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Article

Shopping When You Are Deafblind: A Pre-Technology Test of New Methods for Face-to-Face Communication—Deafblindness and Face-to-Face Communication

1
Rehabilitation Department, Université Laval, Quebec City, QC G1V 0A6, Canada
2
Centre of Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation and Social Integration (Cirris), Université Laval, Quebec City, QC G1V 0A6, Canada
3
School of Optometry, Université de Montréal, Montreal, QC H3T 1J4, Canada
4
Centre for Interdisciplinary Research in Rehabilitation of Greater Montreal, Montreal, QC H3S 1M9, Canada
5
Retirement and Savings Institute, HEC Montréal, Montreal, QC H3T 2A7, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Normand Boucher, Charles Gaucher, Louise Duchesne and Linsay Flowers
Societies 2021, 11(4), 131; https://doi.org/10.3390/soc11040131
Received: 3 September 2021 / Revised: 19 October 2021 / Accepted: 25 October 2021 / Published: 28 October 2021
This article presents the first-year results of a project that aimed to explore the feasibility of using a braille display and a smartphone in society to improve face-to-face communication for a person living with deafblindness, using a simulated communication situation. An applied experimental development design was implemented, followed by a pre-test in the community. Two clinicians and an engineer conducted communication tests with three communication partners with normal vision in a shopping mall. A blind clinician acting as deafblind bought an iPhone case and asked for the location of two stores. Communication partners did not report any difficulties, understood the exchanges, and were proud to have helped a person living with deafblindness. No communication breakdowns or keyboard input incidents occurred. Speech turns were not optimal but can be improved. Clinicians proposed a sequence of three training modules: (1) prior knowledge (basic operations for iPhone, software, and braille display), (2) methods for preparing a face-to-face discussion, and (3) processes during a face-to-face discussion. Results demonstrate the feasibility of using a tactile technological solution coupled with a smartphone to interact with unknown interlocutors. Technology trials form the groundwork for a 9-month case study, involving two individuals with deafblindness. View Full-Text
Keywords: deafblindness; dual sensory loss; Usher syndrome; assistive communication technology; iPhone; braille notetaker; living laboratory deafblindness; dual sensory loss; Usher syndrome; assistive communication technology; iPhone; braille notetaker; living laboratory
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MDPI and ACS Style

Vincent, C.; Wittich, W.; Bergeron, F.; Hotton, M.; Achou, B. Shopping When You Are Deafblind: A Pre-Technology Test of New Methods for Face-to-Face Communication—Deafblindness and Face-to-Face Communication. Societies 2021, 11, 131. https://doi.org/10.3390/soc11040131

AMA Style

Vincent C, Wittich W, Bergeron F, Hotton M, Achou B. Shopping When You Are Deafblind: A Pre-Technology Test of New Methods for Face-to-Face Communication—Deafblindness and Face-to-Face Communication. Societies. 2021; 11(4):131. https://doi.org/10.3390/soc11040131

Chicago/Turabian Style

Vincent, Claude, Walter Wittich, François Bergeron, Mathieu Hotton, and Bertrand Achou. 2021. "Shopping When You Are Deafblind: A Pre-Technology Test of New Methods for Face-to-Face Communication—Deafblindness and Face-to-Face Communication" Societies 11, no. 4: 131. https://doi.org/10.3390/soc11040131

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