On Tuesday, January 27th,
I had the chance to visit the Computer/Electronic
Accommodations Center (CAP), for an Ergonomics Demonstration.
CAP provides assistive technology to allow DoD employees with visual, hearing,
dexterity, cognitive, and communication disabilities, to access computer
and telecommunication systems. Working closely with the
overseas employees, they help determine the appropriate assistive technology
needs and provide numerous
assistive devices and software to enhance their capabilities to exceed
in the work setting.
One of the most interesting products demonstrating the use of true continuous speech was Dragon Naturally Speaking Deluxe. A person speaks at a conversational rate and the words are transcribed immediately onto the computer. This a functional device for individuals with mobility and vision impairments but is also a useful tool in the business world i.e. Universal Design in action. A text-to-speech option allows your document or other files like e-mail to be read aloud to you. For individual with more severe impairments, there was Cyberlink, which utilized a band with sensors worn on the forehead. Typing is completed using an on screen keyboard controlled by eye blinks and gross facial movements. Various alternative keyboards, arm and wrist rests, and pointing device and mini keyboard were also demonstrated.
addition, they had braille printers, video conferencing units, telecommunication
devices for the deaf (TDD's), telephone amplifiers, visual signaling
devices, computer terminals with screen amplification, and many other devices
on display. Other CAP services include training on the use of the
assistive equipment, educational presentations, and recommendations to
work sites about creating accessible electronic environments. The
demonstration was very informative and the staff quite knowledgeable.