Communication devices come with two types of speech. One is digital, the other is recorded. Devices with digital speech should be in the user’s language and have a keyboard in the native alphabet. Messages are made by typing words/phrases (represented by a picture) that are then spoken by a digital voice in the chosen language. Most, but not all devices with digital speech in the US are going to be English, with some having the option of Spanish as well. Usually you cannot mix languages, meaning that if you choose Spanish as the language, you cannot have some messages delivered digitally in Spanish and some in English. They will all be delivered in Spanish or all in English. Many devices with digital speech do have the option of recording someone’s voice to represent some of the messages on the device. Devices with digital voice output usually have digital pictures, so you do not have to cut out paper pictures for each message. Devices with digital speech will be in whatever languages are offered by the device manufacturer and these voices will be in both genders. There are usually various voices to represent kids, juveniles, and adults with varying types of accents. These devices are generally a more robust, but more costly option.
Devices with recorded speech require the person who programs it to record their voice message for each picture. The pictures that represent the messages are printed on paper and are made by the caregiver/person programming the device. There are software programs to help make the pictures onto a sheet (the sheet is called an overlay). Some of these software packages are free, while others must be purchased. The software that can be used often is offered by the company that makes the communication device. So, for instance, we carry AbleNet products such as the BIGmack, QuickTalker, TalkingBrix, etc. AbleNet offers a free program to make overlays for their devices using your own photos. Attainment offers a paid version of their software to make overlays for their devices, such as the GoTalk. Their software contains the pictures already, so you don’t have to supply your own. Using this type of software is very helpful and less time consuming than trying to find pictures on your own that are the right size for the device. Devices with recorded speech will be in whatever language the programmer chooses since it is recorded. The voice gender will depend on who talks into the device while it is being programmed. Generally, the programmer should try to find someone of the same general age and gender to record the messages on the device. So, if you are programming a device for an older male, it’s best to use someone who is an older male to record the messages. Whereas if the user is a female child, you would want to find another female child to record the messages.
The devices carried by Adaptive Tech Solutions have recorded speech. So, you have the flexibility of having whomever you choose record their voice to make the messages. These devices are available from one single message, such as the Talk About! Communicator, to the SuperTalker Progressive Communication Device which has 108 messages. Communication devices accommodate a larger number of pictures (also known as “icons”) that represent the messages by having various numbers of levels. A level is like a page in a book. Each page has its own messages on it and these messages may be grouped by topic. So, generally, each level will pertain to a different topic. So, level or “page” one might have vocabulary about general wants/needs/social, another level might be mealtime related, another level might be telephone related vocabulary (to be used with a phone that has a speaker), etc.
Cerebral Palsy, the most common motor disorder, can make it difficult for people to interact with their environment. Through the use of assistive technology, such as switches and switch adapted toys/devices, people with Cerebral Palsy can independently interact with their environment. Switches are buttons, levers, or sensors that can be activated with any part of the body. Switches [...]
If you are in a pinch, you can protect your iPad by re-puposing vinyl zipper pouches, notebooks with clear outer pockets, or you can use more substantial products such as the Rugged Rubber iPad Case and Shatterproof Screen Protector from www.AdaptiveTechSolutions.com.
Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) can benefit from the use of Assistive Technology (AT). Through the use of AT, the user can become less dependent on caregivers for prompts. This fosters greater independence and success. Visual Schedules Although "paper" schedules are beneficial, many individuals will perform better when there is also a paired voice prompt. Use simple [...]
So, you've bought one or more single output communication buttons. Here's some ideas on how to use them! Record the Happy Birthday Song so the user can sing to someone on their special day.Place 2 buttons on the fridge. On one, put a picture that represents drinking, on the other put a picture that represents eating.Record a [...]
If you’re reading this, you most likely know someone who is non-verbal or has very limited communication skills. They may communicate through grunts, pushing things away, or throwing that tantrum in the grocery store isle that seems to last waaaay too long. As a caregiver, therapist or teacher, our job is to replace those methods of communication with functional, [...]
There's nothing worse than shelling out your hard earned dough for some adaptive game software that isn't even interesting. Most of us have probably had that experience at least once. So, here are some software programs that can be downloaded or played online without paying a dime. Of course, these talented folks have to make [...]
For individuals that have lost the ability to use a standard mouse to control their computer, there are several low cost or no cost alternatives. It seems these methods work best when the target areas (the spots where you click) are larger, requiring less precise movements.To move the mouse around the screen without using your [...]
211I would have to say that the resource to try first would be 211. From any phone simply dial 211. This connects you with a person who is trained in finding resources for a variety of needs. We're talking everything from elder abuse, free medical treatment, to housing issues. This includes many resources for individuals [...]