"Wheelmap.org is an online map to search, find and mark wheelchair-accessible places. -"I'm so glad that this is a thing! I don't know if it is an accurate thing but I know you can add info about your own town and such. You can also mark places that are not accessible at all or only have access to certain parts of it and so on. It sounds like it has the potential to be a fabulous tool for wheelchair users [and walker users and stroller users]. Linking because a, I'm excited and b, because a few of you might find it helpful. :)
cross-posting to my own journal
For this reason many disabled people choose to postal vote instead. In my case, I will be working all of election day, so I am going to postal vote. The application form is online, which is great - previously it has been on paper - so I filled it out, only to run into a CAPTCHA at the end. Since forms have to be filled out with correct personal details and then a secret question answered on the actual physical form, I cannot imagine why a CAPTCHA is necessary or helpful. It's a great hindrance to me - and when I went to the feedback form to lodge a complaint, there was a CAPTCHA at the bottom of that too!
[hattip to James Nicoll]
"Jim Tokos, a vice-president at the Canadian Council of the Blind, said he found the flyers simply “baffling” — especially since the whole purpose of the pamphlet was to boast about how much the Conservatives were doing to make life easier for disabled people in Canada."
So my options were print out the form and take it to my landlords to sign (I don't own a printer, and even if I did I'd have to take it to said landlords, and that's social interaction I didn't want) or use their automated phone service. I didn't think it would be that bad. It was.
They asked me to repeat the word 'yes' three times in a row, ON MORE THAN ONE OCCASION because they couldn't understand me. I realise I have mild speech dysfluency issues, I do realise that. [actually, I have a speech pathology appointment today.] But it's not THAT bad. It's never been so bad that a person (or even a machine) literally could not tell whether I was saying yes or no.
Like other people with dysfluencies, I get worse when I'm anxious. Like, if I'm on the phone for nearly an hour and the recorded voice is dictating long strings of numbers in a disjointed rhythm and at different vocal registers and with no pause before or after the dictation, and I need to write those down [I have auditory processing problems too, specifically auditory working memory] and they also want information from me and won't tell me in advance what information I need so I can go get it, and also they can't understand me and I'm talking as clearly as I can, that would
Also, sometimes it allowed me to use the keypad to enter numbers, or to use 1 for yes and 2 for no, and sometimes it wouldn't, and it wouldn't tell me when it was appropriate or when it wasn't. And there was a period when it wanted my driver's license and I typed it into the keypad, and it said "I'm sorry, I can't understand you. Can you repeat that?" and it happened TWICE IN A ROW. The KEYPAD. I figured out that it was because I was sobbing quietly. My sobs overrode the keypad numbers. I covered the mouthpiece while I was entering numbers after that.
There was a point where it asked me if I wanted to speak to a real person. I said yes. It couldn't understand me, so it just kept going.
[additional tags: phone]
This renders the trainings inaccessible, as I am HoH.
(Fortunately I can understand enough that the PowerPoint slides are useful, but still annoying in the extreme.)
Subject: Home for OCRed and proofread manuals?Within 10 minutes, I got this answer:
So I snarfed http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/p
df/ibm/704/24-6661-2_704_Manual_1955.pdf and I'm now OCRing it and proofreading the result. I read the http://bitsavers.trailing-edge.com/ bit that says: "Documents here are kept in a minimal subset of PDF format, just using it as a container for lossless Group 4 fax compression (ITU-T recommendation T.6) images. Contributions are normally post-processed by tools to put them in exactly this format, so that all of the documents here are the same and
can be burst at some point in the future when OCR technology is mature enough to do a good job of recognition." which seems to imply you're not interested in providing a subset of those documents as OCR'd images+text searchable PDFs. But since I'm going to do it anyway, I'd like to share it with others. If you can't or won't host it on your own servers, do you know of another organization that could?
I need to update that. I have been OCRing documents for several years now.(I answered thanking him, and asking about adding an alt= to the harvesting blocker img for the email address. More when I know more.)
However, I think it might be impossible to rate an article on Wikipedia using the keyboard. The ratings don't seem to be anywhere in the tab order and I've been through it three times. Is this my fail, or Wikipedia's?
I understand that image descriptions are necessary, and that links should have descriptive text or clarifying title text. If anyone here personally uses these accessibility features, could you clarify some things for me?
( Questions under the cut )
My ID grants me access to the door from the stairs to the second floor, but does not grant me access to use the elevator. I have severe arthritis, and avoid stairs whenever possible.
Permission to be Very Irritated?
Thing I should therefore have to do only when I have just finished moving my shit from my cart to my car, and not under any other circumstance: push carts around a Walmart parking lot.
Thing I did tonight anyway: push carts around a Walmart parking lot.
I don't know about the handicapped spaces at the left end of the building; the doors at that end aren't open at half past midnight. But every single handicapped space near the doors that are open at half past midnight contained either a car or at least one cart.
There were ten carts taking up handicapped spaces. Ten of them. And not one single fucking unoccupied handicapped space anywhere near the open fucking doors.
(I have just left an angry but polite complaint on walmart.com. Customer service desk isn't open at half past midnight either, or I'd have done it in person.)
This is the ramp access to a new bar in Portland, OR. If you aren't looking too closely, it's difficult to find, as it's at the back of the business on the side of the building that doesn't even have a sign above the door, and you can't see the door from the street to indicate that this side even has a non-kitchen entrance.
If you step up onto that porch area, there is a door on the right side, though you'd never know it was there. But bad structure when dealing with an historic building isn't as bad as actual human beings who put a pallet and a huge piece of plywood in the middle of the ramp.
I spoke to someone who works there and bless his heart, he didn't give me any funny comments when he got out after a long shift at work and I asked him to please inform a manager that their ramp access was blocked. He said it hadn't been like that a little while before, so someone must have just done it, and the manager said she'd get someone to move it (and all he did was say that the ramp was blocked and where would she like these things moved?). It was definitely gone the next day, and the owners have so far been receptive to feedback--I told them on opening night that they had missed putting purse hooks in the bathroom, and then mentioned they may want to put a second one a little lower in the wheelchair accessible one (since right now the only purse-hook option is the door hydraulics, 7 feet in the air).
All in all I understand this isn't the worst situation in the world, and they fixed it promptly. But it did illustrate and spark a conversation about access and privilege on the way home.
And now a little plug: Vita + Cafe on Alberta in NE Portland (NOT the bar in question above) has two bar seats that are regular chair-height, which they actually keep clear as usable bar seats! Unlike another bar in Lake Oswego (south of Portland) where my partner used to work where they have 4 bar seats at normal chair level which the staff is instructed are wheelchair accessible, but that section of bar is in the main pathway for the service staff and they use that section as a workstation. I once asked how long it would take them to clear it off for a guest to use, and they kind of looked at me like I was nuts and asked me where they would put the juicer and fold napkins? Pretty well answered the question.
You notice someone in a wheelchair going through the gap, navigating carefully because they don't have a lot of clearance. Do you:
Try to clear the way ahead of them, making sure they can go through quickly, safely, and without bumping into your customers and possibly causing them to spill drinks or food?
Stand by the entrance to the inside area, making sure no waiter comes through and bumps into them, but not assisting them actively?
Block their way and insist they find another route, because they might otherwise inconvenience your customers?
Do something else (comment)?
(If standing in the wheelchair user's way) You see cafe customers who also noticed them start clearing a way by themselves. Do you:
Ignore them, because you have some important way-blocking to do?
Hinder their attempt to clear the way, or insist they should be good customers and let you handle it alone?
Do something else (comment)?
(If hindering or discouraging their effort) When the customers object to your behavior and ask to talk to a manager. do you:
Relent, let them clear the way, and go sulk?
Start arguing loudly with them and try to undo their actions, dragging chairs or tables back if they push them, etc.?
Do something else (comment)?
(If arguing with customers) When the manager on duty arrives on the scene and the customers complain about you, do you:
Accept that perhaps you went too far, apologize, and stop hindering or maybe even start helping?
Keep objecting, blaming the customers, the passer-by, and your manager (who are all starting to look pissed off at you by now)?
Do something else (comment)?
(If arguing with your manager) When your manager disciplines you, sending you home, do you:
Leave, protesting loudly?
Refuse to leave, demand police intervention because everyone else is conspiring to deprive you of your wages and tips, and resist attempts to remove you?
Do something else (comment)?
Extra credit optional essay question (comment): when it turns out 2 of the customers are (off-duty) police officers who restrain you until you can formally be arrested, what is your reaction?
Thank you for your recent feedback.
At State Transit we treat incidents such as these very seriously. We have established the identity of the employee responsible for this unacceptable behaviour and will be taking appropriate action so as to avoid a similar incident in the future.
Please accept my sincere apologies for any unpleasantness caused.
STA Customer Relations
You tried to refuse service to a guy in a motorised wheelchair and his companion. You were driving one of the very newest buses on Sydney. They have ramps, they kneel, there are multiple wheelchair areas and there is Braille on the stop request buttons. YOU WERE DRIVING THE MOST ACCESSIBLE BUS IN SYDNEY. AND YOU TRIED TO REFUSE SERVICE TO A GUY IN A WHEELCHAIR. There was room on the bus for him and his companion and when the people sitting in the accessible seats saw him at the stop, they all moved so he could park there even before you eventually let him on!
I have submitted a complaint about you on the complaints line and I hope you get in trouble. For fuck's sake.
(Also: I didn't complain about it to him at the time and I felt so bad about this that I had a dream that night that I did complain, resulting in him slamming all the bus doors closed and sweeping me off to the depot, leaving me to make my way home in the dark alone. What the fuck, subconscious.)
I'm impressed by your provision of a map and guide to step-free stations on the tube [pdf]. Thank you.
However, it would probably be even more awesome if you'd be willing to consider using symbols that didn't rely on users being able to distinguish between red, orange and green.