Health Alert: Blind reader - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina

Health Alert: Blind reader

NATIONAL - In a typical day, how many times do you have to read something to get by? Now imagine that same day if you could not see. Well, there's a new high-tech gadget that gives blind people more independence. 

Like many of us, Chris Danielson gets a lot of mail. The only difference is, he can't see it.

Danielson says, "Normally, as a blind person, you have to sort of put your mail aside when you get home and then get somebody to read it or go through it with you later."

Now thanks to a small device, he can read the mail himself. 

"Document reader. Usually, within a few seconds of the reader reading it, I can actually determine whether it's something I need to keep or not," says Danielson.

The reader, from the National Federation of the Blind, combines a digital camera with a small computer. 

"All you do is basically put the camera down right on top of a document, that's the best way, and then raise it up above and snap the picture."

During the past year, the National Federation of the Blind has continued to conduct the activities. 

It reads various printed formats, from the money in your wallet to the cereal box in your cupboard.

James Gashel, Strategic Initiatives Director at the National Federation of the Blind, says, "It'll read it just as well upside down as it would right side up or it would read it just fine sideways."

What makes the reader revolutionary is its portability.

Danielson says, "You're traveling, you go into a hotel room or a hotel restaurant, they have a menu there that you can't otherwise read."

Now he gets the information in a flash. 

The reader costs about $3,300. For more information, visit http://www.nfb.org or call: 1-877-708-1724.

Posted by Bryce Mursch

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