Computer Tips

Using the Internet Safely, part 1

Internet safety = Cyber safety

1. Many people use the Internet in everyday life.

  • Family and friends keep in touch using the Internet.
  • We use computers and the Internet to learn new information.
  • We also use computers for personal business like shopping or banking.
  • E-mail and digital social networking is a way for people to stay connected with family, friends, and the world around them. Continue reading the full article

Aphasia Software Finder

These are exciting and frustrating times for those concerned with the treatment of aphasia. Exciting because an ever growing body of research and experience shows us that treatment can make a difference. Frustrating because most healthcare systems are suffering financial pressures that mean very few people with aphasia are likely to be allocated enough resources so that they can benefit from these advances – especially as there is increasing evidence that amount and intensity of treatment can be crucial.

Continue reading the full article

E-books and Audio Books for People with Aphasia

I recently ran into a couple of interesting resources that may be appealing to people with aphasia, who have difficulty with reading, as well as to speech and language pathologists. Continue reading the full article

Computer Mouse, Trackpad, Trackball, Keyboard… Which One to Use?

Curious cat and mouse

In our previous post “What Headphones to Use?” we talked about computer headphones, and compared a couple of different models, especially in regards to the needs of stroke survivors. Another important aspects of the computer-based aphasia rehabilitation is the control of the computer and the software. That’s were a computer mouse comes to play.

All modern computers and “graphical” operating systems (Windows, Mac OS, Linux) support computer mouse as an input device. Using the mouse, users can move the cursor on the screen, click on desired buttons or links, and initiate various actions on a computer.

People with aphasia typically have mobility problems with their right hand, which may make it difficult to use a computer mouse. If use of the regular mouse presents difficulties, there are several alternatives that may work better for people with aphasia: Continue reading the full article

What Headphones to Use?

Ear Buds

Here at Aphasia Corner our goal is to provide computer-based services for speech rehabilitation for people with aphasia. In line with that goal, in the next couple of months we plan to address several computer-equipmet-related topics on our blog. Today we’ll start with headphones, and in one of the next post we will compare a computer mouse to a trackpad.

Over the last couple of months, I’ve spent some time observing people with aphasia using the first feature of our service; this feature presents news stories in an aphasia-friendly way. Continue reading the full article

Skype Settings

In my previous posts, I introduced Skype, told you how to install Skype, and gave you basic instructions on how to use Skype.

In this post, I want to walk you through the various options you have for starting Skype on your PC, and the features you can control from the Options window.

This post will deal with:

  • Startup options
  • Accepting or rejecting an invitation from another Skype user
  • Text chatting
  • The difference between text chatting and SMS (text messaging)
  • Using the Options window

Continue reading the full article

Using Skype: Basics

In our previous posts, “Skype: Free Video Calling and “Installing Skype”, we described Skype’s features and gave instructions for installing Skype on a Windows XP computer. In this post, we’ll describe how to use Skype’s free computer-to-computer calling services. Once again, we’ll focus on Windows XP, since most of our readers use that system. Skype has a somewhat different look on Macs and other operating systems (Windows Vista, Linux, etc.), but its basic features are the same.

Starting Skype

When you start up Skype, you may see a window that looks like this:

Skype Welcome Screen (Windows XP)

You may want to explore the options on this window at a future time, but some of them could lead you into areas that are 1) not free, and 2) confusing. So for the time being, let’s get rid of this screen by taking two steps: Continue reading the full article

Installing Skype

In our previous post ,“Skype: Free Video Calling,” we provided an overview of Skype, an internet-based service that allows free audio and video communication. In this post we will step you through the installation process for Skype on a PC running Windows XP. Stay tuned for future posts where we plan to describe how to use Skype.

Here’s how to install Skype on a PC running Windows XP:

You will need the following equipment:

  • Your PC, with built-in speakers and microphone OR with a headset plugged in.
  • (Optional) A video camera, either built-in or attached to your PC.
  • These instructions. Print them out if possible, to make it easier to follow them as you perform the steps. Continue reading the full article

Skype: Free Video Calling

Skype Logo

Communication involves far more than words. When we hear a person’s tone of voice, when we see their gestures, posture, and facial expressions, we understand them far better, and more easily, than when we simply read an email. The more sensory content we exchange, the better we understand each other. That’s why the telephone superseded the telegraph and television superseded radio. And that’s why I’m excited about Skype. Continue reading the full article

Reducing Clutter on Websites

Reading content on the Internet sometimes feel like going through files in a messy office, like the ones in this image, doesn’t it?

A filing cabinet in an office that is a total mess

A filing cabinet in an office that is a total mess

One of the biggest obstacles for people with aphasia when using the Internet is the extensive amount of clutter on webpages. Unfortunately, as the Internet has evolved over the last 15 years, there has not been enough push to make it more accessible.

In our previous, post Linda Worrall talked about An Aphasia-Friendly World. Well, a couple of weeks ago I ran into an interesting tool, a tool that I hope is a small step towards a world that’s more aphasia friendly. That tool is called READABILITY! Continue reading the full article