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Old 04-13-2011, 03:39 AM   #1
amward
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Ereader for sufferer of macular degeneration

My 95 yr old mother has the above condition and is currently finding my ereader great as she can enlarge the font to much bigger than a large print book. I would like to get her one of her own, maybe a 7" screen or even a bit bigger. Not too big as weight could become an issue. The problem will be her ability to see/feel the buttons and the list of titles. Would a touch screen with icons be better? And is there a reader which allows you to increase the size of everything on the screen, not just the text of the books? As she lives 2,000 ks from me and on her own, there won't be anyone to help her on a daily basis.

TIA

Last edited by amward; 04-13-2011 at 03:40 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 04-13-2011, 03:52 AM   #2
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I'd say for elder people touch screen would be much easier to use than pressign bunch of buttons they won't be able to see anyway.

The problem I have noticed with elderly people with touch screens is that they seems to want to wipe dust off of the reader's screen way too often, even when the reader is on
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Old 04-13-2011, 04:02 AM   #3
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I'd say for elder people touch screen would be much easier to use than pressign bunch of buttons they won't be able to see anyway.
The advantage that buttons give you, though, is that you can do things by feel.

I don't know if other readers offer this, but he Kindle 3's offer text to speech in the menus, which might be helpful. Apple makes very accessible devices, too, so I wouldn't be surprised if an iPad had the same capability.
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Old 04-13-2011, 04:36 AM   #4
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Bebook Mini offers a choice for the reader to read the book for you

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=APgj06bKTKc
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Old 04-13-2011, 04:54 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by bhartman36 View Post
The advantage that buttons give you, though, is that you can do things by feel.

I don't know if other readers offer this, but he Kindle 3's offer text to speech in the menus, which might be helpful. Apple makes very accessible devices, too, so I wouldn't be surprised if an iPad had the same capability.
I agree with this.

I'm not old, and don't have macular degeneration, but I have another illness that often... well, makes me see and act like my 85 yr old grandpa. My vision gets blotchy, and I get very weak and shaky.

Of course, that's when we most need to "read" a book, to escape and pass the time.

I have a Sony (touch screen) and while I like it a lot of the time, it's virtually useless when I'm under the weather. I can't reliably touch or stroke the place or way I need to, am constantly touching where I don't mean to, and when I do get the page up, I can't see it well enough to read without fatigue.
And no, you can't zoom in on anything except the text of the books.

But the Kindle3 is a godsend. I can feel the buttons, they give good feedback, and while the D-pad can be hard to press right sometimes, I can have it speak the menu items aloud to me, so I know I have it right; so you don't need to zoom in on the book lists or menus on a kindle.

Best of all, i can turn on the text to speech and let it turn the pages for me, and read out loud to me, if I turn the volume up.

The Kindle's text is also the easiest to read, because of the font types and variety of sizes and spacing.

So for your mother, I'd definitely suggest the Kindle 3, or something like it, over any touch screen I've tried.

The Kindle DX Graphite would be good, because it's bigger, and uses a joystick instead of a DPad, but I don't think it reads the menus out loud. It does have the nice pearl screen and TTS.

Good luck with whatever you choose. I'm sure your mother will bless you for it.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:04 AM   #6
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I would vote for buttons rather than touch screen. Buttons have the advantages of feel and of more reliable response when fingers are less steady. Touch screens demand adequate vision and excellent manual skills.

One point about the Kindles, and probably many other readers, is that the text size selection affects that book display only. The menus and file list are fixed size.
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Old 04-13-2011, 09:13 AM   #7
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Thanks for all the input folks. Mum doesn't want the text to speech feature, says she goes to sleep listening to audio books. She's happily reading on my Ecoreader, I'm just concerned about how she'll go reading the menus and library list. We'll go into that tomorrow now that she's got used to handling it.

Any more ideas and comments will be most appreciated.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:25 AM   #8
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With the Kindle 3, you can change the underlying fonts, which affects the menus as well. Overall, I'd say the Kindle is the best bet here. Certainly my wife who is due for cataract surgery next month has found it a great solution. (and did not enjoy the iPad and touchscreen experience at all.)
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:46 AM   #9
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As long as your mom is happy with her reader, I see no reason to give yourself a headache over this thing.
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Old 04-13-2011, 10:52 AM   #10
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As long as your mom is happy with her reader, I see no reason to give yourself a headache over this thing.

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Old 04-13-2011, 11:19 AM   #11
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As long as your mom is happy with her reader, I see no reason to give yourself a headache over this thing.
So far she's just reading on mine and has found it so good that she wants her own. But all she's done is read the book I opened for her, she hasn't had to navigate around the menus etc. We'll see what happens tomorrow when I start to show her how to do that.
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Old 04-13-2011, 11:35 AM   #12
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I'm legally blind and have a JBL, Kindle DXG (think I need to sell it) and an Archos 5 internet tablet

of the three I _prefer_ the tablet for two reasons, the better font to background options and the push screen (which you can use with your nose, thats how close I have to hold it) BUT the battery life is horrendous, it is tethered to its recharger 75% of the time

The JBL comes in second the smaller screen actually is a plus as my left eye cannot read from it (but can on the tablet, the coolreader program goes to a size 72 font compared to 32 on the JBL, and again the color contrast helps most of all) The JBL also has the slider and button options which help as you go from portrait to landscape both the JBL and tablet let me get library books, the tablet even lets me get audio library books

I got the Kindle dxg as a gift and it was recommended to me from one of my first posts here because with the large screen you can have more words on the screen even at the higher font sizes, but it is very heavy and the page turn buttons are only on one side, the keyboard is useless to me, having the free internet access is one small plus but the controls are so clunky (and slow) that even that is almost useless to me ...

I can READ at the PC have almost a dozen programs that let me shop/get free book offers at EVERY book site on the web, but I cannot take my pc to bed with me (hmm, not liking that mental picture so thats why I got my JBL in the first place, reading with the kindle dxg (I still need to hold it inches from face) is like doing an extended arm curl the weight becomes an issue to me

even where I have it propped up inches from my face, reading in bed, the large screen size starts to work against me as there are fewer page button mashings but then my neck gets sore as my good eye cant see the entire width of the screen let alone top to bottom

I had a few posts that might be of interest:

White Text on Black Background
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/showthread.php?t=90654

Color Ereaders - An issue for though
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...8&postcount=45

Tablet or ebook reader?
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...59&postcount=8

2 many to choose from
http://www.mobileread.com/forums/sho...32#post1431932

from my low vision research page:

Best Ebook Reader for Low Vision
http://www.webrn-maculardegeneration...ok-reader.html

The Accessible E-reader by Clytie Siddall
http://oz-e-books.squarespace.com/ne...e-siddall.html

Last edited by tomereader; 04-13-2011 at 12:00 PM.
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Old 04-13-2011, 12:01 PM   #13
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The buttons on the DX can be moved by rotating the screen. It works pretty nicely.

If she is able to navigate the e-reader you have and is comfortable with it then get her one of those. That way she is using a device that you are comfortable with and can help her with.
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Old 04-13-2011, 01:18 PM   #14
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AVOID

Pocketbook 902. I did a lot of research on this model - I have a Kobo and the type is clear, the screen is white, text stands out. Sadly the screen is tiny for what I need to enjoy reading.

Few proper choices for ereaders larger than 6" and I gambled on the 902, even after research. My conclusion - images on websites are hugely doctored. My screen is grey, images stay on it. I contacted support and got 'it is what it is', (i.e. a grey screen is normal), and absolutely no response about after images.

Very disappointing product. I'll probably be out ~$200 by the time shipping and brokerage fees are over with. I'd avoid like the plague.

A sincerely disappointed Pocketbook 902 new owner ; /

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Old 04-13-2011, 01:57 PM   #15
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