Monday, April 13, 2009

page turning machine!

my original reaction to this was that it was pretty weird and ultimately a redundant little japanese technological oddity in these increasingly digital times, but as joel johnson over at boing boing points out, it raises a few issues that the kindle is direly lacking with regards to catering to people with physical disabilities.


  1. Anonymous3:46 PM

    Since the Kindle is still being improved upon, I can only hope that future releases will include more adaptive technologies. I think it would be fantastic if devices like the Kindle could be responsive to breath-control for folks with certain physical disabilities.

    I mean, if the technology in my Nintendo DS allows me to blow air into the microphone and essentially "blow out candles, dust off of maps, etc." in games like the LOZ: Phantom Hourglass, it's not like this is an unrealistic expectation.

    That said, even if the Kindle makes its design more accessible, it still won't allow people to view materials like catalogs or other documents that aren't available for purchase, so it's important that other adaptive technologies like this page turner start receiving press. (If I'm mistaken on this point and the Kindle does have access to outside documents, feel free to correct me.)

    I will say this, I'm happy that people are actually starting to address issues surrounding ableism and technology. I don't feel like enough mainstream attention has been given to this topic.

  2. Anonymous4:27 PM

    I think that I should clarify that while I *hope* the Kindle will eventually include adaptive technologies, I doubt that Amazon would pursue these ventures without proof that it would radically expand their market base.

    That said, I won't be supporting Amazon any longer for this reason (among many others):

  3. Anonymous4:34 PM

    Last clarification point (I swear!)

    The rankings system on Amazon mentioned in the Guardian article doesn't just strip LGBT books of their rank, but also books that address sexuality and disability. The latter makes my earlier post a bit more relevant to the initial topic.