[AI] Fw: [SayEverything] Products for the Blind are tooExpensive

Jayant Mahajan mejayant at gmail.com
Fri Jun 4 09:59:41 EDT 2010


In case of Information Technology - where ever possible using open
sourse products like ORCA and LINUX etc.. could be an good solution.
to this problem. Not only using open sourse products but promoting
them and contrubuting to their developement in what ever way possible
will help everybody.

regds

jayant

On Fri, Jun 4, 2010 at 5:49 PM, Mukesh Sharma <mrmukeshsharma at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hello,
>
> In todays economy, not only demand and supply govern the market but the
> factor like  need of the service, quality of the service, user base of the
> service, expertise to provide the service etc. govern the price of product
> and services.
>
> Though, from a social justice perspective, the AT products should be equally
> priced if not cheaper.
>
> The total cost of software (windows, office, antivirus, spy ware) exceeds
> the cost of hardware, isn't it a good example of imbalance pricing? But in
> this case people have option to go with open source and free app. Similarly
> we are coming up with free / open source AT apps.
>
> Consider the example of cold rink, the manufacturing cost is not that much
> but it is priced high not because if it is priced reasonably, it would be
> impossible to fulfill the demand but factors other than demand and supply.
> Medicines are another example of imbalance pricing.
>
> Thanks
> Mukesh
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: accessindia-bounces at accessindia.org.in
> [mailto:accessindia-bounces at accessindia.org.in] On Behalf Of Namita Agarwal
> Sent: Friday, June 04, 2010 1:24 PM
> To: accessindia at accessindia.org.in
> Subject: Re: [AI] Fw: [SayEverything] Products for the Blind are
> tooExpensive
>
> so true  maybe installment payments can reduce the pinch of the expenditure.
> regards namita.
>
>
> On 6/4/10, Gaurav sharma <gauravsharmamnd at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi friend, u r saying right i m agree with u. With regards gaurav.
>>
>> On 6/3/10, m.chandrashekar <chandru342 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>> ----- Original Message -----
>>> From: Trepan Singh
>>> To: sayeverything at yahoogroups.co.in ; blindcity at yahoogroups.co.in
>>> Sent: Wednesday, June 02, 2010 9:19 AM
>>> Subject: [SayEverything] Products for the Blind are too Expensive
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Products for the Blind are too Expensive
>>>
>>> Most of us who are blind want to live our own lives. Part of that
>>>
>>> process is to manage our own homes, take care of ourselves, and do
>>> all
>>>
>>> that is necessary to be as independent as the sighted. The problem
>>>
>>> that we face is twofold. First of all, many of us who want to be
>>>
>>> independent have difficulty finding jobs because of our blindness,
>>>
>>> meaning that we have to remain on a fixed income. As a result of this
>>>
>>> fixed income, many of us can't afford to be as independent as we'd
>>>
>>> like to be, because it costs a lot of money to adapt our lives.
>>>
>>> If you compare products that sighted people use with those adapted
>>>
>>> for a blind person, you will find that, in almost every case, the
>>>
>>> blind person's item costs a lot more than a comparable item for the
>>>
>>> sighted. You might say, "Well, you have to think of the adaptations."
>>>
>>> I look at this issue in terms of what goes into a product. Take your
>>>
>>> average calculator, as an example. I'm sure that a lot goes into a
>>>
>>> calculator that does scientific
>>>
>>> notation, square roots, exponents, etc., yet a sighted person is able
>>>
>>> to buy such a calculator for $5. A talking calculator with fewer
>>>
>>> features than the one I just described would cost a blind person $15.
>>>
>>> Let's put this into perspective. If you replace software that
>>>
>>> generates scientific notation and square roots with software that
>>>
>>> talks, are you increasing the total value of the calculator by ten
>>>
>>> dollars? It would seem to me that the original software that does all
>>>
>>> those calculations would cost more than the software which makes a
>>>
>>> calculator talk. Yet the blind have to spend more money on a
>>>
>>> calculator which does less than what a sighted person spends on a
>>>
>>> calculator that does more.
>>>
>>> Then we have the Braille watch. When you make a Braille watch, all
>>>
>>> you are really doing is taking the cover off of a regular watch,
>>>
>>> putting dots on the dial, inserting a pointer, and replacing the
>>> cover
>>>
>>> with one that has a hinge so we can open the watch. I can understand
>>>
>>> why a Braille watch would cost more than a regular one, but four
>>> times
>>>
>>> more?
>>>
>>> Let's talk about the talking measuring tape. After all, in order for
>>>
>>> a blind person to be independent, he may want to measure things in
>>> his
>>>
>>> apartment like everyone else. A sighted person can go to a local
>>>
>>> discount store and buy a measuring tape for two dollars. Well, I
>>>
>>> bought a talking measuring tape because I felt it was necessary. It
>>> is
>>>
>>> slightly larger, and looks like a transistor radio. It talks, and
>>>
>>> converts from the American system to the Metric system. I spent a
>>>
>>> total of $84 for this device. Now, let's prove the point further by
>>>
>>> comparing the talking measuring tape to a sighted person's calculator.
>>>
>>> Do you mean to tell me that the software which makes a measuring tape
>>>
>>> talk is more complex than the software which makes a sighted person's
>>>
>>> calculator do scientific notation and square roots? I sincerely doubt
>>>
>>> it.
>>>
>>> Allow me to give a more ridiculous example. The average old fashioned
>>>
>>> Braille machine has no software in it. It's a mechanical device with
>>>
>>> gears inside, similar to those of a regular typewriter. I am assuming
>>>
>>> that an old fashioned manual typewriter has more complex machinery
>>>
>>> than the average Braille machine, for obvious reasons. If manual
>>>
>>> typewriters were still on the market, how much do you think they
>>> would
>>>
>>> cost? I guess they would be no more than $100. Yet, this relatively
>>>
>>> simple Braille machine is currently valued at over seven hundred
>>>
>>> dollars. How did someone reach the conclusion that a brailler needs
>>> to
>>>
>>> be valued this high? What exactly is in that brailler to justify its
>>>
>>> cost, especially when you compare it to comparable items for the
>>>
>>> sighted with more features?
>>>
>>> Last, but certainly not least, allow me to be even more ridiculous
>>>
>>> when I talk about computer software. There is a product on the market
>>>
>>> called Dragon Naturally Speaking, which types what you say into a
>>>
>>> microphone. Dragon Naturally Speaking is common. It is advertised all
>>>
>>> the time, and it is used by anyone. Jaws, which is a speech software
>>>
>>> that allows a blind person to hear what's on the computer screen, is
>>>
>>> similar to Dragon Naturally Speaking, if you think about it. One
>>>
>>> program sees what is written, while
>>>
>>> the other program hears what's being said. I am taking an educated
>>>
>>> guess that you can buy Dragon for under a hundred dollars, but yet a
>>>
>>> blind person has to spend eleven hundred dollars to adapt his
>>> computer
>>>
>>> with Jaws. I don't think that Jaws is eleven times more complicated
>>>
>>> than Dragon, do you?
>>>
>>> The problem here is supply and demand, and as a former student of
>>>
>>> economics, I fully understand the concept. However, if a company that
>>>
>>> sells adaptive products for the blind really thinks about its target
>>>
>>> market, it needs to understand that many people in the blind
>>>
>>> population can't afford these prices, and perhaps if the companies
>>>
>>> lower their prices, they will gain more customers. How do these
>>>
>>> companies, as well as agencies who provide services to the blind,
>>>
>>> expect the blind to pay these high prices in order to lead
>>> independent
>>>
>>> lives? If I have to buy new speech software today, but can't afford
>>>
>>> it, do I have to go without a computer? In my case, I would have to
>>>
>>> shut down my business. Is this fair?
>>>
>>> I don't know how we can solve the issue of products for the blind
>>>
>>> costing more than those for the sighted, but I am hoping that
>>>
>>> companies and agencies realize that it makes life a lot more
>>> difficult
>>>
>>> for us, especially when most of us are not in the work force. If
>>> these
>>>
>>> products are more affordable, we can buy them a lot easier and use
>>>
>>> them to help us get a job and make more money. Doesn't that help the
>>>
>>> economy?
>>>
>>> [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
>>>
>>>
>>>
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