|Volume 18, No. 2 - Spring 2010||
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The AT Bargain Basement
Marvin Williams AT Specialist DATI New Castle County ATRC
Hello, True Believers, and welcome to another action-packed installment of the AT Bargain Basement! I am Marvin Williams, your guide in the land of AT bargains. As usual, if you are a regular to the Basement, welcome back! If this is your first trip with us, I’m glad you could join the party! The rules of the Basement are simple—I find AT bargains costing $100 or less and share them with you. I will be sure to let you know if you can find the bargains locally or if you need to order them over the telephone or internet. So without further adieu, let’s get to the bargains!
Our first bargain is the Scoot-N-Do Caddy. It’s a seat for those who like to be in the garden, but may find kneeling on the ground a bit difficult. It’s got a swiveling, contoured seat that can be adjusted in height, four pneumatic wheels for a smooth ride even over the roughest terrain, knobby tires for good traction in the dirt and mud, a steering bar for the front wheels to make maneuvering easier, and a metal mesh basket to make carrying items that much easier. The unit is a must-see for anyone who loves to garden or work in the yard but doesn’t have elevated planter boxes or might have a tough time getting down to the ground and an even tougher time getting back up. So far, I’ve only been able to find the Scoot-N-Do for sale through Sky Mall magazine. It sells for $79.95, plus shipping and handling. To order this unit from Sky Mall, you can call 1-800-SkyMall (1-800-759-6255) or visit their website at skymall.com. I’ve looked for other sources without success, though I’ve found other wheeled garden seats. However, they don’t appear to be as sturdy or physically supportive.
Our next bargain was brought to my attention by Sussex County AT Specialist, Dan Fendler. He told me about an application or “app” for the iPhone and iPod Touch called Dragon Dictate. It works by tapping the on-screen start button and speaking into the iPhone or into the microphone plugged into the iPod Touch. The unit then records up to 20 seconds of your speaking. When you are done recording you can hit the stop button. Now your recorded speech is sent to a remote computer where it’s converted back to text and then sent back to your iPhone or iPod for you to use. How will you use it? By tapping the text, you can choose to select all of it and then paste it into an e-mail or text message. It’s fast, it’s easy, and it’s pretty accurate. It does make some mistakes, but considering that you’re doing this with an iPhone or with an iPod, it’s still very amazing. The best part about this app is that it’s free. That’s right, FREE! All you have to do is visit the App Store on your iPhone or iPod Touch and search for “Dragon Dictate.”
The next bargain comes to us from Hear More. They have a device called the Krown Phone Flasher. This is a great little device for someone who has a tough time hearing the telephone ring. If you find yourself missing phone calls because you just can’t hear the phone ringing, this may be a little gem for you. All you do is plug it into the phone outlet in the wall, then plug it into your telephone, and you’re all set! When the phone rings, the light on the top of the unit flashes, giving you a visual alert to the ringing. The unit uses LEDs for its light so you never have to replace a bulb. It also runs off the power in your phone cord so it doesn’t need batteries. While other units also incorporate a ringer amplification system into the flasher, this one keeps it simple by just providing the flashing light as the call alert. This unit has a low price of $24.70 (plus shipping and handling) at Hear More. It works on regular telephones, on video phone units and with some PBX systems (office telephone systems with extensions). You can visit their website at hearmore.com or call them toll-free at 1-800-881-4327.
Our final bargain is the Sonic Shaker SBP 100 Portable Alarm Clock. This is a combination pillow shaker and travel alarm clock. To use it, you set the regular clock time and the alarm time. Then, when you’re ready for bed, you fold the face of the clock back into the body of the unit and place the whole unit under your pillow. When the alarm goes off it not only vibrates under your pillow, but it also sounds a very loud audible alarm. So, instead of just having a vibrating or loud alarm, you get both in a very compact format. By having the clock be the actual pillow shaker, you remove the problems of forgetting to pack the pillow shaker or of having a wire get damaged during travel so that the shaker doesn’t work. Also, if you don’t take a special travel alarm with you but you do take the pillow shaker then you might not have a clock that will work with your pillow shaker. This all-in-one unit is a nice solution to the problem. The buttons are hidden away, so you don’t have to worry about changing the alarm or the clock while you sleep. The Sonic Shaker is made by Sonic Alert, makers of the Sonic Boom Alarm Clock and a trusted name in the hearing loss community. The Sonic Shaker can be found for $29.95 (plus shipping and handling) from AssistiveStuff.com, a web site brought to my attention by Blake Bossert with the University of Delaware’s Center for Disabilities Studies. Besides the Sonic Shaker, you can find many other useful items from AssistiveStuff.com. If you’d like to order the Sonic Shaker from them, you can visit their website at assistivestuff.com or you can call them at 812-358-7300. Please note that the company is located in Indiana, meaning the call is long-distance.
Now, I know that I’ve tried to provide several sources for each item in the past, but time and space are limited. So, in an effort to be more prudent, I encourage you to do your homework via internet searches and shopping outings to find the best price for any item of interest and the related shipping and handling fees. It is no surprise that costs change, coupons appear in our mailboxes or inboxes, and sales happen. Plus, looking for better prices may help you find a completely different item that you’ve been searching for. With that said, this will bring another installment of the AT Bargain Basement to a close. I hope you had fun and found the bargains interesting and possibly helpful to you or to a friend or loved one. Don’t forget to come back next time when I’ll have more bargains to share. As always, if you would like to share any AT bargains or helpful hints you’ve found, please don’t hesitate to call, write, or e-mail me! I’ll make sure your suggestion makes it to the Basement for everyone to see. So until next time, remember, that just because something’s a bargain, doesn’t mean it’s cheap! ■