2003 Conference Proceedings

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Using Kurzweil 1000 as a Powerful Educational Technology Tool

Presenter:
Stephen Baum
Kurzweil Educational Systems, Inc.
14 Crosby Drive
Bedford, MA 01730
Email: steph@kurzweiledu.com

Kurzweil 1000 is a PC-based reading tool that makes printed material accessibly to people who are blind or visually impaired. The Kurzweil 1000 converts the printed word into speech - virtually anything that fits on a scanner can be used to create a version of the page that the Kurzweil 1000 can read aloud.

The primary purpose of Kurzweil 1000 is to provide convenient access to printed and electronic text for people who are blind or visually impaired. However, it can also be a powerful educational tool, providing various mechanisms for previewing, skimming, summarizing, analyzing, and reviewing complex documents. For the first half of this session, I would like to demonstrate the Kurzweil 1000 from this somewhat unusual perspective. Faced with the task of reading, synthesizing, and being held accountable for the information contained in lengthy documents, how can a blind student best utilize Kurzweil 1000?

Features and benefits that will be emphasized include:

Since I'm one of the engineers who develops this product, I am often more interested in the next release than I am in the current release. As a consequence, I would like to reserve some time near the end of my presentation to solicit ideas from the session participants. What would you like to see in future versions of the Kurzweil 1000?

At the end of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  1. Understand how the K1000 can be used by students who are blind or visually impaired to read, synthesize, and be held accountable for information contained in lengthy documents.
  2. Explain how the various features can be used for previewing, skimming, summarizing, analyzing, and reviewing complex documents.
  3. Discuss and influence features that will be included in future releases of the product with the CTO of KESI.


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