BULLETIN BOARD

A Newsletter of the Wisconsin Regional Library for the Blind & Physically Handicapped

(Autumn 2002, Volume 20, Number 2)

PROTOTYPE MACHINES FOR DIGITAL TALKING BOOKS TO BE FEATURED IN LIBRARY OF CONGRESS EXHIBITION

The National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (NLS) will present an exhibition of the six winning entries of a competition cosponsored with the Industrial Designers Society of America (IDSA). Titled "'Dook'--Digital Talking Books: Machine Design Competition Winners," the exhibition will open Oct. 11 and run through mid-December in the foyer of the sixth floor of the Library of Congress's James Madison Building. Exhibition hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday.

The centerpiece of the display is the first-prize prototype playback machine called "Dook," designed by Lachezar Tsvetanov, a senior at the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. Tsvetanov's entry was one of 146 entries from 28 industrial design schools across the country. Launched in January, the goal of the design competition was to challenge student designers to create the next generation of digital playback machines to replace outmoded audio cassette players.

Winners were officially announced at the IDSA annual meeting in Monterey, Calif., July 20-23. Winning entries will be analyzed by the Digital Audio Development Committee to determine which features may be incorporated into the final design. NLS hopes to introduce the Library's Digital Talking Book player in 2008.

NLS is in the midst of full-scale transition from analog to digital format audio technology, a project that will involve converting approximately 30,000 titles (about 10 percent of NLS' collection) from analog tape recordings to master digital recordings and developing a digital playback device to replace the four-track tape player that has been in service for nearly three decades. NLS has approximately 730,000 analog cassette talking-book playback machines in use worldwide today and maintains an inventory of more than 23 million copies of audio books and magazines that it circulates free of charge to blind and physically handicapped readers.

In addition to Tsvetanov's "Dook," which earned him a $5,000 cash award, the following winning entries will be on display:
Second Place ($2,000 each)- - Christopher Garnaas and Laura Hackbarth, Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design. Entry titled "Nero"; and Anna Mastriano, University of Bridgeport. Entry titled "Book Talk."
Third Place ($1,000 each) - Nicki Kuwahara, California State University, Long Beach. Entry titled "Digital Talking Book"; Brian Potempa and Michael Matheau Potempa, Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design. Entry titled "Insight Personal Assistance Device" ; and Emilie Williams, North Carolina State University. Entry titled "D1."

Congratulations to all, especially our Wisconsin winners!

ANNOUNCEMENTS

Milwaukee County, through the efforts of the Parks Department and the Office for Persons with Disabilities, will make available to the public motorized adaptive golf carts at four Milwaukee County Park Golf Courses. The adaptive golf carts differ from regular motorized carts in that the golfer never leaves the cart in order to play. The cart is designed to drive onto tee boxes, greens and even sand-filled bunkers. It is a one-player cart that allows the golfer to swing right from the seat. "By having these adaptive carts at our golf courses, we will be serving a population that otherwise might not be able to play golf," noted Larry Kenny, Associate Director of Parks. "We expect to see those that no longer play golf due to an injury or illness getting back on the course as well as first time golfers that might not have tried golf in the past due to a debilitating condition." The public can make reservations to use the adaptive motorized golf carts by contacting the golf course directly at least 24 hours in advance of play. The cost to rent the adaptive cart is $15.00 for an 18 hole round. A limited number of the motorized adaptive golf carts will be available beginning Wednesday, July 24, 2002 at the following golf courses:
Brown Deer Park Golf Course (414) 352-8080
Hansen Park Golf Course (414) 453-4454
Grant Park Golf Course (414) 762-4646
Oakwood Park Golf Course (414) 281-6700
For more information on the motorized adaptive golf carts, please contact either Bridget Bannon (414) 278-3938 or Larry Kenny (414) 257-4590.

February 23 - March 2, 2003. Ski for Light. Anchorage, AK. Contact: Nancy McKinney, Event Chair, 206-789-2173 (Before 10 PM PT) or nancy@sfl.org. Web site: . International, week-long, cross-country skiing vacation for active adults that pairs non-disabled Guides with visually and mobility impaired Skiers.

Charles Spencer has developed software that helps the speech and hearing-impaired communicate with others and write letters fast. Software lets users communicate in English, French, German, Italian, Polish, Portuguese, Spanish, and Swahili. The software maintains language files that contain messages and a number relating to each message. The user selects his language and the languages of the people with whom he is communicating. When the user enters numbers that apply to messages in his language file, the PC displays messages in selected languages for user and others to read. Others can respond by entering numbers that apply to messages in their language file. The PC displays translated messages in their language and the user's language. This benefits the hearing-impaired user. The user types a letter by entering numbers that apply to messages in his language file. The user types letters faster because he is entering numbers that apply to messages instead of typing the messages. The user can type messages that are not in the language file and they will be accepted. Spencer Data Processing will donate software to the libraries for use only on public computers, or sell software to individual users for $20. Please phone or email for more information and a free demonstration. Spencer Data Processing, Inc., 934 Edgemoor Road, Cherry Hill, NJ 08034, (856) 428-5673 spencerdp@snip.net.

RESOURCES

The Disability Museum Online is a searchable, theme-based digital collection that exists only online, offering documents and images related to disability history in the United States. The website address is http://www.disabilitymuseum.org/.

Computer consultant Cory Jackson has a degree in Micro Computers and is knowledgeable in the field of adaptive technology for the blind. Mr. Jackson excels at trouble-shooting and solving computer problems. Phone him with all inquiries at 740.435.0018 or email him at info@3wcomputing.com.

Recorded Periodicals, a recording subscription service of Associated Services for the Blind, 919 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107, (215) 627-0600, is pleased to announce that they have the following magazines, among others, available for paid subscription: CIVIL WAR TIMES ILLUSTRATED, DISCOVER MAGAZINE, FAMILY CIRCLE MAGAZINE, FAMILY HANDYMAN MAGAZINE, FORBES BUSINESS MAGAZINE, FORTUNE BUSINESS MAGAZINE, HARVARD MEN'S HEALTH WATCH, HARVARD WOMEN'S HEALTH WATCH, MONTHLY TIME MAGAZINE, MS MAGAZINE, O--THE OPRAH MAGAZINE, PC WORLD COMPUTER MAGAZINE, POPULAR MECHANICS MAGAZINE, POPULAR SCIENCE MAGAZINE, PSYCHOLOGY TODAY MAGAZINE, RADIO DIGEST, SCIENCE NEWS MAGAZINE, SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN MAGAZINE, SKEPTICAL INQUIRER MAGAZINE, SMITHSONIAN MAGAZINE, TASTE OF HOME COOKING, and TRAINS MAGAZINE.

Baen Books <http://www.baen.com/library/> is now making available--for free--43 of its science fiction & fantasy titles in electronic format, calling it the Baen Free Library. Anyone who wishes can read these titles online - no conditions, no strings attached. (Later they may ask for an extremely simple, name & email only, registration. ) Or, if you prefer, you can download the books in one of several formats. Again, with no conditions or strings attached. Authors represented include Lois McMaster Bujold, David Drake, Eric Flint & Mercedes Lackey.

READING LIST

As autumn eases into winter, people often turn to "comfort reading". Here are a few seasonal mysteries for the holidays:

Atherton, Nancy. "Aunt Dimity's Christmas." RC 51061.
A homeless man collapses outside of Lori Shepherd's English cottage. While he's hospitalized in a coma, Lori is encouraged by her late aunt's spirit to search for his identity and for the reason he arrived at her door.

Babson, Marian. "The Twelve Deaths of Christmas." RC 18211.
A Christmas killer with a penchant for carving knives transfixes London and presents the police with a seemingly insoluble case.

Beaton, M. C. "A Highland Christmas." RC 50600.
Christmas is at hand in the remote Highland village of Lochdubh. This year, P.C. Hamish Macbeth is set to work through the holiday, while his family vacations without him. On his own, Hamish cracks several cases, including the disappearance of an elderly woman's cat and the theft of a nearby community's town lights.

Borthwick, J. S. "Dude on Arrival." RC 36915.
The new Arizona dude ranch, Rancho del Gato Blanco, is plagued by a rash of pranks, much to the annoyance of Julia Clancy, a demanding, widowed horsewoman who is spending her winter there. By the time Julia convinces her niece, Professor Sarah Deane, and her niece's boyfriend, Dr. Alex McKenzie, both amateur sleuths, to join her for Christmas, the capers have escalated into murder. Some strong language and some violence.

Christie, Agatha, 1890-1976. "Hercule Poirot's Christmas." RC 44355.
As the holiday guest of Colonel Johnson, chief constable of his county, the little Belgian detective Poirot spends his Christmas investigating the brutal and baffling murder of rich, eccentric old Simeon Lee.

Clark, Carol Higgins. "Iced." RC 41161.
Ex-con Eben is happy with his new life as caretaker for the Aspen vacation home of actress Kendra Wood and her family. Plus, he gets to play Santa at neighboring Christmas parties for extra money. But when Eben runs into another ex-con, his luck changes. He is kidnapped and framed for a slew of robberies. Luckily sleuth Regan Reilly, a guest of the Woods, is there to investigate.

Clark, Mary Higgins. "Deck the Halls." RC 50860.
Amateur sleuth Alvirah Meehan assists Los Angeles private investigator Regan Reilly, who is in New York visiting her parents for Christmas when her father is kidnapped. This joint effort by mother and daughter authors brings together characters from earlier works by each writer. Bestseller.

These are only a few of our titles on this theme. Readers may log into our on-line public access catalog to find others by phoning or emailing the Regional Library for their personal ID and passcode at the address and phone numbers shown below.


BULLETIN BOARD is published four times a year by the Wisconsin Regional Library for the Blind & Physically Handicapped. It is available in large print, Braille, and audio-cassette editions. The Wisconsin Regional Library makes no recommendations or endorsements concerning any products or services which may appear in this publication.

Wisconsin Regional Library for the Blind & Physically Handicapped
813 West Wells Street
Milwaukee, WI 53233-1436
1-414-286-3045 (in Milwaukee)
1-800-242-8822 (in Wisconsin)
1-414-286-3548 (TDD)
1-414-286-3102 (FAX)
lbph@mpl.org (e-mail)
http://wmbph.mpl.org/opac (on-line public access catalog)


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