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SuperTrouper
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01 Jul 2010, 4:13 pm

Is anyone here partially or completely nonverbal and use a communication device? I'm working on getting the Adult Autism Waiver in my state to get services, if I'm not too high-functioning/independent, and this is one of the things I hope they can provide for me. Does anyone know what the best devices are?



anbuend
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01 Jul 2010, 6:53 pm

Depends on what your needs are.

My favorite at the moment is an iPod Touch running software called Proloquo2go. It's slower than typing with ten fingers, but it's more portable and easier than having this giant thing attached to my wheelchair obstructing my view.

There's different possible needs for:

* Input techniques (keyboard, touchscreen, capacitative touchscreen, large keys, small keys, switches, head tracking, eye tracking, morse code, etc.)
* Size, portability, ability to mount to a wheelchair, etc.
* Color (some come in truly blinding shades of green or yellow)
* Picture symbols, text, large pictures where you can click on different parts of them, etc., or some combination
* Need for quick-press buttons with common things to say on them
* Auditory cuing, visual cuing, scanning, etc.
* Durability
* Whether or not you have trouble switching pages (if you have a dynamic display device and need lots of pages)
* Whether the device crashes all the time or not
* Clarity of the voice, and also whether it's overloading to listen to

And many other things. It's very hard to recommend what kind of device you need without knowing those things and more.


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CockneyRebel
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01 Jul 2010, 7:00 pm

E-mail and FaceBook, as I can't stand talking on the phone. Does that count?


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01 Jul 2010, 10:54 pm

until you are able to get a device here are some suggestions.
If you have a laptop, there is an inexpensive program called text aloud that works very well (make sure to keep the access code forever because every now and then it acts like you are using a trial version and then you have to enter the code again) this program is a talking word processor, you can put the font as big as you need and also choose from alot of different voices including voices with foreign accents etc. The company also sells next up talker which has extra abilities to store frequently used phrases and sentences etc. but it is more expensive also.
Laptops are a problem if the battery doesn't last, there are some now that have 10 hour batteries, but if you can find a place to plug in it would also work. The other thing is to make a communication book with a letter board page so you could point to the letters to spell what you want to say, and also pages with phrases, messages, words, pictures etc. specifically made according to your needs... you can pm me if you want



SuperTrouper
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02 Jul 2010, 8:41 am

I just need something that will allow me to type into it what I want it to say, and it will speak what I have typed. A moderately-sized keyboard would be nice, big enough to type with ten fingers. I don't need the quick-press buttons or any built-in phrases.

--, I have Language Reader on my computer and currently use that when needed. The only problem is that my laptop is pain to carry around. Its battery lasts about 3 hours, which isn't horrible.



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05 Jul 2010, 7:33 pm

I am nonverbal when overwhelmed and often use communication devices so that I can slow the flow of information in potentially overwhelming situations.

When I have my computer out I use Proloquo. I have a Macbook Pro that I take everywhere so this works well in many situations. Unfortunately, Proloquo only works on Macs. There are other solutions on Windows and linux. J-talk used to be on Windows for free but the website is down now. On Linux things like KSayIt also work.

I also have my iPhone no matter what with Proloquo2Go installed. This serves as a good backup device. More recently I got an iPad with a case and bluetooth speaker that I can carry with a strap. This is fairly easy to type on with 10 fingers.


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SuperTrouper
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05 Jul 2010, 8:07 pm

What all does an iPad do? And how much does it cost? How much does the Proloquo2Go software cost? This might be a good option for me.



Shidash
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05 Jul 2010, 8:42 pm

iPads do many things. You can find a more complete list than I can give at http://www.apple.com/ipad/features/ . The cheapest is $500. They get more expensive with more memory and 3G. The most expensive is currently $830. However, iPads are starting to become available on ebay. I found one under $300 in a quick search.

Proloquo2Go costs $190. In total, this is really cheap compared to most high-tech AAC devices. The PI of my research group cites $8000 as being around average. There are certainly some cheaper but for anything fairly decent it is hard to find stuff below $1000. Also, be aware that insurance only replaces AAC devices every 5 years and many high-tech devices break easily. Insurance will not pay for the iPad but there is a slim chance that they may pay for Proloquo2Go.

I am working on building a better and cheaper solution for people with motor impairments but if you do not have major motor difficulties the iPad and other existing devices may work well.


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Hummingbird
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05 Jul 2010, 9:19 pm

Here are some things to check

http://gusinc.com/2010/Communication_Packages.html

http://www.nextup.com/


http://teachinglearnerswithmultipleneed ... evere.html
(this link has a list of free stuff some very good stuff on here)

http://www.taptotalk.com/



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Hummingbird
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05 Jul 2010, 10:14 pm

Here are some things to check

http://gusinc.com/2010/Communication_Packages.html

http://www.nextup.com/


http://teachinglearnerswithmultipleneed ... evere.html
(this link has a list of free stuff some very good stuff on here)

http://www.taptotalk.com/



SuperTrouper
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05 Jul 2010, 10:39 pm

I used to use JTalk in college and was upset when I found the site to be down and the program no longer available. Now I use a program called Language Reader, as I find the "Microsoft Sam" voice that most programs use to be indecipherable! He sounds like he's underwater.

I wonder what kind of options the Autism Waiver supports. I'll have to ask. They might have a protocol in place.

The iPad costs more than I make in a month! It appears that Apple doesn't make a netbook, or that the iPad is its version of one, but nothing cheaper. Maybe if I get SSI later this year or next year I will be able to afford an iPad, but not now.

What kind of programs/devices would insurance/Waiver offer?



loli
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06 Jul 2010, 6:41 am

I use a dynavox . it have alot of different voices to choose from. and touch screen . I also use a head mouse to acces . it have word prediction and alot of picture communication symbols .
the only prblems is it computer part is only 800mhz. and it is hard to see in bright light or sun



Shidash
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06 Jul 2010, 7:30 am

You would have to ask them for specifics. In general I think that it covers any dedicated device. That means a device that can be used for nothing but communication.


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