning on television as
an example. She said it was originally developed to assist those with
hearing impairments, but is now found to be useful in noisy bars and fitness
centres as well. Treviranus believes if hi-tech industries can be innovative
in this way, the results could be commercially viable and, at the same time,
benefit everyone.

You can reach Radhika Panjwani at rpanjwani@mississauga.net.

Originally published at customerservant.com. You can comment here or there.

I’m getting around to this now before I forget.
It’s time to open up the floor for anyone who has anything to show off.
Just link to this post, and send a trackback, (the trackback URI now appears in the section of the post containg the information, like a link to the comments), and your links will appear in the content of this post.
If your blogging platform doesn’t accept/support trackbacking, (I.E., LiveJournal, Blogger), you can use this standalone trackback pinger.
If you’re looking for more OTB posts for Thursday, or the rest of the weekend, Linkfest Haven has more.

Originally published at customerservant.com. You can comment here or there.

Rabbi Raymond Beyda

Negative financial news strikes fear in the hearts of common men. How low can it go? What steps must one take to survive? The smiling face is replaced by a concerned countenance, and the friendly “good morning” passes from a daily ritual to a once-in-a-while occurrence. Serious thought is given to the lifestyle changes one must make to avoid falling deeply into debt. It is not a pleasant situation, to say the least.
It is sad that when a person is under pressure and cannot think clearly, time-proven methods for bettering his or her situation may be missed.
However, it often happens that one who can only see gloom and doom consults with a helpful outsider and finds a simple solution that he or she would not have found alone.
Two steps taken by many people when the going gets rough are said by our Sages to be counter-productive. There are those who feel that the appropriate first step to take when experiencing concern about the future financial well-being of one’s business is to cut charitable contributions. Yet this move can really reduce the possibility of bailing out of trouble. The Torah teaches that one who gives is blessed. Furthermore, one is challenged by Hashem to “test Me with this”-i.e., Hashem promised: give and you will get and remember, you have the right to test His promise!
Secondly, many cut out time from their Torah learning schedule in order to devote more time to business. True, one’s business may need more hands-on attention, but one must find that necessary time without decreasing the time already dedicated to learning and self-improvement. The Torah, says the Gemara, protects and saves and so reducing the time spent learning reduces one’s protection and security.
If you, unfortunately, are in a situation where you are forced to consider making changes in order to deal with hard times, include the advice of our wise predecessors in your calculations. Give, and you will get. Torah protects and saves. These are simple solutions for complex problems.

CONSIDER THIS FOR A MINUTE

A good technique for deciding whether to do something or to refrain: When one has to decide, one should imagine that another person asked his or her advice on the matter. Usually, when one is advising another, one sees clearly, without personal interest and prejudice to cloud the issue. What you would advise another is how you should act yourself. (Sefer Hasidim 155)