(dis)ability by jobpostings magazine (fall 2010)

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The fall 2010 issue of (dis)ability addresses career-related issues unique to students and recent grads with disabilities. The cover story explores how person-specific computing is taking assistive tech to a whole new level.

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  • careercupidYour Rights in the Workplace

    thorkilsonneThe Autistic Revolution&

    jobpostings

    edition

    RealityRealityYourAugmentfall2010 | careers. education. ideas. all of it.

  • 1jobpostings.ca | fall2010 | (dis)ability book

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    Did you know that these companies have a whole bunch of sweet jobs for students? Visit jobpostings.ca to see a full list of positions available.

    IFC Bank of Montreal 2 Cameco 5 TD Bank 7 Ontario Power Generation 9 Imperial Oil 15 Export Development Canada 15 Delta Hotels 18 Wood Manufacturing Council of Canada 21 FInTraC

    whoshiring

    stuff tobuy IFC Skittles 11 rogers Wireless 25 Lipton Brisk 31 Fishermans Friend IBC Excel

    whoelse?OBC & 28 nEaDS

    Best Practices // 19 When it comes to invisible disabilities in

    the workplace, not everyone got the memo.

    Psychological Disability & Self-Advocacy // 22 Jonathan Wamback on overcoming restrictions.

    The Autistic Revolution // 26The Attitude Barrier // 29

    How do we renovate outdated attitudes?

    getstuff! // 3 Which smartphone is the smartest?

    interviewsmarts // 6careercupid // 8

    successstory // 10 anything is possible. Brought to you by rogers Wireless.

    edu-ma-cation // 32 Dropping out of school? Hold on a second.

    Augment Your Reality // Person-specific computing is taking assistive tech to a

    whole new level.

    fall2010

    12

  • 2 (dis)ability book | fall2010 | jobpostings.ca

    Published by Passion inc. 25 Imperial Street, Suite 100 Toronto, On M5P 1B9

    www.jobpostings.ca 1-877-900-5627 ext. 221

    jobpostings publishes disability issues twice a year. Issue dates are September and January. 20,000 copies are distributed to over 100 universities and colleges. available by subscription: 2 issues for only $8.00 (plus HST). Contents of this publication are protected by copyright and may not be reprinted in whole or part without permission |of the publishers

    on the cover: iStockphoto.com/arICan

    jobpostings

    Endorsed by the national Educational association of Disabled Students

    publishers:

    Nathan Laurie nlaurie@jobpostings.ca

    Mark Laurie mlaurie@jobpostings.ca

    editor:

    Jason Rhyno jrhyno@jobpostings.ca

    graphic designer:

    Sonya van Heyningen svanheyningen@jobpostings.ca

    web editor:

    Emily Minthorn eminthorn@jobpostings.ca

    production & circulation:

    Amy Kappus akappus@jobpostings.ca

    can help.

    Whatever you need to buildyour dream career,

    jobpostings.ca is here

    careers. education. ideas. all of it.

    what do youwant to bewhen you

  • MobiLity to DisabilitiesBringing

    new wireless Braille displays and screen-reading software. Originally created for their Mac desktops, the VoiceOver screen-reader benefits from the established resources of its larger cousins, and utilizes a con-text-driven focus that distinguishes it from similar programs. When paired with one of the many Bluetooth-connected Braille accessories sup-ported by the iPhone, the package offers a more seamlessly integrated support for vision-impaired users, eliminating (as apple has attempted in all other regards) any awkward-ness in the devices myriad uses.

    A FutuRE oF ViRtuAL FREEDoMThough the side-by-side compari-son might seem skewed towards the iPhones predictably stylish treatment, the truth is that none of the companies has made significant steps in accommodating the array of difficulties faced by those with disabilities. While it is true that these devices can greatly enhance the quality of life for impaired users, real innovation is needed before these phones can really represent a smart solution for those with disabilities.

    bLAcKbERRy PAtcHESHomegrown Canadian contender rIM has its work cut out for it by ensuring their massively popular BlackBerry line remains competitive in this new era of sleek and sexy smartphones, while also providing a device accessible to all customers. a quick survey of their website reveals that theyve repackaged a number of standard features as disability friendly solutions, but they manage to win points with the legitimate useful-ness of the apps theyve listed. The individual descriptions, grouped by manner of disability, hint at innova-tive tips and tricks for an improved experience; the section for Cognitive Disabilities, for example, describes how the voice recorder feature can aid with remembering important notes and tasks. rIM could certainly devote more resources to creating actual solutions for accessibility, whether with software or with hard-ware, and hopefully the emerging minds of Canadas tech workforce will be able to contribute.

    APPLES oRigiNAL WiNapple appears poised to become a trendsetter in the world of acces-sibility devices. Boasting what can now be said to be the standard so-lutions of voice-controlled apps and multi-sensory alerts, apple has gone a few steps further and engineered an elegant synthesis of old and

    In a wireless world, physical conditions no longer apply but how savvy are the leading

    smartphones when it comes to real access issues?

    uNDEREMPLoyED ANDRoiDas much as we might all feel a certain kinship with the above title, the android in question is Googles offering into the cellphone market, an OS descended from the nobly geeky Linux family. Despite a strong showing this year against rivals apple and rIM, as well as a reputation for innovative products, Google has proven to be more machine than hu-man when it comes to caring about users with disabilities. Their acces-sibility project of note is Eyes Free, which creates apps to allow blind and vision-impaired customers still get full use out of their android-compatible devices. Though well-intentioned, this attempt is too little and too late BlackBerry has a full suite of similar features available for their products, and apple goes a few steps further and delivers full accessibility with style. androids devoted community of third-party developers, normally a strong point in its favour, appear to be to blame for this; the sad truth is that, quite simply, not enough pro-grammers are interested in accessi-bility issues to provide the same sort of momentum to these projects as can be found for the digital toys that let us find better shopping deals or weather updates.

    by Austin Bahadur

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    3jobpostings.ca | fall2010 | (dis)ability book

  • 4 (dis)ability book | fall2010 | jobpostings.ca

    I live for stories, always have. When I was young, I spent a great deal of time in hospital waiting rooms for a myriad of both physical and psychological illnesses. To pass the time between EEGs and blood tests, I would create stories and lose myself on wonderful flights of fancy. Problem was that after I became healthier, I had developed this habit of drifting into my very own Never Ending Story during class, during dinner, on the bus to school, and pretty much every other waking moment of my adolescent life. I would fail tests at school, was incapable of socializing and was generally disconnected from reality.

    It wasnt until high school, when I landed an internship at the local newspaper, that I realized I had a knack for something no one else my age had: I knew a good story when I saw one. I could find the narrative in any situation or issue and was skilled at pulling out the meat of the story. as the years progressed, I applied this to film, radio, writing, and now its what I do for a living; it pays my rent. What was once a detriment on my life has now become a skill a skill that I use to make magazines like the one youre reading.

    a much better example of turning a disability into a strength is the story of Thorkil Sonne (pg. 26), a entrepre-neur from Denmark. Thorkils son was born with autism, but instead of lamenting this fact, the innovative father had the insight to create an IT company where people with autism could work. This story isnt just about a successful entrepreneur, its about challenging misconceptions.

    Then there is Jonathan ryan Wam-back (pg. 22). I first met Jonathan when I was editor of a student news-paper at York University. I didnt know much about Jonathan, al-though I should have. What he went through made headlines. a profes-sor had introduced us; he wanted to try his hand at writing, and I was looking for writers. The article came in on time, we published it, and then we lost track of each other.

    It wasnt until this past summer that we met again, naturally under the same circumstances as before; I needed a story, and he wanted to write. We met over coffee at York, and he told me about his journey with self-advocacy, on disclosing his invisible disability plot points mainly, the details I wouldnt get un-til I was editing his story. The attack on Jonathan left him with a physi-cal disability, but it wasnt until much later that the psychological trauma manifested, disrupting his studies,

    Jason Rhyno

    noteeditors

    straining his relationships, and af-fecting his performance at work. But he overcame it. Its a good story, equal parts light and dark and hope.

    Finally, there is our feature story (pg. 12) about assistive technology, and cloud computing, and the wild-ly brilliant innovations that are be-ing created by our countries brav-est minds. Its the story about how people are creating technology to fill the cracks in our society so that nobody falls through.

    If you look closely at all these stories, youll find a narrative that will help you excel in y