Braille Book Review

July-August 2010

In Brief

Digital talking-book players now available

The new digital talking-book players are here! All NLS patrons are eligible to receive digital players and digital talking books.

Both the standard and advanced players are easy to use and come with a built-in audio guide. Users may press any button on either player to learn the button’s function. The sound quality is excellent, and most books fit on one cartridge. Users need only insert the book cartridge and the book will begin playing.

To receive a digital player, contact your local network library. Contact information for network libraries is listed on the last pages of this magazine and is also available through the “Find a Library” feature at


The following announcements may be of interest to readers. The National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped reserves the right to publish announcements selectively, as space permits. The items mentioned, however, are not part of the NLS program, and their listing does not imply endorsement.

Talking first-aid kits for travelers

The Talking Safe Traveler kit from Intelligent First Aid includes bandages, sponges, antibiotic ointment, disposable gloves, and other essentials—plus talking instruction cards that explain how to treat breathing difficulties, bleeding, shock, and routine injuries. The kit comes in a lightweight, water-resistant nylon bag and costs $59.99. You may order online at or by phone toll-free at 1-800-377-4544.

New tactile atlas available

The Princeton Braillists of Princeton, New Jersey, recently published the seventy-eight-page Atlas of Southern Africa, which includes eighteen tactile maps and sells for $14. The small group of senior citizen volunteers produces maps by hand in metal foil. The maps are then duplicated by the Thermoform process onto 11 x 11.5–inch plastic sheets that are spiral bound into volumes with cardboard covers. The group also has produced Maps of Alaska, Maps of Canada and the United States, and many other atlases.

Contact Ruth Bogia at (215) 357-7715 or by e-mail at, or Nancy Amick at (609) 924-5207 or More information is available on the Princeton Braillists web site,

Talking banknote identifier

Orbit Research, which developed a talking calculator in the late 1990s, has introduced the iBill talking banknote identifier. The iBill is about the size of two packs of chewing gum laid side by side and can be attached to a keychain or lanyard. Users insert a piece of U.S. currency into a slot and push a button; a female voice announces the banknote’s denomination. For those who want more privacy, or who have a hearing impairment or difficulty discerning speech, the iBill also has vibration and tone modes. It is available for $99 through Orbit Research at or 1-888-606-7248, and through AT Guys at or (269) 216-4798.

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