[Athen] Assistive/adaptive software & hardware & iMac... oh my

normajean.brand normajean.brand at hccs.edu
Fri Sep 21 08:38:00 PDT 2007

All of the concerns you have listed I have brought to the table, however
you are correct when you 'smelled' a Mac fanatic - the dept head. The IT
folks are made up of 3/4 PC and 1/4 dual users but they of course will
do whatever is handed down. I use both however it is a matter of using
the right tool for the job, and a Mac of any breed is not the right tool
for assistive technology IMHO. Right now I am the lone voice for
assistive software and hardware. I think that part of the reasoning,
from his perspective, is that Macs are easier to maintain, less
problematic than PCs and the other part is 'they just look cooler, more
hip and inline with today's generation of users.' This morning he said
he would keep a PC in each classroom and lab for those who need
accommodations if that was acceptable.

I guess my fear is that is like putting a label on the student and
saying "look at me" instead of blending with the rest of the students.
The other fear is having to go to the purchasing dept and begging them
to fund assistive software and hardware that **will** work with Macs.

Thank you for your input!


From: athen-bounces at athenpro.org [mailto:athen-bounces at athenpro.org] On
Behalf Of Phillip Goodman
Sent: Thursday, September 20, 2007 8:38 PM
To: 'Access Technologists in Higher Education Network'
Subject: Re: [Athen] Assistive/adaptive software & hardware & iMac... oh

Not to bash Macs, nothing wrong with them for those who prefer to limit
the applications they can run, the bottom line is that Macs only account
for a small percentage of the computers being used worldwide.

It sounds like a huge waste of money in both equipment and IT staff time
to me. What is the point? If they want both Mac and IBM compatible
machines why don't they have some of each? Macs have always been more
expensive that PC's (apples to apples) and now they want to make sure
they are paying more for ALL the workstations as opposed to half (or
less)!. There are known issues with running some of the accommodations
software using the Boot Camp and or Parallels boot systems, but I doubt
they have investigated these issues. Have they given a reasonable
explanation for why they want to do this?

I smell an equipment deal or a Mac fanatic somewhere here!

Phillip A. Goodman B.S. OTR/L

Assistive Technology Consultant

From: athen-bounces at athenpro.org [mailto:athen-bounces at athenpro.org] On
Behalf Of normajean.brand
Sent: September 20, 2007 8:01 PM
To: Access Technologists in Higher Education Network
Subject: [Athen] Assistive/adaptive software & hardware & iMac... oh my

Fellow ATHENians,

Is anyone on the list using assistive/adaptive software (ZoomText, JAWS,
Kurzweil, WYNN, etc.) installed on an iMac? And, if so, how

The Academic IT Support team, where I am employed, is considering
pulling all PCs from the classrooms and labs and installing iMacs, with
Windows OS running in the background or foreground depending on the boot
sequence. I have used Macs off and on since 1984 and they have some very
good qualities about them, however I am concerned that ZoomText and
other assistive software and possibly hardware will not run effectively,
or at all, on the iMac environment. Not to mention segregating and
calling attention to those users who may need the PC environment to
access learning materials with assistive/adaptive software and hardware,
I have major concerns regarding this plan of action.

Any thoughts? Constructive suggestions/criticisms welcome. Dodging
bullets here as they try to shoot the messenger...

Thank you for sharing...


Personal Mission Statement
Integrity, trust, commitment and talent is the foundation of my
My dedication to providing the highest level of technical expertise to
solve client's problems is why I'm here. I strive to create, innovate,
and to
research solutions to meet and exceed expectations.
-- NJ Brand
NJ Brand
Houston Community College-NW
Technical Support and Innovation Center
Assistive Technology Specialist/Sr. Lab Assistant
Town and Country Square Campus
MC 1379 Room RC13
1010 W. Sam Houston Pkwy N.
Houston TX 77043
VM/Office: 713.718.5604
FAX: 713.718.5430
Email: normajean.brand at hccs.edu <mailto:normajean.brand at hccs.edu>
http://nwc.hccs.edu <http://nwc.hccs.edu/>

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