Low-Tech assistive technology designs

LOW-TECH Design & Construction       e-Book

By: Samantha van Greuning

George Mason University

EDAT 523 - Summer 2016

 

Computer Access Solutions

Access to Independent Living

Table of Content

4. Magnifier

5. Baggie Book

 

6. Light Switch Extender

1. iPad Stand


2. Handheld Pointer


3. Portable Speaker/Amplifier

Purpose:

To hold the iPad in a position without having to hold it

Description of Potential Users:

This Universal device can serve all users with and without disabilities.  Providing a stand for the iPad will allow users to have both hands free, which could increase productivity.  This would also be helpful to individuals who are unable to use both hands or to grip and hold the iPad for extended periods of time (arthritis, carpal tunnel syndrome, Parkinson's, individuals with the use only one hand or no hands, muscle dystrophy, etc.)  

 

Individuals of all ages can use this iPad stand, when watching something on the iPad, listening to music, playing games or using it for work and as a communication device.

iPad Stand 

Materials needed:

Crafters knife

Scissors

Pencil

Ruler 

2-way Tape

Hold-It

Velcro

2 x 11" by 12" Corrugated Plastic

iPad Stand

Step 2:

 Use a ruler or the horizontal edge of the corrugated plastic (the base) as a straight edge, use crafters knife to score 2nd piece of corrugated plastic +- 1.5 " from the edge (against the grain, score don't cut all the way through) This will be the iPads angle 

Step 3:

Flip the corrugated plastic (the angle) over and score about halfway down horizontally and again about 2" from the edge

Step 4:

Bend sheet at the score lines

Step 1:

 Take one of the 11x12" corrugated plastic sheets cut and stick a piece of 2-way tape on the verticle side of the plastic. This will be the iPad stands base.

Step 5:

Now you can mount angle sheet to the base. Firstly remove the backing off the double-sided tape

Step 6:

Take the loop side of the velcro and place it in the middle of the bottom edge (that 2" score section)

Step 7:

Take two pieces of the hook part of the velcro and stick it on the base section.

Step 8:

Now you need to put a lip on the front end so that the iPad would not slip off.  Place 2-way tape in the center and stick down.  (you can use corner guards from a hardware store, corner guards for wallpaper. I just used what I could find at home which was a plastic gadget that you usually use when you open blinds.)

Step 9:

Flip the base over and place 4 pieces of Hold-IT on the bottom, this will prevent the iPad stand from moving around.

Step 10:

You can now flip it back over and put your iPad in and it will not slip.

You can also...

use this as a book stand when reading off recipes 

Purpose:

To point to desired items or objects by pointing or pushing on the object

Handheld Pointer

-Ball Pointer-

Description of Potential Users: 

A Handheld pointer may be useful for individuals with arthritis or limited grasp, the larger surface would allow for easier gripping.  Individuals with fine motor limitations or unable to use one finger at a time.

 

Individuals with Cerebral Palsy, individuals with tremors.  

Handheld Pointer

-Ball Pointer-

Materials needed:

Crafters Knife

Tennis Ball

Hand Saw

Krazy Glue

Eraser tip

Dowel stick

Step 1:

Measure and cut dowel stick 12" long, using the hand saw

Step 2:

Cut a small incision in the tennis ball, using the craft knife.

Making an X in the tennis ball.

Step 3:

Squeeze the tennis ball on the sides to open the X incision, add Krazy Glue to the end of the dowel stick and insert the dowel stick into the tennis ball, pushing it all the way to the other end.

Step 4:

Place some Krazy Glue on the tip of the dowel stick and then place the eraser tip over the end securing it in place. 

Final Product

Purpose:

Amplify sound from smartphone, increase speaker volume

Portable Speaker/Amplifier

Description of Potential Users

This could be used by anyone to enhance the volume level of their smartphone.  

Individuals with Hearing Impairments such as low hearing would greatly benefit from this as it increases the volume of the smartphone.  

This could also be used as speakers to increase the volume of music or someone talking over the phone. 

Portable Speaker/Amplifier

Materials needed:

Paper towel inner-roll

2x plastic cups

Cellphone

Craft knife

Marker

Step 1:

Place paper towel roll at the center of the plastic cup and trace around the paper towel with a marker. Do this for both cups.

Step 2:

Use the craft knife to cut the marked cups.  Do this for both plastic cups.

Step 3:

Place the Paper towel roll in the plastic cups - midway

Step 4:

Find the center of the paper roll and trace the outer edge of your smartphone/iPod.

Step 5:

Cut out the marked outline on the paper towel roll using the craft knife. 

Step 6:

Place your smartphone/iPod in the hole.

It is now ready to use.

Purpose:

Magnify items

Magnifier

Description of Potential User:

Individuals with low vision, individuals with nearsightedness, elderly individuals.

It is easy to slip something underneath to have instant magnification.  It could also be used in the kitchen to put recipe books under for individuals who need a larger text, individuals could use it for reading labels on items like medication etc. 

Materials needed:

1x magnifying sheet

1x aluminium foil baking pan

4x spools of thread

craft knife

2-way tape

Masking tape

Magnifier

Step 1:

Using the craft knife carefully cut out the bottom of the aluminium foil baking pan, that is slightly smaller than the magnifier.

Step 2:

Apply masking tape to the edges of the hole of the baking tray so that they are not sharp.

Step 4:

Attach the spools to the corner of the baking pan with 2-way tape. 

Turn over and place items underneath to magnify.

Step 3:

Apply 2-way tape to the outer edges of one side of the magnifier.  Place magnifier inside the baking pan so that it covers the hole and that the magnifier is secured to the baking pan.

Purpose:

DIY book that can be individualized, durable.

Baggie Book

- Book of Shapes-

Description of Potential Users:

The Baggie Book could be used by anyone.

This is great because it is lightweight, durable and can be cleaned easily.  Its versatility allows it to be modified to meet each individual's needs, by adding pictures that will fulfill that person's needs. 

Individuals with autism could use this - adding facial expressions and emotions.  Individuals with low vision - increase font and color contrasts.  Even individuals with limited to no speech could use such a book - PECS. 

Materials needed:

Color Paper*

White Paper*

Scissors

Pencil

Material 

Ziplock bags*

Stapler

Masking tape

Glue

Ruler

Marker

Printout of shapes

 

* Dependent on how many pages you want to make and the size of the baggie book you want to make. 

Baggie Book 

-Book of Shapes-

Step 2:

 Cut background color to the right size. (slightly smaller than the ziplock bag. 

Step 1:

Decide if you want a white background or color background.

Take the color you want at the picture and draw the shapes, one on each page to the size you want.

Cut out the shapes.

Step 3:

Label all the shapes you have cut out with Marker.

Step 4:

Glue all the shapes to your background pages.

Step 6:

Place two zip lock bags on top of each other and with the left over background paper cutoffs make a binder and staple the ziplock bags together. 

Step 7:

Add the piece of material with 2-way tape, and staple together

add the rest of the zip lock bags and wrap the material over the binding again secure it with staples. 

Step 8:

Insert all the pages, in the order you like.

Close/seal the zip lock bags.

Purpose:

To reach light switch, and ability to turn off and on.

Light Switch Extender

Description of Potential Users:

Individuals in wheelchairs, individuals who are short and unable to reach light switches, children.  This could also be useful for individuals with limited ROM, and limited fine motor abilities. 

Light Switch Extender

Materials needed:

Drill with a 5/56 inch drill bit

dowel stick

pliers

picture frame hook

scissors

electrical tape

hand saw

toggle light switch

eraser cap tip

plastic ball

Step 1:

Use a drill to drill a hole into the toggle light switch vertically (top to bottom).

Step 2:

Take the picture frame hook, use the pliers to open the hook.

Step 3:

Use the hand saw and cut the dowel stick to the right length that best suits the individual.

Step 4:

Take the picture hook that you have bent open and screw it into the edge of the dowel stick.

Step 6:

**This is the point where you should reconnect the light switch and the wires etc.  as well as put the plate back.

once the switch is reconnected, hook the picture frame hook into the hole that you drilled in the toggle light switch. 

Step 7:

Use electrical insulation tape to secure the hook onto the toggle switch.  

Secure the eraser tip on the other end with the electrical tape as well. 

Step 8:

You are now able to use the Switch extender by pushing up or pulling down to put the light switch on or off.

There are different variations that you could modify this with, I added a plastic ball with holes in on the bottom edge for a large surface for easier grip.

Step 5:

Add eraser cap tip on the other end of the dowel stick so that there are no sharp edges.