Braille Monitor                                    July 2018

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News from the Federation Family


The Rochester Chapter of the NFB of New York held its elections this past Monday, May 21. Four officer positions and one board member position were voted on at this meeting. The results were as follows: president, Heather Bird; vice president, Justin Young; treasurer, Zachary Kolbuc; secretary, Bernice Bird; and board member, Kelleigh Larsson.

The chapter is grateful to New York affiliate president Mike Robinson and his wife, Buffalo chapter treasurer Angie Robinson, for attending the May meeting and assisting to help this young chapter’s first election run smoothly. The chapter would also like to thank its nominating committee, all those who were nominated, and all of those who voted. Democracy in action, and energetic and thoughtful participation: that is what it is all about.

Blind People with Cerebral Palsy Helping One Another:

Come one and all, blind and visually impaired Federationists who have cerebral palsy, to assist in the development of an active, lively, independent, and vibrant group of blind and visually impaired Americans with cerebral palsy. The purpose of this group will be to provide professional rehabilitation training solutions, rehabilitation training techniques, networking opportunities, mentoring opportunities, problem-solving techniques, mutual support, leadership, legal self-advocacy advice, and an improved understanding for those of us who share both disabilities and must devise strategies to assist with management of each disability singly and together.

Meetings will be held by conference call on the first Saturday of the month (except in January when meetings will be held on the Second Saturday, in July when the meeting will be held on the last Saturday, and November when it will be held on the last Saturday). Meetings will run from 3:00 p.m. eastern time until 5:00 p.m. starting on Saturday, July 28, 2018. The conference phone number is 712-831-0000 followed by pin 999999#.

We hope to hold a face-to-face meeting at the 2019 National Federation of the Blind annual convention. To assist in developing this group, contact Alexander Scott Kaiser by Braille, snail-mail, by phone, or by email. His postal address is Alexander Scott Kaiser, 52 Meadowbrook Road, Brick Township, New Jersey 08723-7850. His email address is [email protected], and his phone numbers are 848-205-0208 and 732-202-6795.

In Brief

Notices and information in this section may be of interest to Monitor readers. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the information; we have edited only for space and clarity.

Order these new titles in UEB today!

Seedlings Braille Books for Children, which offers one of the largest selections available of books in Unified English Braille, now offers 110 titles in contracted UEB for older kids! Five more titles were added in May, bringing the total to 110. They are: Aesop's Fables retold in verse by Tom Paxton, Amelia Earhart: Pioneer in the Sky by John Parlin, A Long Way from Chicago by Richard Peck, Coraline by Neil Gaiman, and A Series of Unfortunate Events #2: The Reptile Room by Lemony Snicket.

See all 110 titles at Seedlings continues to add new titles regularly, so check back often. Seedlings' nearly 300 print-and-Braille board books for babies and toddlers and beginning readers are already in UEB. Order at

BlindSquare Enabled Airports Help Blind People in Travel:

MIPsoft, makers of BlindSquare, the most used waypoint navigation solution for persons who are blind or partially sighted, has created a special version of BlindSquare, made available for use when entering or exiting BlindSquare Enabled Airports. Access is enabled through the BlindSquare Event app, available for free on the iTunes store.

Travelers arriving at BlindSquare Enabled Airports, whether by ground or air, will be able to activate BlindSquare Airport Event and automatically be provided with free use, regardless of location, and they will continue with the support of BlindSquare Event for the next seven days.

When arriving by ground (for departure), or by air (on arrival), BlindSquare Airport Event is ready for use at ANY destination airport on the globe: this, to assist in completing the journey to connect to ground transportation on arrival, hotels, meetings, places to eat and places of fun, supported with all the tools of BlindSquare and 105,000,000+ points of interest globally.  When returning to any sponsored airport, the seven-day counter is renewed for another seven days.

For more information about BlindSquare, its features, this exciting promotion, and who is sponsoring it, go to

Actiview Announces Access for the Blind and Hard of Hearing to Watch Solo: A Star Wars Story:

Actiview, a Bay-Area-based technology company, is providing support for all blind/low vision and hard of hearing attendees of the new film, Solo: A Star Wars Story, nationwide. Starting June 1, 2018, the Actiview app will be enabled with audio description and Amplified Audio tracks that people can download on their mobile phone and bring with them to watch the movie. The tracks will be available to anyone, anywhere in the US who wants to experience the movie with the accessibility features.

Millions of people in the US use important accessibility solutions to enjoy movies, including audio description and amplified audio. Audio description enables blind/low vision movie lovers to experience a film fully by providing a narrated description of the visual components that accompany the film dialogue.

Noah Carver, a blind teenager from Maine, explains why audio description is so important for him to enjoy fully movies like Solo: A Star Wars Story. “For me to watch a movie, I need a special audio track called audio description. It’s like a really in-depth audio book of the movie, so while everyone else is watching the battles on screen, a narrator is describing every saber swing and leap in amazing detail to me.”

Actiview’s amplified audio support provides a louder soundtrack for the film that is helpful for the 10 million+ people in the US who are hard of hearing. Hearing loss is an increasing problem and often leads to people missing important audible components of films such as dialogues and conversations.

Actiview brings accessibility back to people who need it. Actiview believes that accessibility technology should be convenient and should fit naturally into everyone’s lifestyle.

Actiview founder, Alex Koren states, “Every day we see people miss out on these shared experiences with family and friends. Movies are such a central part of our culture, and it’s our mission to ensure everyone is included in watching films through the Actiview app.”

For Solo: A Star Wars Story, Actiview will be providing audio description and amplified audio for use in cinemas. Lucasfilm’s new release, Solo: A Star Wars Story, is an all-new adventure with the most beloved scoundrel in the galaxy. Through a series of daring escapades deep within a dark and dangerous criminal underworld, Han Solo meets his mighty future copilot Chewbacca and encounters the notorious gambler Lando Calrissian, in a journey that will set the course of one of the Star Wars saga’s most unlikely heroes. Solo: A Star Wars Story releases in US theaters on May 25, 2018, with accessibility support being offered through the Actiview app starting June 1st.

To learn more about Actiview visit To download the Actiview app on iOS visit To learn more about audio description visit

Actiview is a technology company focused on making the entertainment experience more accessible, active, engaging, and immersive. Our flagship product, the Actiview app, is an all-in-one solution that makes movies accessible to the blind/low vision, deaf/hard of hearing, and foreign-language-speaking communities in a way that feels natural and inclusive for everyone. The mobile app offers a range of services including amplified audio, audio description, translations, closed captioning, and sign language for both in-theater and in-home entertainment experiences. Follow us on social media @TeamActiview.

NFB Pledge

I pledge to participate actively in the efforts of the National Federation of the Blind to achieve equality, opportunity, and security for the blind; to support the policies and programs of the Federation; and to abide by its constitution.

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