Shockproof iPad case (your choice of colors)

I like this a lot. It kind of grew on me. I didn’t like the appearance at first, but now I love the look (helps that I get my choice of colors). The stand folds out to be a big comfy handle. When standing, there’s a little wiggle when you tap/swipe. Great for watching videos, FaceTime, etc. Unabashed Amazon affiliate ad follows:

iPad excitement!

This morning my friend Bob and I visited my student; I saw him yesterday and had explained what I’ve planned. The case came in the mail last night and the response from my student was immediate and excited! It turns out the overall cost (used iPad 2nd-generation 64GB $317.06 delivered + shockproof case $17.94 delivered = $335) was good and we got into the first lessons. Training curriculum on Day One included:

  1. How to gently plug in the charger
  2. How to go to the Home screen
    1. Push the Home button
    2. Type in the four-digit passcode
  3. How to start the JW Library Sign Language app by tapping it
  4. How to select a sign language video from the library by tapping it
  5. How to pause and resume play with two-finger tap
  6. Don’t get water on it
  7. Power off
  8. Power on

I had an old spare wireless router which I configured at tested first at my home and then connected at his house; it didn’t work. I don’t know if this is a router configuration issue; I’ll have to go back to his house with my laptop to troubleshoot (I know he has internet because the Sorensen videophone works).

Unexpected contagion: one of my fellow teachers (who is also my barber) liked the used-iPad idea so much that by the time she finished my haircut we’d ordered another one for her use (3rd-generation, a little more money and you get Siri and a better display). My father-in-law saw the setup last night and he wants one. I actually want one myself now.

Used iPad aggravation

The second-hand iPad came today and I am locked out of it because it was erased while still linked to the previous owner’s iCloud account with the Find My iPhone feature.

Did I purchase stolen property? Am I out $3C?

Hassan at Amazon walked me through how to send an email to IPAD MANIA, the Amazon seller whom I purchased this from. Short and sweet, I’m requesting they unlock this iPad and let me activate it. Hassan assured me that I can pay to ship it back to Amazon for a refund. I should be grateful to have such a reputable middle-man in this transaction. My excitement turns to sickening disappointment so easily…

UPDATE: I am returning the brick to Amazon and have ordered another. A gentleman from IPAD MANIA contacted me by email. He seemed nice enough and offered to rebate me $13 for return shipping and $40 as a discount; he asked me to return the iPad to him directly and he’d send me another, as well as some freebies and the discount to compensate for the inconvenience. It was tempting. $40! But when I talked it over with Susan, we realized that this nice man (whose name and address I do not know, I was given a generic company name and a public mailbox-type address to ship to) may or may not be honest, and I may or may not end up with a working iPad to show for my troubles. (Also, it’s a stretch to believe that a man who’s selected the iPad secondary market as his business foundation doesn’t know how to activate one.) On the other hand, if we just return to Amazon.com directly and reorder through them, we are more or less guaranteed the expected result. Hassan’s associate at Amazon sent me a prepaid shipping label, and I’m happy again.

Trying something new…

I’m happily back home to Susan from cold and rainy Orlando. The ATIA conference took a week of my life and gave me some very exciting ideas about using assistive technology. Today the two of us implemented the second of these. Ironically, I should have thought of this myself a long time ago…

At the conference, a dynamic Deaf high-school junior named Dante explained how he’s leveraged his iPhone as a communication tool using FaceTime (for sign language), messaging to talk with friends and family, and the BuzzCards app by Sorensen for communicating short messages to hearing people who can’t sign. He was justifiably proud of his success, keeping in stride academically in ASL and English while competing as a student athlete.

I have a very dear Bible student who has been deaf his entire life, is not fluent in sign language, and his only other form of communication is home sign. I’d hoped he’d follow the crowd and get himself an iPad (Project Endeavor was an opportunity while it lasted) but his only technology is a digital camera (which he loves) and a portable DVD player (far less lovable). I hadn’t faced the fact that his further progress depends on his comfort level with expensive technology that’s been completely out of reach for him. In that regard, I haven’t been much help at all.

Like Dante, my student has a Sorensen videophone, but unlike Dante he doesn’t do very well with it (for one thing, he never answers; for another, he doesn’t really seem to enjoy communicating through an interpreter). When I am with him and use FaceTime he loves it, but that’s gotten him no closer to getting an iPad or iPhone. I myself use an iPhone for communication constantly and an iPad regularly (JW Library Sign Language!) My friend, on the other hand, is hemmed in by daunting barriers including the high cost of iOS devices, no transportation, no Internet access, no credit, no employment… how could I have been so unreasonable in my expectations for so long?

At the conference, one topic taken up was cost vs. benefit: how is assistive technology (like the iPad) to be distributed so that nothing is wasted? Trucking in crates of iPads and dealing them out like cards seems not to be the answer; too often they end up in a drawer, batteries dead and unjustly blamed for their own uselessness. A better method put forward is to start from a small lending library of tech; identify a person who could potentially benefit, and establish criteria as to what success would look like. After a timed trial (say, three months) if the data shows improvement, then (and only then) effort is put into buying/selling/obtaining personal tech for the user. On the other hand, if there’s no data supporting improvement, the tech goes back to the lending library and we try something else.

As I listened to the discussion in our workshop, I realized that my friend is never going to get what he needs on his own (I shouldn’t have needed a week at a conference to figure this out, but that’s what happened). Today, Susan and I came up with a plan. A used iPad 2, a shockproof case I saw disturbingly demonstrated at the trade show this week, a second-hand wireless router and optimism are all we need to start our lending library. Either my friend will respond to training by learning to make and accept FaceTime calls and using the JW Library app and will agree to pay for the hardware on an installment plan… or I just got myself a new (previously loved) iPad with a clunky orange case. We are very excited…