[BlindMath] Drawing and Accessing Graphs on the Computer Efficiently

Ed Summers Ed.Summers at sas.com
Fri Mar 22 12:29:52 UTC 2019

I analyze/manipulate data programmatically using SAS. I create complex graphs programmatically using SAS and create simple graphs using SAS Graphics Accelerator. All of these graphs are digital so I store them on my computer, dropbox, etc. I view these graphs using sonification in SAS Graphics Accelerator. Full disclosure ... I work for SAS and I created SAS Graphics Accelerator.

I also use a Sensational Blackboard and wiki sticks. I just bought a View Plus Columbia embosser, but I haven't integrated it into my workflow yet.

I love the feel and efficacy of tactile diagrams, but I hate the clutter of filing/storing physical stuff. I am resigned to have piles of graphs/diagrams/maps and braille in my office. I will do that until technologies such as sonification and refreshable tactile displays mature to meet more of my use cases.


-----Original Message-----
From: BlindMath <blindmath-bounces at nfbnet.org> On Behalf Of Kevin Fjelsted via BlindMath
Sent: Friday, March 22, 2019 8:07 AM
To: Blind Math list for those interested in mathematics <blindmath at nfbnet.org>
Cc: Kevin Fjelsted <kfjelsted at gmail.com>
Subject: Re: [BlindMath] Drawing and Accessing Graphs on the Computer Efficiently


> I think it is a combination of creating graphs for reference efficiently such as with a Tiger View+ embosser, and developing a condenced description language.

> On Mar 21, 2019, at 11:27 PM, Bhavya shah via BlindMath <blindmath at nfbnet.org> wrote:
> Dear all,
> I have a slightly tricky problem. In my Physics, Chemistry and Math
> classes, I often need to deal with a ton of graphs - graphs of
> trigonometric and inverse trigonometric functions in Math, electric
> field intensity VS distance and potential energy VS distance and all
> sorts of such questions in Physics, Maxwell’s probability distribution
> curve and work done by different types of thermodynamic processes in
> Chemistry, just to name a very few. My issue is not with understanding
> or visualizing or being taught these graphs, but rather, purely with
> noting them for future reference.
> The crux of the problem is the amount of time in writing sufficiently
> descriptive, and thus lengthy, explanations about how these x-y plane
> graphs look like. When it takes me virtually 10 minutes to explain
> that in an electric field intensity VS distance graph where a -q
> charge is placed on (-x nought,0) and +q charge is placed on (x
> nought,0) at x=-infinity the graph (that is y coordinate) would be at
> 0 because of reason A, then it would incrementally rise up in a
> non-linear fashion up till x=x nought due to reason B, then at x
> approaches x nought it would be infinity, after x just crosses x
> nought there would be a discontinuity and the graph would suddenly
> jump to -infinity…. And I would describe the curve from -x nought to
> 0, 0 to x nought (both approaching and crossing cases), and then from
> x nought to infinity. This approach is functional but not feasible
> because it is too time-taking and thus problematic in a course of the
> nature I am pursuing, wherein an incredibly vast syllabus needs to be
> completed in a relatively short span of time.
> To give you some additional context around my situation, I am in a
> position wherein my sighted teacher can use the mouse to draw the
> graph on my computer for me if the process of doing that using some
> tool is simple enough, which would be useful only if that graph could
> then be accessed somehow by me. I have heard of graph sonification
> applications like Math Trax and Audio Graphing Calculator, but have no
> past experience with them. I have also heard of recent advancements in
> screen reading technologies that makes accessing graphs possible, but
> am unclear as to how they operate and whether those graphs include the
> kind of Cartesian plane graphs I require to deal with. Presently,
> sometimes, I do have some of these graphs drawn on the plastic,
> embossing, swell line sheet, and am able to store them for future
> reference, but due to a number of reasons, I do not prefer that route.
> I would greatly appreciate your tips, suggestions and experiences as
> to how best to deal with these constraints. I would like to be able to
> produce and subsequently access graphs on my computer without needing
> to spend several minutes on writing and reading verbose descriptions
> of the same.
> Thanks.
> --
> Best Regards
> Bhavya Shah
> Blogger at Hiking Across Horizons: https://bhavyashah125.wordpress.com/
> E-mail Address: bhavya.shah125 at gmail.com
> LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bhavyashah125/
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