2018-07-13 19:35:22

@25, perhaps not, but I certainly got my point across quite well.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

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2018-07-13 23:03:53

At KJones, it's funny that structured discovery was mentioned and is now a major point in this discussion. I have, ever since I was very little, had a paralyzing fear of getting lost, to the point where, even if I'm with a sighted person and they're lost, I panic. Of course, now that I'm an adult, I know better than to show it, but this has definitely been a barrier for me to becoming a super efficient traveler. That, plus the fact I've always struggled with understanding cardinal directions, makes me wonder whether someone like me would benefit from structured discovery. It seems a lot like throwing someone who can't swim in the deep end with concrete blocks on their feet, and telling them they have 30 seconds to get them off or a hungry pihrana will be set upon them.

The first time I heard about these methods was in a book, an autobiography, actually, I read when I was a teenager about a guy who was in a car accident, hit by a drunk driver, and lost his sight. He had gone to an NFB training center after his recovery. A lot of the details were glossed over for the sake of space, I suppose, but he talked about THE DROP. That's in all caps because it literally sounds terrifying to me. If there was a punctuation symbol which denotes a deep scary voice, I would totally use it right now. Now, granted, I did understand that this is something they do at the end of your training, and that it's a graduation requirement, but I imagine that the training itself is like that anyway.

Interestingly, I was also listening to a podcast yesterday about exposure therapy, and when and how it should be used and so on. I obviously don't expect these instructors to be mental health professionals, but I wonder what they would do if someone was in that type of scenario where mishandling of their mental state would make all the difference between success and failure? Because, while exposure therapy is effective if done right, and with the proper set of tools at your disposal to make it more bearable, it also could go very wrong. I'm reminded strongly of a show I watched on either Discovery or maybe TLC when I was 10 or so. This woman had a phobia of germs, so the so-called psychologist made her go around and touch every dirty surface she saw for an entire day, and she wasn't allowed to wash her hands once. This, of course, for maximum primetime drama, had to include her going into a deliberately disgusting public bathroom, using it, and not washing her hands. I hope I'm imagining the part where she ate a sandwich afterwards, but I can't escape the thought that I wouldn't remember that if it weren't true. In any case, it stuck with me through all these years, because, in addition to it being utterly revolting, I believed for a very long time that that's what exposure therapy entailed, because that was the purpose of the show. My friend, who's in graduate school to become a psychologist, finally dispelled this for me several months ago, then I just happened to stumble on that podcast yesterday as I said.

This actually does have to do with limitations. A sighted person who experiences anxiety about getting lost may, in theory, avoid getting themselves into situations where this could happen, but they would have options we don't, namely always following familiar routes and/or relying heavily, even unhealthily, on GPS and/or friends, partners, or relatives who they trust to be with them in unfamiliar areas as a shield. I don't know if this is a fear that would even be experienced the same way by a sighted person, though, because at least they can more quickly orientate themselves with landmarks, street signs, etc. that they can scan in their environment. I do get that not all people are good with directions, and that of course you can still get lost even if you have 20/20 vision, but I believe that having the more immediate input from your eyes would at least be somewhat calming. That may be me saying that the grass is greener, because obviously I've never asked anyone this. It's not exactly something you'd bring up in casual conversation.

Anyway, in addition to that personal anecdote that I'm sure nobody wanted to know, there are some inherent limitations with blindness. I would tend to agree that not driving is a huge one, but self-driving cars are becoming safer all the time. I would jump at the chance to have one, even though I know it wouldn't be the same, and I might always yearn for the experience that sighted people have when they drive a bit. I'll take embracing the future over never being able to operate a vehicle at all, though.

The glass is neither half empty nor half full. It's just holding half the amount it can potentially hold.

2018-07-14 00:57:39 (edited by enes 2018-07-14 00:59:06)

ethin, drop the demeaning atitude. I am not one sad person who thinks about blindness all the time.  I have long since accepted that there isn't anything I can do and moved on. However, my acceptance does not mean I should deny the obvious. Claiming blindness has no limitations is equally absurd as claiming the earth is flat. Also, you accusing everyone who doesn't think the way you do as "close minded" is extremely  arrogant.

A learning experience is one of those things that say, "You know that thing you just did? Don't do that."

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2018-07-14 02:06:31 (edited by TJT1234 2018-07-14 02:07:06)

If I were alone in a supermarket, my first thought would probably be to use a service like Be My Eyes or Aira.

As for sport, blind people can definitely participate in quite a large number of sports--just look at the summer and winter Paralympics.

The first part of this article from the NFB's Braille Monitor explains what exactly structured discovery is and why it is useful.

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2018-07-14 02:11:49

Haha, post 26 is quite funny. So, yes, I will agree about self driving cars, and I wont go check 10 links you posted because that is a waste of time. Self driving cars might become our driving in the future, however, in the future we might as well have a great way to cure our blindness. Until then, as it stands, driving is a limitation no matter how you look at it and everybody should accept that. As for video games, we can play some, but this is far from what sighted people can play. You can try as much as you want, a sighted person will always be able to pick up the game and enjoy it. They wont need to go on a forum to check how accessible it is before buying it, nor will they need to learn game menus first, and this is talking only about accessible games for blind people. There are games, which no matter what you do, you just cannot play. We've discussed that before, but you do not seem to accept that you cannot play lots of video games and that's it. The fact you cannot do something is defined as a limitation.

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2018-07-14 02:18:25

I think there is a misunderstanding of the words "limitation" and "inconvenience". A dictionary definition of "limitation" is "something (such as a lack of ability or strength) that controls what a person is able to do". If we use this definition of the word "limitation", I would argue that blindness itself is a limitation because we are unable to see. But the real question of this topic is whether there are limitations that result from blindness. I don't think there are. Although we cannot drive a car, we are not limited by this because we can use other methods of transportation, i.e. our inability to drive a vehicle does not control whether we are able to travel long distances. Various circumstances can make public transport less desirable than driving, and in this situation, blindness is inconveniencing us, but not necessarily limiting us.

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2018-07-14 02:49:27

@enes, I love your attitude. I totally love it. Not. Telling people that they're close-minded just because they don't think the way "I think" is arrogant? Sure, I'd agree... only if I was the only one thinking it. Clearly, I am not. tongue @30, Ha ha. Limitations vs. inconvenience. Post 31 nailed it.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

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2018-07-14 02:57:44 (edited by matt1211 2018-07-14 02:58:29)

Personally I'm glad I can't drive, gas isn't the cheapest thing in vancouver, anyways, and I'm a student.
As for blindness? I consider it more of an inconvenience than a limitation. Would my life be easier if I had vision? Yes, it really, really  would, especially when it comes to trying to get math textbooks in post Secondary tongue. It isn't impossible to do most things blind, just more challenging. If the possibility somehow existed tomorrow to get sight, would I do it? I'm really not sure. I've been totally blind my entire life, and who knows what the addition of an additional sense that I haven't experienced would do to my brain.
I think how you consider blindness also depends on circumstance. I was lucky, and had a supportive family, and a tolerable school experience. Speaking for anyone else is of course impossible, but I don't doubt the outlook would change.
Sorry about my rambling post jumping from subject to subject. I must sleep.

People suck.
You, me, everyone! I'm not discriminating here.

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2018-07-14 03:07:14

don't forget though, that major "inconveniences" you call them, can be limitations when they are significant. For instance, not being able to operate a car, is! a major! limitation. You are at the mercy of public transport. Let me give you an example. At my university, as the campus is huge, there were shuttle buses every 15 minutes, which was reduced to 10 last year. My department was far from the dorm, taking 15-20 minutes by bus. When the bus drivers went on strike, I had to take a cab.

A learning experience is one of those things that say, "You know that thing you just did? Don't do that."

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2018-07-14 03:37:50

@enes, it is an inconvenience now. Driverless cars will hopefully change that. You can't say that you'll never be able to do something. That will only make it true for you. Do you imagine the pure torture you'd have to go through if you got your vision back? You'd have to go back to the lessons you learned from a newborn up to now just to learn all the stuff sited people know. I could take being sited for a day, but not permanently. I consider it just an inconvenience, not a limitation.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

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2018-07-14 06:56:18

@Turtlepower: yeah, pretty much exactly what you said. I should mention that, in spite of their (deserved?) reputation as extra difficult, the instructors I had experience with at LCB do take the client's demonstrated skills, feelings, etc into account. ... the braille teacher was also not very nice about people who criticized UEB which I had turned on to play with Unicode and am about to turn off because the dropped contractions are getting on my nerves. *ahem*
Yes, though. Exposure Therapy is not a bad description, but they do try to keep it at what the individual can handle. My travel instructor had students with widely varying skills, backgrounds, experience, ages, etc. There was a mimiddle-aged woman who hadn't left her house since she went blind, who was terrified of stairs or anything in that category. AIUI, she didn't get to the point of being cleared for Drops by the end of the training, instead spending a lot of extra time on stairs before going out on independent routes. There was a younger woman who had lost her sight gradually, and whose rehab agency insisted on trying the in-state training first (it sounded inspired by the NFB centers, FWICT). I think their approach to travel was one of the bits that she found the most frustrating, and eventually convinced them to send her to LCB, where she promptly got lost in a parking lot in the rain and was understandably ... unhappy about that. She completed all the requirements in 8 months, and based on my observations, she had much better skills than she gave herself credit for, even early on. Skills are a major part of it, but similarly important is the confidence-building.
I don't remember anyone ever getting an assignment they couldn't handle (other than maybe trying to teach only UEB with a library that is 99.9% US -_- ), even if it took more than one attempt. I don't want to harp on about how awesome it was. No one wants to hear that, and you may recall that I had a number of complaints. And the style, techniques, equipment, etc aren't necessarily ideal for everyone. If you want my opinion, you specifically sound like you would probably get a lot out of it, if you can tolerate the negatives, based on what you've posted. LCB in particular, just because it sounds like you live somewhere more similar to Ruston than to Littleton.

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2018-07-14 09:20:58

Ethin, the future is only hypothetical. I am talking about the here and now. With your logic, I also argue that regaining sight might also be an easy process, with brain stimulation therapy, or similar processes in the future. I remember reading an article that talked about how scientists managed to re-open the critical period for the development of some brain functions. We can't know what the future will bring to us, so I think it is better if we focus on the situation we are in now.

A learning experience is one of those things that say, "You know that thing you just did? Don't do that."

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2018-07-14 12:10:29 (edited by braille0109 2018-07-14 12:13:59)

to post 29. you actually have a valid point, blind people can indeed play more sports than we could ever think of, but it's not a case of going in the shop and buying some rather basic equipment, then going out to the garden. I'm not saying it's impossible, but it needs slight adaptation, in some cases.

as for post 24. have you ever driven a real car?
if you have, you would know that self driving cars will almost never give you that experience, in fact, I see self driving to be a form of public transport.
not to mention hybrid cars still need charging every few hundred miles, so I honestly don't see self driving to be a permenant thing, till the fuel consumption and recharging are worked around.
as for what happens in 50 to 40 years? I can only hope there will be a cure for my type of LCA by then. it's honestly encouraging to see that you're confident in yourself, and you're willing  to try things, but some of us are less confident, and get easily embarrassed. so to come out, claiming we've been given up on, and are vegetables, well I got a good old laugh out of it. as for video games, have you ever written a guide, or published a list of games that are accessible, and playable? I've been wanting to get into an online multi player mainstream, but I don't know of any that would work. I've been thinking of trying GTA just for the hell of it, but from what I  gathered, my vission isn't enough. if i happen to be wrong, any pointers, please?
also, if blindness truly has no limitations, can you please explain to me why the employment rate iss so low? I almost forgot, it must be the people not trying hard, it must all be the hopeless blind, I mean, the sighted employers would never do such a thing, right?
tongue

in all seriousness, though, I'm not closed minded, I haven't given up, I'd just rather expect the worse, than the best. if I don't expect much, I can't then be disappointed. I choose the safe path these days, and under estimate myself, in case of failures. the past can shape the future.

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2018-07-14 12:17:12

I guess its down to how do you define a limitation. Limit to me sound harsh, and limitation sounds harsh, so I define limitation as this: After all my attempts to work around the issue, can I complete the task, do the thing, reach the goal, etc. If the answer is yes, its not a limitation, and if its no, then it is.

When I was in college, I had to walk about 1.25 miles to get groceries. It was one of those up hill both ways because the campus was at the bottom, it went up, peaked, and started going down. The shopping center was there, and I'd go to the store at the end of it. It always took a long time for me in there, but I never asked for help, It took me 3 and a half hours the very first time I went there to find all my stuff, but I managed it. Now, in the summer, it could often times be hot, so I'd do it in the evenings after classes after the sun started going down. In the winter, it was cold, more than once I'd come back with hands and fingers so numb and stiff, I couldn't make a fist, couldn't get the key out and manipulate  to unlock and open the door. I'd have to stand in the inside area at the top of the stairs to my apartment for a couple minutes with my hands inside my pockets to warm them up. Now, the question is, was that an inconvenience, yes, but was that a limitation, I'd say no. I got to the store, I found what I needed to find, I got back to campus and to my apartment with the items successfully.

The bipeds think this place belongs to them, how cute.

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2018-07-14 13:03:44

I'm sure there's something more relevant I could reply with, but now all that's going through my head is "When I was your age, we had to walk fif-teen miles, uphill, in the snow, just to get a bag o' groceries!" Do they do that routine anymore, or are there so few grandparents from that era left that no one gets it these days? The things that can change in a century yikes

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2018-07-14 21:26:11

To brail0109:
as for post 24. have you ever driven a real car?
Yes. When I was six, as a matter of fact. Drove it all the way from one house (where I lived at the time) to my Grandpa's house. Sure, I had help, but I did the steering and shit.
if you have, you would know that self driving cars will almost never give you that experience, in fact, I see self driving to be a form of public transport.
That is your opinion. You cannot definitively say that they will "never" do x or "never" do y, since you yourself have never driven one (I doubt anyone on this forum has the money to even test-drive one).
not to mention hybrid cars still need charging every few hundred miles, so I honestly don't see self driving to be a permenant thing, till the fuel consumption and recharging are worked around.
That's hybrid cars, not self-driving cars. Difference. A self-driving car does not need to be a hybrid car.
as for what happens in 50 to 40 years? I can only hope there will be a cure for my type of LCA by then. it's honestly encouraging to see that you're confident in yourself, and you're willing  to try things, but some of us are less confident, and get easily embarrassed. so to come out, claiming we've been given up on, and are vegetables, well I got a good old laugh out of it. as for video games, have you ever written a guide, or published a list of games that are accessible, and playable? I've been wanting to get into an online multi player mainstream, but I don't know of any that would work. I've been thinking of trying GTA just for the hell of it, but from what I  gathered, my vission isn't enough. if i happen to be wrong, any pointers, please?
GTA is easy to play once you get a handle on it. Its easier to help you interactively though. As for the list of "playabl" games, I believe I wrote a post on how playability and accessibility of a game was irrelevant and really was nonexistent since if you're going to play a game, try it first and determine if its accessible and playable for you, but do not automatically assume that that will be the same for everyone else. But I really shouldn't be saying this, of course, since none of you guys have ever actually tried that method of gameplay. If you have, I'd love to know -- it definitely works! But before you play a video game, braille0109, get rid of the way you play audio games. Throw it all out the window. Why, you ask? Because that's not how you play a video game. Have I written guides or articles? No. There are plenty out there already that you can find. Me writing them would be a waste of time, since I'd only be doing it for those too lazy to go find them themselves. Professional gamers and hobbiests have written guides and articles.
also, if blindness truly has no limitations, can you please explain to me why the employment rate iss so low? I almost forgot, it must be the people not trying hard, it must all be the hopeless blind, I mean, the sighted employers would never do such a thing, right?
I was wondering where in your post you'd bring this up. Here's my answer: society has this nasty habit of "selective hearing". That means that they choose to hear what they want to hear and ignore the rest as unimportant when it just might be quite important. And since they have selective hearing, they have selective seeing: they choose to see what they think is good when there might be better candidates) rather than looking at all the candidates neutrally. Now, I know that you cannot possibly look at something completely neutrally, because no matter how hard you try, you can't get rid of all the bias; but you can try to do so. The reason the employment rate is so low for disabled people is purely because employers refuse to see the good things blind people can do in the workforce and simply see the bad. There's not much we can do that, other than promote and advocate for ourselves, but like I said, society will use its "selective hearing" and "selective seeing" to see and hear what it wants to hear and nothing else. So even if we promote and advocate ourselves, it will still take society a while to acknowledge the fact that we might actually have some good in us. The other theory of mine is that society (the employers, rather) refuse to work within the ADA, which requires that all companies that employ disabled people must have appropriate accommodations for their disability. But I think it might be a combination of both.
in all seriousness, though, I'm not closed minded, I haven't given up, I'd just rather expect the worse, than the best. if I don't expect much, I can't then be disappointed. I choose the safe path these days, and under estimate myself, in case of failures. the past can shape the future.
That may be true, but underestimation of yourself probably won't allow yourself to do your best at everything. Its your choice, though.

"On two occasions I have been asked [by members of Parliament!]: 'Pray, Mr. Babbage, if you put into the machine wrong figures, will the right answers come out ?' I am not able rightly to apprehend the kind of confusion of ideas that could provoke such a question."    — Charles Babbage.

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2018-07-14 22:44:35 (edited by braille0109 2018-07-14 22:47:08)

post 41.
first things first, my opinion of self driving cars. as the name suggests, they will be self driving. so I doubt we will have much interactions, in terms of driving.
I hope that I'm wrong.
it is also true that hybrid and self driving are 2 different things, that is a valid point. I'm not comfortable enough on the subject, to be sure whether they're testing self driving with regular fuel consumption.
as  for interactively helping with GTA, what exactly do you  mean, please?
regarding the playability of games in general, I actually agree with you, but as some are less confident than others, and some may know something that others don't, I was wondering if you've had anything in particular in terms of accessibility of video games.


regarding game controls, if I can use the touch pad, or the keyboard, I don't care how, I'll adjust accordingly, to play the game. I don't, however, have a gaming pad, or a touch screen enabled laptop. other than that, am opened to try things.

you wrote: I was wondering where in your post you'd bring this up. Here's my answer: society has this nasty habit of "selective hearing". That means that they choose to hear what they want to hear and ignore the rest.


so my question to you, in all seriousness. don't you consider that right there a limitation? I certainly do. the fact that people decide whether to higher us based up on roomers, is a straight up limitation, a rather unfair one, too. and as you've said yourself, there really isn't much we can do against it.

regarding the rest, post 39 nailed it. what is actually a limitation. for me, a limitation is either something I can't do as of now, not because of skills but because of sight, either that, or something that requires a work around/alternative paths. adaptations I don't consider to be limitations.

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2018-07-15 01:07:44

At KJones, that's fair, and yes, I do remember your list of complaints well. And I know I'd get much more out of a quieter environment, due to my background and experiences.

As for this debate over limitations vs. inconvenience, I think that, at least in some cases, that's relative. Whether something is truly a limitation or an inconvenience can be influenced by a variety of factors, and we would do well to try to understand the whole picture before jumping to conclusions about whether someone is just saying they can't just to hear themselves talk, or whether there are real barriers preventing them from doing whatever thing it is that they feel they can't do. You know, sighted people come up against brick walls all the time, which have fuck all to do with their eyes, so it would be great if we all tried to be a little more empathetic at times.

The glass is neither half empty nor half full. It's just holding half the amount it can potentially hold.

2018-07-15 07:31:25

I drove a truck across a parking lot when I was 7 (it was more like two conjoined parking lots, connected by gravel). I also had this little plastic tractor (or technically I suppose it was a trike disguised as a tractor) that I drove all over the paved parts. The oldest video of me includes me at 2 on one of those battery-powered tricycles at my grandmother's house, and a year or so later I also had a battery-powered red Corvette (I do not know why that made me like this specific type of car so much but if I could drive for real I still think I'd want one of those hmm ). None of that compares to driving a 2-ton machine at high speed on a very straight path while avoiding deadly collisions with other such machines or pedestrians, with the audio muffled by glass and wind. If we could drive golf-carts everywhere, maybe I'd argue there's a way to make that safely accessible (aimable sonar controlled by a Novint Falcon? Good luck steering with that sort of thing, but yeah).
Even if we could drive, autonomous automobiles or no, the extremely visual nature of interacting with the world through a sheet of glass makes it a dramatically different experience when vision is your weakest sense. Waiting for public transit, then again being stuck behind the glass, has that same problem, although at least buses and trains are more like portals from one map to another, so there's still a part where you are exposed to your environment before reaching your destination.
Thinking about this reminds me how much the idea of road-side crickets in Swamp sounds good to me. Maybe that's a climate thing, but crickets near the sides of paths are somehow really nice. Maybe it's a sort of sonic street-light thing? I dunno; I don't get the same sense from cicadas, or katydids, or whatever those things I only thought of because they were going wao wao wao outside while I was typing about crickets. Crickets feel like tiny street-lights, and katydids are more like ambience? Hmm.
But I'm sure this digression is bugging everyone, so to bring things back on topic...
... Sleep disturbances are bad for you, and blindness makes one especially vulnerable to sleep disturbances, such as non24. I've never heard of whether or not Seasonal Affective Disorder (people getting depressed during the winter) has any noteworthy prevalence among the blind, but if it is caused by lack of visual exposure to sunlight, rather than lack of skin exposure to sunlight, then we'd expect higher rates of SAD-like symptoms among the blind, even if we lived in a world where blindness itself was perfectly accommodated and treated as good. Those aren't limitations, per se, but they are particularly frustrating Secondary Disabilities. Maybe Non24 wouldn't be a big deal in a civilization that handled scheduling differently, but SAD is a harder problem. I should probably go research the exact details of SAD before making a mountain out of something that can be resolved by a house full of sunlamps.

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