Friday, November 4, 2022

"His vocabulary has grown tremendously...."

Hey Tek-ninjas! A while back, I posted how Kiyah uses her AAC device to effectively navigate her life. More recently, Tobii Dynavox posted a short clip of a boy named Brock and how he uses the TD i110. I've shared it below.

I'm sharing Brock's video, because I believe many folks don't understand the power of AAC, and it is simply a joyous clip!  Similar to the video of Kiyah, this video of Brock provides a terrific look into AAC. On the linked page, Brock's mother is quoted saying: "His vocabulary has grown tremendously, and we love seeing our lil’ man finally being able to speak his mind". Those are powerful words!

Check out the link to read more about Brock's success, what life with Assistive Technology can look like, and the benefits of having a solid team helping our AAC users. 

Happy therapy!

Wednesday, October 12, 2022

Opportunity for End of Year LEARNING (and CEUs): Deep dive into implementing AAC.


Hey Tek-ninjas, the Tobii Dynavox Learning Team is excited to announce a virtual conference that you and your colleagues won't want to miss! They have great new content that takes a deeper dive into implementing AAC.

When: December 6th and 7th, the Learning Team is hosting a two-day learning event where learners can earn up to 10 PDH or 1.0 ASHA CEUs. Also, they are all free of charge.

Tobii Dynavox is not saying this.... Just me.... I've taken all of the ASHA approved courses and received full credit from AOTA. Just say'n. 

 
Where: use this link to view the conference landing page, and explore the courses offered.

Hope to see you there!

Friday, September 30, 2022

Hurricane Books: Let's get ready!

Hey Tek-ninjas! In light of Hurricane Ian bearing down on many of us on the East coast, I wanted to take a moment and remind you have the collection of printable books Tobii Dynavox makes available that help explain and prepare all communicators for natural disasters, including blizzards, earthquakes, wildfires, and more timely - hurricanes. These books are free and available to anyone. 

Go ahead and log into the Learning Hub - you can use your single sign-in account from Tobii Dynavox's mytobiidynavox, eFunding platform, or Boardmaker online to log in. If you don't have any of these accounts, they are free to make. 

Once logged in, go ahead and search for "natural disasters". This 'course' will provide the downloadable PDFs to support discussion of natural disasters. 

I think both the "We are Ready", and "Hurricanes" books would be useful for families and schools this week. 

To reiterate, I believe these books can be useful for any of your folks who might struggle to understand natural disasters that are coming their way, regardless of the language system they use. 

I hope you all stay safe! 

Wednesday, August 31, 2022

More continuing Ed from Tobii-Dynavox!

 

Hey Tek-ninjas! Check out continuing Ed from Tobii Dynavox.

Once again they’ve got great live virtual trainings planned for you this month covering an array of topics and products. If you register and can’t attend, you’ll receive a recording to watch on your own time.

Week of September 5

Support All Learners with Boardmaker
Learn more >

Boardmaker Flash 15: Adding Actions to Buttons
Learn more >

Device Funding for the SLP: Resources to Get Started
Learn more >

Supporting Communication Beyond Requesting
Learn more >

Week of September 12

Create Activities with Boardmaker

The Magic of Modeling

Boardmaker Flash 15: Creating from an Interactive Template

NEW! Communication Supports & Support Comprehension for People with Aphasia

For more live virtual and on-demand trainings visit: https://go.tobiidynavox.com/e/911492/pages-training/nsx2r/1028581387?h=STK80SgeyEbNQSljtMzWmPy5qOKEUeQE_gQihulgTgs

On-demand training
Happy learning!

Friday, August 19, 2022

How the rubber hits the road for teaching and integrating AAC

Hey Tek-ninjas! It's been a minute. So much happening professionally and personally. The two most significant milestones.... my 21 year old son just moved to Portland, Oregon, and my 25 year old son is moving to Berlin in mid-September. Sigh. Such good stuff, but I am going to miss them tremendously. And we will officially be empty-nesters again. Fortunately, my wife and I still really like one another! 

But. that's not what I intended to share today. Long time readers may remember that I blogged about the integration of the Boardmaker Activity Player into TD Snap a few years back. Today, I want to share a new video that was made by the Tobii Dynavox Learning team. The video titled "Communicate and Learn with the Boardmaker Player in TD Snap really does an amazing job at showcasing how well Boardmaker integrates into TD Snap for communication, AND supports occupational performance in all environments. 

Speech Therapists, caregivers, and other professionals are eager to know concrete skills like "how to edit a button" or "link to a page" - but - what is sometimes harder to teach is how to integrate and teach AAC. This video does an amazing job at show-casing both of these tasks leveraging the integrated Boardmaker Player. 

I hope you enjoy it, and feel free to share it with your fellow AAC oriented colleagues! 

Happy Therapy!

Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Keep Learning!

Hey Tek-ninjas! Just a quick reminder of all the live webinars available at the Tobii Dynavox Learning Hub. These are zero cost, generally about an hour, and full of terrific content. See a sample of courses, dates, and times below. 

One of my graduate professors, way back in the day, was fond of saying; 'twenties-years of experience don't matter if it's the same year over and over'. Her message was advice to be sure to keep learning!

Maybe bookmark the site so you can come back and visit them when you need content. Some of our clinics treat these like book-clubs either watching together to discuss, or independently. Might be a nice continuing professional development for your group?

Happy Learning!


Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Living an All Access Life with Brad and Dan!

 Hey Tek-ninjas! Have you heard of "All Access Life"? If not, get familiar with their work. You will be inspired, and educated. That's a beautiful feeling! 

Brad and Dan run the company. They've had a long friendship which you can read about here, and the quality of their friendship comes through in all of their videos with their joking and mutual respect for one another. Their intention in making "All Access Life" was to create a website that showcases the latest trends and movements in adaptive products and assistive technologies. 

Brad was born with nonverbal spastic quadriplegic cerebral palsy, and he showcases products that have made a difference in his life. Additionally, they also showcase products which are appropriate for folk with various disabilities. 

The videos are not just informative, they are super fun to watch. According to their website, their "mission is to empower people with disabilities to live their best life through adaptive products". That's our jam here at Tek-ninja! 

On the website, they review products which have transformed Brad's life. You can see video reviews about those  adaptive products on their featured products page

Perhaps my favorite video is the unboxing of the newest Tobii Dynavox innovation, which I've blogged about before, the TD Pilot. 


So, go check out "All Access Life", you may find a technological solution that helps make someone's life better!

Happy therapy!

Wednesday, May 11, 2022

South Carolina Solutions Consultant Position

 Hey Tek-ninjas! I have got another opportunity for YOU to help deliver voices with Tobii Dynavox. 

Unfortunately one of our Solutions Consultants needs to relocate, so our South Carolina position is open.

Perhaps this is the opportunity you have been waiting for! 

We prefer candidates with a Bachelor Degree and 2+ years of durable medical device sales experience OR clinical background. 

Maybe you ought to consider checking it out? You can read more here. Come work with me!

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Delivering Voices Opportunity!


Hey Tek-ninjas! I know I'm always effusive about Tobii Dynavox. Almost 5 years in, and I still believe this company and the work we do is phenomenal. 

I love delivering voices! Have you ever thought about working for Tobii Dynavox? Well, a Solutions Consultant position has opened in the Maryland/DC area. We prefer candidates with a Bachelor Degree and 2+ years of durable medical device sales experience OR clinical background. 

Maybe you ought to consider checking it out? You can read more here. Come work with me!

Saturday, April 2, 2022

TD Snap Discount!


Hey Tek-ninjas! We are coming up on World Autism Day. For folks working with AAC, that often means deep discounts on pricey communication apps. Annual discounts are great, but I believe pricing should not be an obstacle to having a voice. 

I love that TD Snap is so affordable year round. Following the trend of discounting communication apps, April 2nd, TD Snap will be on sale in the Apple store at 15% off. It will be a one day, Apple Store only sale. 

APRIL 2nd, TD Snap will be 15% off.

April 2nd, the AAC app which is normally $49.99, will be approximately $42.50!

If you are in a school district, and leveraging the Volume Purchase Program even when NOT on sale, 20 copies of TD Snap costs equal to or less than the 2 copies of the competition's software. 

Also, I want to highlight, that if your AAC communicator is text-literate, and does NOT need symbol support, TD Talk remains free for your iOS users. That's year round. I blogged about TD Talk a few weeks back here

Do you know someone who needs a voice? One of these offerings may be just what they need. 

Monday, March 21, 2022

Never stop learning!

 

Hey Tek-ninjas! This is simply a quick reminder of all the amazing live webinars available to you on the Tobii Dynavox Learning Hub for a variety of AAC subject matter. No cost. Click here, and then bookmark the page if you haven't already. 

You can log in to the Learning Hub with the same credentials you may have for mytobiidynavox, the Tobii Dynavox eFunding portal, or your Boardmaker Online account. That's right, they all use Single Sign On. 


In addition to the live webinar courses, there are a number (about 36) pre-recorded ASHA approved courses for CEUs. I've mentioned this before, but as an Occupational Therapist, I've submitted these courses with AOTA, and received full credit as well. My favorite courses were the Scanning 101, 102, and 103

Happy therapy!

Friday, March 18, 2022

Core Skater Shoes - reduced price while they last!

 


Hey Tek-ninjas! I've got roughly 30+ pairs of Core Skater Shoes still available. I'm reducing the price from $60 down to $50! 

Get a pair, while I still have them! 

Thursday, March 17, 2022

The more you know....

 Hey Tek-ninjas! I have blogged about the Tobii Dynavox Learning Hub multiple times before. I'm doing so again today. 

If you are interested in AAC, perhaps you are a parent, an educator, or a therapist (SLP, OT, PT, etc) this educational content is for you, and you can choose catered content. There is no cost to access any of it. All you need is "Single Sign On" Tobii Dynavox account. And, if you have a Tobii Dynavox account, that's what you have!

A Single Sign ON account will allow you to access all the courses and webinars in the Learning Hub. That same account will allow you to access mytobiidynavox, the eFunding Platform, AND Boardmaker Online


If you are a Speech Therapist, you should know, there are currently 36 courses with ASHA approved CEUs. As an Occupational Therapist, I was able to submit all of them, and received credit from AOTA as well. All of those 36 courses are either 30 or 60 minutes long. While this content is built by Tobii Dynavox, I'm pleased that a lot of the content can be generalized to all AAC interventions. 

So, go get your learning on!

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Resources for Ukraine refugees


Hey Tek-ninjas! In the face of horrific news, and for me at least, a feeling of being able to offer no support, here is a potentially useful link from Tobii Dynavox. They are offering free, multi-lingual communication resources to help Ukrainian refugees express their basic needs in a fast, simple way. 

There are a handful of resources offered, but two highlights include a "communication board designed for use in settings such as country borders and refugee asylums to support those struggling to communicate in a different language, or for those with communication disabilities". Languages include Ukrainian to Czech, English, German, Hungarian, Moldovian, Polish, Romainian, Slovak, and Swedish. The second is a communication board for medical or hospital settings to support those struggling to communicate in a different language, or for those with communication disabilities. 

Please help share this message widely with people you know working for aid organizations at country borders, refugee asylums and medical/hospital settings.


Thursday, March 10, 2022

TD i110 gets an overhaul!

 Hey Tek-ninjas! Let's talk about the TD i110

Back in the summer of 2018, I blogged about the i-110. At the time, it was the most rugged purpose built AAC device on the market and when purchased with funding, it came with a 3 year 360 support plan that basically said, if you break it, Tobii Dynavox would fix or replace it. It was the device that I sold the most of, and that is saying something for a company re-known for it's eye-gaze technology. 

Over the years though, Snap + Core First, became just Snap, growing to include many languages, and pagesets including PODD, Gateway, Aphasia, Scanning, and Text Literate pagesets.  It is a BIG program! Additionally, with several years of Windows updates, and general increase in demand on browsers the i-110 started to perform a bit sluggishly. It was time for some improvements. 

I'm so excited by the over-haul which Tobii Dynavox rolled out towards the end of February. With an ultra-rugged design, Gorilla Glass, intuitive user interface, and an IP55 classification (up from IP54) , the TD I-110 is an AAC device that delivers exceptional durability, performance, and reliability.  Once again, it is covered by a 3-year Support 360 warranty which includes extended support and damage protection, no questions asked. 

The TD i110 goes BEAST mode. Again. 

On the surface, the TD i-110 looks much like the classic device. And this is smart imo. AAC companies often get blow-back from users for changing hardware or software designs too often. Users express feeling "left-behind" by these changes. The TD i110 will feel familiar, like coming home. However, with twice the RAM, twice the storage, 10 hours of battery run time, Windows Hello, a higher quality rear camera, and the option to build to order with Windows 11, this is a significant upgrade. 

If you need to see/try/touch this device, reach out to your friendly neighborhood Solutions Consultant

Happy therapy!

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Let's talk about TD Talk


 Hey Tek-ninjas! It's been awhile. Hope everyone is having a good pandemic.  Lot's of busy-ness going on in my work life. All good stuff. Tobii Dynavox recently released an overhauled i110. The changes are subtle at first glance but significant! I'll write more about that later, but for now, let's just say "faster, tougher, and more responsive". 

Today I want to blog about TD Talk. 

TD Talk came out when the TD Pilot was launched a few months back. The Pilot came out to great fanfare. I blogged about it here. With the excitement of true eye-gaze integrated with Apple (actually MFi) folks may have not paid as close attention to TD Talk, which accompanied the Pilot along with TD Snap. 

If you are working with folks who need AAC, specifically folks who are text literate, you want to take a closer look at TD Talk. While it does come pre-loaded on the Pilot, did you know that if you don't have a Pilot, you can still access TD Talk on the iTunes App store

TD Talk is available for free! It's not a trial. It's not temporary. And yes, the voices work. 

A significant factor in this decision was the need to help ALS clients who need a voice today, but perhaps don't qualify for funding at this stage of their journey. If they have an iPad, they can have a voice. Later, if they need DME with eye gaze, they can get a TD Pilot funded, and transition straight to that mode of access, without having to learn new software. Ultimately, we've been finding that a number of folks are appreciating the software regardless of age or disability. 

TD Talk offers a large selection of languages and voices to express yourself as naturally as possible. Allowing for fast, predictive sentence construction, and easy in-sentence editing, this is a remarkably lean, fast, and efficient communication app. 

User's will also appreciate the simple keyboard, along with a few quick-fire phrases to balance speed with flexibility. 

Take a look at it, I suspect you too will be impressed. 

Happy therapy!