Variety is the spice of life

One of the advantages of being blind, is that it enables me to live in a world composed of many and varied surprises. To take one example, when opening a can I am never quite sure whether it’s contents will delight my taste buds with Baxters vegetable soup (please note that other brands are available)! Or custard …! It is, I often think fortunate that my guide dog, Trigger eats a complete dried food, otherwise who knows what I might be enjoying the next time that can opener goes to work …
Today I popped into my local supermarket and purchased (amongst other items) 2 boxes of microwavable porridge and 1 box of Earl Grey tea bags (again other varieties of tea are, of course available)! On reaching home I found that I had 3 cardboard boxes and was faced with trying to ascertain what each contained. By placing the boxes together I discovered 2 where of the exact same size while the third was of different dimmentions. Given that I had bought 2 packs of porridge I therefore correctly concluded that the odd one out in my interesting collection of boxes must, of necessity be the tea. Had I purchased a greater variety of packages I would, almost certainly have required sighted assistance to determine what each contained.
Things are easier for visually impaired people than was previously the case. For example all medication now comes with braille labelling, which as a user of this medium is extremely helpful to me. Again most bleach now comes with a braille label clearly identifying it as such, although many other poisonous products, for example toilet cleaner do not.
There are solutions to enable visually impaired people to label products, for example a hand held device allows those with sight difficulties to record a short note on a plastic card identifying products which can then be affixed via an elastic band or string. However this solution relies on sighted assistance to identify the item in the first instance thereby enabling the VI individual to label it.
A hand held scanner has been developed allowing blind people to identify products and I am considering purchasing one. In the meantime I remain thankful that my guide dog eats dry rather than tinned food …!

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About drewdog2060drewdog2060

The purpose of this blog is to showcase my writing (gosh that sounds pompous but it isn't meant to be, honestly)! Thus far I have published two ebooks on Amazon, "Samantha", which can be found here and "The First Time" which can be found here For further information on this and the other titles which I'll be publishing over the coming months please explore my blog. As new titles are published they will appear here. I hope you enjoy reading my blog and my books.

3 thoughts on “Variety is the spice of life

  1. Victoria Zigler (@VictoriaZigler)

    You could consider downloading TapTapSee. It’s an app my brother and I use. It’s completely free to download, and – though a little patience is required while you get to grips with using it – can be used by a blind person without sighted assistance. It’s meant as a way for blind people to share and take photos, but my brother and I have both used it to identify boxes and cans of food items when sighted assistance isn’t available. As yet we haven’t had any problems with it identifying items for us. Just open the app, aim your phone’s camera at the box or tin in question, and wait for it to tell you what it sees (a couple of attempts may be required to line up the shot properly to get it to see the writing on the label, and it sometimes takes several moments for it to figure out what it’s seeing and tell you, but the requirement of a little patience is a small price to pay for the ability to identify the contents of a box or can without assistance).


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