2018 January E Alert

Hines Alumni Association Monthly E Alert

2018 Month January

What you will find:

Information from our members including links to blogs, website articles and podcasts.




Out-Of-Sight.net invites you to their Tenth Annual Birthday Bash on Saturday, January 27, 2018!

To Attend, Here’s How to Sign Up!

Send an email to oosnhq with the following info:

First and last name

Email address

Preferred nickname

Phone number

How you heard about Out-Of-Sight.net

You will then become a member of Out-Of-Sight.net.

Special guest speakers for the celebration are:

Greg Stilson, from Humanware. He will present information about the new device, the VictorReader Trek! For more information, visit: www.Humanware.com

Saqib Shaikh, Software Engineer and lead tech on the SeeingAI research project. The Seeing AI app is a free Microsoft app that describes the world around you! It uses the cloud and artificial intelligence to help you navigate through your day!

Click the link below to hear more, or visit their website at: www.SeeingAI.com


Jason Romero, ultra-Endurance blind athlete from Denver. On May 23, 2016, Jason is the first blind person to run 3,063 miles across the United States

Ray Foushee. Ray has narrated over 500 books Here’s a short bio about Ray from the APH website at: www.APH.org

Dean Koontz, best-selling author. Here is a bio on Mr. Koontz from his website at: www.DeanKoontz.com

Ronnie Milsap, 6 time Grammy Award winner.

If you would like to ask questions of any of our guests, Send an email to: oosnhq

In the subject line, please write the name of the person who your question is directed to.

Send in your questions no later than Thursday, January 25, 2018, except for questions related to Ronnie Milsap. His interview will take place on January 12, and the recording will be streamed during our birthday celebration.


Social Issues


What’s your New Year’s resolution? Whether you’re looking to lose a few pounds or become more active, VA may be able to help.

Woodi, an Army Veteran, turned to VA for help with her back pain. After going through several different therapies, her physical therapist recommended incorporating yoga into her routine.

“I thought, how can you ask someone with a bad back to do yoga?” Woodi says. “I had no idea that yoga is done in so many different ways and for people of all ages and all abilities.”

Veterans enrolled in VA health care not only have access to comprehensive medical benefits, but also exercise and movement services like Woodi’s yoga class, weight loss programs, recreational therapies and much more.

“The VA has made a huge difference in my life,” Woodi says. “The yoga class has loosened my back up, taken away a lot of my pain, helped me to be able to move better, to have a better quality of life, to take less medication.”

Take control of your health. Learn how to apply for VA health care by visiting www.Explore.VA.gov




New post on Freedom Scientific Blog

Responsive Web Design: Why one site can behave differently on different PCs and browsers; by Jonathan Mosen

Most of us visit a few websites regularly, and our familiarity with those sites speeds up our use of them. A well-structured website is a pleasure to use with JAWS, thanks to all the navigation quick keys that provide for moving by common elements such as links, form controls and headings. You can also invoke lists of these elements, which may help you navigate the site more efficiently.

As we become more familiar with favorite sites, we have the option to customize our experience even further, using tools like place markers, Flexible Web and even scripts. These tools are particularly helpful when on the job, where it’s important to get at the exact information you need as quickly as possible.

One question we get asked regularly relates to seemingly odd behavior, where you use a different browser on the same system, or your usual browser on another machine, and the site doesn’t behave as you expect. Perhaps you have a desktop PC at work, and a Windows tablet for personal use, and the sites look and feel very different despite both PCs running the same version of Windows and JAWS.

That’s certainly confusing and frustrating. What causes it?

Before answering that specific question, let’s take a slightly wider view. When you visit a website, the experience you receive might vary depending on several factors. First, websites can receive information about the kind of browser you’re using to access them. While it’s becoming less common, some sites will still serve up a completely different, scaled-down site when a mobile browser, such as those found on Android and iOS, is detected. In that case, most mobile browsers provide for you to override this default behavior on the part of the website, and show you the full "desktop" site.

As for why you’re getting a dissimilar experience on the same operating system using different machines or browsers, the most common reason for the variation is a technique known as "Responsive Web Design" or RWD for short. For those interested in a more developer-friendly explanation of this concept, you can read this Wikipedia article.

In practical terms, RWD means that one website can serve a range of devices and device configurations. It’s great for the site’s developers and content creators because there is only one site to maintain. It’s a good thing for consumers because you don’t have to be concerned about whether a feature is available on the version of the site you’re visiting.

That said, RWD may cause some features to be invisible depending on your screen size. For example, let’s say you visit a site with a common menu of links to key sections of the site. If you visit with your window maximized and your zoom level set to 100%, the site may detect this, and expand the menu for you, making the links and text easier to locate. However, if your window isn’t maximized or your zoom level is lower than 100%, the site may make an intelligent decision to collapse that common set of links in the interests of best using the limited screen real-estate available. If the site makes appropriate use of text on its links, you’ll usually be able to locate a link to expand the menu. That’s fine when you know what’s going on, but if you search for content you know is there using a technique like the JAWS Find command or the links list, and you get told that the text isn’t found even though you definitely saw it there on another PC or browser, it can be disconcerting.

The solution is often a simple one. You can increase your chances of getting a consistent user experience across browsers and devices by following a couple of steps.

First and most important, make sure the zoom level in your browser is set to 100%. This can be done by tapping the ALT key and navigating whatever options are offered. Not all browsers offer a full menu bar nowadays, but a zoom option will be available. In Microsoft Edge, you can press control+0 to return to the default zoom level of 100%.

Second, if your browser supports it, it’s a good idea to maximize the browser window, ensuring you have the most screen real-estate possible.

Being aware of, and responsive to responsive web design can help you get the most consistent, easily-searchable experience across browsers.


Topics of Interest


VA News Releases

Today Navajo Code Talker, Marine Veteran George B. Willie Sr passed away after a storied life of service to our nation. He enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps as a 17-year old in 1943.

For more information: Navajo Code Talker, Marine Veteran George B. Willie Sr. remembered for heroic service to the nation




ZoomText 11.7 and Fusion 11.7 are now available!

The ZoomText development team has delivered a very robust set of version 11.7 updates for ZoomText 11 Magnifier, Magnifier/Reader, and Fusion 11. You can learn about all of the changes in the 11.7 update in the ZoomText 11 release notes: https://www.zoomtext.com/help/releasenotes.




Tech Capabilities: Using the Flashlight on your iPhone and Apple Watch to attract attention; by Timothy Hornik

Have you ever wondered how to increase independence through the various apps and devices available for the blind? Blind Vet Tech’s Tech Capabilities offers suggestions to achieve these goals. The flashlight or torch, for my UK followers, is more than a quick method to drain your device’s battery. Rather the flashlight on your iPhone and […]

Read more of this post

Tech Capabilities: Using the Flashlight on your iPhone and Apple Watch to attract attention


Send topics that you would like to be considered to terrykebbel


Terry Kebbel, President Hines Alumni

PS A reminder to our Members and Visitors: you can update your status information or donate at any time by using our website online forms. Go to this link: Update or www.hinesalumni.org