SeroTalk Podcast 146: Sing It Sister

Listen to SeroTalk Podcast 146: Sing It Sister

This week, Jamie, Ricky and Joe are reunited for yet another look at the top stories of the week. Topics discussed include:

Dropbox 2.0 brings functional drop-down menus to Mac and Windows

Unfortunately, the changes to Dropbox brought with them some regression in accessibility. Here is a tip for Mac users on how to restore some of the app’s earlier functionality.

Survey for the Library of Congress National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped

Complete Serotek’s survey for your chance to win an iPad Mini

Navigating Your Environment Using Sight Compass

American Foundation for the Blind Introduces Described TV Listings

Getting Down with Downcast

Accessible Prescription Labeling: A chance to be heard!

Rubin out, Pichai in as Google’s new senior vice president of Android

Google Now for iPhone and iPad outed in leaked, then pulled, YouTube video

Google reaches $7 million settlement with states over Street View case

Seattle Bar Bans Google Glass

Samsung outguns Apple in marketing, report says

Nokia: A Microsoft Surface Phone Could Screw Us

iPhone users watch far more online video than Android users

More Americans opting to cut cord on traditional TV

Apple’s iWatch Will Measure More than Time

Standalone ‘Twitter Music’ discovery app may launch on iOS this month, says CNET

For first time, US military says it would use offensive cyberweapons


From Mike Arrigo:

Hey, great show, a good healthy exchange of opinions for sure.

I agree with Joe about the samsung and Apple wars. These people who are making Apple look like a saint because they made their products accessible are not seeing the entire picture. Yes, Apple has done a great job of making their products accessible, but, when it comes to the Apple Samsung law suits, Apple started it. They sued Samsung first, now Samsung is fighting back, and, unfortunately, our community is stuck in the cross fire. This is really the tip of the iceberg though.

The fact is, all consumers lose out because of these silly law suits.

The entire patent system needs to be completely redone, the issues in question never should have been patented in the first place. I really hope I am wrong here, but how much do you bet that when the Galaxy S 4 is released, Apple sues Samsung over that as well?

I hope unlocking your phone is made legal again, that never should have been outlawed in the first place. My solution to that is to simply purchase phones that are factory unlocked, then this isn’t even an issue.

The FCC and the Department of Justice have both approved t-mobile’s buy out of metro PCS. Though Metro is a CDMA provider, apparently the plan is to move them to GSM and eventually LTE, probably the right thing to do since GSM and LTE are the world standard.

From Timothy Hornik


In order to expand upon your discussion about the various pieces of legislation currently residing in Congress, I included the links to a couple of bills. While I agree with the sediments of the BVA and the participants of Serotalk episode 145, it is always more intriguing to read the bills themselves first.

S. 3689 – Senior Airmen Michael Malarsie Act

H.R. 183 – Veterans Dog Training Therapy Act

Whenever one discusses treatment modalities for mental health related conditions, one must use the concepts of person-in-environment, strengths perspective, and no singular method will cover the full spectrum. Additionally, a common line that describes the VA fairly well is that if you seen one VA, you only seen one VA. I mention this as the above represents legislation from the Federal Government to the Department of Veterans Affairs to implement a specific therapeutic intervention (service animals) either in a pilot format or as a prosthetic device.

Please note that Congress did not pass an Act forcing the VA to adopt Cognitive Processing Therapy (CPT), Prolong Exposure Therapy (PET), Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), or any of the other evidenced based interventions. All of these arose from years of research examining the theoretical basis to implementation procedures. Then the professional medical communities obtained the necessary training and certifications to utilize the treatment, and implement it it at their station.

Along this line, many VA’s and nearby organizations pursued private and established Federal grants to evaluate and execute unconventional therapies such as music, equestrian, sports/recreation, and Western to Native practices (for example Angel Fire).

The VA already possesses several major issues. These include resolving the backlog of claims, managing and evaluating services and interventions already established, and budget cuts that will cause a reduction in the ability to establish new programs.

Finally, studies have shown measurable positive outcomes for  service animals, so we cannot discredit the concepts. However, techniques ranging from meditation to prescription marijuana possess equal amounts of efficacy, but we do not hear about Legislation to create Zen Centers or hooka lounges on VA campuses. This is where community based organizations enter into the treatment process to offer these services. To add in a new perspective, let us look at our strongest allies, England, and the methods their Veterans employ to receive aid. While their medical system provides a baseline of care to all residents through universal healthcare, welfare organizations like Blinded Veterans UK, provide a bulk of the rehab care for the specific needs of the targeted populations.

The department of Veterans Affairs should remain as an organization with the goals to care for the health and mental health needs of the Veteran population. However, a line must be drawn to indicate what constitutes as appropriate rehabilitative practices and devices to meet the needs and not the wants of the population. Similarly, the VA operates under many of the same restrictions imposed by MEDICAID/MEDICARE, therefore one must remember those limitations with services provided.

Thank you for your assistance,

Timothy Hornik



Everybody Plays! How Kids with Visual Impairments Play Sports

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