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The Blind Side Podcast 91, beginning a smart home project, why Jonathan tried and returned a Surfacebook 2, many screen reader users negatively impacted by latest Realtek drivers, listener comments

It's a rather geeky Blind Side this week. Jonathan Mosen discusses his latest home improvement project, creating a smart home compatible with Apple's HomeKit and Amazon's Alexa. It turns out there are some challenges doing this in New Zealand. Jonathan explains what led him to give a Microsoft Surfacebook 2 a try, some things you might find helpful if you do the same, and why it got returned. If your screen reader seems to take a while to respond to a key press after you've left it alone...


The Blind Side Podcast 90, Mosen Consulting's latest audiobook, Mushroom Escape returns, and an extended interview with Neal Ewers about audio, technology and more

There's a new audiobook from Mosen Consulting, "The Secret Sauce of Savvy Search" that will have you using Google Search like a boss. Jonathan Mosen describes the audiobook, how to get it, and why it might be the most essential book we've ever produced. Some years ago, Mushroom FM used to have a sister station, Mushroom Escape, playing old time drama and comedy. Now, Mushroom Escape is back. Visit Mushroom Escape on the web, or, since it's on TuneIn, look for it in all TuneIn apps and...


The Blind Side Podcast 89. Post WWDC Keynote Analysis

Tim Cook and his team have delivered the keynote at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference for another year, and now it's time for some analysis. Jonathan Mosen is joined by Heidi Taylor, Janet Ingber and Debee Armstrong as we summarise some of the key takeaways and look at what it all means from a blindness perspective. We look at what's coming in iOS 12, watchOS 5, tvOS 12 and MacOS Mojave. If you have some views you'd like to share, be sure to let us have them in time for the next...


The Blind Side Podcast 88, Wishin' and hopin'. Looking ahead to Apple's WWDC keynote with thoughts on what should be in iOS 12 and other Apple operating systems

Apple's Worldwide Developers conference is next Monday. Jonathan Mosen introduces our expert panel who'll be part of The Blind Side Podcast 89 in which we'll provide post-WWDC analysis. And don't forget, if you're a Daily Fibre Premium subscriber, you can tune into a live stream of the recording of that episode. Become a Daily Fibre Premium subscriber today. Jonathan outlines his top 10 wish list for iOS 12. Read a text version of his thoughts here. We had a stunning number of responses...


The Blind Side Podcast 87, Rich De Steno, lawyer, game developer and now musician, and what do you want to see in iOS 12 and other next generation Apple software?

Rich De Steno is one of those people who has put into practice the adage that you can do anything if you put your mind to it. As a lawyer by profession, he found there wasn't an accessible version of a game he wanted to play, so he taught himself how to code in the evenings and wrote the game himself. He then produced a range of fun, accessible games. Now retired, he always had a dream of making music and doing an album, so he taught himself how to do that as well. Rich is Jonathan Mosen's...


The Blind Side Podcast 86, in loving memory of Marlaina Lieberg

Marlaina Lieberg has made so many contributions to the blind community that it's hard to know how to describe her. Internet broadcasting icon, advocate, technologist, and the list goes on. One way to summarise her immense contribution is to say that whatever she did, she made a difference. Sadly, marlaina Lieberg died last week. In a blog post published shortly after her death, Jonathan Mosen announced that this episode of The Blind Side would be dedicated to Marlaina's memory. A number...


The Blind Side Podcast 85, The Daily Fibre Premium podcast. What it is, why we're doing it, how to get it and a free demo episode.

Following many requests, The Daily Fibre, the technology news show Jonathan Mosen produces for Mushroom FM, is available as a podcast. Producing it is time-consuming, and that's why it's been made a premium podcast, costing just a quarter per episode, $5 USD per month. Jonathan discusses how this podcast came about, what it contains, and why it's taken this form. We then include a full episode from the Premium feed, so you know what to expect if you subscribe, and offer some guidance for...


The Blind Side Podcast 84, the Windows 10 April 2018 Update. how to get it now, summary and demonstrations of some new features

Microsoft's Windows 10 April 2018 Update will be coming to a PC near you very soon. It's available now if you'd like to be an early adopter. Visit the Windows download page to get started. Jonathan Mosen discusses new features in the Windows 10 April 2018 update, demonstrating Timeline, Focus Assist, and some cool new means of directing apps to specific audio devices. There's comprehensive discussion of many more Windows features. In listener comments, we get a few tips on Braille...


The Blind Side Podcast 83, federal hands are off Canadian harnesses, write Alexa skills without knowing a line of code using Amazon Blueprints

In the previous episode, we led with the breaking news that the Canadian General Standards Board has abandoned plans to adopt a federal standard for service dog animals, following a widespread backlash. Jonathan Mosen speaks with Yvonne Peters and Tom Dekker, who played critical roles in this successful advocacy campaign. Even if you're not directly interested in the issue, the story Tom and Yvonne tell is an example of how effective use of social media for advocacy can make a difference....


The Blind Side Podcast 82, victory for Canadian guide dog handlers, Braille readers give their testimonies, should the sighted give up their seats for us, and Pam MacNeill from Disability Responsiveness New Zealand

We lead with the breaking news that the Canadian General Standards Board has abandoned its proposed service dogs standards, covered extensively in episode 43 of this podcast. Many listeners emailed or called with feedback about the difference Braille has made to their lives. We include a selection of the comments. We learn about new legislation promoting the use of Braille in the District of Columbia. A listener is seeking more information on accessible cryptocurrency solutions. The...


The Blind Side Podcast 81, En-Vision America, deleting Facebook, and long live Braille

Jonathan has a couple of new gadgets. A new Samsung wireless charger that allows the iPhone X to be upright which helps with Face ID, and a Bluetooth transmitter dongle that he hopes will help him and Bonnie to use Aira at the same time. He describes both cool new toys. To subscribe to the Accessible Phones Discussion list mentioned in this episode, send an email to We're thrilled to be Libsyn's Rockin' Libsyn Podcast this week. Read Libsyn's piece about...


The Blind Side Podcast 80, Microsoft Research brings Virtual reality to the blind with Canetroller, and are we blind people, or people who are blind?

Microsoft has delivered some innovative new products to blind people in recent times. We've talked about Seeing AI and Soundscape on the podcast before. Now, Microsoft researchers are considering how virtual reality, a technology many of us think of as inherently visual, might be put to use in a blindness context. The Canetroller just might be a technology that in future could allow you to rehearse travelling in unfamiliar environments from the comfort of your own home or with an...


The Blind Side Podcast 79, comprehensive summary of Apple's Let's Take a field trip event, CSUN observations, Aira revolutionising our lives

We're pleased to unveil our new listener line for The Blind Side Podcast. Want to have your say? Call us any time and leave a message, on (719) 270-5114 We begin with information, hot off the press at time of publication, about all that Apple has announced today at its education-focused event in Chicago. Jonathan Mosen recaps some highlights of his time at the CSUN Assistive Technology Conference, including a look at how to keep those hard-won Apple Watch goals going when you're losing a...


The Blind Side Podcast 78, Rica report on inaccessible gym equipment, Andrew Kranichfeld hopes to set up a dating service for disabled people

Based in the UK, Rica is an organisation conducting research with a focus on the needs of disabled people and seniors. They've produced a report thanks to the sponsorship of the Thomas Pocklington Trust on the inaccessibility of gym equipment to blind people. If you've splashed out on that membership and turned up ready to sweat, only to be thwarted by gym equipment with touch screen interfaces that offer no accessible output, you'll know that this is a big problem. Jonathan Mosen speaks...


The Blind Side Podcast 77, Podcast chapters make navigating the podcast a breeze, why Amit Patel puts a camera on his guide dog's harness, New Zealand Green MP Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill

Podcast chapters are a cool and convenient way to skip between sections of a podcast, making it easier to hear the portions of a podcast that interest you. We've now implemented podcast chapter support for The Blind Side Podcast. Jonathan Mosen demonstrates how they work using his favourite podcast app, Overcast for iOS. There are listener comments on travel anxiety, gun control, Microsoft Soundscape and Apollo 8. We update you with attempts to overturn the Nepalese Government's blanket...


The Blind Side Podcast 76, New Mexico students talk with the space station, New Zealand census problems and reflections on the power of self-advocacy in the digital age

In news briefs, we hear about a beeping Easter egg hunt being organised by the Corpus Christi Police Department's bomb squad. Nice one! A blind woman has filed a class action lawsuit against McDonalds, alleging that their drive-throughs discriminate against blind people at times when no other option is available. Microsoft has released yet another free blindness-related app. Soundscape for iOS is available in the US and UK App Stores. Jonathan makes mention of the Mosen Consulting...


The Blind Side Podcast 75, Our very own Alexa skill, adjusting Spotify podcast pllayback, Samsung Galaxy S9, Delta sees sense, ADA gutting passes the house, Anna Dresner's new book, "You and your Apple Watch"

Episode 75 begins with more exciting news about how increasingly easy it is to hear The Blind Side Podcast wherever you need it. We're now on iHeart Radio, and we now have our very own cool Alexa skill for the Amazon Echo, which Jonathan Mosen demonstrates. Jonathan then demonstrates a hidden but cool Spotify trick, how to speed up playback of the podcast when listening through Spotify. Samsung has unveiled the Galaxy S9, complete with some interesting news features, plus others...


The Blind Side Podcast 74, Film maker Nicole Ellis's "Blind Date" Documentary, and "America, put down your guns"

We're pleased to welcome Spotify as another outlet now carrying The Blind Side Podcast. Feel free to search for and follow us there if you're a Spotify user. Still recovering from your Valentine's Day or lack thereof? Jonathan Mosen speaks with Nicole Ellis, a journalist and film maker who produced a documentary called Blind Date. It traces three blind New Yorkers' quest for love and lust in the digital age. Nicole tells Jonathan about herself, and what led her to make this fascinating...


The Blind Side Podcast 73, New Blind Side Discussion group, Apple comes to terms with its iOS bugs, David Woodbridge talks HomePod

Jonathan's featured guest in this episode is David Woodbridge, who talks about his first impressions of Apple's HomePod smart speaker. David has already produced a couple of demonstration podcasts, which you can hear on his iSee podcast. Search for David Woodbridge in any good podcatcher, or visit this page to listen online or subscribe. This interview first aired on Mushroom FM's technology magazine show, The Daily Fibre. To find out when it's on where you are, check out The Mushroom...


The Blind Side Podcast 72, Chris Danielsen from NFB talks airline service dog policies, the ADA Education and Reform Act, and more

Following Delta Airlines' decision to require all service animal handlers to submit documentation at least 48 hours before they fly, it was inevitable that other airlines would follow. United has chosen to clamp down on emotional support animals, while acknowledging the high standards to which most guide dogs are trained. Chris Danielsen, spokesman for the National Federation of the Blind, talks to Jonathan Mosen about the challenges of protecting the rights of blind people in the...