Off the top of my head, how about...Though population data representing all blind programmers is currently scant, there are 347 registered e-mail addresses in one of the many popular list serves for the blind, and a great majority of this single sample, if not all, are blind or visually impaired individuals "all gathered with the common interest in programming for the blind and sighted population of computer users." Their "nonexistence" in the consciousness of the computer sciences only serves to emphasize the need for accessible programming tools that can hasten their representation in the sciences and technology. You then go on lauding the life changing magic your research will accomplish--(smile)
In other words, because you know they are going to want to ask you about the number of blind programmers, beat them to it and explain how they are nonexistent due to XYZ factors--which will undoubtedly be exactly what you're researching. If you beat them to the obvious questions then they will not have much to follow-up with. Then of course explain how your research can dramatically change the future for blind programmers.
How about you append to your proposal a sample of the e-mail messages you gathered this past week in regards to the great and varied needs of the blind programmers who responded to your initial information request.
Nevertheless I do completely understand and sympathize with your predicament--having to justify the costs and utility of your research venture.
Matthew---- Original Message ----- From: "Andreas Stefik" <stefika@xxxxxxxxx>
To: <programmingblind@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> Sent: Saturday, October 20, 2007 3:35 PM Subject: Re: Number of folks on the list
Yaa, I agree with what everyone is saying, that even the number of subscribers, addresses, etc, isn't that useful for judging the size of the community, etc. That's all completely true. However, many of my colleagues, for some truly insane reason or another which I can't for the life of me understand, question the existence of blind computer programmers in general. By far the most common argument I hear against doing this kind of research is that the community is very small ... or so I'm told by those that don't know any better ... But without any data on the topic at all, it's pretty tough to argue. Now, I can at least say, "Well, on a popular mailing list for blind programmers, there are 347 registered email addresses." Obviously, there are duplicates, some folks aren't active, and some folks are sighted impostors (like me), but hey, it's better than nothing! Thanks Jim for the number of addresses, that helps. Andreas __________ View the list's information and change your settings at //www.freelists.org/list/programmingblind __________ NOD32 2604 (20071019) Information __________ This message was checked by NOD32 antivirus system. http://www.eset.com
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