Saturday, March 26, 2011

A Few Pitfalls to Avoid

Inappropriate apps
Check apps for appropriateness e.g. avoid apps with violence - review an app before allowing a child to use it

Multiple iTunes accounts /Multiple base computers
Recommend creating one iTunes account for the family and apps can be shared across all devices on that account. Syncing to multiple base computers is generally not a good idea. Just trust me on this one.

Insomnia apps
A few apps out there we have found linger and don't allow the iPad to go into it's normal sleep mode. Check that things do close down properly.

Siblings or peers could be jealous that your ASD child has one and they don't. Come up with social rules make sure sharing and turn taking are defined and explained. You may want to come up with some particular rules for classroom do's and don'ts. Make sure and give consequences for rule violations!

Usually stimming occurs on a child's desire for one particular app. Take the app off. Expect a possible new behavior to take the stims place - a tantrum. Stay strong! Keep it off! You can always reload it later when the child is not expressing an problem behavior and limit the amount of time your child is exposed.

Antisocial behavior
It's best to not allow a child to retreat into their room with the iPad. We recommend for those users who are in autonomous mode to operate the iPad in the family environment as much as possible (e.g. kitchen or family room). Come up with what you believe is an appropriate amount of time the child can use the iPad and let the children know. ("OK - when the timer goes off - it is time to put the iPad away.")

It is best to be a part of at least some of the use of the iPad with your child - get yourself involved by either narrating what your child is doing when using or download a multiplayer app and play with them!

Recommended Steps in Introducing an iPad to Your Child

  1. Present ground rules
  2. Introduce specific apps and features that you have already tried
  3. Test their understanding (ask them to review rules if verbal)
  4. Begin with supervised use
  5. Provide more autonomy with appropriate usage
  6. Observe and interact!
  7. Maintain desirability - looks for occasional new apps, take apps off, reload them later on


AirPrint was made available in November 2010 with the release of the iOS 4.2 release of the operating system for the iPad. The following is a list of AirPrint enabled printers.

AirPrint-enabled printers

* HP Envy e-All-in-One series (D410a)
* HP Photosmart Plus e-AiO (B210a)
* HP Photosmart Premium e-AiO (C310a)
* HP Photosmart Premium Fax e-AiO (C410a)
* HP Photosmart e-AiO (D110)
* HP Photosmart eStation (C510)
* HP LaserJet Pro M1536dnf Multifunction Printer
* HP LaserJet Pro CM1415fn Color Multifunction Printer
* HP LaserJet Pro CM1415fnw Color Multifunction Printer
* HP LaserJet Pro CP1525n Color Printer
* HP LaserJet Pro CP1525nw Color Printer
* HP Officejet 6500A e-AiO
* HP Officejet 6500A Plus e-AiO
* HP Officejet 7500A Wide Format e-AiO
* HP Officejet Pro 8500A e-AiO
* HP Officejet Pro 8500A Premium e-AiO
* HP Officejet Pro 8500A Plus e-AiO

Monday, March 21, 2011


Touchscreen technology has been around since the early 1970's. It has evolved from kiosks in airport
terminals to PDAs with styluses. It's current iteration has brought it to the home user in the form of smart phones and tablet PCs. Most popular, has been the iPad.

The iPad was first made available for sale in April 2010. It became an instant phenomenon, as many Apple products do, to it's typical audience. However, the new form factor as compared to it's iPhone model, quickly was being received by one set of the population as being different. The iPad's larger screen has made this a particularly useful technology for many of those with special needs, and probably most obviously with those with autism.

Other manufacturers have realized the success of this product and have now put out competing technologies that are, at least initially, being well received. We hope to one day evaluate these models for our audience, but have had minimal exposure at this point, so our first entrance into touch tablet technology and those with an ASD will be geared specifically toward the iPad.

We hope to present a series of presentations for all of the various interested parties out there - teachers, therapists, administrators, coordinators, social workers, parents, technologists and the students themselves! We hope that we can intrigue those who have no experience with this technology and bring new ideas to those old pros out there. We look forward to your feedback on how we can make this a valuable experience to all, especially those special students out there who may finally get the chance to show what they are really made of!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

About Us

Leanne Morphet has an undergraduate degree in electrical and computer engineering, and a master's in engineering management. Her current research areas have been in application of technologies to those with special needs, particularly on assistive technologies to those on the spectrum. Her activities include supporting families with children with an ASD through various advocacy projects.

Dr. Steven Morphet is a research scientist whose research areas include machine learning and artificial intelligence. He received his PhD from Syracuse University in 2004 where he was awarded the All-University Doctoral Prize for prestigious dissertation. His current research is on the application of these technologies in the area of speech synthesis. He is the Technology Alliance of Central New York's Technologist of the Year for 2010 and was recently inducted into the 2011 Who's Who of Americans.

Steven and Leanne are proud parents to 2 children, one who has an autism spectrum disorder.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Presentation 1 Synopsis : iPad 101

We will begin our exploration of touch screen technology concentrating on the iPad.
It's cool, it's new, it's easy, it's iPad. It also can promote language and communication, develop fine motor abilities, teach academics, and create a bridge to developing social skills. iPad 101 will cover how this technology, and others like it, can be one of the best resources your child can have. In this presentation, we will cover available models and how to choose which one to meet your needs, features and setup, and safety and behavior. But let's not forget the apps! We will provide a roadmap to the 65,000 apps on the iPad, offer suggestions on how to look for apps, and even provide an overview of some of the top apps that work for our children with ASD. For those who don't have an iPad - there will be iPads available preloaded with some really excellent apps for you to interact with and see what the new craze in the ASD world is all about. Please join us as we look forward to exploring how this new technology can make a difference in a child's life.

Teachers, therapists, coordinators, parents - we hope you all join us in this journey to see what this technology can help show our children can do!