Getting a Communicative Device

My first augmentative device was an Epson Eval Pac. I used it to do my work and it was connected to a laptop. I wore a baseball cap (with Velcro on top) that allowed the infrared light to be attached to the top of the cap. Since I am unable to use my hands, this allowed me to access my communication device. The Eval Pac had an overlay on with an infrared keyboard. When I shined the light on each letter, it would accept the letter allowing me to spell what I wanted to say. I could also shine the light on the “Talk” button, my device would speak for me and print out my message.

After using my Eval Pac for several years, I heard about another speaking device called a DynaVox. In order for me to access the Dynavox, I would need to wear a reflective dot on my glasses/forehead which would work with a Tracker Pro. The Tracker Pro plugged into the Dynavox allowed me the ability to control the mouse by my head movement. I was apprehensive to get a new device because I had used my other communitive device for a long time, and it worked good for me. I decided to get the DynaVox and after I got used to using the DynaVox, I was glad I made the change.



Image: Dynavox


A few years ago, it was time for me to upgrade to another device, so I tried a speaking device called Tobii Dynavox. I tried this device one time before and it didn’t work well for me, but I decided to try it again. This time when I tried the Tobii speaking version and it worked great. This augmentative computer is calibrated to my eyes. When I look at a letter on the keyboard, it types that letter. It also connects to the internet and I can do everything with my eyes.

I hope this article gives information to anybody who needs help speaking or knows somebody that needs this kind of device.

Written by:

Douglas Winkler


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