[nabs-l] questions about reading braille

Katie Wang bunnykatie6 at gmail.com
Thu Aug 12 02:12:27 UTC 2010

Hi, Kerri,
  Not all state libraries have a reading advisor system. When i lived
in Texas, I was able to request hard-copy braille books by speaking to
anyone who happen to answer the phone when I call the library, but
here in Connecticut I am required to speak to an advisor assigned to
me based on my last name. I would suggest calling your state library
and figure out how the book-borrowing system works for your state and
who your reading advisor is (if applicable). You can then ask for his
or her email address. Hope this helps!

On 8/11/10, Kerri Kosten <kerrik2006 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi Heather and All!
> Thanks so much for this!
> When I received the hard-copy braille books from the library, I had
> them sent to me randomly so I didn't call the library or anything.
> When I signed up for Web Braille, and then in 2008 got my victor
> stream, a lady named Terry Methony helped me both times. I do have her
> email address...would she be my "reading advisor?"
> Also what are the differences between the Iowa canes and the straight
> fiberglass NFB canes? I'm trying to figure out what to get as a
> backup...I have and love my straight NFB cane now...but I've been told
> the Iowa ones are a lot sturdier and don't break nearly as easily or
> often!
> Thanks,
> Kerri
> On 8/11/10, H. Field <missheather at comcast.net> wrote:
>> Dear Kerri,
>> I too am an avid braille reader since childhood, and I am  proficient
>> with a braille display but there is no feeling like the stillness and
>> silence of a hard-copy braille book. So, I encourage you to keep
>> borrowing braille books. Here's how I do it and it works well for me
>> as I don't like bothering with the time it takes to call in my
>> requests and try to call at a time when my reader adviser is
>> available.
>> Every reader adviser in the Library Service has an e-mail address. I
>> suggest you get the e-mail address of your reader adviser. Next, you
>> can, indeed, go on to the website of the National Library Service for
>> the Blind and Physically handicapped and search for the books you want
>> by numerous search criteria. For example, author, title, subject.
>> Make a list of the books you want in an e-mail, being sure to include
>> the catalogue number, and then simply e-mail your requests to your
>> reader adviser.
>> It is important for braille readers to remember that if everyone stops
>> borrowing braille books the government might decide that there is no
>> longer a need for hard-copy braille books and dismantle the service.
>> Reading braille on a book, as opposed to a braille display, is much
>> faster and it is important to keep reading speed up. One doesn't have
>> to take braille books on the bus or the plane on a flight, but reading
>> a book at home is a good idea for the reasons which I've mentioned.
>> The website for the National Library Service is:
>> www.loc.gov/nls
>> Warmest regards,
>> Heather Field
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: "Kerri Kosten" <kerrik2006 at gmail.com>
>> To: "National Association of Blind Students mailing list"
>> <nabs-l at nfbnet.org>
>> Sent: Tuesday, August 10, 2010 8:24 PM
>> Subject: [nabs-l] questions about reading braille, labeling, and canes
>> Hi All!!
>> I have a couple of questions.
>> First, for braille readers out there, do you find you read more on
>> your note-taker and braille displays and get your books from Bookshare
>> and Web Braille or do you still call your library and order hard-copy
>> books? Also, can you order hard-copy braille books either online or
>> through email?
>> I have been blind from birth and am a very very fast braille reader. I
>> used to get books from the library and loved reading hard-copy
>> braille, but then in 2007 when I got my notetaker which had a braille
>> display on it I stopped having them send me hard-copy books. But, I
>> find I miss reading hard-copy braille, and though reading on the
>> braille display is nice it's kind of cumbersome.
>> I am trying to figure out whether I should do the easy thing and just
>> download my books from Bookshare and Web Braille and reading them on
>> my display or go through the hassle that is calling the library,
>> picking categories of books, and ordering them hard-copy.
>> I really wish NLS had an online system where you could just go online,
>> fill out a form, enter in the book title/author, submit it
>> electronically, then just wait for the book to come through the mail.
>> Even on the Web-braille website, it is very hard to browse...they
>> don't have it set up so you can browse by category...I know you can
>> type in keywords but for whatever reason every time I try this I don't
>> get any relevant results.
>> So I thought I'd ask what you all do!
>> My next question has to do with labeling canned foods. A blind friend
>> told me to use dymo tape, then get a hole puncher and some rubber
>> bands, punch a hole in the tape, and somehow thread the rubber band
>> through the hole? She explained to me how to do this...but I'm not
>> getting it...the rubber band is round...I don't understand how you put
>> the round rubber band through the hole in the label?
>> I saw that you could order these pre-made labels with rubber bands
>> already on them...so all you have to do is write what you want the
>> label to say...then stick it on the can.
>> Which way do you prefer/use? I'm very confused by the dymo tape way...
>> My final question has to do with canes. I need to get a backup. I got
>> a free white cane in January and really like it. However, I've been
>> told that the Iowa Canes (the canes you get from the Iowa Center) are
>> much sturdier and can last pretty much forever. What should I get as a
>> backup...one extra nfb cane and then one Iowa one? I've never used an
>> Iowa cane...but my friend has had hers for over three years and it
>> hasn't broken yet...and my NFB one though I like it a lot because how
>> light it is is already chipping.
>> What do you prefer? What are the pros/cons of the Iowa canes? What are
>> the differences between the Iowa canes and the fiberglass NFB canes?
>> Also...does anyone know how much the Iowa canes cost if you order them
>> and are out-of-state? I'm not from Iowa.
>> Thanks,
>> Kerri
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