Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Association of Adult Musicians with Hearing Loss 2013 Web Conference

I'm the captioning sponsor for the Adult Musicians with Hearing Loss web conference, to be held on Saturday, September 7th, 2013. I finish my weekly recorder lesson at noon, and then I'll have to ride my scooter quickly downhill to my home office in order to get setup in time for sound check, so it'll be a very musical day. I'm really looking forward to this conference. I've captioned for AAMHL for several years now, both onsite and remotely, and they always put together top quality events. So if you love music and you've either got hearing loss or you work/play with people who have hearing loss (and specifically, for this conference, cochlear implants, though I'm sure plenty of the information will be relevant for non-CI users as well), feel free to register for the conference!


Making Music with a Hearing Loss: Issues for Cochlear Implant Users

Note: All time listed in this announcement are for Eastern Standard Time (EST)

The Association of Adult Musicians with Hearing Loss (AAMHL) is pleased to announce our second web conference on September 7, 2013, featuring presentations on listening and making music with a hearing loss when you are a cochlear implant user. The intended audience is for consumers, musicians, music teachers who are interested in the effects of cochlear implantation on music perception and music performance.

We will be using voice-over IP (no calling in via phone) and captioning will be provided for this online event.

If you have questions regarding the conference or registration, please email us at info@aamhl.org

1. Introduction of our Association and our presenters (1:00-1:05 pm EST) / Wendy Cheng

2. Musical Interval Perception between Cochlear Implant Users and individuals with Normal Hearing (1:10-1:40 pm EST) / Dr. XIn Luo

3. Factors that Contribute to and Impede Satisfactory Music Participation by Adult Cochlear Implant Users (1:45-2:15 pm EST)- / Dr. Kate Gfeller and Ms. Virginia Driscoll

4. Developing a Music Rehabilitation Program (2:15-2:45 pm EST) / Mr. Richard Reed

5. Cochlear Implant Musicians Panel (2:45 to 3:30 pm EST) / Wendy Cheng, Moderator: Blue O'Connell, Lisa Jordan, Sara Gould, panelists

Bios of presenters and panelists:

Wendy Cheng is the founder of AAMHL, and is also studying viola and music theory while raising two musical daughters. She hopes to obtain a music degree someday.

Dr. Xin Luo is an assistant professor in the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences at Purdue University. Prior to this appointment, he worked as a post-doctorate research fellow at the House Ear Institute. Dr. Luo has authored many publication and studies on pitch perception and cochlear implants.

Dr. Kate Gfeller holds a joint appointment at the University of Iowa's Music Therapy department and the Department of Communication Sciences and Disorders. She is currently the principal investigator of the Music Perception Project at the University of Cochlear Implant Clinics.

Virginia (Ginny) Driscoll is an investigator at the University of Iowa's Music Perception Project. She received her masters in music therapy at the University of Iowa in 2006.

Richard Reed is a composer, musician and cochlear implant advocate. Before losing his hearing to antibiotics, Richard played piano and Hammond organ with Junior Walk and the All Starts, Otis Rush, Mark Cutler, and many other R&B, Blues and Rock and Roll bands. Unable to appreciate music for almost ten years, Richard underwent CI surgery in 2001. Richard is certified by the Hearing Loss Association of America and Gallaudet University as a hearing loss specialist. Richard is a guest lecturer at universities, symposiums and research facilities across the globe. His experiential knowledge help researchers improve the fidelity to hearing loss technologies.

Blue O'Connell is a music practitioner at the University of Virginia's Medical Center, a songwriter, and avid cochlear implant user. She resides in the Charlottesville, Virginia area where she gives concerts in coffeehouse settings.

Lisa Jordan received her bachelor's degree in music education from West Virginia University in 2004. While working as a high school band director, she began to lose her hearing, and opted to receive bilateral cochlear implants in 2012. Lisa has even performed her oboe and flute in musical ensembles post-implant.

Sara Gould began playing saxophone at the age of 9. She continued playing all 4 kinds of saxophones even after her hearing loss progress to the profound stage. She received her first cochlear implant in September 2009 and her second implant in December 2009. She currently resides in Charlottesville, Virginia, where she plays with several saxophone ensembles.

Friday, August 9, 2013

NCRA Convention Post!

I'm in the Newark airport, waiting for my flight to Nashville as I write this. I'll be getting in around 9:05 this evening, and staying until Sunday evening. If you see me in the hallway, please say hi! I'll be giving ad hoc Plover demonstrations at various points around the convention, and I'll be demonstrating Google Glass for captioning Saturday morning at 10:00 am at the "CART: The Tech Connection" seminar. Speaking of Plover, check out my most recent post on the Plover Blog, including my new Plover FAQ for Steno Professionals. If you have any questions about Plover that aren't answered by that FAQ, please feel free to ask, either in person or by emailing me at info@stenoknight.com. I'm really looking forward to meeting new people at the convention and to catching up with some of the people I've met at previous events. Please don't be shy about flagging me down if you see me around! I love talking about steno, and I can't wait to spend a whole weekend doing pretty much nothing but. Here's a bigger version of my profile picture, so you can see what I look like:

Making Tablets Client-Friendly

Most CART providers do the lion's share of their work one-on-one, with a single client reading from their laptop, which is usually mounted a foot or so away on a tripod. There's an unwritten social convention that it's not polite to reach over and fiddle with someone else's laptop, and I've found that virtually all my clients respect that rule without having to be asked. But what about when a CART provider sends their realtime feed to a tablet, which the client holds in their hands, often sitting at some distance away from the provider, or moving around the room while the provider stays in one place? For some reason, that simple act of holding a screen rather than viewing it while mounted on a tripod changes the whole situation. When people hold tablets, they're tempted to play with them; it's practically a law of nature. And if you don't want your client to have free rein over everything accessible via your tablet, what should you do? Fortunately, there's a very simple solution: Lock it up.

I use an app called Friend Lock Pro on my Samsung Galaxy Tab II. It's simple, aesthetically attractive, and only $1.99.

This is what the homescreen of my tablet looks like when it's unlocked. Notice the large dolphin icon. That's a link to the Dolphin Browser, which offers an aesthetically attractive full screen mode for realtime CART streaming. I made the icon nice and big using Giganticon, and set Dolphin Browser's homepage to the URL I use for realtime captioning via Streamtext. To get to the captions, it's only a single button push away. When I'm ready to hand the tablet to the client, I push the lock icon and get this:

Now Dolphin Browser is the only app accessible to the client. They can page through my homescreens and eventually find my personal screen (though I have blank homescreens on either side of the main one as a sort of buffer):

But if they try to access my email, they only get a notification that the app has been blocked. All notifications are also turned off, so the client won't get annoying (and possibly confidential) pop-ups from my email, calendar, or other apps while they're trying to read the captions. To unlock the tablet, I just have to draw a simple design in Friend Lock Pro's unlock screen, and the tablet is mine again. I can use it to access student schedules, display prep material, log my steno practice, or navigate to my next gig, using my own personal apps. Then I can lock it back up again and hand it on to the next client, secure that none of that information is accessible to them. Since installing this app, I haven't had to fret or worry about what the client is doing with my tablet when they're out of my sight. I can't recommend it highly enough.

I'm not a paid endorser for this app or anything; I'm just really, really happy with it! If anyone knows of equivalent apps for iOS devices, feel free to let me know about them in comments, and I'll pass them along to my iPad-loving colleagues.