[Blindmath] psychology statistical diagrams

Birkir Rúnar Gunnarsson birkir.gunnarsson at gmail.com
Mon Oct 25 16:00:08 CDT 2010


Not sure this would the the best context to bring this up. But I have
always felt that a little more understanding of how sighted people see
and do things would benefit us blind folks, or at least some of us
(can't generalize, in general).
I've always wanted a book that explains the characters (using raised
lines or fusing or something), explains how to cross multiply, how
square roots look, what a super script and a subscript looks like in
text, what the big dividing line is and how it looks in a set up. How
does an integral look, what about a sum, etc.

I know some braille codes try to immitate this, which is cool, and I
know we can't really work that way, but I think it'd be cool tohave a
standard book that showed this, along with the printed symbols.
It'd be neat to hve a standard book of sighted mathematics or
something along those lines, and it would come with some basic
diagrams that are popular, (bell curve, graphs of distributions, sum
of least squares) perhaps even 3d models of the most common shapes usd
in mathematics.
I managed just fine without these things, but I think the lessons are
getting more and more sight centric and I think I would've spent my
time in class better, had I had a better understanding of what the
professor/teacher was doing.
May be such a book exists, may be I am the only one who finds this
idea attractive, but since it seems vaguely relevant to this
discussion I figured I'd throw it out there.
Cheers
-Bæ

On 10/25/10, Larry Wayland <larry.wayland at arkansas.gov> wrote:
> I agree with Lloyd on this.  I do not think there is anyway a three
> dimensional representation can be adequately done using a Braille drawing.
> Indicating three dimensions on a two dimension plane is done by using
> optical allusions.  You can't do that tactually.  The lines are all there
> but they just will not look three dimensional.
> Larry
>
>
> Larry Wayland
> -----Original Message-----
> From: blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org] On
> Behalf Of Rasmussen, Lloyd
> Sent: Monday, October 25, 2010 2:15 PM
> To: Blind Math list for those interested in mathematics
> Subject: Re: [Blindmath] psychology statistical diagrams
>
> As a totally blind electronics engineer who got his bachelor's degree in the
> 1960's, I think that getting an understanding of three-dimensional concepts
> from two-dimensional drawings has severe limitations.  Is this an isometric
> or perspective projection?  From what distance is the "object" being viewed?
>
> Talk to the people in the math department who study topology.  Do they ever
> make solid models of the shapes they are describing algebraically?  Note
> that the solution to the problem of everting a sphere (turning it inside
> out) was first proposed by a French blind mathematician.  He visualized what
> sighted people were unable to visualize.
>
> Talk to people in mechanical engineering or industrial design departments
> about stereolithography or 3D printing, where numerically controlled
> machines are used to create solid models (quite expensively and slowly).
>
> Going these routes will not get you all the drawings your textbooks use, but
> they should get you enough information and examples so that you understand
> the concepts, in some cases more correctly than sighted students will from
> the limited viewpoint of paper and blackboards.
>
> Lloyd Rasmussen, Senior Project Engineer
> National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped
> Library of Congress   202-707-0535
> http://www.loc.gov/nls
> The preceding opinions are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of
> the Library of Congress, NLS.
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org [mailto:blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org] On
> Behalf Of Bernard M Diaz
> Sent: Monday, October 25, 2010 2:00 PM
> To: Rasmussen, Lloyd; Blind Math list for those interested in mathematics
> Subject: Re: [Blindmath] psychology statistical diagrams
>
> Hi,
>
> I've experience of generating only one diagram that NEEDED 3D - a plane
> embedded in 3D; that is a "surface"; and yes used the Tiger system.  It took
> about 2 days playing to get a not too successful result, which we did not
> use in the end!
>
> I'm clearly not very good at this sort of thing, it needs an artistic (I
> think that's the best word) flourish which I guess I don't have.  And I
> guess, my knowledge of 3D use is limited too ...
> I'm sorry I've not looked at economic stuff, trends, and time series stuff -
> which I suspect could all benefit from the 3D aspect you suggest.  I
> suspect, for each, it would be useful to know the approach chosen - if
> anyone attempts to do (or has done it) please do share your findings.
>
> Simple "images" (essentially phtographic stuff rendered into "tonal
> pictures") e.g. most of the Tiger examples I've looked at: flowers parts,
> coloured country diagrams, digestive systems, most maps - all work well.
> Where there is an attempt to get tonal representation to mimic depth cueing
> - what I've done suggests: a) its hard, and b) not too successful at getting
> over what is intended.  But, as I say, perhaps I'm not thinking about this
> in the correct way - and would appreciate pointers.
>
> A final note.  Many staff use Powerpoint. Where a diagram is involved I
> suggest that they copy the "slide" then edit that to remove all but the
> diagram.  Enlarge that so that it fuses correctly ("touchably" .... is that
> the correct word? This also involves thinking about any colour coding used)
> and provide in the "notes" section for that slide a textual description of
> the diagram using the language guideline mentioned before.  Then, those
> slides are "hidden" with a note that they are for "accessibility purposes".
> The idea is that the student (or teacher) can fuse the diagram (slide
> object); Jaws the notes section (notes object) while "touching" the fused
> version, and have Jaws read any text on the slide proper as well.
> ...
>
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