Archive for June, 2008

New legislation is being put on the table which will require closed captioning on some internet videos.  Reading various sites, I see that many technology people are against closed captioning on the internet.  They feel the government will now get their hands on regulating and setting fines for videos not captioned.

 At first, I was very much for the legislation.  But rethinking it all and reading on the comments and criticisms on the subject, I wonder, do we really want the government watching everyone on You Tube and regulating it?  Do people on Vblog want their videos captioned?   Do u really want the government controlling the internet?  This is how people are responding to this piece of legislation.

Naturally, as a hearing impaired person, I want access.  All I wanted were for the videos on news based sites to caption their videos, candidates online to caption their videos, advertisers to caption their videos.   Naturally, there are many ways to caption our own videos with lots of free software out there for us.  So who should be taking the responsibility for this?

Here’s the legislation that is being presented and causing an uproar in the technology world on the internet:   What do u think?

http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080626-new-bill-mandates-closed-captioning-for-internet-video.html

You know when you hear about someone quitting their job, packing up and just leaving? Did u ever wonder how successful that person was in their attempts to leave all that they uprooted?   Do people really just pack it in, pack it up and leave? Do they really leave it all behind for short term? long term?  and never look back?

When u look at all the technology out there from the beginning of their creation to its current status, u’ll note that most technology started out large and clutsy looking and eventually the product was reduced in size BUT improved in its functioning purposes .  For example, Look at computers, headphones, cellphones, xerox machines, fax machines, TTY’s, even televisions and radios.   They all went from large to small and improved.

 Now, lets look at the hearing aid.  Hearing aids started out as horns, something looking like the Shofa used on the Jewish holidays.  The first real hearing aid  by Sonotone with a transistor was put on the market in 1952 for $229.   In fact, AT&T (American Telephone and Telegraph……remember them?)  gave out free transistor licenses in honor of Alexander Graham Bell.

 Without losing a beat, companies began producing their own aids and competing. Acousticon put an aid out soon after for $74.50.  The hearing aids were powered by batteries worn around the waist.  Could u imagine if the competition continued with prices like these to this day?   Anyway, my point is that hearing aids have always been small, but they never quite improved and never got cheaper the way other technology has.  In fact, the hearing aid price is so varied and so steep and so difficult to shop around for, that most buyers will not price them the way we do when buying a car.

Sure, we have the directional microphones and the programming of the aids for different environments and background noise reductions.  We have the options of digital, digital programming and analog.  All promising maximum speech understanding.  Did u ever wonder whether it was all a gimmick?  I mean, after all, hearing aids don’t provide 20/20 hearing, so why make promises u can’t keep?

All I know is that when I cut the background noise out on my hearing aid, with that advantage comes the downside of the voice i’m listening to being lower as well.  Or when there are two speakers, one behind me and one in front of me, my directional mics seem to get a little ditsy and neurotic. 

Point being that for some reason, the hearing aid industry has changed asthetically but not really technically.  They have their new state of the art micro style differences, the ergonomic designs made especially for the boomer generation who has become so vain and forgotten their roots.  And I just love when a company states, u won’t even know you’re wearing them……duh! never in a million years.   I am constantly reminded that I’m wearing my aid.  Whether from someone’s dumb question of “are u wearing your aid today” to “is your aid working.”

Naturally, I’ve accepted that hearing aids are not the perfect solution but they give me the best situation for my hearing loss.  I would have preferred the aids have been more miraculously improved without convincing us they are so dynamically tuned for our specific hearing loss and that our ability to hear will be a miracle.   And whats with the tiny battery? How do they expect the largest population of hearing impaired people to put that little battery into that little thingie compartment?  And don’t forget about what happens when dropping that little battery on the floor.  It’s amazing to watch a group of seniors on hands and knees looking for that stinker.  It’s also amazing to see how far that little battery can travel when its not even on.

I never lead anyone to believe that hearing aids are the all or nothing solution.  Its just a temporary solution to a problem that can’t seem to be fixed by medical science thru other means, yet.  In the meantime, all I want is a hearing aid that works and works to my benefit.  I couldn’t care less about all these ergodynamic state of the art designs.  After all, I don’t expect anyone to say, ay Pearl, cool hearing aid you got there in your ear!

Today is my birthday and I’m actually very excited. Not about being another year older but that my good friends are taking me out for the whole day and my husband will take Friday off to take me to a special place as well. 

My friends and I decided to go to this new Korean spa in town that has had rave reviews since they opened over a year ago.  I’m getting a massage and going into all seven saunas.  

We plan to have a korean lunch and just relax.  I can’t stress the importance of a woman having girlfriends outside of your main relationships.  Your girlfriends always know the right things to say, they don’t make u feel old, in fact, they make me feel young. 

I’ve always loved birthdays and I never need an excuse to celebrate.  I’ll celebrate anything.  I may not be where I had hoped I would be at this point in my life, but I have very special friends who just make me happy.

Happy Birthday to me!

Its hard to believe that I am now in June and have approximately 12 weeks left before returning to work.  Yea, I know, 12 weeks is alot.  But not as much as 12 months were…lol.

I’ve continued with my silver jewelry making classes though the five week course is not as good as the 13 week course.  Too condensed, too fast paced and the majority of the people in the class, are extremely talented and creative.   Thats not to say, its not fun.  Its alot of fun just very hard work.

I’ve started on my summer credits and its interesting though I am so uncertain whether I should even be doing it.  I will however, complete the six credits (in six weeks) and finish the certificate program in the Fall with my doing an externship while I return to work full time as well.

I have so much going through my mind about life, work and me.  I feel in limbo with everything these days.  I want to just get on a plane and go away.  I’m feeling on the verge.  I’m feeling everything around me either makes too much sense or no sense. What do u do when you’re in limbo?  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not tormented or feeling suicidal, just feeling that I’m not where I want to be at this point in my life and questioning whether I’ll ever have what I want or be where I want to be at this point in my life.