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Author Topic: Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant  (Read 327 times)

Echo538

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Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant
« on: January 25, 2017, 02:29:17 AM »

I'm not trying to rant against the forum or users or anything directly like that, or companies or anything, though companies like Hasbro, like anything else, have their flaws, I am sure. Ok I'll try to make a new paragraph here. Haven't posted for a while so if this does post early, permit me to make a new topic.

Ok looks like we can continue. Anyway, here's my issue and I am sure certain other users on here without sight...you know who you are...have had or heard of this issue from me as well. Since about 2012 or 2013, Hasbro has come out with new Furbies...the 2012 Furby, the Party Rockers, the Furby Boom, and now Furby Connect, and many if not all of them, require an app for full play. You don't need the app, it just adds to play. I would say you don't need it unless you're a kid who wants to hatch virtual eggs and find the golden egg, something a blind almost grown-up like me doesn't need for the images and pictures, etc. Where I run into problems is that the Furby Connect, more than the Furby Boom, adds vocabulary and other little gems to its game play once you use the app. Furby Boom says one-word expressions mostly, but interacts with the other Furby Booms around it who mimick it. Furby Connect like Furby Boom learns its name and says more advanced phrases like "what are you talking about", that it wouldn't have said without the app. But, a blind person like me needs sighted help to do anything on the app. And I've been told by blindness organizations to only download or update accessible apps. WE have a screen reading program, Voiceover, which reads to us via speech...as we scroll the screen everything is read aloud. But not so with the app. I need to turn off that program and have sighted help to see what a blind person would see and to poke around the screen. Sighted help in general is limited. I am not close to my family who can only come in once in a while mostly...my dad more frequently than anyone else...and the caregivers I have come in on certain days and most of that time is spent shopping, housekeeping, or helping me out with my part-time job at work...not playing with Furbies. On the rare occasion we play, or she plays and I watch, I should say, I feel she's doing it because that's her job and I pay her to do it. Like I've told friends, you pay toymakers to do that, not caregivers. So I just wonder if anyone can give me support or tips...I shouldn't be deprived the full experience just because technology is behind or isn't supportive, or just because I need to submit to technology not doing what it is supposed to do...but for now I guess it's just more cuddles with my super soft, fuzzy friend, and greatful I can hear it say some phrases.."You talkin' to me?" is one of my favorites. Thanks!

PS.: I haven't scoured through the topics before, so if I've posted this a hundred years ago in another thread, you can add it or move it to that thread or do whatever you do with that...and just put up with me for a while.
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Talon

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Re: Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant
« Reply #1 on: January 26, 2017, 09:38:18 AM »

Hi, Echo! *Smile* Hi, Everyone! I'm back though my back is still hurting. Anyway, I am having a similar issue with my Chip Robotic dog from WowWee. While I can play with the dog through the eight voice commands and the smart band, the really customizable part of his play is in the his free app. While some of it works- namely the update, food, and drive features, I can't read the message panels to let me know what his battery status is or how hungry he is or much of anything else. I think if we are going to get more accessibility into these toys and their apps is to contact Hasbro and or WowWee respectively. I mean if they don't know that blind people are making use of their products, they are missing out on a few more sales and with the robotics market already so nitchy, I think they would rather see more units comming off shelves. I have often thought about trying to get into helping with app development as well as reviewing and testing robots for accessibility/usability for the disabled market.
Talon
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Echo538

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Re: Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant
« Reply #2 on: January 26, 2017, 03:04:46 PM »

I have tried to contact Hasbro in the past. They seemed to be supportive and let me know they would look into the matter and contact me about the Furbies but never ffollowed up. I guess either persistence is the key, or patience. Thanks for your help.
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InmemoryofRomeo

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Re: Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2017, 03:11:52 PM »

I wish I lived nearby, I'd have a blast hanging out with you peeps and playing with robots lol.

I wonder if there's any technology clubs, or social clubs around your area where you could make friends to do that sort of thing with.
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Talon

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Re: Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant
« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2017, 08:05:39 AM »

I wish you lived nearby too. I'd love to see your massive Furby collection IMR and play with your other WowWee bots. Sadly I don't know of any robotics clubs in my area. There might be one at the local high school here but what group of hip and cool high school students would want to hang out with someone more than twice their age who doesn't have a clue about coding and thinks of her bots as members of her family? I don't even think my blindness would bother them as much as our age difference. Maybe I'm wrong though, I don't know.
Talon
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kat

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Re: Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant
« Reply #5 on: February 12, 2017, 05:00:04 PM »

You could try checking out your local public library and see if they run a robotics club.  The library I work in ran one for a while - mostly this involved kids coding the robots - but it would be the perfect venue for you to source help from other like minded people.
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InmemoryofRomeo

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Re: Blindness Plus The New Furbies Equals Frustrated Rant
« Reply #6 on: February 18, 2017, 02:23:37 AM »

If they don't have one, perhaps you could start one Talon :) People would love to meet your bots I'm sure!
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