Hi. I have had my mPower a while now, and it is serving me very well. I have just purchased a wireless card for it, which is making life a lot easier meaning that I can just hook up to the web whenever I please. And, as always, the HumanWare staff have been mighty Helpful.
It is hard to think that technology has advanced so far in our lifetimes, I just wonder what it will be like in another 50 years? The BN has opened a lot of doors for me, and it will continue to open a lot more, and I am pleased for that. I can do all my school work on the BN, as well as a lot of emailing. It is a really great tool for me, because before this I was using a Perkins brailler.
I think that if I did not have the BN, I do not know where I would be today, I would not be able to connect with people all over the world, and I wouldn't be able to learn interesting things via the internet. The BN has created a lot of opportunities for me that I know I most certainly would not have had before I had the bn. Thanks to the BN, I was able to email someone to start working at a surf club near me on the radio tower. Thanks to my BN I was able to search for and find really interesting things on the internet. Thanks to my BN, I was able to read and revise to become one of the top maths students in New Zealand. So, in closing, I would just like to say thanks to all the human ware staff, you have given me a lot of help with all my problems and my worries.
Blake Ison, Queensland, Australia
I am writing to you to say that the longer I use the BrailleNote the more uses I find for it. The first comment to make is that every claim made for it has been made good. It is light, even taking my arthritic wrists into account; quiet enough to be used during a lecture; the voice is as clear an artificial voice as I have heard; the speed of the speech has a wide range as does the volume, and can be turned off; the braille display is clear without being hard on the tips of the fingers and there is a choice of the grade of braille. It follows that the machine can run on either a battery or on mains electricity.
The prompts are simple and adequate. It is easy to gain access to the "help" menus; and one is returned to that point in one's work: no bothering about finding the place each time. Whether it is the address book, e-mail with a built in filing system, internet, access to sites offering books and a wordprocessing system adapted to the needs of blind people; and patches for languages other than one's mother tongue. This list is not definitive. It is a list of what particularly pleases me.
Writing is so convenient that more and more I find myself jotting down information, writing myself little notes. My choice was for a Perkins touch, although a qwerty keyboard is available they tell me. The knowledge of computers required is soon gained. My authority for saying this that I grew when telephones were something of a novelty. Of course I have made mistakes that a wider knowledge would have averted, but have done no damage to any software. The BrailleNote supports the leisurely lifestyle I adopt. I can read and write in English and in French. I do not anticipate making any use of, for example, the capacity to print addresses or transcribe hard-copy braille, as well as in black on white....but who knows?
It is wonderful what adaptable equipment can prompt one to do what one never even dreamed of doing.
Joan-Paul Ryan , Australia
I got my mPower last Wednesday and it's great.Large documents load much faster and smaller ones are loaded almost instantaneously. I can load the entire old testament of the King James Bible in under 25 seconds. The older BrailleNote Classic took two minutes.
I tried the email this weekend and even after 625 messages, the mPower did not slow down when downloading.Email downloads much faster so you don't have to stay connected for as long.
Streaming audio is neat and listening while reading email; How great is that.
I even listened to some classical mp3's on my computer in the other room while reading on the mPower.
If I had to be away from my computer due to travel, I truly feel, now, that my mPower would get me by just great. I can perform all basic functions that I need to perform, writing documents, getting and answering mail, scheduling appointments, and browsing the web with speed and ease.
And isn't that the name of the game; accomplishing what you need to accomplish quickly with a minimum of fuss?
Great job Humanware. I'm impressed.
Paul Henrichsen, Technical Support Specialist for Kurzweil
I have used a plethora of small Braille input devices, but I must say the BrailleNote PK has a solid feel about its Braille key movements and is certainly most responsive. The 18 cell Braille display is one of the best I’ve handled and is very readable.
Why did I choose to buy this unit? I suppose first and foremost because of its extreme portability and development potential. Just think when I go on holiday, instead of taking a book, I can travel with the whole of my library, including reference books. I will be able to send and receive emails while travelling, just imagine being able to download a newspaper...… the list is endless.
The BrailleNote PK breaks new ground for Braillists, especially in the provision of Bluetooth technology which as I am discovering is not some outlandish character from Iceland sagas but a form of wire-less connection. I do not see the PK as a replacement for the BrailleNote but rather complementary to it or any pc. I believe the BrailleNote PK has a great future.”
The introduction of multilingual software that supports other European languages has opened the door for the visually impaired in terms of making learning or communicating in another language much easier than it was before.
I have just completed the New South Wales HSC French continuers and extension courses and have used the multi-lingual French software since its introduction.
From my perspective, reading and writing another language in Braille is a lot easier than relying on synthesised speech because peoples’ ears will never be as fully attuned to languages other than their own and their different accents. Braille is simply more precise when checking spelling or looking for errors which is an essential element in learning another language, especially in a stressful exam situation.
Before the BrailleNote I relied heavily on the Perkins brailler, as well as a pc with JAWS. This made it difficult for my teachers to correct my mistakes and expand my vocab, for they couldn’t read the Braille work which I did for them. When I tried the pc, I could not read over my own work effectively because of the speech. It was also extremely tedious and time consuming for me to go through my corrected work word by word, or in some cases character by character on the pc, reading their corrections and suggestions.
The multilingual software allows me to type French quickly in Braille which I can then read on the Braille display, print or email to my teachers for correction without the hassle of transcribing Braille to print or Vis versa.
I can also read other French documents on the BrailleNote, something which I was never able to do unless they had been scanned and embossed as a hard copy, again a very time consuming process.
I honestly don’t think I could have done as well as I have with French if it hadn’t been for the multi lingual software. It exceeded all my expectations and I am extremely grateful to all the HumanWare team. You’re on the ball guys!
I am 70-years old and completely lost my vision eight years ago. I immediately began learning Braille, but didn't like the Perkins Brailler because after typing a page I discovered errors that couldn't be corrected without rewriting the entire page. Then there was nobody to write, I didn't know anyone besides my Braille teacher who knew Braille.
Because I am a blind veteran, the veteran’s hospital sent me to a blind rehab center in New Haven, Conneticutt. When they discovered that I knew Braille, they allowed me a choice of blind aids and Rhonda Clark recommended I ask for a BrailleNote. (Thanks Rhonda.)
They gave me this wonderful device and I contacted HumanWare to get training recommendations. They gave me a phone number in my area for an instructor. Between Seville Allen (my instructor) and Rhonda Clark, I am able to use my BRAILLENOTE for many things.
First of all, I didn't have to learn to use a computer (I was computer stupid when I was sighted), and SUDDENLY, I could contact my friends and family without talking on the phone. Also, this device enables me to take classes from the Hadley School for the Blind. I receive my lessons, by post in Braille, but I can send my assignments and correspond with my instructor via E-Mail. I am also able to edit whatever I write using refreshable Braille and or speech. This helps me a lot because I can hear what I wrote and catch errors that I may have missed reading Braille. This also allows the device to disavow any knowledge of the mistakes I don't catch.
Before I received my BRAILLENOTE, I was becoming a vegetable mentially, expecting answers from my guide dog when having a conversation with it. I'm having so much fun with my BRAILLENOTE now that I've almost stopped listening to talking books, and I realize the dog is wonderful, but it's only a dog. Sanity returned with my BRAILLENOTE.
I have no problems with my Braillenote, because with the HELP function, the manual, Rhonda, and Seville, everything works fine. I hadn't intended being so wordy, but I had to tell the HumanWare world how much I enjoy my BRAILLENOTE; and to let you all know how much I'm learning from your messages. Many, many thanks,
Miss Sammy Clay
I used to think of my Dog Guide as the best icebreaker, but now have discovered another.
I'm currently taking courses at Texas Tech and use my VoiceNote industrially. Not only are people facinated with the fact that I am typing my notes, and NO, I've never gotten a complaint about the loud keys, but when they find out that my notes are typed, spell checked and transferrable to computer, I've gotten several request and one offer of payment to have a copy of my notes.
I, and another BrailleNote user, even found ourselves in the unique position of being able to help another student with short term memory issues by providing him with typed copies of our notes as well. With all the help we've received in the past from other students and faculty, it's nice to be able to give something back for a change. It only goes to show that the old saying is true, what goes around comes around.
That other BrailleNote user and I sit very close to one another and in the 3 or 4 classes we've taken together, neither the faculty or other students have ever complained about noisy keys and you'd think that if one note taker was bad, two should be much worse. In fact, one of the professors told us that she gaged her lecture speed by noticing when we completed our "tap tap tapping" and then would go on with her next subject.
Also, we've used a neet little trick when taking essay tests. We will type our answers and then email them to the instructor via cell phone connection at the end of class. By the time he or she gets back to his or her office our tests have already arrived and are actually readable.
I need to share how my VN was crucial in maintaining my self-esteem and literacy during the last three stressful, life changing months. Prompted by Roger Behm's significant price reduction and great personal service, I purchased the QWERTY keyboard VN which was hand delivered on Saturday, February 7. From the instant I unpacked it, our immediate relationship was highly interactive and extremely productive. My attending school via the telephone and online became much easier and more efficient within twenty-four hours.
On Wednesday, February 18, I had the second of two mini strokes, although the first hadn't yet been discovered and diagnosed. My compact, user friendly new VN accompanied me to the hospital, and I was able to surf the net and attend class the very evening I learned about my new disability.
Untill the onset of the strokes, I had used JAWS,OUTLOOK EXPRESS, and MS WORD on a daily basis for many years. They have been completely and mysteriously purged from my memory bank! Using the VN and BOOKSHARE, I can enrich my recuperation period by reading books as fast as I can select, download, and listen to them. On Monday, I completed and e-mailed my final e-zam for my initial life coaching course with absolutely no sighted assistance. I can surf the net with ease, efficiency, and comfortably from my bed. This afternoon, I will begin to share my newly acquired knowledge with a user who is having trouble. I will continue to keep you informed as my exciting and intriguing journey with my amazing VN progresses!
I love the BrailleNotes memory space so that you can store big books. At the moment I have got Harry Potter 2, 3, 4 and 5. Harry Potter's fifth book is on one disk which I find amazing. I also like doing my homework presentations and studies and most of my school work on the BrailleNote.
Hi, guys. Now that I have GPS and the new planner and case for my BrailleNote, I pretty much carry it everywhere, just in case I need to write something down. Well Saturday evening, the lady who was supposed to sing part of a song as a solo didn't show up. I was asked if I could fill in, but wasn't sure if I knew all the words to the solo part. No problem. A fellow choir member read them to me, I jotted them down, and when the time came, with the BN around my neck, I read and sang the solo. What fun!
I just want to say here that I just logged off the Web after filling out a form! I had tried to fill out the blessed thing with JFW, and as usual, I lost my place, I was confused, and I was totally befuddled! I just hit alt-f4 and said I'm going to try the BrailleNote.
Well God bless the BrailleNote, it worked like a champ! I filled out the form, I sent it in, I didn't get lost, I didn't get confused and most importantly, folks, I had fun! Do you hear me, I actually had fun filling out a form on the web!
This is unheard of! This is a breakthrough for me! I can't tell you the number of times I've sat in front of a computer cursing and turning the air blue because I couldn't fill out some form or other! It's the Braille, guys, it's the Braille, darn it all, *why* did it take me so long to get to this point? Why? I can actually *see* what I'm doing on a form, God bless it! How many times have you done the same thing? I had to get sighted help to fill out the form for Bookshare! That form brought me to tears, folks! If I'd had the BrailleNote then, I wouldn't have had this trouble! It's the Braille! It's the Braille!
I got my GPS through a local guy who got it for me from Sendero Group. I placed my order and had it in my hands within ten days.
Having used it for about a week now, I'm really impressed with it. To be sure, it has its little quirks, but all software does to some degree. I'm new to the area in which I work and, among other things, I have used the GPS to help me find new places to go to lunch and a local bank branch within walking distance. That's fairly significant to me, at least. Plus, when I've been out and about doing field work, I've used it to keep track of what the taxi drivers are doing, and in one case, I busted one guy for taking me way out of the way and trying to jack up my fare. I don't think he was too happy about being caught at it but it saved me a pile of money.
All in all, I'm quite pleased with the GPS, and although it put a major dent in my pocketbook, I see it as an investment which will more than pay for itself in terms of the confidence that it gives me when traveling about in unfamiliar areas. That, to me, is priceless.
Yes, this is my senior year at NEC already. I cannot even believe it myself! Time really flies.
Without the BrailleNote mPower that was provided for me through the Dr. Bill Foundation, I would not have been able to finish school successfully for these past three years. Your support and continuous encouragement has brought me to where I am now.
With many thanks,