Browse By Topic: Personal Reflections

Why I Have Written Three Series of Articles About My Experience with Macular Hole and Pseudo Macular Hole

by Joy R. Efron, Ed.D.   People have asked why I have written three series of articles about my experiences with macular hole and pseudo macular hole. The simple explanation is that I am attempting to reciprocateto thank the many people who helped meby helping others. My impressive visual recovery would not have been possible without


Appreciating Disability Employment Awareness Month

by Suzanne Turner, Guest Blogger October has become one of the months that is known for many celebrations of awareness. This month highlights Breast Cancer Awareness Month, National Hispanic Heritage Month, White Cane Safety Day, Meet the Blind Month, and my favorite, National Disability Employment Awareness Month. The reasoning behind my enthusiasm for Disability Employment Awareness is that I have come a long way from my days of working in a sheltered workshop. As a teenager with hopes of attending college in the Department of Music at Jackson


The Reality and Costs of Gene Therapy for Eye Disease: Who Will (or Can) Pay?

As our readers know, VisionAware is committed to providing current and reliable information about eye and vision research that is relevant to adults and older adults, many of whom experience late-life vision loss resulting in low vision. During the past several years, gene therapy has gained traction and offers promise for treating (but not yet curing) a range of eye diseases, including retinitis pigmentosa,


What Does Independence Really Mean to Older Persons Experiencing Vision Loss?

We are celebrating our independence as a nation this week. We indeed have much to celebrate as we our flag flows proud and free, and we sing our nation’s anthem (in my case slightly off key)! Taking this to a personal level, the VisionAware peer advisors have addressed this theme in a series on independence. How Independent Do You Want to Be? Peer Advisor DeAnna Noriega raised this question saying, the training, tools, and


During Vision Rehabilitation Therapy Awareness Week: Considering the Increasing Role of Technology

By Steve Kelley, CVRT, CRC Celebrating Vision Rehabilitation Therapy Awareness Week Helen Keller and Anne Sullivan playing chess The week of April 9-15, 2017 is Vision Rehabilitation Therapist Awareness Week. The week commemorates the birthday of Anne Sullivan, who was Helen Keller's teacher (both pictured at left). With this celebration comes the


Understanding Our Shifting Health Insurance Landscape – and What It Means for People with Vision Loss

Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D. Guest blogger Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., is the Senior Policy Researcher with the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C. The AFB Public Policy Center collaborates with policy makers in Congress and the Executive Branch to ensure that Americans with vision loss have equal rights and opportunities to fully participate in society. She also is the author of two important and helpful Public Policy Center publications:


Readers Beware: In a Dangerous and Unregulated Stem Cell Treatment, Patients Lose Sight After Stem Cells Are Injected Into Their Eyes

A retina with wet AMD Of all the eye research developments reported on the VisionAware blog, it is stem cell research for eye disease that generates the most inquiries from our readers. Many readers request information about stem cells, assuming that this is an established and widely-performed treatment for eye disease; others ask for help in finding a doctor who will administer "stem cell treatments." In response to these inquiries, my message is always the same: "Although stem cell research for eye disease has produced a small number of interesting results, it is in its very earliest safety-testing


American Foundation for the Blind Leadership Conference Recap: Some Critical Issues for Older Persons with Vision Loss

Guest blogger Kay McGill (pictured at left recording a Public Service Announcement) is the manager of Project Independence: Georgia Vision Program for Adults Age 55 and Over. The Georgia Vision Program is administered by the Georgia Vocational Rehabilitation Agency and provides the following services to people who are at least 55 years old and have vision loss or a combined vision and hearing loss: comprehensive


What the Oscars Can Learn from VisionAware About Print Legibility and Effective Lighting for Reading

As many news outlets have reported by now, actors Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway announced the incorrect Best Picture winner at the 89th Academy Awards ceremony on February 26, 2017. Mr. Beatty opened the envelope and Ms. Dunaway read the winning picture as La La Land instead of Moonlight, the actual winner. How did this happen? Many explanations have been advanced, including human error by a tweeting and distracted Brian Cullinan, the PricewaterhouseCoopers accountant who handed the incorrect envelope to Warren Beatty backstage. Another possibility, however, is that the envelope – which was redesigned this year – was difficult to read, due


Meet Joseph Fontenot, MD, CVLT: Be Informed and Proactive About Low Vision Services, Protect Yourself, and Always "Buyer Beware"

Joseph Fontenot,M.D., CLVT Dr. Joseph Fontenot is a medical doctor, Certified Low Vision Therapist, and Medical Director of Community Services for Vision Rehabilitation (CSVR), with offices in Alabama and Mississippi. He is also the current Chair of the American Academy of Ophthalmology's Vision Rehabilitation Committee. In that role,


Meet Alan R. Morse, J.D., Ph.D., President and Chief Executive Officer, Lighthouse Guild

Alan R. Morse, J.D., Ph.D. Alan R. Morse is President and Chief Executive Officer of the New York- and New York State-based Lighthouse Guild, which provides a full spectrum of integrated vision + healthcare services helping people with vision loss, including those with multiple disabilities or chronic medical conditions. His professional interests include the influence of vision loss on health care utilization, functional implications of vision loss, and communication issues in patient-centered care delivery. Dr. Morse is an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Ophthalmology, College of Physicians and Surgeons of


What's New in iOS 10 Accessibility for Blind, Low Vision, and Deaf-Blind Users Part 1: Scott Davert, AppleVis Editorial Team

Guest blogger Scott Davert, M.A., VRT, is an AppleVis Editorial Team Member and the Coordinator of the New York Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program, administered by the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults. The Program provides no-cost communication and technology training to persons with significant combined vision and hearing loss who meet federal income guidelines. Equipment can include smartphones, tablets, computers, screen readers, braille readers, and adaptive


What's New in iOS 10 Accessibility for Blind, Low Vision, and Deaf-Blind Users Part 2: Scott Davert, AppleVis Editorial Team

Guest blogger Scott Davert, M.A., VRT, is an AppleVis Editorial Team Member and the Coordinator of the New York Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program, administered by the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults. The Program provides no-cost communication and technology training to persons with significant combined vision and hearing loss who meet federal income guidelines. Equipment can include smartphones, tablets, computers, screen readers, braille readers, and


My Journey: Coping with Dry Eye Syndrome

Holly applying her eye drops July is Dry Eye Disease Awareness Month! Dry eye disease is one of the most common eye problems affecting people today. Although the actual prevalence of dry eye is difficult to determine, due to varying definitions of the disease, the National Eye Institute, in Facts about Dry Eye, estimates that "… five million Americans 50 years of age and older are estimated to have dry eye. Of these, more than three million are women and more than one and a half million are men. Tens of millions more have less severe


Notes on Blindness: A Remarkable Film About Professor John Hull's Experience of Blindness Receives Strong Reviews

"Vision, in ordinary circumstances, is seamless and gives no indication of the underlying processes on which it depends. It has to be decomposed, experimentally or in neurological disorders, to show the elements that compose it." ~Oliver Sacks, M.D., In the River of Consciousness Touching the Rock: An Experience of Blindness Touching the Rock: An Experience of Blindness, first published in 1990, is the


An Award-Winning Optometric Student Essay: Ethical Issues in Low Vision Rehabilitation

The Association of Schools and Colleges of Optometry (ASCO) is the academic leadership organization committed to promoting excellence in optometric education. ASCO's activities cover a wide range of educational issues related to optometry, including applicant development and diversity, faculty and executive development, advocacy, and communications. ASCO also recognizes optometric student achievement through a number of annual awards, including the


Aging in America: Women at Risk for Vision Problems

by Mary E. Worstell, MPH Editor's note: Guest blogger Mary E. Worstell, MPH, is Senior Advisor, Office on Women's Health, United States Department of Health and Human Services. Ms. Worstell recently spoke on a panel at the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Leadership Conference and at a recent teleconference on the 21st Century Agenda on Vision Loss and Aging. She spoke to the health and disability disparities represented by seniors with vision loss and the need for collaborative efforts to improve services for older persons with vision loss. She encouraged our community to "be proactive and at the


Understanding Low Vision Care and Low Vision Devices: Part 2 in a Series on Low Vision and Low Vision Services by Bryan Gerritsen, CLVT

Guest blogger Bryan Gerritsen is a certified low vision therapist (CLVT) and owner of Low Vision Rehabilitation Services, providing low vision services throughout Utah. He is also the author of An Overview of Low Vision Devices,


There is Hope; There is Help: Part 1 in a Series on Low Vision and Low Vision Services by Bryan Gerritsen, CLVT

Guest blogger Bryan Gerritsen is a certified low vision therapist (CLVT) and owner of Low Vision Rehabilitation Services, providing low vision services throughout Utah. He is also the author of An Overview of Low Vision Devices,


Meet Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., Senior Policy Researcher, American Foundation for Blind Public Policy Center

Rebecca Sheffield, Ph.D., is a Senior Policy Researcher with the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Public Policy Center in Washington, D.C. The AFB Public Policy Center collaborates with policy makers in Congress and the Executive Branch to ensure that Americans with vision loss have equal rights and opportunities to fully participate in society. She also authors two important and helpful Public Policy Center publications:


Charles Bonnet Syndrome: Visual Hallucinations Are My Constant Companions by VisionAware Peer Advisor Sheila Rousey

Guest blogger and VisionAware Peer Advisor Sheila Rousey is an educator, assistive technology specialist, and certified braille transcriber. With a Master's degree in Special Education from Clemson University, Sheila has provided Interrelated Special Education Instruction in the public


Meet Author Irv Arons and Learn More About Gene Therapy and Gene Editing for Eye Disease

Irv Arons is the creator of – and driving force behind – Irv Arons' Journal, an online compendium of the latest information on ophthalmics, medical lasers, clinical trials, developments in stem cell therapy and gene therapy, and emerging drug therapies and treatments for retinal diseases, including age-related macular degeneration. Until his retirement in 2005, Irv was a consultant to the ophthalmic industry for over 30 years, and to the medical laser industry for over 20 years.


Meet Dr. Gislin Dagnelie and Dr. Duane Geruschat: Pioneers in the Study of Restored and Prosthetic Vision

Gislin Dagnelie, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor of Ophthalmology in the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and the associate director of the Lions Vision Research and Rehabilitation Center, a division of the Johns Hopkins Wilmer Eye Institute. His work over the last 20 years has been supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation,


VisionAware Response: The White House Conference on Aging Final Report

Guest blogger Priscilla (Pris) Rogers, Ph.D. is the Program Manager for VisionAware and co-author of Aging and Vision Loss: A Handbook for Families. Her other works include Self-Advocacy Skills Training for Older Individuals Who Are Visually Impaired and Solutions for Success: A Training Manual for Working with Older People Who Are Visually Impaired. She has an M.A. degree in gerontology and a Ph.D. in special education with an emphasis in vision and aging. First, Some Background and an


New Research: Stepped Care for Coping with Age-Related Vision Loss, Depression, and Anxiety

New research from Europe indicates that stepped care – a type of treatment that can offer self-help and "as needed" options for coping with age-related vision loss and depression – can offer promise in dealing with depression and anxiety in visually impaired older adults. Further, this stepped care approach (detailed below) could lead to standardized strategies for the screening, monitoring, treatment, and referral of visually impaired older adults with vision-related depression and anxiety. From the British Medical Journal (BMJ) The research, entitled


AFB Press Releases New Edition of Making Life More Livable: Simple Adaptations for Living at Home after Vision Loss

by Mary D'Apice, VisionAware Contributing Writer An interview with Maureen A. Duffy, CVRT, Author Making Life More Livable Agencies that provide services to people who are blind or visually impaired offer vision rehabilitation to the 5.3 million Americans over 65 with


On Veterans Day: VisionAware Thanks Our Veterans and Provides Critical Information and Veteran-Specific Resources

Master Sergeant Jeffrey Mittman According to the Blinded Veterans Association (BVA), there are 165,000 blind or visually impaired veterans in the United States. BVA data also indicates that some 7,000 veterans become newly blind or visually impaired each year, due to age-related macular degeneration, glaucoma,


Ten New Tips for Braille Users of iDevices: Scott Davert, AppleVis Editorial Team

Guest blogger Scott Davert, M.A., VRT, is an AppleVis Editorial Team Member and the Coordinator of the New York Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program, administered by the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults. The Program provides no-cost communication and technology training to persons with significant combined vision and hearing loss who meet federal income guidelines. Equipment can include smartphones, tablets, computers, screen readers, braille readers, and adaptive software.


What's New in iOS 9 Accessibility for Blind and Deaf-Blind Users Part 2: Scott Davert, AppleVis Editorial Team

Guest blogger Scott Davert, M.A., VRT, is an AppleVis Editorial Team Member and the Coordinator of the New York Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program, administered by the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults. The Program provides no-cost communication and technology training to persons with significant combined vision and hearing loss who meet federal income guidelines. Equipment can include smartphones, tablets, computers, screen readers, braille readers, and adaptive


What's New in iOS 9 Accessibility for Blind and Deaf-Blind Users Part 1: Scott Davert, AppleVis Editorial Team

Guest blogger Scott Davert, M.A., VRT, is an AppleVis Editorial Team Member and the Coordinator of the New York Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program, administered by the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults. The Program provides no-cost communication and technology training to persons with significant combined vision and hearing loss who meet federal income guidelines. Equipment can include smartphones, tablets, computers, screen readers, braille readers, and adaptive


Meet Antonio Capone, Jr., MD, and His Pioneering Work in Face-Down Positioning after Macular Hole Surgery

Antonio Capone, Jr., M.D. is a board-certified ophthalmologist whose special interests include pediatric vitreoretinal diseases, complicated retinal detachment, ocular oncology, and macular disease. Dr. Capone is an internationally recognized clinician, surgeon, and educator. He has authored or co-authored over 200 publications in peer-reviewed medical journals, book chapters, and publications from clinical trials. He is currently a Professor of Biomedical Sciences at Oakland University, and Professor at the European School for Advanced Studies in Ophthalmology, Lugano, Switzerland. In addition, he is Co-Director of the


The White House Conference on Aging Issues and Initiatives: Part Three

Guest blogger Priscilla (Pris) Rogers, Ph.D. is the Program Manager for VisionAware and co-author of Aging and Vision Loss: A Handbook for Families. Her other works include Self-Advocacy Skills Training for Older Individuals Who Are Visually Impaired and Solutions for Success: A Training Manual for Working with Older People Who Are Visually Impaired. She has an M.A. degree in gerontology and a Ph.D. in special education with an emphasis in vision and aging. In


A Summary of the White House Conference on Aging Issues and Initiatives: Part One

Guest blogger Priscilla Rogers, Ph.D. is the Program Manager for VisionAware and co-author of Aging and Vision Loss: A Handbook for Families. Her other works include Self-Advocacy Skills Training for Older Individuals Who Are Visually Impaired and Solutions for Success: A Training Manual for Working with Older People Who Are Visually Impaired. She has an M.A. degree in gerontology and a Ph.D. in special education with an emphasis in vision and aging. The 2015 White House Conference on


Meet Dr. Gregory Goodrich, Chair of the Upcoming Conference on Vision Loss in Older Adults and Veterans

Dr. Gregory Goodrich received his Ph.D. in Experimental Psychology in 1974 from Washington State University, when he also began his career with the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). He retired in 2014 after having served as supervisory research psychologist assigned to the Western


Calling All Advocates: White House Conference on Aging Set for July 13, 2015

Guest blogger Priscilla Rogers, Ph.D. is the Program Manager for VisionAware and co-author of Aging and Vision Loss: A Handbook for Families. Her other works include Self-Advocacy Skills Training for Older Individuals Who Are Visually Impaired and Solutions for Success: A Training Manual for Working with Older People Who Are Visually Impaired. She has an M.A. degree in gerontology and a Ph.D. in special education with an emphasis in vision and aging. The 2015 White House Conference on


Maintaining Your Ocular Lenses Helps Ensure Longevity and Enjoyment

Editor's note: As we end Women's Eye Health and Safety Month, Empish Thomas talks about the cosmetic reasons for her choice to wear ocular lenses and the vital importance of properly caring for them. Decision to Wear Ocular Lenses In 2012, I made a radical decision, to stop wearing dark sunglasses and start wearing ocular lenses. It was a huge step for me because I had been wearing sunglasses for such a long time. But I felt it was the right decision. I wanted to do it because of cosmetic reasons. I wanted my face to have a more natural look and I wanted to feel better about my appearance. My decision had nothing really to do with any medical problems I was having with my


Experiencing The Magic of Eye Makeup While Practicing Eye Safety

The Magic of Eye Makeup Oh, the wonders of makeup. It's one of those things that from the time we are young girls we cannot wait to get glammed up with cosmetics. The use of lipstick, blush, mascara, and eye shadow is not only transformative; it's almost magical. But did you know there are dangers lurking in your cosmetics arsenal, especially when it comes to your eyes? The Past and Present of Eye Makeup "Eyes are captivatingly beautiful. Not because of the color but because of the words they hold within them." This quote from an unknown author speaks


Vision Rehabilitation Therapists Awareness Week Commemorates Anne Sullivan’s Birthday

by Steve Kelley, CVRT New Date for Celebration of Vision Rehabilitation Therapists Awareness Week This year marks a change of date for Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT) Awareness Week. In the past, the week of Helen Keller’s birthday, June 27th was the highlight of this commemoration. For 2015 VRT Awareness Week will take place, April 12-18, the week of Anne Sullivan’s birthday, which was April 14. <img src="http://www.afb.org/image.asp?ImageID=6500"


Preparing for the 2015 White House Conference on Aging: Highlights of the Phoenix Conversation on Aging and Vision Loss

On April 8, 2015, a large group of older individuals with vision loss, family members, service providers, eye care specialists, policy makers, and researchers gathered in the same room in Phoenix, Arizona, during the American Foundation for the Blind Leadership Conference. The purpose of the gathering was to hold a “conversation about aging and visual impairment” to discuss issues to be raised at the upcoming White House Conference on Aging (WHCOA) to be held in July, 2015. White House Conference to Be Held July, 2015 How fitting that the conference will be held in


New Research: "Blindness Simulation" Activities May Do More Harm than Good

New research findings from the University of Colorado indicate that blindness simulations – intended to be bridge-builders resulting in greater compassion and understanding – can sometimes harm rather than help. According to the authors, simulation activities, and blindness simulations in particular, "highlight the initial challenges of becoming disabled" and thus "decrease the perceived adaptability of being disabled and reduce the judged capabilities of disabled people." The lead author is Arielle Silverman, now a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Washington in Seattle, who is blind and has experienced a variety of reactions from the public, related to people's


Meet Donald C. Fletcher, M.D., Internationally Recognized Authority on Low Vision Rehabilitation

Donald C. Fletcher, M.D., is one of the world's leading authorities on low vision rehabilitation. Dr. Fletcher is a clinician and researcher in the field of retinal diseases and low vision rehabilitation. He is a medical doctor and an ophthalmologist who has completed fellowship training in both retinal diseases and low vision rehabilitation. After completing surgical training, he gave up surgery to devote his practice to patients who could not have their vision restored by any medical means. He is affiliated with, and routinely sees patients


Braille Literacy Awareness Month: The Story of Louis Braille

During Braille Literacy Awareness Month, VisionAware is pleased to celebrate the life and work of Louis Braille (January 4, 1809 – January 6, 1852), the creator of the braille code, which revolutionized reading and writing for blind people throughout the world. This month, our examination of Louis Braille's life and work features Louis Braille: A Touch of Genius, authored by C. Michael Mellor and published by


Meet Nancy D. Miller, CEO of VISIONS/Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired in New York City

Ms. Nancy D. Miller, LMSW, began working with people of all ages who are blind, visually impaired, and multi-disabled in 1971. Since 1987, she has been Executive Director/CEO of VISIONS/Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired, an 88-year-old vision rehabilitation and social service organization in New York City. Ms. Miller has a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development and Family Studies from Cornell University, a Master of Science degree in Social Work from Columbia University, and is a New York State licensed social worker. In


Guest Blogger Jeremiah Taylor Reviews Descriptive Audio Narration for "Unbroken"

Guest blogger Jeremiah Taylor is a dynamic sales professional, motivational speaker, and serious movie buff. Life has not always been easy for Jeremiah, however. In 1999, he became suddenly and totally blind as a result of complications during routine back surgery. You can read more about Jeremiah's (and his wife Jo-Ann's) long, steady journey – from sudden blindness through rehabilitation to full employment – at the VisionAware website. "Going to the movies," Jeremiah says, "is not just the movie! It's a night out with friends and family,


Do You Have Problems with Light and Glare Sensitivity? Meet Leann Gibson, Who Has Been There Too!

Leann Gibson was born and raised in the small community of Wainwright, Alberta, Canada. Leann and her husband Steve are professional chefs who "fell in love over a buffet line," as they like to say. Steve also serves in the Canadian military; thus, says Leann, "Moving is a way of life, so our home is truly where the heart is." Leann's vision loss journey began in June 2012, when she awoke one morning with a sense that something was "not right" and had seemingly changed overnight. Coincidentally, she was working in an optometrist's office as an optometric assistant at the time. At work later that morning, Leann was overwhelmed by a cascade of visual changes,


What's So Wrong with "Elderspeak," Anyway? Answer: Everything

Hypocorisma: It's the bane of older adulthood. What is hypocorisma, you ask? Here is a helpful (and perceptive) definition from Maeve Maddox at the excellent Daily Writing Tips blog: Hypocorisma is a type of euphemism derived from a Greek word meaning "pet name." The English word hypocorism may be defined as "the diminutive or otherwise altered version of a given name." The use of diminutives and pet names is usually an indication of affection or intimacy, but sometimes hypocorisma is used to diminish, infantilize, or insult. For example, the


The True Ice Bucket Challenge: Never Saying "There's Nothing More that Can Be Done"

As the Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) Association's Ice Bucket Challenge winds down, I can't help but regret that my friend Arthur (Artie) Kraemer (February 12, 1960 - June 12, 2012), who succumbed to ALS, didn't live to see the outpouring of support for the disease (a progressive, incurable neurodegenerative disorder) that claimed his life. Artie was totally disabled from ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease, and was,


Meet Kooshay Malek, MA, MFT, Marriage and Family Therapist – Who Also Happens to Be Blind

Kooshay Malek, MA, MFT, is a marriage and family therapist in Los Angeles, California. She also writes for the Discovery Eye Foundation Blog, which features lively, up-to-date information on eye disease, eye research, nutrition, low vision, technology, and healthy lifestyle choices. The following essay, in which Kooshay recounts her concurrent personal, medical, and educational journeys from Tehran to Boston to Los Angeles, was first published on the Discovery Eye Blog as


Meet Robert Wall Emerson, Ph.D. and the Newly-Funded "Better Long White Cane" Project

Robert Wall Emerson, Ph.D., is a professor in the Department of Blindness and Low Vision Studies at Western Michigan University (WMU) in Kalamazoo. Dr. Wall Emerson, in conjunction with WMU colleagues Dae Shik Kim, Ph.D. (the principal investigator) and Koorosh Naghshineh, Ph.D., is the recent recipient of a $421,125 grant award from the National Institutes of Health/National Eye Institute. The three-year grant, entitled


It's Vision Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT) Appreciation Week: My Life as a VRT

Did you know that this week (June 22-28) is Vision Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT) Appreciation Week? Now you do. As a longtime – and proud – Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (CVRT), I have been asked by my colleagues to compose a paean, of sorts, to the "greatest profession." What Is a Vision Rehabilitation Therapist? Vision Rehabilitation Therapists (VRTs)


Meet Aries Arditi, Ph.D., Founder and Principal Scientist of Visibility Metrics, LLC

Aries Arditi, Ph.D, is the founder and Principal Scientist of Visibility Metrics, LLC. Visibility Metrics is a new venture for Dr. Arditi, who has devoted his career to a variety of research interests in human visual perception, spanning basic and applied studies in the human factors of vision and visibility and studies of functional visual impairment, including low vision and blindness. Dr. Arditi spent most of his earlier research career at Lighthouse Guild International, with a brief two-year stint at the IBM Thomas J. Watson


Guest Blogger Sue Wiygul Martin: Public Speaking As a Person Who is Blind

Novice at Public Speaking When I began speaking publicly about my life and my book, Out of the Whirlpool, a Memoir of Remorse and Reconciliation, I really didn’t have a clue what I was doing. My first time out was before a very small audience, most of whom I knew. I had planned it this way. My book begins with the account of my suicide attempt at the age of twenty-six which is the cause of my blindness. It’s a pretty heavy topic and I wanted to start small. That first


Meet a Bold Blind Beauty and a Deafblind Mother: VisionAware's Blogroll Spotlight

It's time for some VisionAware blogroll love once again. As I explained in my introductory "blogroll love" post, ... the VisionAware "blind bloggers" collective is a marvelous way to position my favorite bloggers front-and-center. You'll discover outstanding writing – and not only about blindness issues. My favorite bloggers are people who happen to be blind – and have much to say about the simple act of being deeply human. This week, I'd like you to meet two talented and thought-provoking bloggers whose subject matter ranges from fashion and beauty to living well with deafblindness. Bold Blind Beauty Stephanae (Steph) McCoy is the spirited fashionista who


Meet the Authors of Macular Degeneration: The Complete Guide to Saving and Maximizing Your Sight

This week, during National Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD) and Low Vision Awareness Month, VisionAware is pleased to feature the definitive resource for patients and families who must grapple with the sometimes-shocking – and always difficult – diagnosis of AMD: Macular Degeneration: The Complete Guide to Saving and Maximizing Your Sight by Lylas G. Mogk, M.D. and Marja Mogk, Ph.D. About the Authors Lylas G. Mogk, M.D. Dr. Mogk is the


Guest Blogger Jeremiah Taylor Reviews Descriptive Audio Narration for "The Wolf of Wall Street"

Guest blogger Jeremiah Taylor (pictured at left with his wife Jo-Ann) is the founder and CEO of ProActive Sales, Inc., a full-service sales management company. In 1999, Jeremiah became suddenly and totally blind as a result of complications during routine back surgery. You can read more about Jeremiah's (and Jo-Ann's) long, steady, and inspirational journey – from sudden blindness through rehabilitation to full employment – at the VisionAware website. In addition to his talents as a dynamic sales professional and motivational speaker,


Why Do We Fear the Blind? My Answer: I Don't. Do You?

Rosemary Mahoney, author of the forthcoming (January 14, 2014) book For the Benefit of Those Who See: Dispatches from the World of the Blind, has published a provocative op-ed "teaser" for her book in the January 4, 2014 edition of the New York Times. Entitled Why Do We Fear the Blind?, Ms. Mahoney's op-ed describes her work as an English teacher of blind students at the


The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field: 2014 Nominations

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field is currently accepting nominations for 2014. The nominating deadline is Friday, March 28, 2014. About the Hall of Fame The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field honors, at present, 52 individuals who were pioneers in the blindness field and shaped the field's history, philosophy, knowledge, and skills, while providing outstanding service to people who were blind and visually impaired. During my visit to the Hall of Fame in 2012, I was in awe as I read the biographies of


Out of the Whirlpool: The Story of a Suicide Attempt Survivor and the Rebuilding of a Life

Sue Wiygul Martin is the author of a just-published personal memoir, entitled Out of the Whirlpool: A Memoir of Remorse and Reconciliation, which she describes as "the story of a suicide attempt survivor and the rebuilding of a life." Out of the Whirlpool, which began as a series of blog posts, describes Sue's suicide attempt at age 26, her subsequent blindness, and the long, hard road she follows to rebuild her life – and herself – as a blind person and blind rehabilitation professional. Sue, who is a


"Going Blind" and "Getting Started": A Dynamic Combination

Going Blind: Coming out of the Dark about Vision Loss is a documentary film in which producer/director Joseph Lovett documents his own experience of gradual vision loss from glaucoma and his sometimes-difficult journey through the "secret world," as he calls it, of vision rehabilitation. Going Blind also tells the personal stories of everyday people who are living, coping, and ultimately thriving with blindness and


Where I've Been: My Blindness Work in Central Europe

Last month, I took a break from my duties at VisionAware.org to visit Central Europe, teach in the post-graduate Low Vision Therapy program at the Akademia Pedagogiki Specjalnej im. Marii Grzegorzewskiej (the Maria Grzegorzewska Academy of Special Education) in Warsaw, and attend a Board of Directors meeting for the Kielce-based VEGA Foundation, directed by my longtime friend and colleague Agnieszka (Agnes) Janicka-Maj.


Tips and Resources to Protect Yourself From Identity Theft--Third Installment

Now that you have read my two battles with identity theft I want to share with you how to protect yourself and resources you can use if it does happen. The most important thing that you can do as a person with vision loss is educate and empower yourself to avoid being a victim of this type of crime. A few months back I attended a teleconference hosted by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) that was specific for people with visual impairments. During the presentation valuable information was shared and resources given which I am going to now pass on to you. How Does Identity Theft Happen A very important thing to understand about identity


My Two Battles with Identity Theft and What I Learned: Second Installment

Editor's Note: This blog post has been updated. Read "My Two Battles with Identity Theft and What I Learned". Identity Theft Happened Again After dealing with identity theft the first time, I thought I had put things in place to protect myself, but it happened again. This time by a friend, not a stranger. It was around 13 years ago. I had lost all my vision by this time and was out with a girlfriend and her son. We wanted to go get pizza; we stopped at my bank's ATM machine, so I could get cash for the meal. We went through the drive-thur where I handed her my ATM card and verbally gave her my


My Two Battles with Identity Theft and What I Learned: First Installment

Editor's Note: This blog post has been updated. Read "My Two Battles with Identity Theft and What I Learned". My First Experience with Identity Theft I never realized how vulnerable a person could be until my ID was stolen. Most of my life I felt very safe and never really worried about my personal information being tampered with. But in 1996, all of that changed. I had just started losing my vision but could still see colors and read large print. I was working as a sale


Tips on How I Prepare for an Emergency

The author with wall-mounted fire extinguisher Are You Prepared for an Emergency? The month of September is observed as National Emergency Preparedness Month. As a person with vision loss are you prepared for an emergency? Do you know what things to do to handle an emergency? Several years ago I had to say no to both of those questions. I would tell myself to put things in place but I allowed procrastination to get in the way. It was not until Hurricane Katrina hit in the fall of 2005 that I sobered up and really began to get more serious about preparing myself for an emergency.


My Experience at the Signing of the ADA by Judy Scott

Guest blogger Judy Scott is the former Director of the American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) Center on Vision Loss in Dallas, Texas. Opened in 2006, the Center on Vision Loss is a 9,000-square-foot training facility that educates people with vision loss and their family members – along with the healthcare, construction, and design professions – about ways to create environments that promote independent and healthy living. In honor of the anniversary of the


Out of the Whirlpool: The Story of a Suicide Survivor and the Rebuilding of a Life (Part 3)

In honor of Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT) Appreciation Week (June 23-29), VisionAware is featuring the work of talented VRTs throughout the United States. Sue Wiygul Martin has worked in the field of blind rehabilitation for over 20 years as a Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT), a Low Vision Therapist (LVT), and an assistive technology specialist.


Out of the Whirlpool: The Story of a Suicide Survivor and the Rebuilding of a Life (Part 2)

In honor of Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT) Appreciation Week (June 23-29), VisionAware is featuring the work of talented VRTs throughout the United States. Sue Wiygul Martin has worked in the field of blind rehabilitation for over 20 years as a Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT), a Low Vision Therapist (LVT), and an assistive technology specialist.


Out of the Whirlpool: The Story of a Suicide Survivor and the Rebuilding of a Life (Part 1)

In honor of Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT) Appreciation Week (June 23-29), VisionAware is featuring the work of talented VRTs throughout the United States. VisionAware Peer Advisor Sue Wiygul Martin has worked in the field of blind rehabilitation for over 20 years as a Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT), a Low Vision Therapist


VisionExchange: A Support Group for Support Group Leaders by Guest Blogger Polly Abbott, CVRT

In honor of Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (VRT) Appreciation Week (June 23-29), VisionAware is featuring the work of talented VRTs throughout the United States. Polly Abbott is a Certified Vision Rehabilitation Therapist (CVRT), an Orientation and Mobility Specialist with a background in education, and Director of Rehabilitation Services at Second Sense in Chicago,


Two Pioneering African-American Educators to be Inducted into the Blindness Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame for Leaders and Legends of the Blindness Field honors, at present, 50 individuals who were pioneers in the blindness field and shaped the field's history, philosophy, knowledge, and skills, while providing outstanding service to people who were blind and visually impaired. The Hall of Fame, which belongs to the entire field of blindness, is located within, and is curated by, the American Printing House for the Blind (APH) in Louisville, Kentucky. You can learn more about APH's long and storied history


A Dog Guide Diary by Gil Johnson and Harley at The Seeing Eye, Inc. (Part 4)

Gil Johnson is a talented woodworker and the author of Gil's Guide to Home Repairs on the VisionAware website. You can learn more about Gil's early life and professional accomplishments at Meet Gil Johnson. This month, Gil is at The Seeing Eye, Inc. in Morristown, New Jersey, training with his new guide dog (pictured left). In


A Dog Guide Diary by Gil Johnson and Harley at The Seeing Eye, Inc. (Part 3)

Gil Johnson is a talented woodworker and the author of Gil's Guide to Home Repairs and Parenting or Grandparenting with Vision Loss on the VisionAware website. You can learn more about Gil's early life and professional accomplishments at Meet Gil Johnson. This month, Gil is at The Seeing Eye, Inc. in Morristown, New Jersey, training with his new


My Excellent Experience as a Hadley School for the Blind "Ambassador"

On May 13 and 14, it was my privilege to attend the Hadley Ambassador Training Program at Hadley School for the Blind in Winnetka, Illinois. The mission of Hadley is to promote independent living through lifelong distance education programs for people who are blind or visually impaired, their families, and blindness service providers. About Hadley School for the Blind Mr. William A. Hadley (at left) was a college and high school educator and


There's Nothing More that Can be Done, You Say? Not True, We Say!

Filmmaker and advocate Joe Lovett is the producer/director of Going Blind: Coming out of the Dark about Vision Loss, a documentary film created to increase public awareness of blindness, vision loss, and the vision rehabilitation system. Going Blind is also Joe's personal story of his ongoing struggle with glaucoma and his sometimes-difficult journey through the "secret world," as he calls it, of vision


A Dog Guide Diary by Gil Johnson and Harley at The Seeing Eye, Inc. (Part 2)

Gil Johnson is a talented woodworker and the author of Gil's Guide to Home Repairs and Parenting or Grandparenting with Vision Loss on the VisionAware website. You can learn more about Gil's life and professional accomplishments in VisionAware's in-depth interview with Gil and at


A Dog Guide Diary by Gil Johnson and Harley at The Seeing Eye, Inc. (Part 1)

Gil Johnson is a talented woodworker and the author of Gil's Guide to Home Repairs and Parenting or Grandparenting with Vision Loss on the VisionAware website. You can learn more about Gil's life and professional accomplishments in VisionAware's in-depth interview with Gil and at


Guest Blogger John Miller: Blogging against "Disablism" with a Dual Disability

Guest blogger John Miller is a writer, sports enthusiast, former graduate student, and author of the blog A Blind Man's Journey, whom we first met – and profiled – in Meet John Miller on the VisionAware website. John's blog describes his long and not-yet-finished journey, beginning with his early childhood and diagnosis with Norrie disease, which causes blindness and progressive hearing impairment, to his current life as an employee of


They Look So Real! Wearing Ocular Lenses by Empish Thomas, Center for the Visually Impaired

Guest blogger Empish J. Thomas is the public educator for the Center for the Visually Impaired (CVI) in Atlanta, Georgia, where she organizes tours, exhibits, presentations and speaking engagements. She also posts on CVI's SightSeeing Blog and the CVI community bulletin board. In addition, she talks with potential clients, medical professionals, social service representatives, family members and others about the services that CVI can offer. In her spare time, Empish is a career columnist for


Meet Alice Lynch: Artist and Designer from Braille Design: Custom Braille Jewelry

It gives me immense pleasure to introduce you to the work of the talented artist and designer Alice Woodside Lynch, who hails from Jonesboro, Arkansas. Alice describes herself as "Navy veteran, cat lover, comics reader, textile artist, jewelry designer, braille enthusiast, and champion of the downtrodden." She is the proprietor of, and creative force behind, Braille Design: Custom Braille Jewelry and Gifts and Brailletshirts.com: Custom-Made Braille T-Shirts. Initially, I met "Alice the cat lover" via Twitter


Getting On with Life when the Rules Change by VisionAware Peer Advisor DeAnna Quietwater Noriega

Guest blogger DeAnna Quietwater Noriega (at left) is an Independent Living Specialist and facilitator of the Vision Impairment and Blindness Exploration and Support (VIBES) Group at Services for Independent Living (SIL) in Columbia, Missouri. She is half Apache, a quarter Swan Creek Chippewa, and has been blind since age eight. DeAnna is a poet, writer, legislative public policy advocate, and Peace Corps veteran. You can learn more about DeAnna's life and work at her VisionAware Peer Advisor


My Adventures in Wall Climbing by Empish Thomas, Center for the Visually Impaired in Atlanta

Guest blogger Empish J. Thomas is the public educator for the Center for the Visually Impaired (CVI) in Atlanta, Georgia, where she organizes tours, exhibits, presentations and speaking engagements. She also posts on CVI's SightSeeing Blog and the CVI community bulletin board. In addition, she talks with potential clients, medical professionals, social service representatives, family members and others about the services that CVI can offer. In her spare time, Empish is a career columnist for


My Commitment to Professional Growth by Guest Blogger Laurel Leigh, COMS

Laurel Leigh is a certified Orientation and Mobility Specialist (COMS) with the New Jersey Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired. Orientation and Mobility (O&M) is a profession specific to blindness and low vision that teaches safe, efficient, and effective travel skills to people of all ages. Laurel's article, entitled "Personal Reflections on AER Membership: A Commitment to Personal Growth," appears in the Winter 2013 edition


Meet Gil Johnson: Blind Woodworker and One of California's "50 Notable People"

Gil Johnson is an avid (and talented) woodworker and the author of Gil's Guide to Home Repairs and Parenting or Grandparenting with Vision Loss on the VisionAware website. Gil also hosts the Repairing Your Home message board, where you can ask him any question about home repair techniques and tips. Gil's professional life began as a Rehabilitation Counselor and


My Journey into Ophthalmology by Guest Blogger Irv Arons

Guest blogger Irv Arons is the creator of – and driving force behind – Irv Arons' Journal, an online compendium of the latest information on ophthalmics, medical lasers, and new drugs and devices for the treatment of age-related macular degeneration (AMD). Until his retirement in 2005, Irv was a consultant to the ophthalmic industry for over 30 years, and to the medical laser industry for over 20 years. I have been following Irv's informative blog for several years, and have great respect for his depth and breadth of knowledge regarding developments in stem cell therapy, gene therapy, and emerging


My Amazing Amazon Adventure by VisionAware Peer Advisor Michelle Miller, LCSW

Guest blogger Michelle Miller, LCSW, is a licensed psychotherapist and professional grant writer who also serves as Director of Client Services for Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind in Washington, D.C. Michelle has advocated on behalf of clients with disabilities as an expert witness for legal matters and serves as a consultant to "vision awareness" events and documentaries. She is a board member with Guide Dogs for the Blind and the New Hope Development Corporation, a non-profit organization for underserved children and families she


In Memoriam: Professor Whitestick

I have always been an avid follower of blind bloggers – and of arts bloggers who are blind, in particular. My favorite has always been Professor Whitestick, whom I featured in a VisionAware Blogroll Love post last year: Professor Whitestick's Blog Professor Whitestick is the voice (and considerable intellect) that informs the deeply felt cultural and artistic observations on Professor Whitestick's Blog. The Professor describes himself and his reasons for


"My Life in Korea" by VisionAware Peer Advisor Lenore Dillon

Guest blogger Lenore Dillon, CVRT, has over 30 years of experience in all aspects of Vision Rehabilitation Therapy (VRT). Her experiences include both direct service provision (itinerant and center-based) and administration of VRT programs. She served as a faculty instructor at Northern Illinois University and was an associate professor from 2002-2005 at Korea Nazarene University in Chonan City, South Korea. You can learn more about Lenore's work as a VRT on her


Remembering Le Dan Bach Viet: 1961-2011

I first published this tribute in January 2011, on the former VisionAware blog. The blog was on hiatus in early 2012, the first anniversary of Bach Viet's death; thus, I'm publishing it now (updated and revised), so that our new readers can learn about this inspired – and inspiring – blindness professional. A Sorrowful Message from Vietnam Two weeks ago, I received an email with a sorrowful message that had been forwarded from Dr. Minh Kauffman, Director of the Center for Educational Exchange with Vietnam: With great sadness, I must tell you that Le Dan Bach Viet


Scene from a Barbershop: Deaf-Blindness Considered

I was preparing to leave my favorite venerable Greenwich Village barbershop this past week (after my monthly "bob-maintenance" appointment), when a murmur rippled through the premises: "You have to see this guy! Don't leave yet – watch what he does." I looked up, and sure enough – a youngish blind man paused at the front door, getting his bearings and orienting himself, so it seemed. He carried a long white cane and I could see that he also wore two hearing aids. He was deaf-blind.


The Importance of Braille Literacy: An Open Letter to the New York Times from Daniel Aronoff

Guest blogger Daniel Aronoff is New York City's premier blind food critic. You can read about his culinary experiences at The Real Blind Taste Test© blog and @blindblog on Twitter. Daniel received the People's Choice Award in the Dining and Entertainment category of CBS New York's Most Valuable Blogger Awards 2011. Following is Daniel's response to Listening to Braille: With New


My Journey Back to Braille by Empish Thomas, Center for the Visually Impaired in Atlanta

Guest blogger Empish J. Thomas is the public educator for the Center for the Visually Impaired (CVI) in Atlanta, where she organizes tours, exhibits, presentations and speaking engagements. She also posts on CVI's SightSeeing Blog and the CVI community bulletin board. In addition, she talks with potential clients, medical professionals, social service representatives, family members and others about the services that CVI can offer. In her spare time, she is a career columnist for


Why Braille Is So Important To Me by DeAnna Quietwater Noriega

Guest blogger DeAnna Quietwater Noriega (at left) is an Independent Living Specialist and facilitator of the Vision Impairment and Blindness Exploration and Support (VIBES) Group at Services for Independent Living (SIL) in Columbia, Missouri. She is half Apache, a quarter Swan Creek Chippewa, and has been blind since age eight. DeAnna is a poet, writer, legislative public policy advocate, and Peace Corps veteran. She has written the following tribute to honor Louis Braille (born January 4, 1809) during National Braille Literacy Month. My


November—a Time of Thanksgiving

We know the end of October brought about very bad times for millions of people and that it is going to take a very long time to get back to normal. But as a nation we have lots to be thankful for, such as the opportunity coming up to vote as a free people, the wonderful generosity of people who have donated time and money to help those in need, and the sacrifices of our military personnel to help keep us safe and secure, to name just a few. We hope you will continue keep the storm victims in mind and, if you can, respond to requests for providing assistance. With that in mind, VisionAware has a section on


Second Sense Blog "Jalapeños in the Oatmeal" Tackles Emotional Issues with Candor and Charm

It's time for some VisionAware blogroll love once again. As I explained in my introductory "blogroll love" post, ...the VisionAware "blind bloggers" collective is a marvelous way to position my favorite bloggers front-and-center for our ever-growing audience. You'll discover great writing there – and not only about blindness. My favorite bloggers are people who happen to be blind – and who have much to say about life's joys, sorrows, and everything else that makes us human. This week, I'd like you to meet the talented writer and blogger from Jalapeños in the Oatmeal. Jalapeños in the Oatmeal:


Dining in the Dark: Does Its Mission Succeed? Part 2

Dans le Noir? (translation: "In the Dark?") is a "dining in the dark" social franchise network that began in Paris, France in 2004. The stated mission of Dans le Noir? is to encourage and foster empathy with – and a greater understanding of – people who are blind and visually impaired. It is managed by the Ethik Investment Group, a French consulting and event-marketing corporation, which has added Dans le Noir? restaurant franchises in Paris, London, Barcelona, Saint Petersburg, and – most recently – New


Dining in the Dark: Does Its Mission Succeed? Part 1

Dans le Noir? (translation: "In the Dark?") is a "dining in the dark" social franchise network that began in Paris, France in 2004. The stated mission of Dans le Noir? is to encourage and foster empathy with – and a greater understanding of – people who are blind and visually impaired. It is managed by the Ethik Investment Group, a French consulting and event-marketing corporation. The Dans le Noir? social experiment evolved from a series of "le goût du noir" or "taste of darkness" dinners that


Adventures In Sighted/Blind Air Travel

In a few days, I'll be departing for Poland to work with the VEGA Foundation and teach/lecture at The Maria Grzegorzewska Academy of Special Education in Warsaw. I've been traveling there since 1995, and have made many close friends throughout the years. Whenever I visit Poland, I always bring along a rigid (meaning non-folding and non-collapsible) carbon fiber cane from the National Federation of the Blind for my good friend


A "Top Eight" List of My Favorite Blog Posts by Joe Strechay: Part 2

Guest blogger Joe Strechay is the CareerConnect Program Manager at American Foundation for the Blind (AFB). Here's Joe's description of his AFB working life: "I spend most of my time writing about employment, career education, job seeking, and


A "Top Eight" List of My Favorite Blog Posts by Joe Strechay

Guest blogger Joe Strechay is the CareerConnect Program Manager at American Foundation for the Blind (AFB). Here's Joe's description of his AFB working life: "I spend most of my time writing about employment, career education, job seeking, and


BlogHer '12: A Whole New Way of Thinking

Last week, I had an excellent (and educational) immersion in all things social media-related at BlogHer '12, BlogHer's 8th Annual Conference, held this year in New York City, from August 2-4. (Bonus: Whenever anyone asked where I was from, I was able to point downtown while saying, "About twenty blocks from here.") About BlogHer for the Uninitiated So what is BlogHer? Here's an explanation from the BlogHer website (i.e., The Mothership):


More VisionAware Blogroll Love!

It's time for some VisionAware blogroll love once again. As I explained in my introductory "blogroll love" post, … the VisionAware "blind bloggers" collective has migrated from the former VisionAware.org website to the sidebar of the new VisionAware blog. It's a marvelous way to position my favorite bloggers front-and-center for our ever-growing audience. You'll discover great writing there – and not only about blindness. My favorite bloggers are people who happen to be blind – and who have much to say about life's joys,


More VisionAware Blogroll Love!

It's time for some VisionAware blogroll love once again. As I explained in my introductory "blogroll love" post, … the VisionAware "blind bloggers" collective has migrated from the former VisionAware.org website to the sidebar of the new VisionAware blog. It's a marvelous way to position my favorite bloggers front-and-center for our ever-growing audience. You'll discover great writing there – and not only about blindness. My favorite


Some VisionAware Blogroll Love!

As my always-astute readers surely have noticed, the VisionAware "blind bloggers" collective has migrated from the former VisionAware.org website to the sidebar of the new VisionAware blog. It's a marvelous way to position my favorite bloggers front-and-center for our ever-growing audience. You'll discover great writing there – and it's not only about blindness, so please abandon that notion, dear readers. My favorite bloggers are people who happen to be blind – and who have much to say about life's joys, sorrows, and everything


On Meeting a Sighted Person

I'm guessing that most of us – both within and outside the blindness field – have encountered some version of the classic What to do when you meet a blind person or When you meet a person who is blind. These widely available instructional guides offer tips and techniques to help sighted people interact more effectively with – and avoid offending – people who are blind. Most include


Around the Interwebs with VisionAware

I have several excellent (and thought-provoking) items to share with our readers this week. The Blindo Diaries The Blindo Diaries has been on a creative streak this week, for sure! In a collaborative post entitled How Do You See?, Becca and


More Thoughts about the Meaning(s) of Blindness: Words for Blindness

Last week, I initiated this somewhat esoteric exploration with a post entitled Initial Thoughts on the Meaning(s) of Blindness, Via Art, in which I explored the (mostly unanswerable) philosophical questions that surround the meanings of sight, vision, blindness, and cognition. But this week it gets real. No more philosophical flights of fancy or theoretical issues. This week, my Twitter followers speak out – and do they ever! Here's the question


Initial Thoughts on the Meaning(s) of Blindness, via Art

Although I report most often on research and breaking news about blindness and vision loss, I also like to take the occasional flight of fancy and explore the (mostly unanswerable) philosophical questions that surround the meanings of sight, vision, blindness, and cognition. My Blog Inspirations Recently, I was inspired by philosopher Alva Noë's series on the National Public Radio (NPR) blog 13.7: Cosmos and Culture.


In Memoriam: Dr. Lorraine Marchi, Founding Director, National Association for Visually Handicapped

"We don't consider anyone blind who has usable vision. Ninety percent of the people who are considered blind aren't completely blind; they are hard-of-seeing." ~ Dr. Lorraine Marchi Excerpted from Dr. Marchi's obituaries in The New York Times and the San Francisco Chronicle: Dr. Lorraine June Fastie Marchi died in San Francisco on February 20, 2011, surrounded by family. Dr. Marchi was a


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