“What is your favorite or best AAC?” is a question that I frequently am asked. As the owner of Tolt Technologies I have the privilege of trying many different eye gaze devices and cameras. With a bit of a smile my response to this question is always, “what works best for the client, you really need to try different devices out and see.”
The irony is that I am profoundly nearsighted, -14 with a very steep corneal curve. For the most part I can’t use eye gaze devices. Thanks to technology I have fantastic hard contacts that allow me to see well enough to drive. These contacts wreak havoc with eye gaze cameras. To test our A13J eye gaze computer I had to go to the optometrist with the A13J and explain that I had to have single vision glasses that would allow me to at least see the computer screen well enough to drive using the eye gaze camera. Hello 20/200 tunnel vision with ¾” thick lenses, but it works well enough to drive a chair for testing. Every time we get a new camera in here at Tolt Technologies I get excited and the first thing I do is test to see if it will work for me.
One of our goals at Tolt Technologies is that we work with as many AAC’s and power chairs as possible so that people get the best device for them. At ASHA I had the opportunity to work with James Brinton from Eyegaze Inc. We were in the process of approving the Eyegaze Edge as a device that Ability Drive is compatible with. For the first time I was able to calibrate and use an eye gaze device while wearing contacts. Back to the question, “what is the best eye gaze device?” The answer is you really need to try several different devices and pick the one that works best for you or your client.