With the New Year ringing in in just a few short days, I would like to take time to revisit our top five blog posts from 2016. Did you know the INDATA Project publishes at least 3 blog posts each week!? That means we write more than 156 blog posts each year! Instead of revisiting every single post, I’m going to highlight five of our most popular articles written this year. (Note: The following posts were selected as they had the highest numbers of reads and shares on social media.)
Top 5 Posts from 2016
Okay, so before diving into the top 5 posts from the year, I want to explain how the following made the list. In the field of assistive technology, it is hard to really state what is “the best” as it varies for every single individual! My mission as the social media content specialist is to introduce assistive technologies to individuals of all abilities. In other words, I don’t focus on one population (e.g. autism, visually impaired, hearing impaired, etc.) When I’m writing our blogs, I try to cover items that will benefit different populations within the special needs community. Therefore, I wanted to inform you that this list consists of the top highest-ranking posts in terms of reads and shares this year.
One of the top posts written in 2016 discusses several fidgets suitable for adults who simply just need to fidget! Individuals with ADHD, autism, anxiety, high stress levels and more all often resort to fidgeting as a means of relaxing. The article covers several types of fidgets including:
- Jewelry by Stimtastic
- Pencil fidgets
- Desktop fidgets
- And more!
2. Pokémon Go
Writing an article about Pokémon Go was both extremely challenging and rewarding. As a writer, I feel it’s essential to be vulnerable and try new challenges. While writing my post on this wildly popular app, my goal was to first introduce anxiety and depression as disabilities (read more about the ADA classification here.) Secondly, I wanted to present my argument on how the “silly” viral app, Pokémon Go, is indeed assistive technology. If you haven’t read my article yet, here are a few of the app’s benefits:
- It encourages exercise and being physically active.
- The app also encourages fine motor skills.
- Encourages players to go outside for some fresh air, as well as visit local landmarks they may have never seen before!
- The biggest benefit of the app is that it motivates those with anxiety and depression.
Next up on the list is a variety of fun fidgets for children. I wrote this after receiving a lot of positive feedback for my articles on Stimtastic. Stimtastic is a company dedicated to creating affordable stimming products. I began to realize how products such as chewable jewelries, fidgets, and more could benefit so many individuals! Therefore, this article discusses 5 fun fidgets that are suitable for in the classroom, on the go, at home, and more. The fidgets included are:
- Bouncy Bands: a bungee-like fidget that attaches to desks and chairs.
- Tangle Creations Tangle Therapy: an ergonomic tool that is ideal for those with sensory issues.
- Q3 Enterprises LLC Twiddle: a soft toy that “calms and increases attention through fidgeting and sensory stimulation.”
- Busy Fingers: a fidget made of various fabrics; can be used whenever child feels stressed, needs to keep hands busy, or is seeking sensory stimulation.
- Fidgipod: a fidget that features a nonskid bottom so users can place it on any flat surface and run their palm or foot over it for instant calming sensory stimulation.
When I first heard about the Cicret Bracelet, I had to write about it right away! It takes touch screen technology to the next level, so I’m not even surprised it turned out to be one of our most popular blogs this year! If you’re unfamiliar with the Cicret Bracelet, in sum, it’s a wristband that projects an interactive screen onto your arm. The product is still in beta testing, and the company hopes to begin taking pre-orders in early 2017. Once the final product is released, I’m sure it’ll prove to be a very useful piece of assistive technology for many (but especially to those with limited movement!)
The minute Apple introduces a new operating system, I immediately begin researching what is new in terms of accessibility. We were fortunate enough to test the new operating system out before its release, so this article sums up my [limited] experience with iOS 10’s new accessibility features.