Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Update: New wiki-style resource being proposed for blind and visually impaired

I just came across an interesting blog that is seeking input and feedback from the blind/visually impaired community.

Wiki Visual Impairment blog
is seeking to find funding to launch a
Style of web resource of information related to blindness and visual impairment.

However, to get the funding, they have to show that there is a grass roots support network that is willing to work on this project, hence the call for feedback.

What will set this apart from the scattered collection of web resources which already exist is that it seeks to be the one-stop shop for information related to blindness and visual impairment, with the provided information coming from the most authoratative people to speak on the blind/VI experience— blind and visually impaired people themselves.

From the blog:
“Now, what if we had one resource available to us where all the knowledge and experience of the blind community could be found – from how to cook and eat a lobster, to how to diaper a new-born, to what assistive devices work and do not work, and why? A resource where researchers, service providers, family members, prospective employers, educators and anyone seeking information on any topic related to blindness and vision loss, could access the knowledge of those who can provide a perspective that no one else can – those of us who are living the experience.”

“In order to obtain the necessary funding to begin developing a wikipedia on blindness and vision impairment, it is critical that we demonstrate that there is widespread grass-roots support from those who have the most to gain. If you are prepared to assume an active role in establishing and maintaining a wikipedia on blindness and vision impairment by being a contributor and sharing your knowledge and experience, or if you are willing to allow your name and comments on the value of such a resource to be used in proposals for funding, please contact Penny Zibula at 404-4321-6111 ext. 6795, or e-mail
Your name and comments will not be used without your permission.”

So, if you’re blind or visually impaired and willing to contribute on this collaborative effort, contact Penny Zibula via one of the contacts above. If interested in reading more information about the wiki, check out the blog linked above.

Update: 01/27/08

I apologize for any false hope this post might have presented to anybody. Unfortunatley, it seems that this idea has faded into history as nothing more than that, a great idea and nothing more.

The blog for the venture seems to have fallen into a state of abandonment as well. I skipped right into the original post I linked to above myself without noticing the last posting date on that blog was 18 months ago. I tried to email the contact person listed and promptly got an email bounce notification informing me that this was no longer a working email address. So, that was another dead end.

I tried one more technique in an attempt to get the blog author to acknowledge what the status of the project was. I left a comment on that post. Unfortunately, I appear to have been the only real person to have done so, as there were 26 comments above me, each of which were spam comments trying to get readers to click on links to some unrelated web sites.


Oh well, the idea is still a good one.

Perhaps the
Blind Net
Web site may fulfill the dream of the group. Blind Net offers very similar content to that which this proposed wiki was going to have, only it is not in a wiki format.

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