Week of March 2nd- CSUN

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  1. This week Ann was sick so I did not get a chance to work with her in the office or in our appointments. I went to a school to observe a student for my AAC class on Tuesday, and that nicely overlapped with my internship. I was able to work with the district Implementation Specialist and we worked with both the student for my project and an older student who needed some assistance with their communication device. The teacher for that student was willing to speak to us for a few, so we discussed different implementation strategies and supports both on the computer and built into the device.

    Next I traveled to San Diego for the CSUN conference. The “fun” started Wednesday so after getting the booth setup my colleagues and I got ready for the conference attendees. This was a large enough conference that many people purchased passes only to get into the exhibit hall, which says a lot about the number and quality of the vendors in the conference. Most of these were for individuals who had low vision, but there were still a few AAC and other AT companies present.

    Every chance I got I would escape from the booth for a bit and wander the conference hall. I saw a lot of interesting things and took pictures along the way. There was a computer program that took the key components of Windows and stripped it down to 7-8 core components, such as email, making a word document, mp3 player, and watching movies. I signed up for more information, but have no received anything yet. As a large majority of the attendees were blind or visually impaired, we had a lot of people coming by the booth asking what our devices did and who they might be useful for. Most of the time this would elicit the answer, “oh, but I’m verbal so this isn’t for me”. The other times the people coming by were also AT specialists or looking to become AT specialists, so they were very interested in our communication devices.

    I saw my favorite watch from an AzTap training and the vendor was an artist from Europe. She did not understand my question about clarifying what the watch does to people that have never seen it before, but otherwise she had a number of beautiful watch styles in handheld and necklace options. As vibrating watches go, it was the coolest thing I had seen, although I will probably not purchase one myself until I can find a masculine watch version or have enough pocket space for it.

    Attached are some pictures from the conference. I also learned a new concept in eating, that food can be cooked to a “blue” level. This is below rare as steak goes, but it was very tasty. Pictures of this are attached as well.

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