[vendtalk] assistance and guidance

Harlon Cowsar II deucehc at gmail.com
Tue Feb 3 22:10:35 UTC 2009

Hello, Venders,

   I am training to become a vender and the information and guidance that I
have received from the NFB, the NABM, and all of you has been wonderfully
helpful and greatly appreciated.
   I have a question for venders out there who are totally blind and it is
regarding a couple of subjects that are very important to me as a future

1) How do you navigate invoices from your suppliers? Is there specific
assistive technology that you depend on for these kinds of operations or do
you try to depend more heavily on sighted assistance from family or
employees? Have you found ways to have invoices more itemized according to
each product rather than by categories such as: product name, manufacturer,
package size, or cost?

2) What are some of the methods or mechanisms that can be used to regulate
portion control; especially in circumstances that involve a cook or multiple
employees? How can a blind vender be sure of how much product is being
portioned out when the lack of any eyesight prevents them from seeing what
the cook or the server is putting on the plate or in the containers? How can
you be sure that larger portions are not being given to specific people
because of friendship or gaining favoritism?

  I would be grateful for any information that other totally blind venders
might be able to give me on these matters and I also have one other question
that is for any venders who might be able to help.

1) Do you know of any point of sale talking cash registers that are
currently available to buy? I am interested in finding a point of sale cash
register that would utilize the talking cash register and, if necessary, a
personal computer to help keep track of inventory. If there was a way that
inventory could be logged into this system so that each sale automatically
deducted that item from the inventory list while new inventory could be
somehow scanned or added to the existing inventory list. I think that a
system like this, if it exists, could benefit totally blind venders in many
ways; from setting notification alerts when it is time to reorder a product
to controlling theft in the workplace. If anyone knows anything about these
types of systems, please let me know.

   Thank you all for the assistance that you have offered me. The
information that I have learned from the discussions on vendtalk and the
information that I have gained from NFB Conventions and the BLAST Conference
has been eye opening and educational to say the least. I appreciate your
willingness to take the time to share your experiences and knowlege with me
and all other new venders.


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