Those of you who have been reading this blog for a while probably know that the biggest challenge of collecting without vision is recognizing an unknown coin. There just isn’t a good way to do it alone. I need help. I was trying to come up with all kinds of ways of using technology to do this independently, but I couldn’t succeed. There are a number of shortcuts, but in most cases I need help from a human. While this hasn’t changed, I found a solution where I don’t have to bug friends and family, and I can get a coin recognized any time I’d like to. I found an app, called BeSpecular.
I found the ultimate coin store, just perfect for blind collectors, too. It is called the Stamp and Coin Place. They are located in Washington State, but they sell online. It started when they mentioned my blog in one of their blog posts on Past and Present. So as it usually happens on twitter, I tweeted the post and thanked them for the mention, after which I got a complement about my blog. There the conversation started with Elizabeth, who appeared to have read my blog and understood my challenges as a blind collector. Fast forward, I have made my first purchase from them, but let’s see why.
This is one of the coolest things I found recently, an online museum of coins, stamps and notes. The amount of information is amazing, and very readable with my screen reader.
A quick update on how the coin description project was evolving over the next year, and future plans. You can help if you have ten minutes a week.
It’s been years that I have been very interested in having coins described in more detail than what you can find in coin catalogs. Today, I would like to announce a new initiative that has a potential, more than ever to make it happen.
When you look at a coin, you can exactly see what’s on it. If you can see, of course. If you can’t, you can feel certain details. Maybe a head, a number, an animal. For those who can’t see, much of this information is unavailable.
But even if you see what’s on a coin, there maybe things which you cannot identify if you do not have the understanding of a given country’s culture.