AAC, AT, Families, Inclusion, Literacy, UDL

iPhone Drawbacks

by Samuel Sennott

iphone sdk icon

There looks to be some significant initial drawbacks to the iPhone  platform.  The most important drawback, that only one application can run at a time, has come to my attention in a personal communication and in the form of this TechCrunch post.   This will make the scanning software, as well as some of the overlay controls much more difficult to configure.  As I look at working with the iPhone as a tool for special education as a long range project, it is good to note this and other major challenges.  Another major drawback is that the SDK is limited to only US developers presently.  Nonetheless, as Dan Herlihy often shows, when there is a will there is a way.


March 7, 2008 Posted by | Accessibility, iPhone | Leave a comment

iPhone SDK First Looks

by Samuel Sennott

iphone sdk icon

The iPhone SDK has been released! Why is this important? Because it could become a key platform for learning and communication tools for people with special needs. From a 9 location pragmatically organized communication set up for an elderly individual, right down to utilizing digital images and visual scene displays with our youngest learners, the iPhone/Touch may prove to be a more easily accessed avenue to the use of AAC and AT. Truly there are limitations at this time, but there are significant rumors about larger form factors and even the seemingly destined tablet. Some of the features are very exciting, like the ability to capture pictures and also the amazing multi-touch potential. One key feature of the SDK that could prove interesting is the iPhone emulator. While on one hand this is helpful for giving designers a chance to test their applications, on the other it is helpful because it gives a platform for running an application created for the iPhone for users to take advantage of.

See a picture gallery of the simulator here:

iphone simulator

Additionally, I see this tool and genre of tools being a key piece in the implementation of a one to one computing initiative. I look forward to dialogging with friends about this.

Watch the Presentation held on Thursday March 6th, 2008

jobs iphone sdk

Go to the Development Website:

March 7, 2008 Posted by | AAC, Accessibility, AT, iPhone, Special Education | Leave a comment

iPhone SDK: Ready, Set, …

by Samuel Sennott

The anticipation has built and built. The day is finally here. Tech Crunch and Mac Rumors are two good places to follow the big Apple news. What does the SDK mean to us? Well it has potential to mean a great deal. Imagine having your iPod touch be the best step sequencing, digital storytelling, portable direct select or one/two switch scanning device, all for under $500 with speakers and all peripherals.

apple road map

Although back in October for CTG, we had a basic AAC software, thanks to collaboration with an awesome member of the iPhone development community. Yet, it wasn’t right to move forward. It needs to be solid. Families and their children would be depending on it to work. An iTunes update should not break the functionality of a communication device. Also a conversation with a trusted Apple developer, made me realize the importance of respecting the process. Now is the time. It will be very interesting to see what happens.

I still maintain my original theory that there should be an open format for conversion to a shared iPod touch platform. PRC, Dynavox, MJ, Blink-Twice, and on should consider collaborating on a project like this. Wishful thinking maybe, but could be a powerful way to share.

March 6, 2008 Posted by | AAC, iPhone | 2 Comments