So, it has been a busy few weeks since my last post. On the one hand Jakob was given a few phones courtesy of Nokia thanks to help from Ben/SI Phd candidate who formerly worked at Nokia research. And on the other I was finally able to make contact with the Director of Nokia’s Developer Forum, only to find out he will now be overseeing Ovi for Nokia. Ovi is Nokia’s e-commerce store of all of its services and applications that it has. So, I am now in talks with Tico Ballagas, who among other things heads the Nokia University Program but is also himself a researcher. His research is focused on applying human-centered iterative design processes to ubiquitous computing. Check it out: NY Times 2008/04/09: My Life as a Video Game
On other fronts, I have also written three separate proposals and sent them to Google. One was to Google.org, another one was to the Google office in Ann Arbor and the last one was aptly sent to Google’s Boston branch, which among other things is considered the hub for Android based mobile apps!!! I cross my fingers and hope for the best on my proposal.
Lastly, I have also entered Talking Points into a business plan competition with Great Lakes Entrepreneur’s Quest, a Michigan based business that pairs aspiring entrepreneurs with serial ones. The cool aspect about the GLEQ Business Plan Competition is that entrepreneurs are matched with a business coach to advise them through the competition. Plans are due May 15 and cash awards will be presented on June 11 in Lansing. So, Dan and I are now hitched, hopefully with some great advice from the Tech community here in Ann arbor. I am of course hoping that we are lucky enough to work with someone who has an assistive technology background. Which allows me to segue into my last point pertaining to blind individuals in America.
The following information is according to the American Foundation For The Blind:
Q: What constitutes a legally blind person:
Answer: those who have a central visual acuity of 20/200 or less in the better eye with the best possible correction, or a visual field of 20 degrees or less.
Q: How many adults with vision loss in the U.S. use computers?
At least 1.5 million Americans with vision loss use computers.
Q: What percentage of legally blind children attend residential schools for the blind?
According to the 2007 Annual Report from the American Printing House for the Blind, approximately 9% of legally blind children attend residential schools for the blind. Of the 57,696 children who are legally blind, 83% (48,080) were registered by state departments of education, 9% (5,085) were registered by residential schools for the blind, 5% (2,791) were registered by rehabilitation programs, and 3% (1,740) were registered by multiple disability programs.
Q: Looking at different racial and ethnic groups, how many Americans have vision loss?
Approximately 20.9 million Americans who have vision loss indicated one race and 319,000 indicated two or more races. Of those who indicated one race, 17.5 million are white, 2.5 million are black or African American, 2.3 million are Hispanic or Latino, 580,000 are Asian, and 274,000 are American Indian or Alaska Native.
Q: How many people with vision loss live in a large metropolitan statistical area (MSA) with a population size of 1,000,000 or more?
Approximately 9.2 million people who have vision loss live in a large MSA. There are approximately 7.5 million people with vision loss living in a small MSA with a population size of less than 1,000,000. Of the people with vision loss in the U.S., 4.5 million do not live in an MSA.
Q: How many people with vision loss live in each of the particular geographic regions of the U.S.?
Approximately 2.9 million people with vision loss live in the Northeast, 5.5 million live in the Midwest, 8.5 million live in the South, and 4.3 million live in the West.
Q: How many people with vision loss in the U.S. have a family income of less than $20,000?
Approximately 5.7 million people with vision loss in the U.S. have a family income of less than $20,000. There are approximately 14.6 million people with vision loss in the U.S. that have a family income of $20,000 or more.
Q: How much schooling have Americans with vision loss received?
Of Americans who have vision loss and are 25 years of age and over, 4.5 million have less than a high school diploma, 6.0 million have a high school diploma or a GED, 5.4 million have some college education, and 3.6 million have a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Q: How many older Americans have vision loss?
There are approximately 6.2 million seniors (65 years of age and over) who have vision loss. There are approximately 9 million Americans 45 to 64 years of age who have vision loss. As the 9 million baby boomers with vision loss continue to age, the number of seniors with vision loss will continue to grow substantially.
Q: How many Americans who have vision loss are married?
Approximately 11.3 million of Americans who have vision loss are married, 2.3 million are widowed, 3.4 million are divorced or separated, 3.1 million have never married, and 1.1 million live with a partner.
For more information: http://www.afb.org/default.asp