Out-Of-Sight News and Views

Issue #9

September 1, 2013


In This Issue

Greetings from Our President


Word on the Street

Guess Who Took Another Trip Around the Sun

Our Out-Of-Sight Superstar

On Stage – An Intimate Little Theater

The Bookshelf – 2 Selections

On Your Own – Facts and Statistics

In the News - Talking TV Channel Guide

Geek Gossip – Getting Started with Audacity

Another Milestone - Blind Motorcyclist Breaks Record

Healthy Choice, Healthy Living – Stress

In My Opinion - Top 10 Advantages of Dating Sighted and Blind People

Taking a Vacation? – Visit the White House

Fun and Adventure – Blind Navy Veteran Kayaks Colorado River

The Argus – Helps Blind People See Shapes and Colors

Come Join Our Fall Auction – September 21st

And, the Winner Is

The Recipe Box – Magic Cookie Bars

Dear Betty Blunt

Think Tank

Did You Know? – Birthstones

Words to Live By

A Round of Applause

Oosabelle’s List

What is Happening on Out-Of-Sight


Greetings from Our President


 Here we are again thanks to various contributors with another edition of the news letter packed with interesting articles and information for all of us to enjoy.

Another month has brought us new Additions to the site in the way of members, games, event hosts and delightful presentations.

Each of you continues to make Out-Of-Sight the place to come and enjoy meeting new people and forging friendships that will last a life time. 

 Remember to mark your calendar for our annual fall auction and raffle that will be taking place later this month on September 21st at 3:00 PM eastern. There are several items and goodies for you to consider bidding upon and I am looking forward to seeing all of you there. Note the details concerning this event are further down in the news letter.

And as always, if you think of anything else you would like to see in this format, be sure to let us know by writing to us at the below email address.


Best Regards,

Lee Richards 




To navigate quickly to the different articles in this newsletter using JAWS, System Access, or Window Eyes, press the letter H to move through the headings.  For MAC users, press Control Option Command plus the letter H. 


Word on the Street

  • Ruff!  Ruff!  Cynthia Owusu will soon be home with her new guidedog.  Welcome home to you both!
  • The movie in which Roger landed a part is in the midst of filming. Roger’s scene will be filmed on Saturday, September 7th, so break a leg Roger! 
  • And, they said it would not last!  Ha!  Congratulations to Charlie and Arcy Richardson on their 1 year wedding anniversary, which took place on August 24th! 
  • Off to college!  Harrison Tu will be attending the University of California Riverside beginning on September 26th, where he will major in Economics. Way to go Harrison! 
  • It’s vacation time!  John Horna will soon be going home to Cleveland, Ohio to spend time with family and friends!  Have a great time!
  • Applause!  Applause!  Roger also landed a role as Assistant Audio Technician for an upcoming play titled, Bells. It is a neat play about life for a group of sisters who love chatting to one another on the phone.  It will be performed in October, in London, Ontario.         

Got any news for us?  We would love to hear what is going on in your world, so please keep us up to date and write to:


We look forward to sharing your news with our extended family, here on Out-Of-Sight!


Guess Who Just Took Another Trip Around the Sun?


Help us celebrate our September birthdays:

  • September 7, Ricky Farley – Ricky, from Tennessee.
  • September 8, Sharon Helms – Sharon, from North Carolina.
  • September 8, Linda Permar – Linda lee, from North Carolina.
  • September 10, Patty Iorio – Pattycakes, from Virginia.
  • September 11, Lisa Filroy – Lisa Filroy, from Missouri.
  • September 11, Suzy Barnes – Suzy B., from Tennessee.
  • September 13, Mike Everett – Mike E., from North Carolina.
  • September 18, Leia Stewart – Leia, from California.
  • September 19, John Chatfield – John C., from Arizona.
  • September 21, Tanshia Inniss – Fabulous.T, from Barbados, West Indies.
  • September 23, Glenda Johnson – Glenda, from Nova Scotia, Canada.
  • September 23, Evelyn Cesena – Chili Pepper, from California.
  • September 24, Francois Marais – FM94, from South Africa.
  • September 25, Jim Ashley – The Maestro, from California.
  • September 25, Cynthia Owusu – Bernard’s Girl, from Michigan.
  • September 26, Jack Crawford – Jack C., from Alabama.
  • September 28, Louis Cisneros – Eddie Doo Wop, from North Carolina.
  • September 28, Steve Rushing – PC Tech, from ?.
  • September 29, Linda Knights – Linda, from Maine.
  • September 29, Della Lausch – Della, from Toronto, Canada.

Please help us build our birthday list, by sending your Username, first and last name, date of birth, (year optional), and where you live, to:



Our Out-Of-Sight Superstar

By Karen Santiago


Editor’s Note:

Thanks to everyone who wrote in with your suggestions about who should be our Member of the Month for September! There were several names put forth, and it was a difficult decision as all of the candidates are members who deserve this recognition! Unfortunately, only one member each month can be the recipient of this honor.  Keep those submissions coming, because we recognize a member for each month.  So, without further ado:

Congratulations to Mike Everett for becoming our September Member of the Month!  Now, here is a bit more about our friend, Mike.


I had a great time interviewing our September member of the month, Mike Everett. Mike has lived in Washington, NC all of his life. Nope, that is not supposed to be DC, it is the first town/city that was named Washington, and in North Carolina! It is referred to as Little Washington, so it is not confused with Washington, D.C. Hey trivia hosts, you think there is a future question here?


In his earlier years, Mike lived near the Pamlico River. He spent most of his free time down there with his friends swimming and fishing. Mike was diagnosed with RP, at a fairly young age. Mike’s father purchased an unused airport landing strip in 1982. Mike cleared out the property of old debris, and maintained the lawn. His dad had a commercial building put on the property to house an auto body shop, and he sold used cars. Mike started working with his dad when he was 16 years old.  After graduating High School, Mike went to a Community College to study machinery. It was halfway during college that his vision started to diminish. This kind of put a wrench into his plan, he said. However, that did not stop him from completing the program and receiving his degree.


In 1984 the Everett family decided to build a house on this large piece of property. Mike did much of the building, from wiring, plumbing, to the construction. It took some time, but on July 4 1986 they moved into their brand new home. Mike’s mom worked downtown in her beauty salon, and was tired of the commute. So, they added a salon onto the end of their home. How about that, drop your car off to get fixed, and get yourself a new haircut!

In 1988 Mike had cataract surgery and it greatly improved his vision. Two years later Mike started working for Stanadyne automotive corporation, a manufacturing company of diesel parts. He started on the 2nd shift, 3:30 – 12:00, which was difficult   when arranging rides. Finally after two years of second shift, he was moved to first shift. Some of his jobs included working on an antifreeze recycling machine, dye casting molds, machine shop, fuel pumps, production line, , and training new employees. Due to the cataract surgery, his eyes were extremely sensitive to light. He suffered from macularedema; blisters forming on the retina. The company tried to accommodate his needs, but it was difficult since he moved from one department to the next. After five years, Mike decided it would be best for the health of his eyes to leave, and he did.


In February 1995, Mike’s mother became ill and suddenly passed away. This was a great shock to Mike and his father. It took quite some time for the both of them to adjust, as anyone could imagine.  Mike is a Christian, and is a firm believer in his faith and that is how he was able to cope and move on. It was his faith that would have to be called upon again in late 1999, when his father suffered a heart attack and needed bypass surgery. Mike’s dad had several other complications while in the hospital for 51 days, and Mike is truly grateful for his father’s recovery.


Currently, Mike maintains some parts of the lawn, the house, and the behind -the -scenes of the auto body shop and car lot. For instance, he is in charge of advertising, ordering parts, handling calls, e bay, just to name a few.


It was his sister that got Mike involved in computers. She introduced him to text chat, the in thing back then. After acquiring a computer and JAWS, Mike continuously listened to the trainings till he got a headache. He was introduced to FTP, Audio Tips, and Out-Of-Sight, by friends. As you all know, Mike is a host of Technically Speaking, where he gives computer advice. Mike likes going to games and chat rooms where he meets people from all over the world. He especially likes the Book Club, Blind Handyman, and The Learning Center.


Here are two things that Mike said during the closing of our interview; do not limit yourself and become more independent, the technology is out there. His final question to me was if I wanted to know his real name. He told me it was Fred, who knew?

If you would like to send Mike a message of congratulations, or recommend someone for our October Member of the Month, please write to:


We look forward to your suggestions in selecting our next Out-Of-Sight Superstar! 


On Stage – An Intimate Little Theater

By Joe Giovanelli


Not long ago I had some free time so I wandered into a small but well-appointed theater.  The seats were very comfortable and the temperature was just about right.  A music show was getting ready to start. From what I could see, there were about 25 to 30 people in the room. One man had a guitar.  A lady had a few sheets of paper which I guess she planned to read from. There was a grand piano on the stage.


The room got very quiet and the host stepped to the mike and introduced the first performer. He sang a good old country tune. You should have heard the applause he received.  The next person went to a keyboard he'd previously set up and played an energetic rock tune which sounded like Jimmy Hendricks. He got lots of cheers after that was over.  A rather shy lady stepped to the mike holding a flute. She played a beautiful piece of classical music to the accompaniment of a recorded music track. What a hand she got!


The evening was just getting started and we already had three different musical styles.  The audience appreciated each one's performance.  Another guy went to the grand piano and played some pretty advanced jazz. As before, the clapping was almost deafening.  As the evening progressed, I heard singers and musicians with various skill levels, but regardless of that, each received thunderous applause.  I'm looking forward to the next music show in that small, intimate theater.


Would you like to come to the next performance? Well, you can! All you need to do is check the daily schedule for Out-Of-Sight, and you will see that the next time the little theater will open is next Saturday at 8:00 PM eastern. Follow the crowd to the On Stage room and get there early so you can get a good seat.  See you there!


The Book Shelf – 2 Selections


Do you love to curl up with a good book?  Been meaning to read that best seller?  Here are two of our book club selections.  They are to be read for our next book club meeting, which will be held, Friday, September 20, at 8:00 PM eastern, in the Library.  See you there!


Book #1:  Daddy’s Gone a Hunting

DB 76343

Author: Mary Higgins Clark

Reading Time:  10 hours, 1 minute

Read by Madelyn Buzzard

Suspense Fiction


Concerned by something she discovered at her family’s furniture business, Kate Connelly asks former employee Gus Schmidt to join her there in the predawn hours.  But, the building explodes as they enter, killing Gus and leaving Kate comatose—and the prime suspect in an insurance scam.  Some violence.  Bestseller 2013.

Download Daddys gone a hunting


Book #2: Cuckoo’s Calling

DB 76784 

Author: Robert Galbraith 

Reading Time:  15 hours, 56 minutes 

Read by Robert Glenister 

Mystery and Detective Stories


J.K. Rowling writing as Robert Galbraith.  Private detective Cormoran Strike is down on his luck.  He lost a leg in Afghanistan, his practice is suffering, he broke up with his girlfriend, and he lives in his office.  Then, he is hired to investigate supermodel Cuckoo’s supposed suicide. Strong language, some violence, and some descriptions of sex. Bestseller 2013.  Commercial audio book.

Download Cuckoos calling        


On Your Own – Facts and Statistics

By Karen Santiago


Levels of Visual Function:

There are four levels of visual function, according to the International Classification of Diseases; 

  • normal vision
  • moderate visual impairment
  • severe visual impairment
  • blindness

Moderate visual impairment combined with severe visual impairment are grouped under the term low vision: low vision taken together with blindness represents all visual impairment.


Legally Blind:

The federal statute states that blindness means central vision acuity (clearness of vision) of 20/200 in the more functioning eye with the use of corrective lens. Simply put, individuals who are incapable of reading the largest letter on an eye chart even while wearing corrective lens are deemed legally blind by the government.


Causes of Visual Impairments:

Globally the major causes of visual impairment are:

  • uncorrected refractive errors (myopia, hyperopia or astigmatism), 43 %
  • cataracts, 33%
  • glaucoma, 2%.


  • Fast Facts:
  • 285 million people are visually impaired worldwide: 39 million are blind and 246 have low vision.
  • About 90% of the world’s visually impaired live in developing countries.
  • The number of people visually impaired from infectious diseases has greatly reduced in the last 20 years.
  • 80% of all visual impairment can be avoided or cured.



Almost all statistics on blindness are estimates, which mean that the numbers found in a sample are extrapolated to the entire population. United States government agencies—including the Bureau of the Census, the National Center for Health Statistics, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics—use sophisticated statistical techniques that lead to population estimates with great accuracy. Moreover, these techniques also provide the margin of error.


Children: under age 15

An estimated 19 million children are visually impaired. Of these, 12 million children are visually impaired due to refractive errors, a condition that could be easily diagnosed and corrected. 1.4 million are irreversibly blind for the rest of their lives.


Blindness among Children through age 21 (2012):

·                 59,193

·                 By reporting agency

·                         Reported by state departments of education: 49,794 (84.1%)

·                         Reported by residential schools for the blind: 4,859 (8.2%)

·                         Reported by rehabilitation programs:  3,301 (5.6%)

·                         Reported by multiple disability programs: 1,239 (2.1%)

·                 By primary reading medium

·                         Braille readers: 5,186 (8.8%)

·                         Print readers: 16,635 (28.1%)

·                         Auditory readers:  4,728 (8.0%)

·                         Non-readers: 20,361 (34.4%)

·                         Pre-readers: 12,283 (20.7%)


Education attainment 21 – 64 (2011):

·                 Less than high school graduation: 4,232,100

·                 High school diploma or a GED: 1,061,600

·                 Some college education/associates degree:  939,700

·                 Bachelor's degree or higher: 374,400


Adults: age 55 and over

About 65 % of all people who are visually impaired are aged 50 and older, while this age group comprises about 20 % of the world's population. With an increasing elderly population in many countries, more people will be at risk of age-related visual impairment.


Income Status, 2011:

·                 Median Annual Earnings: $33,200

·                 Median Annual Household Income: $32,600

·                 Number living below the poverty line: 1,002,700 (31.0%)


Supplemental Security Income 21 - 64:

received SSI benefits in 2011 was 604,700 (18.7%).


Job Capability:

Braille is a strategy that enables the blind to read and write. Through the use of Braille and technology there are several employment opportunities that are available to blind people. Blind people have been successful in the field of accounting, law, customer service, travel, stock brokeragehttp://images.intellitxt.com/ast/adTypes/icon1.png, electrical engineering, teaching, and more.


Employment 21 - 64( 2011):


  • Employed: 1,225,080
  • Full-time/Full-year Employment: 770,000
  • Unemployment (in the labor force): 302,909
  • Unemployment (not in the labor force): 1,849,048

Therefore, for working age adults reporting significant vision loss, only 36.8% were employed.


Global response to the Prevention of Blindness:

Globally, 80% of all visual impairment can be prevented or cured. Areas of progress over the last 20 years include:

  • governments establishing national programs to prevent and control visual impairment
  • eye care services increasingly integrated into primary and secondary health care systems, with a focus on the provision of services that are available, affordable and high quality
  • campaigns to raise awareness, including school-based education
  • stronger international partnerships, with engagement of the private sector and civil society.

Data over the last 20 years shows that there has been significant progress in preventing and curing visual impairment in many countries. Furthermore, there has been a massive reduction in onchocerciasis-related blindness as part of a significant reduction in the disease. This has been achieved through a number of successful international partnerships.

Specific achievements include Ghana and Morocco, both of whom have reported elimination of trachoma (2010 and 2007 respectively). Over the last decade, Brazil has been providing eye care services through the national social security system. Since 2009, China has invested over 100 million dollars in cataract surgeries. Oman has completely integrated eye care service provision in the primary health care framework over the last decade and since 1995 India has made available funds for eye care service provisions for the poorest at district levels.


Its role is to:

  • develop policies and strategies to prevent blindness
  • to give technical assistance to Member States and partners
  • to monitor and evaluate programs;
  • to coordinate international partnerships.

In 2009, the World Health Organization (WHO) approved the 2009-13 Action Plan for the Prevention of Avoidable Blindness and Visual Impairment, a roadmap for Member States, WHO Secretariat and international partners.

WHO works to strengthen national and country-level efforts to eliminate avoidable blindness, help national health care providers treat eye diseases, expand access to eye health services, and increase rehabilitation for people with residual visual impairment. Building and strengthening health systems is a particular area of focus.


WHO leads an international alliance of governments, private sector and civil society organizations aiming to eliminate blinding trachoma from the world by the year 2020.

For the last ten years WHO has worked with the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness in the global initiative "Vision 2020: the Right to Sight".

Since 2004, WHO in partnership with Lions Clubs International has established a  global network of 35 childhood blindness centers in 30 countries for the preservation, restoration or rehabilitation of sight in children.

In response to the increasing burden of chronic eye disease WHO is now developing policies and guidelines for diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, age-related macular degeneration and refractive errors.

Finally, to support comprehensive eye care systems, WHO provides epidemiologic and public health technical support to its Member States.

If you have a question about this section or would like a specific topic covered, please email us at:



In the News – Talking TV Channel Guide

Submitted by Debi Chatfield

Reprinted from the Philadelphia Inquirer


How does a blind person find what to watch on a TV with 200 channels and 46,000 video-on-demand choices of movies, shows, and clips? Tom Wlodkowski, a blind executive at Comcast Corp., thinks he has the answer: a talking TV channel guide.  No joke.


Quote, The television is not strictly as visual a medium as you might think, end quote, said David Goldfield, a computer technology instructor at the Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired. Quote, Radio drama in the U.S. is more or less dead. If you are blind and you want a good story, you are still going to get it on television. End quote.  Comcast expects the talking guide to come with its next-generationX2 platform in 2014. The cable giant demonstrated the talking guide this year at a California technology conference and at the cable-TV-industry trade show in Washington.

Comcast also market-tested the guide with 20 average-Joe-type sight-impaired individuals in Philadelphia, arranged by the Associated Services for the Blind and Visually Impaired.  The interactive, cloud-based guide - the current voice is a woman, but users eventually could choose the voice, as they can with a ring tone responds to buttons the person pushes.

This is part of a year-old project at Comcast to make the company's products more accessible to customers with disabilities. Wlodkowski has an accessibility team and will soon have a lab in the Comcast Center.

Comcast is not doing this just to reach out to the nation's 1.3 million blind individuals who fear being left behind as popular culture and media go digital on the Internet and TV. The Twenty-First Century Communications and Accessibility Act of 2010, passed on the 20-year anniversary of the Americans With Disabilities Act, is forcing technology companies to integrate accessibility functions into products. It's believed that, in three years, talking interfaces will have to come with TV products.

Wlodkowski thinks he also can drive business. People with disabilities account for $200 billion in discretionary spending power, and catering to their needs, he believes, can boost brand loyalty. Quote, We will meet the requirements of the law, but we also believe there can be innovation, end quote, he said. Wlodkowski is looking to develop products that could help older Americans, quote, age in place, end quote, through the Xfinity home products, which now include home security.

Generally, technology companies - with the exception of Apple Inc. -have received poor marks in the selling of blind-friendly products. Quote, We see it as a civil right, and we see manufacturers embracing accessibility way too slowly, end quote, Lauren McLarney, government affairs specialist at the National Federation of the Blind, said of consumer electronics and technology companies. Comcast's talking guide sounds, quote, worthwhile, end quote, but she hasn't seen it. The association offers a channel guide by zip code called newsline that last year was accessed 600,000 times. Before the talking guide, Wlodkowski said, he would have to recognize Matt Lauer's voice at NBC or Anderson Cooper on CNN. He also memorized channel numbers. But most times, he had no idea what was on the channel. Quote, The only way I could navigate TV before, end quote, Wlodkowski said, "was to go up and down the channels and listen until I found something that I liked. End quote. Recently, he was fiddling with a talking TV guide and stumbled on Brady Bunch reruns. Quote, They still syndicate that? Wow, end quote, he said.
Formerly with AOL Inc., Wlodkowski is the vice president of accessibility and said his team at Comcast had four goals:

* To seek information from disabled customers about what they need and how they interact with Comcast's products.

* To integrate functionality into products so they can be more easily used by disabled subscribers.


* To introduce specific products, such as the talking guide.

* To enhance customer service for disabled subscribers.

Wlodkowski, who was born blind, was raised in Southington, Conn., with three older brothers. His parents insisted on a regular childhood. He rode a bike in the neighborhood, skied with a guide, and marched in the marching band (he beat the snare drum). His most popular sitcom was Cheers because, he said, quote, it was relatively easy to follow. When Norm walked in, everybody said, Hi, Norm. end quote. He attended Boston College, majoring in communications. His first media job was with WGBH, the public broadcasting station in Boston. While there, Wlodkowski developed, with a federal grant from the Department of Education, a prototype of a talking TV interface. It was never commercialized. Wlodkowski said he was happy to be back in a city with mass transit and lives in an apartment at 17th and Arch Streets. His wife, Michele, and 15-year-old son, Colin, will relocate from Virginia, and he intends to buy a suburban home near a rail line.

One challenging experience in Philadelphia has been mastering the elevators at the sky-high Comcast Center. There are more than 30 elevators, and some go only to certain floors. Quote, Catching the elevator in this place, end quote, Wlodkowski said, quote, is an art that I do not think I have figured out. End quote.

Geek Gossip – Getting Started with Audacity

By Rich De Steno


Audacity is a free powerful multi-track audio recorder and editor for Windows or the Mac.  This article will focus on its basic functions in the Windows environment.  David Bailes has written an excellent guide for use of Audacity with Jaws, although it really applies to use with any screen-reader.  You can download a zip file of Audacity Version 2.0.3, its special Lame MP3 encoder, and the David Bailes guide from my dropbox with the following link:




After you install Audacity, you should also install its special Lame MP3 encoder so that you will be able to save files in the MP3 format.  To make a voice recording, first plug a microphone into your computer and make sure your sound card is set to microphone, and not line-in.  Press r for record and speak.  You may pause recording by pressing p for pause.  To end the recording, press the space bar.  Press space bar again to hear the recording.  If the volume of the recording is too low or high, you can adjust the input and output by pressing control-F6 twice to get to the Transport Tool Bar and tabbing over to the mixer slider out and input and adjusting the percentage numbers.  The input will affect the volume of future recordings.  Press control-F6 again to exit that tool bar.  To adjust the volume of the recording you just made, press control-a to select the entire recording, press alt-c to get to the Effects menu, arrow down once to Amplification, and press Enter to accept the suggested adjustment in volume.  This will adjust the volume to peak level without distortion.  To save the recording, press alt-f for the file menu, arrow down to Export, and press Enter.  Type in a path and file name and tab over to select a format, such as wav or MP3.  If you choose MP3, you should tab over to Options and choose a bit rate.  Tab over to Save and press Enter.  A screen will come up enabling you to enter file tag information, such as a title and artist.  Press Enter to exit this file tag screen.  The same procedure applies to line-in recordings once you change your computer's audio input to line-in.  Line-in recordings would enable you to, for example, record old cassettes and save them in MP3.


Audacity is capable of making professional-sounding multi-track recordings.  Let us say you make a recording of you singing a line of a song.  It is fairly simple to record a second track over that recording of you singing harmony with yourself.  Similarly, you may want to record yourself singing over a karaoke music background.  To sing over a karaoke track, press control-o to open the karaoke file.  Once it is loaded into Audacity, it becomes your first track, similar to the above example of singing a line of music.


Use headphones for this procedure.  With the first track loaded into Audacity, press r to begin recording a second track.  You will hear the first track played through your headphones, so you will know exactly when to sing the second track.  When you are finished, press the space bar to stop. 


You now have a two-track recording, but you will probably want to balance the volume of the two tracks to get the most desirable mix.  You can work on each track individually to adjust volume or apply other effects.  Press the up and down arrows to hear if either or both tracks are selected.  To toggle a track between selected and unselected, press Enter on the track.  To work on one of the two tracks, make sure it is selected and that the other track is unselected.  To adjust the volume of the selected track,, focus on that track, press the home key, and then press shift-end key to work on that entire track.  Now you may adjust the volume of that track by pressing alt-c for the Effects menu, arrowing down once to Amplify and pressing Enter, and typing in a positive number or a negative number and pressing Enter to raise or lower the volume of that track, respectively.


Once you are satisfied with the mix, you should save this two-track recording as a Project in the file menu.  This enables you to retrieve it at a later date if you decide that you want to make further adjustments to individual tracks.  If you want to save the two-track recording as a wav or MP3 file, follow the instructions described above for exporting a file to wav or MP3.


Audacity has a multitude of other functions and capabilities, such as using effects like noise reduction, applying reverb, compressing the sound, fading in and out, and many others, all of which is beyond the scope of this article.   The David Bailes guide referred to above is an excellent means of learning much more about the program and its use

with a screen-reader.  Good luck and have fun with Audacity.


Another Milestone - Blind Motorcyclist Breaks Record

Submitted by Roger Khouri

By Nicole Le Marie


Every corner is a blind bend for this motorcyclist.

But Stuart Gunns inability to see where he’s going has not prevented him from setting a new world speed record.

He became the fastest blind and disabled biker on the planet after hitting 167.1mph on Saturday.

His father, Geoff, rides alongside him and uses an intercom system to tell him if he is drifting off course or needs to brake.

‘I hope this proves to people that just because you are blind or have a disability, does not mean it should change. or limit your life, said Stuart, from Edinburgh. This record-breaker is zooming along at 167mph… and he cannot see a thing. I have ridden for years with my dad and so it worked really well.’

The 39-year-old broke his back in two places, shattered several ribs and his shoulder and was paralyzed across the right side of his body in a horror road accident 11 years ago.

But he fought back to regain some feeling in his right arm and eventually conquered the challenge of climbing back on his bike.

Mr Gunn battled crosswinds to beat the previous fastest time of 164mph at Elvington Airfield in North Yorkshire.

Quote, I am absolutely ecstatic and I do not think the news has quite sunk in, end quote he said.


Healthy Choice, Healthy Living - Stress

By Lawrence MacLellan


Hello everyone!  The topic for this month is stress.  Managing our stress is very critical for staying healthy. It is just as important as the other topics I have covered in recent months. It is helpful to take a look at ourselves.  Figure out what we think about how we are doing. Too often, blind people have been exposed to lots of negativity from their friends, family, and society in general. Many of us place limitations on ourselves based on these negative comments, and all of this can cause a lot of stress.


There is a lot of information about stress, especially on the internet.  I have included a link below, which has information about meditation, relaxation, and other such related topics, that I think would be helpful for you. Check out the following link:

Dealing with Stress - Ten Tips | Skills You Need


Recognizing that you are stressed, is the first step in the process of stress management.  This could be, realizing that you are not sleeping well, being irritable, gaining weight, suffering from headaches, experiencing digestive problems, or a whole host of other issues.  So, first, identify if you are feeling stressed. Then, ask yourself what you can do about it? For example, is the stress you are feeling self inflicted?  Meaning, are you getting enough sleep?  Drinking enough water?  Drinking too much alcohol or coffee?  Are you upset with someone and cannot forgive them? Are you eating right?  Eating too much junk food? Some of our stress levels are caused by our own habits, so we have to be careful and try to minimize these as much as possible. It is also a good idea to talk to someone about how we are feeling. Sometimes, we take on more duties than we realize, and this can be overwhelming, too.


Another way to manage your stress, is to make a schedule for yourself.  In your schedule, plan for some activities that you enjoy and look forward to attending.  This could be as simple as having dinner with a friend.  Or, it may be getting back into that hobby that you used to do so long ago.  Relax, take some time for yourself, and start releasing some of the stressers that are in your life. Adopt the glass is half full kind of attitude. Remember, your health is your responsibility, so, make one healthy choice at a time!

If you have any questions for Lawrence, or would like a certain topic covered, please write to:


Each month, an MP3 of this section will be available, so that you may keep an audio reference of the advice given by Lawrence in this section.  Here is the download link:



Top 10 – The Advantages of Dating Sighted and Blind People

Submitted by Roger Khouri

By Priscilla McKinley


10. Dating a sighted person means having a sighted guide when some idiot smashes into you and breaks your cane on your way to class. Dating a blind person means having a spare cane when some idiot smashes into you and breaks your cane on your way to class.

9. Dating a sighted person means having someone to keep you from kissing a nose instead of the lips. Dating a blind person means not caring if you give or get a kiss on the nose instead of the lips.

8. Dating a sighted person means being able to take drives in the country on weekends. Dating a blind person means being able to have private NFB conventions on weekends.

7. Dating a sighted person means having someone to blame when you run into each other in the hall. Dating a blind person means it's no ones fault when you run into each other in the hall.

6. Dating a sighted person means having someone to describe what is going on during the silent moments of a movie. Dating a blind person means having time to get popcorn. Or go to the bathroom during the silent moments of a movie.

5. Dating a sighted person means knowing who is going to drive on your next date. Dating a blind person means knowing you are going to take the bus on your next date.

4. Dating a sighted person means having someone to tell you if your socks match. Dating a blind person means having someone else remember if you cut your tag out of your orange or purple shirt.

3. Dating a sighted person means someone telling you when you have a piece of broccoli stuck between your two front teeth. Dating a blind person means no one noticing when you have a piece of broccoli stuck between your two front teeth.

2. Dating a sighted person means being able to ask questions like, What is the expiration date on this milk? And, Does this look infected? Dating a blind person means being able to ask questions like, What is the Braille symbol for S-I-O-N? And, Does this feel swollen?

Okay! Okay! Hold on!  I am not going to give you the number one advantage for dating sighted and blind persons, at least not until you hear me out. And, do not cheat by skipping ahead, for I have some important things to say hereReally!

As students, many of you have dated, are dating, or at least would like to date. Some of you may have pondered the questions about whether or not to date a sighted or a blind person, as I have in the past. Sometimes, I thought it would be easier to date a blind person. Someone who could understand the challenges blind people face on a daily basis. Other times, I thought it would be easier to date a sighted person. Someone who could alleviate some of the challenges that go along with blindness, But then, when in a relationship with a sighted person, I would start questioning why I was with this person, and why he was with me. Is he with me, because he likes to play the protector? Is he with me because he has low self esteem and does not think he can get a sighted person? Am am I with him because it is nice to have someone to drive me places when I'm in a hurry, or read the paper when Newsline® breaks down? Am I with this person because I am afraid to be alone?

When in a relationship with a blind person, I found myself asking similar types of questions. Do we have anything in common besides our blindness? Am I in this relationship because I do not think a sighted person could accept my blindness?  If I stay in this relationship, how are we going to manage as a blind couple?

There are many reasons why people enter into relationships with others, and we as blind students are just as likely to enter into relationships for the wrong reasons. However, we can make this less likely by possessing self-confidence and good blindness skills. For example, I will not be as likely to get into a relationship of dependency on a sighted person if I have access to readers, have good Braille and cane travel skills, and know the city bus schedule like the back of my hand. Likewise, I will not be as likely to enter into a relationship of safety with a blind person if I have the self-confidence to be blind on my own.

In other words, as in any relationship, you have to be happy with yourself before you can make another person happy. The better your blindness skills, the less your blindness becomes an issue in any relationship. Both sighted and blind persons will respect you more if you have self-confidence and good blindness skills, And is not that
what Doctor Jernigan, Doctor Maurer, and our other mentors from the National Federation of the Blind have been telling us for years?  It is respectable to be blind. It is respectable to be blind. It is respectable to be blind. If you keep telling yourself this, you will start to believe it. If you believe it, you will start to live it, which will positively affect your relationships with both the sighted and the blind.

It is important for all of us as blind individuals to analyze our relationships. I am not saying you should get out a microscope and examine each and every move you and your partner make, but you should ask yourself the following questions:

1. Would you still be interested in this person if the status of his or her sight changed? In other words, if dating a sighted person, would you still be interested if he or she went blind? Or, if dating a blind person, would you be interested if he or she got his or her sight back?

2. Would you still want to be with this person if all of a sudden you could see?

If you are currently in a relationship and answered no to either of the above questions, you might want to get out that microscope and take a closer look, for you might be in the relationship for the wrong reasons.

If you answered yes to both of the questions, then you have made it to the number one advantage for dating a sighted or a blind person, which is the same for both.

1. Dating this person, sighted or blind, means being with the one you love (or at least the one you like a heck of a lot), and is this not what really matters?

Taking a Vacation? – Visit the White House

Submitted by Mike Everett


·                     Wheelchairs may be requested from Capitol Visitor Center staff wearing red vests or at one of the Information Desks in Emancipation Hall.

·                     Listening devices with audio description of the orientation film and exhibition are available at the Information Desks in Emancipation Hall.

An audio-descriptive tour of Exhibition Hall provides visitors who are blind or have low vision with a self-guided experience of the Capitol Visitor Center’s exhibits. The nearly three-hour descriptive narration is available on a handheld device which visitors may request at the North Information Desk in Emancipation Hall. Visitors may also download the audio-descriptive tour onto a personal device. There is no cost associated with using the handheld device or downloading the tour. As documents are changed in the display cases, the tour will be revised accordingly. Download the audio-descriptive tour in MP3, ZIP , or Text file formats.


·                     Sign language interpretation for tours is available when booked in advance. Email Interpreters@saa.senate.gov. All films have open captioning.

·                     Family Restrooms are available throughout the Capitol Visitor Center.

·                     Service animals are allowed in the Visitor Center and the Capitol.

·                     A public TTY is located near one of the gift shops on the Upper Level.

·                     Copies of all Capitol Visitor Center brochures in alternative formats (large print, braille, HTML) are available at the Information Desks.

·                     Emergency evacuation information for visitors with disabilities is available here.

·                     Additional information on accessibility in the Capitol and the House and Senate Office Buildings is available at the Architect of the Capitol's Web site here.

·                     Both the Senate and House have accessible Galleries which include televisions with closed-captioning. In addition, the Senate has informational materials available in alternative formats.

·                     If you have any accessibility questions, please call the Office of Congressional Accessibility Services at 202-224-4048.


Visitors Requiring Shuttle Service to the Capitol Visitor Center Entrance

For your convenience, the Capitol Visitor Center Office of Visitor Services provides an on-demand shuttle service for those with mobility issues or in manual wheelchairs.  The shuttles run from the southwest corner of Capitol Square at Independence Ave. and First St. SW to the Capitol Visitor Center entrance at the center of the Capitol’s East Plaza.  Please inquire about this service from the Office of Congressional Accessibility Services at 202-224-4048, from any Visitor Services personnel in a red shirt or vest, or at either of the Visitor Services kiosks located at the southwest corner of Capitol Square or on the east side of the Capitol near the corner of First St. NE/SE and East Capitol Street.  Please provide as much advance notice as possible to help facilitate your request.

If you are traveling with a large group requesting mobility assistance, we strongly recommend that you contact the Office of Congressional Accessibility Services at 202-224-4048 prior to your visit.  Please provide as much advance notice as possible to help facilitate your request.


Fun and Adventure – Blind Navy Vet Kayaks Colorado River

Submitted by Debi Chatfield


Disabled Navy veteran Lonnie Bedwell made history last week, becoming the first completely blind solo kayaker to go down the entire length of the Grand Canyon. He achieved this feat when he completed his trek down the Colorado River supported by Team River Runner on Wednesday, August 21. Bedwell, a Navy Veteran from Dugger, Indiana, was guided by three military veterans from Team River Runner who relied only on a system of voice commands to navigate him through the entire trip, including the large, difficult Class V rapids. The 16-day journey was made possible thanks to the help of numerous volunteers and fellow veterans, as well as a generous grant from Check-6 Inc., a service disabled veteran owned company that focuses on safety and training in the energy industry.

By kayaking the entire 226-mile length of the Grand Canyon in a solo kayak, Bedwell not only made history, but he also fulfilled a dream he has long shared with Team River Runner Executive Director, Joe Mornini. "Running the Grand Canyon was a dream for Joe and me, and now that dream has become a reality. I hope that other disabled persons will be able to share this feeling with me one day and achieve their dreams as well,” said Bedwell.

Mornini, who co-founded Team River Runner, a chapter of Disabled Sports USA, in 2004 and currently serves as its Executive Director, praised the team effort that engendered this historic achievement and which continues to serve as the ethos of his organization. Quote, No one goes down the Grand Canyon on the river and leaves the same way they entered. Lonnie's three warrior guides, and the entire group of veterans and volunteers, formed a bond that enabled healing and empowerment for all, and a truly historic achievement as a team. End quote.

Quote, Joe Mornini has opened the doors for warriors who were wounded to find life again on the water. He is a man of singular vision and energy who saw a need and focused his sites on helping wounded veterans get back in the game,” said Brian Brurud, the founder of Check-6, Inc. Congratulations to Lonnie and Team River Runner on a job very well done!end quote.

Team River Runner (TRR) was established in August 2004 by kayakers in the Washington, DC area. Overseen by a Board of Directors, and with 10 employees, TRR remains primarily a volunteer-based organization, supported by grants, and corporate and individual donations. Initially established to help active duty military personnel wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan and recovering at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, TRR now serves veterans of all eras at over 40 chapters throughout the United States. For more information, visit

Founded in 2007, Check-6 (
http://www.checksix.com) is a disabled veteran run organization that brings lessons learned from aviation and the military to other high-risk industries, including oil & gas, mining, and industrial power generation. Check-6 applies the best practices of aircraft carrier operations, commercial aviation, nuclear and space operations to help reduce human error, increasing efficiency in the process. The company has grown from a handful of dedicated people in 2007 to more than 300 working around the world today.


The Argus - Helps the Blind to See Shapes and Colors

Submitted by Roger Khouri

By Danela Hernandez

Dean Lloyd started losing his sight in his mid twenties, while he was studying medicine in the early 1960’s. His doctors diagnosed him with a debilitating condition known as Usher Syndrome. They told him he would be blind and deaf in months, and that dementia would follow.

Quote, my prognosis did not look good, end quote, Lloyd recalls with a chuckle. As it turns out, Lloyd had something else altogether. He had been born with a genetic condition known as retinitis pigmentosa, a disease that eats away at the retina, specifically targeting those cells that detect light. Once these cells die, the eyes cannot transform and decode the incoming light in order to produce sight.

Lloyds condition worsened very slowly. Though his night vision was not great, he does not recall having other difficulties at first. He transitioned into biochemistry research at Stanford, then moved on to be a software engineer. When his loss of vision began to make coding on a computer screen too difficult - there were no aids for visually impaired programmers back then, he says - he decided to try law school. With the help of two readers, Lloyd passed the bar and started practicing law in 1982. At the time, he had very limited vision.

Then in 1989, he finally lost the ability to see. Quote, There was nothing for 17 years, he says. Until I got the Argus in 2007. end quote. The Argus, named after the all-seeing Greek god with 100 eyes, is a wearable computer that helps blind people see borders and boundaries at very low resolution. We first reported on the device some eight years ago, when it was still in testing. Now, at long last, the Food and Drug Administration has approved its use in the U.S. for people with Lloyds condition, and the device will begin selling shortly at select medical centers, including the University of California, San Francisco.

The Argus is not a true eyes for the blind device - patients can't see objects in the same way people with normal eyesight can. Instead, they see black-and-white edges and contrast points, and the brain can be trained to use this artificial data as a visual guide. It provides enough visual information for the patient to gain some independence, allowing them to cross a street safely, or navigate an unfamiliar room.

Quote, you have to learn to see again, but people who have this implant were people that used to see, end quote, said Lloyd, one of the first patients to get the Argus. "As you go through life, you still have pictures in your brain of everything you've seen before. So, you are creating yourself an image that matches what's in your memory. It's a concept that a lot of people do not get when they think about this device. End quote.

An array of hardware makes this possible. Central to the Argus system is a grid of 60 tiny electrodes, which are implanted in a patient's retina. The patient also wears a pair of sunglasses outfitted with a video camera and a Texas Instruments digital signal processor. The chip translates the light picked up by the video camera into patterns of electrical activity, and those patterns get beamed wirelessly to a receiver connected to the grid of electrodes inside the eye. These electrodes - basically miniature glass needles – stimulate nerve cells in the retina, which then send signals to the part of the brain that processes visual information. Through this stimulation, the perception of sight is produced. Since it requires the optic nerve to be healthy, it will not work on patients who have nerve damage or suffer from other kinds of blindness.

The device is the result of about 20 years of research and clinical trials, and its development has benefited tremendously from innovations in consumer electronics. The tiny video camera, for example, is very close to what you'd find on a cellphone, says Dr. Robert Greenberg of Second Sight, the Sylmar, California-based company that developed Argus. The images the camera captures are then processed by a DSP chip, a component common in consumer-grade electronics.

Even though the Argus is the first of its kind in the medical world, the hardware components are not exactly state-of-the-art. The DSP chip it's currently using is 10 years old. Getting a medical device cleared by the FDA is a long and tedious process, and approval is only granted for a specific device. So if it's tweaked at all, the FDA needs to take a second look. The medical space isn't like the consumer world, where new and shiny devices are prototyped and brought to market within months. Right now, Second Sight is considering upgrading the Argus to an ARM processor or a new DSP chip for image processing, but such changes would likely result in a couple of years of testing and regulatory approvals.

Quote, the computer technology [we use] tends to not be the latest cutting edge because of the amount of testing required, end quote, said Greenberg. To speed up the development process, Second Sight is turning to software instead. The company is working on a software platform called Acuboost that would make updating previously manufactured Argus models as easy as updating your computer's operating system, says Greenberg. This is especially important because the Argus is an implanted device, and installing it inside a patient's eye requires pretty invasive surgery. Swapping out the electrode array like you would a cellphone, a tablet, or a pair of augmented-reality goggles is not really an option. So software upgrades would benefit both new patients and patients who already have the device implanted.

The company is currently developing algorithms to improve resolution, image focus and zooming. Their latest software can also automate brightness adjustments and enable color recognition. Thus far, scientists at Second Sight have been able to produce the perception of multiple colors in the lab by sending different patterns of stimulation to each electrode in the retinal implant. When the Argus camera picks up red or green, that information would be encoded through different patterns of electrical activity, which would be sent to the electrodes in the patient's eye, creating the perception of color. The team is testing whether varying the frequency or the delay between each stimulus plays a roll in producing color quote, vision. End quote. Because each patient is different, they also have to optimize the algorithm to determine each persons color map - that is, which stimuli can reliably result in the particular patient seeing which colors.

This new direction of research grew out of feedback from current Argus patients who reported seeing colors. Because the cells that are tuned to detect specific colors are dead in these patients, the scientists at Second Sight did not expect any color perception to be reported.

Quote, that is what led to the investigation, end quote, said USC's Dr. Mark Humayun, the ophthalmologist and biomedical engineer who developed Argus. These new color detecting algorithms are not quite ready yet, but the Argus team hopes to roll them out shortly.

Meanwhile, researchers continue to learn a lot about how an artificial sight mechanism relays the information it gathers to the brain. Quote, It is different, end quote, says Humayun. Quote, It is not the way we normally see, but it activates the same function. End quote.


Come Join Our Fall Auction – September 21st


We will be having our 6th Annual Fall Auction Fund Raiser coming up on Saturday, September 21st, at 3:00 PM eastern, in the Town Square room.

Please feel free to let us know of any items you would like to donate. Perhaps, you have updated your adaptive technology and have a talking dictionary lying around collecting dust, or what about some software, keyboards, microphones, note takers, cellphones, headphones, hard drives, mp3 players, digital recorders, and even computers, that you've meant to sell, but just haven't found a buyer? We've got the perfect solution for you! Donate your technology items, whether new or gently used, to us, so that we may auction them off and raise money for our site. All proceeds go toward our annual fees to maintain the site for your continued enjoyment and fellowship. Most of the donations tend to be accessible electronic items, however we are not going to limit it to just this. So if you have any homemade craft items, delectable desserts, or anything non electronic we would appreciate the donation of those items as well. We ask when you donate please let us know the physical condition as well as the working order of your donation. We also ask anyone who is donating to pay for the shipping of that particular item to the winner of that bid, if possible.

If you wish to donate an item to this fund raiser, please, contact us at:  fallauction@out-of-sight.net .

Please include the name of your item, the age of the item, model number, a brief description, any problems with the item, and any other pertinent information about the item which would be beneficial for the new user to know.  It's due to the generosity of members like yourself that we enjoy the activities, games and events here on Out-Of-Sight.net.

Whether you donate or not to our auction, everyone is welcome for an afternoon of friendship and fun!

At the conclusion of the auction on September 21st, please send all donations for winning bids to the address below. Once those donations have been received, we will promptly ensure that the respective auction item is shipped.

If you are unable to attend the auction, but wish to make a tax deductible donation, please send your check to:

Out-OF-Sight.net Inc.
2219 South Kings Avenue
Springfield, MO 65807

Make sure you put donation in the memo field for your tax records.

If you prefer to make your donation through Pay Pal or credit card, you may click on the Donate button on our Fall Auction page. 

Thank you for your support, and see you on September 21st! Together, we can truly make this community an Out-Of-Sight place to be!


And the Winner Is


You!  This would be great to hear, right? 

Well then, it is Your Choice!  Would you like either a brand new iPod Touch?  Or, an iPad Mini? Or, how about a Logitech Wireless, Bluetooth capable headset?

Yup!  That is right!  You could be the proud owner of one of these items, courtesy of Out-Of-Sight.net!

Do you love a good sounding headset?  Do you love Apple products?  Are you just dying to have the latest and greatest iDevice available?  Would you like to win?  We are pleased to announce our first ever raffle, here on Out-Of-Sight!


The raffle winners will be drawn at the conclusion of our 6th Annual Fall Auction, which will be held on Saturday, September 21st, at 3:00 PM eastern. A donation of $5 per ticket, or 5 tickets for $20 will be available.  Specific rules for the raffle are below. 


Please send all requests for tickets to the following email address.  We will need your name, telephone number, and the number of tickets you would like.  Send this information to:


Once we receive your payment, ticket numbers will be issued to you by email.  So, what are you waiting for?  Send in your request for raffle tickets, send in your payment, and be there on September 21st to see if you are the winner!  All proceeds will be used to continue to keep, Out-Of-Sight up and running for many years to come! Support the site that brings you hours and hours of enjoyment each week, while at the same time, getting a chance to be the proud owner of a Logitech Wireless Headset, or the choice of either a brand new iPod Touch, or iPad Mini!  Will the winner be you?


Out-Of-Sight Raffle Rules

3 items are being raffled:

Drawing #1:  Your choice of either an iPod Touch or iPad Mini.

Drawing #2.  LogiTech Wireless, Blue Tooth capable, H 800, Headset.

Drawing #3.  LogiTech Wireless, Blue Tooth capable, H 800, Headset.

  1. All payments for raffle tickets must be received by midnight September 20, 2013.
  2. No ticket numbers will be released to an individual until payment has been made.
  3. Tickets will be sold as either $5 per ticket, or in increments of 5 tickets for $20.  For example, a $50 donation would provide 12 raffle tickets.
  4. The drawings will be held on September 21st, 2013 at the conclusion of the Fall Auction, unless the Fall Auction is cancelled due to technical difficulties.  If this occurs, the drawings will occur at the conclusion of the rescheduled Fall Auction.
  5. The winner of the first drawing will have a choice of  either the iPod touch or the iPad Mini described below.  This will be the first of 3 prizes drawn.  The second and third winners will receive a new LogiTech H 800 Wireless, Blue Tooth capable Headset.
  6. The iPod Touch or iPad Mini will be purchased new by Mark Dew, direct from Apple, shortly after the Fall Auction on September 21, 2013, after the winner has made personal choices, as to the color, engraving, and such.
  7. The device will be engraved with the words:  www.Out-Of-Sight.net on the back, along with the winner’s personalized preference.
  8. The winners need not be present to win.
  9. The iPod Touch or iPad Mini chosen will be shipped directly from Apple to the raffle winner.
  10. No shipping cost of any kind will be incurred by the winners.
  11. If choosing an iPad Mini 64 gig, instead of the 32 gig offered, the winner will need to add an additional $100 to upgrade the device.  This will not be paid by Out-Of-Sight.net.
  12. Any questions about the iPod Touch or iPad Mini should be sent to Mark Dew at:


  1. All questions or requests for raffle tickets must be sent to the email address provided below. We will not accept requests for tickets in any other format.  Send your ticket requests to:


  1. Payments may be made by check, money order, credit card, or through Pay Pal.  If using a credit card or Pay Pal account, please go to our home page at:


and click on Donate to complete your transaction.

  1. If sending payment by check or money order, please send it to:


c/o Lee Richards

P. O. Box 668

War, WV  24892   


Hurry, and get your tickets now, and see you on September 21st!


Raffle Descriptions

iPod Touch

5th Generation

The Ipod touch comes in 5 different colors.
Black, Silver, Pink, Yellow, Blue, and Red.
Ipod Touch 64 gb storage.
Connects to the Internet over Wi-Fi networks.
Free iPod engraving.
Brilliant new design
ultra slim, ultra light iPod touch comes in fresh new colors, and rocks the incredible
new Apple
Ear Pods.
4-inch Retina display
More screen means more music, messages, websites, and games. And it all looks stunning
on the Retina display.
iSight camera
Make every shot your best with advanced optics, tap to focus, and LED flash. And
shoot video in 1080p HD.
What is in the box
iPod touch
iPod touch loop
Ear Pods
Lightning to USB cable
Every iPod touch includes 90 days of free telephone technical support and a one-year
limited warranty.


iPad Mini

IPad mini 32 gb storage.
Connects to the Internet over Wi-Fi networks.
Free iPod engraving
Beautiful 7.9-inch display
Colors are vivid and text is sharp on the
iPad mini display. But what really makes
it stand out is its size. At 7.9 inches, it’s perfectly sized to deliver an experience
every bit as big as
Over 300,000 apps3
Right from the start, apps made for
iPad also work with iPad mini. They’re immersive,
full-screen apps that let you do almost anything you can imagine. And they make
mini practically impossible to put down.  Ultrafast wireless With advanced Wi-Fi that’s up to twice as fast as any previous-generation
iPad and access to fast cellular data networks around the world, iPad mini lets you download content, stream video, and browse the web at amazing speeds.
What is in the box
iPad mini
Lightning to USB Cable
USB Power Adapter
Limited Warranty
iPad mini comes with complimentary telephone technical support for 90 days
from your
iPad mini purchase date and a one-year limited warranty.
Note: the winner may upgrade the
iPad mini from 32 to 64 gb if they wish.
The cost is $100 paid by the winner.


Logitech Wireless Headset

Chat, rock, and surf on your PC, Tablet, or Smartphone with no wires to tie you down.  Easily connect to and switch between devices like your PC, tablet and smartphone with a full set of on-ear controls.  Laser-tuned drivers and a built-in equalizer give you rich digital stereo that immerses you in your music and calls, and a noise-canceling microphone reduces background noise.  This headset is blue tooth capable as well.


The Recipe Box – Magic Cookie Bars

Adapted from Eagle Brand recipe

By Suzy Barnes


Yields about 24 bars

Preparation Time:  About 10 minutes

Cooking Time:  About 30 minutes



Crisco, original, no-stick cooking spray

1 ½ cups, graham cracker crumbs (about 15 crackers)

1/2 cup, (1 stick) melted butter

1 can, 14 ounces, Eagle Brand Sweetened Condensed Milk

2 cups, dark chocolate pieces, (I use Ghirardelli 60%)

2 cups, peanut butter morsels

1 1/3 cups, moist, flaked coconut

1 cup, slivered almonds (you may also use walnut or pecan pieces)



Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease the bottom and sides of an 8” by 8: square baking pan with cooking spray.  Use approximately 15 graham crackers for crust.  If these are not already crushed, place in a Ziploc bag and crush crackers using a can, rolling back and forth over the bag.  Mix together crushed graham crackers and melted butter in a bowl.  Mix together.  Press moistened mixture into greased pan to form a crust.  Pour ½ can of condensed milk over the crust. Begin layering ingredients, beginning with some chocolate pieces, flaked coconut, peanut butter chips, and then, slivered almonds.  Repeat again to make another layer beginning with chocolate pieces.  Add a few more chocolate pieces and coconut to the top.  Pour remaining condensed milk over top of layers.  Lightly tap down ingredients before baking. Bake 25 to 30 minutes until coconut is lightly browned. Loosen from sides of pan while still warm.  Cool on wire rack.  Cut into squares.



Substitute chocolate pieces or nuts with candy coated pieces, dried cranberries, raisins, mini-marshmallows, or butterscotch chips.  


Dear Betty Blunt


Please note:

This submission is not to be taken seriously.  It is just for fun! If you would like to submit a question for Miss Betty Blunt to answer, please write to:


She may or may not answer your question seriously, and she may or may not give you the answer you were hoping for, but one thing is for sure, you will get a good laugh out of her witty, bold, and blunt advice.  She will often make comments that we all wish we could say, but are just too afraid to make. So, send in your questions, and let us see if she can help you with your relationship issues. If you wish, your initials, city, and state will be altered to conceal your identity. 


Dear Betty Blunt,


I am new to computers, and it is getting quite frustrating when trying to learn how to use things. Take for example; you need to click on the Start Button to find the Shutdown button to turn off your computer. How intuitive is that? Looking for it in the Start Button menu would have been the last place on earth for me to look.  Would it have really killed them to put a Turn Off button right beside the Start Button? I'm getting more gray hairs as I trudge along.  Do you have any sound advice as I make my way through all this nonsense?

Albert G. Doerty
Alberta. Canada


Dear Computer Geek,


Oh, some of these questions make my head hurt. Ah, the wonderful wonders of the world!  If we could only find answers to all of our burning questions! Today is your lucky day, however!  I actually have an answer for you that should make some sense.  Back in my day, the Start Button actually was called, the System Button.  But, there seemed to be a problem.  People would boot up their computers and just sit there, unsure of what to do next. So, the powers that be renamed the button, the Start Button, so that people would know where to where to click when they wanted to do something.  The button represents click here you dummy, and after it was renamed, the usability of the button sky rocketed.  Hmmmmm, I wonder just exactly who they were thinking about when they programmed that button?  Got any clues Mister Computer Geek?  I will give you three guesses, and the first two do not count. Miss Betty points to Computer Geek.





Think Tank

By Rich De Steno and Roger Khouri


Thank you to everyone who submitted answers to last months brain teasers.  Many of you were very close, but close only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades!  Just kidding!  It is apparent that this month, many of you had your thinking caps on!  So, congratulations go out to Muffee Beaton, sue Burdyshaw, Roann Clarke, Allison Hilliker, Roger Khouri, Lawrence MacLellan, Charlie Richardson, and Pam Scott for answering all three brain teasers correctly!


Applause also goes out to Suzy Barnes, Joe Giovanelli, and Nancy Martin for figuring out one of the three brain teasers! Way to go!  


Here are the August brain teasers and their answers:


1.  How much dirt is there in a hole that measures two feet by three feet by four feet?


Answer:  None.  There is no dirt in a hole.


2.  What word in the English language is always spelled incorrectly?


Answer:  Incorrectly


3.  How many seconds are there in a year?


Answer:  12.  January 2nd, February 2nd, March 2nd, etc.


Now, for our super duper brain teasers for September!  Can you solve these?  Lets see who thinks they are smarter than a fifth grader! 


1.  I am the beginning of the end, and the end of time and space. I am essential to creation, and I surround every place. What am I?


2.  What always runs but never walks, often murmurs, never talks, has a bed but never sleeps, has a mouth but never eats?


3.  Two men play five complete games of checkers. Each man wins the same
number of games. There are no ties. How?

Please submit the answers to these brain teasers to:


We will let you know if you are correct, and if so, we will publish your name in the October newsletter. Have fun trying to solve these puzzles!


Did You Know? - Birthstones

By Katie Chandler


Do you know the name of your birthstone and its color?  Check out this list and discover!



Garnet – deep red

Amethyst - purple

Aquamarine – pale blue  



Diamond – clear



Emerald - green


Pearl, Moonstone, Alexandrite – white or purple



Ruby – red



Peridot, Sardonyx – pale green


Sapphire – deep blue


Opal, Pink Tourmaline – multicolored, pink


Citrine, Yellow Topaz - yellow


Blue Topaz, Turquoise - blue

Words to Live By

Submitted by Karen Santiago


Time is too slow for those who wait, too swift for those who fear, too long for those who grieve, too short for those who rejoice, but for those who love, time is eternity.

By Henry Van Dyke  


A Round of Applause

Thanks goes out to you, our extended family on Out-Of-Sight!  You participate and spend your time getting to know one another on the site. Without you, there would be no need for programming, no need for special activities, and no need to even have a site. So, thank you very much! Thanks for making this community an Out of Sight place to be!

Oosabelle’s List


No, this is not Craig’s List, but it is the next best thing!  If you have something to sell, or announce, send us your ad, and we will post it, as long as there is space available in the newsletter.  Send your ads to:



  • A new, free, challenging and accessible word game for Windows called Tiny Zebras Rock is available from Rich DeSteno. Send your request to him at ironrock@verizon.net. He also has Destination Mars, Run for President, Dodge City Desperados, and Atlantic City Black Jack for the asking.  



  • Are you blind or visually impaired, looking for a singles group?  If so, join the newly created blind_singles group.  To join, send a blank email message to:



A unit converter for all measurements.


  • Dicey Rolls is a new computer game for Windows that works well with speech from Rich De Steno.  It is a dice game in which you compete against the computer to reach a target number of points.  You bet on rolls of the dice, and there are various occurrences and factors that effect your score.  Download Dicey Rolls at:   



  • Global Penfriends is a pen pal site that allows people from all over the world to submit their ad and connect with other pen friends. Profiles are manually approved and if you activate your premium membership, you could access all features of the site. I highly recommend it to
    others. If you would like to have a look, the link is:


What is happening on Out-Of-Sight?


If you would like to receive our daily announcements and schedule of events, please select the following email link.


Or, write a blank email to:


That is all there is to it!  You should receive a daily announcement from us within 24 hours. These announcements not only highlight the schedule of the day, they provide important information about any cancellations, new events, or special messages from our hosts or board members. Stay informed with our daily announcement!


Also stay tuned for our monthly newsletter, which will be distributed on the first of every month.  We look forward to your input and suggestions for future newsletters.  Please submit your questions, comments, or article submissions by the 20th of each month to



Debi Chatfield



Catch the vision--it is Out of Sight!