Exploring Vision Aids @ SRC

Listen to the Audio: Exploring Vision Aids @ SRC

Hear this discussion from our Longevity Explorers — circles of older adults who meet monthly to explore solutions to the challenges that come with aging.

Join now (free) | Log in


Scroll Down for Discussion Summary. 

from: Longevity Explorers | Saratoga Retirement Community

Discussion Summary

Saratoga Retirement Community Explorers start an exploration of low vision problems and share some of the devices they use to improve visibility.

Explorer John starts by mentioning the VideoEye machine in their library, a tabletop device consisting of a camera with variable image magnification. It enlarges a printed page, and is good for one page but not for a book - "too bulky, and at $500.00 - "too expensive."

Another member reports that the Vista store in Palo Alto offers resources for the blind, as she shows the group a hand-held magnifier and light that she finds useful for seeing her cards at bridge games. She is pleased at its small size, that it is easily hand held, battery powered, and folds up for easy storage. Reading gadget



Others in turn show their devices: 

  • A computer keyboard modifier for larger, more visible keys. 
  • Ottlite - a bright LED light from the art store suitable for seeing store for close work - portable. Cons: needs to be plugged in, glares back if not masked.
  • A headlamp (left behind in a hobby work area). 
  • 'Mageyes' variable interchangeable magnifier lenses for a glasses frame.
  • Magnifying glass - good for counted cross stitch knitting, but can be tedious for reading and needs a good light source. 
  • Fancii LED magnifier device (LED devices are much better, less expensive) but not good for reading or work for hours on end. 
  • A small high magnification hand-held lens, especially good for scanning a map while avoiding distortion at the edges. 
  • Combining hands-free illumination with the use of high strength reading glasses (up to 9.0) vs. holding something up to see it.
  • The State of California provides TTY phones with readable text.
  • Emergency wall socket plug-in with battery for automatic illumination during a power failure.  

Explorer Kay suggests reading on a Kindle, with the option of using Bluetooth technology to cast the text onto a TV screen.

Explorers begin to focus on the types of issues they are having with reduced vision:                                  

  • Blue light reading may interfere with sleep  
  • Looking for a phone with larger letters. One with a back lit keyboard. 
  • In a low light situation - one member can't see in early morning to water garden plants. 
  • One wants a flourescent bright tape to see stair edges, etc. 
  • Home entry lock and key the same color makes finding the lock slot difficult - and for the car key, as well. 
  • Road glare driving after dark following cataract surgery. (Explorer Tip: Ask your eye doctor about changing your distant vision prescription for driving after cataract surgery.) 

Besides the problems commonly solved by magnifiers and lighting, many of the Explorers agree with Explorer Helen, whose complaint is the distraction of direct sunlight in her eyes while driving. Her after-market sun visor screening attachment doesn't work well, and the group agrees that it is a problem that needs a good solution. 





Log in to learn more and to listen to the audio recording. 



Interested in what our circles of older adults discuss?


Get Longevity Explorer Discussions by Email.


Sign up to get Tech-enhanced Life's email newsletter, which summarizes the discussions from our Longevity Explorer circles each month. See what our explorers care about, are interested in, and are exploring.

Comes monthly. No spam. Unsubscribe at any time.

Dig Deeper

Topic Hubs(s)

Insights for Innovators

More discussions

Key words: 
low vision aids, vision problems, vision solutions