[access-uk] Re: Notetakers again

  • From: "Carol Pearson" <carol.pearson@xxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Wed, 2 Jan 2008 16:33:47 -0000


Just breezing in here - the PK does have most of the facilities of the mPower, 
though not all.  You can't print, but I don't care about that.  You don't have 
the FM radio either, but again I don't want it.  Maybe you can write faster on 
the mPower, though personally I can write faster on the PK, but they both have 
speed limits ... and everyone hates having to slow down!

Maybe I've forgotten some (half asleep today I'm afraid), but they're the ones 
that readily spring to mind.

Incidentally, Mike has an mPower and I have a PK, so I use both whenever I 
want, though primarily choose to go with the PK, partly because of its size and 
weight.  No there's not masses of difference, really, but enough, especially if 
you have back problems and want to take something to write everywhere you go!


  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Jackie Cairns 
  To: access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
  Sent: Wednesday, January 02, 2008 3:01 PM
  Subject: [access-uk] Re: Notetakers again

  Terry, I reckon you've summed it up nicely.  I had major issues with BN in 
its original format when I was given Word documents to open that needed to keep 
their formatting.  It drove me utterly round the bend, so I had to abandon it 
for complex work.  I also absolutely detested its file structure.  It seemed to 
me that, back then, you had to put all your folders in the route.  If you made 
sub-folders within folders, you had a job getting to them, and couldn't type in 
a path to get to them without doing something really stupid if my memory serves 
me correctly.  I thought PM was better and easier in that regard.  I could use 
ActiveSync no problem, but couldn't do anything with a network, or even get it 
to recognise a card.  But, for me, I could wipe the floor with it when writing 
Braille.  I was just too fast for it by a mile.  My friend with the PM also 
floored it when he had a demonstration, which is why he opted for PM instead.

  I thought GPS on it was very good though, even back then.  I've heard it's 
even better now.

  The advice I give people now when they ask me directly about note-takers is 
think about what you want it to do; who's paying for it; and if Braille isn't a 
necessity, use a laptop because it'll do everything if lugging it isn't a 

  What is the difference overall between PK and MPower though, apart from their 
size?  What do you miss out on by having the MPower over the PK if they are 
from the same stable?  I'm only asking for reference purposes.  I have regular 
discussions with people who are in work or education, and they ask me what they 
should go for.  None I laugh (smile).


    ----- Original Message ----- 
    From: Terry Clasper 
    To: access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
    Sent: Wednesday, January 02, 2008 2:34 PM
    Subject: [access-uk] Re: Notetakers again

    From a networking point of view the BN range is now very flexible, and 
KeyWeb is OK although purely because I don't use it as much as my PC I 
personally don't find it as intuitive as I would if I used it more.
    There are however still some issues with file format. Now the M-Power and 
PK does read word formats to a certain degree, although in fact all its doing 
is using a Microsoft filter and converting the file before importing it into 
keyword. The result is often that either the word format cannot be read, or it 
gets  messed up.
    Tables, well again some issues here I'm afraid.
    I find that basic tables are OK but tables which contain advanced 
formatting again problematic.

    My general view this whole topic for what it's worth is that there isn't 
one notetaker that does everything.
    I agree with Brian that the PacMate has lots of potential if you are able 
to script, however falls down by default badly if you are a brailleist.
    The BrailleNote range on the other hand whilst offering a great user 
interface, and lots of overall stability lacks some of the things which busy 
people need when on the move like a text and voice chat facility.
    The best advice has to be talk to people who are independent and who 
understand the product range and choices in detail, and if you can talk to 
users particularly about stability reliability and the level of support you get 
from the supplier.

    Terry Clasper.
    MSM: terry.clasper@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Skype: terryclasper
    Private E-Mail: terry.clasper@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Work E-Mail: terry.clasper@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

      ----- Original Message ----- 
      From: ari 
      To: access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx 
      Sent: Wednesday, January 02, 2008 12:56 PM
      Subject: [access-uk] Re: Notetakers again

      Hi Deon, 
      I looked once at the ELba, but no go, as it hasn't been updated from 
2005, I don't know how well it's grade 2 support is, it can't even work with 
Word, you have to apparrently convert them first, I wouldn't get it now, maybe 
earlier or if it was updated, and it only has a USB port which can't takea 
memory stick, because it can only receive data. I've heard of the Icon, but 
their site says they won't send outside the US, and anyway, I've got no idea of 
their braille or word processor. 

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