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Old 09-07-2009, 03:38 AM   #1
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Default Best computer for my blind daughter?


I was searching around and found this forum. I have a question about computers I thought I'd ask.
I need a laptop (Preferably 13 inches) that is durable, will last long and doesn't feel like you're carrying a brick around. Also, very good battery life is also important. The laptop isn't for me but is instead for my blind daughter who turned twelve. She wants to learn to use the computer but the computers I have are very old.

Macintosh Performa 6200 and a Compaq running Windows ME.

I don't know much at all about computers and I haven't kept up to date on any of them (I still use the ME machine). Which computers do you think have the easiest OS to learn? Which one is the least amount of trouble.

I haven't had time to stop at stores and look around, asking people and trying to explain the situation.

Thanks in Advance and I apologize if this is the wrong section of the forums.

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Old 09-07-2009, 04:13 AM   #2
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Default Re: Best computer for my blind daughter?

The operating system depends on the person. I grew up on Windows (First computer I had came with Windows ME, actually) and I have used every version since, so I know quite a bit. Mac is one of those operating systems some consider to be user friendly while others say is a complete pain to use. I'm a mix of both.

Now a question about your daughter, if you don't mind me asking. This will help us here find her a good laptop. Can she see anything at all or is she completely blind? Reason I'm asking this is because of certain features that are actually built in to Windows that might help. For example, low contrast modes which makes the background black and letters white. Also a software based on-screen magnifier, and if it comes down to it, I know Windows Vista has a built-in narration program (not sure how well it works)

If Windows ME has the narration program, I'd start her out on that Compaq. If that isn't an option, I'm not sure where to look. I'm more of a desktop person. This looks nice: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...198&CatId=3987

You might want to take a look at this, too: http://www.hooleon.com/miva/merchant...Store_Code=KBH This would help her learn the keyboard faster, but I'm not sure how well it would work with that Compaq.

Hope this helps! Good luck!

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Old 09-07-2009, 03:07 PM   #3
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Default Re: Best computer for my blind daughter?

I myself grew up with the Apple II and the Macintosh but, at the time it was the only computer you didn't have to type code in to tell it what to do. I haven't used a Mac in years and instead keep creeping along with my Compaq.
Yes, my daughter is completely blind. She has a great sense of feel and hearing though. It's amazing what she can do, actually. I took her into Best Buy this morning, but, the sales person that was on duty seemed rather rude. He kept snapping at her not to "touch" the laptops on display. I made it quite clear she was blind and he proceeded to insist blind people shouldn't really have the need for computers. He was a young guy and I hope he gets sacked. It sure did discourage her but I'll keep searching.
The laptop you posted did catch my eye and that keyboard looks excellent. I noticed what you said about desktops and maybe that would be better for her. She'll always know where the desktop is and they tend to be slightly cheaper than most laptops of equal speed.

Thanks for your help! I'll continue to take your advice and also look around at other products. I'll be searching for the voice options on Windows ME now.
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