Re: The Optacon wow! good explanation

Hi, Marsha here.  Meet another Optacon user.  If I could get my hands on an
Optacon 2, I'd love it.  My 2 model was stolen from me and the R1D model
really didn't work all that well after awhile.  I read books by the
gazillion with that thing.  All I can tell you is I miss it and wish there
were some way to get one.  Oh well, guess progress marches on.

Marsha

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Francis Daniels" <fdaniels@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
To: <jfw@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Saturday, August 28, 2004 3:55 PM
Subject: Re: The Optacon wow! good explanation


> The Optacon was like our scanner and scanning software we have now.  It
was
> your job to move the camera over print, feeling each letter shape and put
> them together into words.  The camera is small, about the size of a
> cigarette lighter.  A cable runs out the end of the camera to the
> electronics unit.  You put your hand in a small cavity in the unit, with
> your index finger on the tactile array so you can see the shapes.  You
> adjust the contrast and intensity with the same hand you use to read,
using
> your thumb.
>
> I think it would be safe to say that the Optacon was for totally blind
> people, or for someone who could not read magnified print well.  But you
had
> to have pretty good finger sensitivity and be able to track - move - the
> camera in a straight line without skewing it.  Mistracking the camera
would
> result in misreading what the print was.
>
> One neat thing I liked was that you could tell if a page had columns on it
> and where the pictures were by listening to the sound.  A staccato sound
> usually meant print.  No sound meant no print.  A sold buzz meant a
picture.
> Very cool.
>
> Can you tell I loved the thing?  Heh.
>
> Francis
>
>
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