How Do Deaf People ______________________?

TTY for The Deaf - circa 1968


Go ahead and ‘Google’  “How do deaf people………………………………?”  and you’ll discover how many hearing people are curious about managing life with ‘no’ or ‘diminished’ sound.

How do deaf people “hear” doorbells?

How do deaf people use alarm clocks?

You get the idea.

Over the years, new technology has provided innovative ideas . Here are just a few.

Equipment & Technology Teletypewriter (TTY) / TDD / TT

Most people are familiar with this one. A teletypewriter (TTY), which is sometimes referred to as a TDD or TT, is a device that allows the deaf  to converse over a landline telephone line. Instead of speaking, a deaf person types his or her message on a TTY, which is simultaneously sent to another TTY.

Equipment & Technology Signalers

Signalers are devices to alert people to audible warnings. These devices alert people who are deaf or hard of hearing to a telephone ring, a doorbell, a baby crying, fire/smoke alarms, timers, alarm clocks, pagers, etc.  Signalers are used in the home and on the job.

The light signaler can be a single lamp hooked to a receiver and placed strategically around the house. Some light signalers are hard wired to the source of the sound. These lights flash in response to sounds and alert the person to the auditory source, such as a doorbell or ringing phone. A phone ringer is attached to your telephone and amplifies the volume of the ringer. This allows the hard of hearing people when the phone is ringing. The personal signaler is often used for pagers and alarm clocks. A tactile/vibrating signaler is a lightweight signaler that uses vibrating motions to notify you of an audible signal. Some signalers can be worn on your belt and are effective up to 80 feet away. Others are placed on a bed spring so you will be awakened while sleeping. These devices tell the user that the pager or alarm clock is ringing.

Equipment & Technology Video Phone (VP)

A Video phone is a phone using the internet instead of a land line. It connects to a live person who can also communicate in sign language. A sign language interpreter may be used via the Video Relay Service. Through the use of webcams, two callers can communicate visually via streaming video.

Equipment & Technology Computer Assisted Real-Time Transcription (CART)

CART (Computer Assisted Real-Time Transcription) records speech for display in a typed format that people can read on a screen. This service is provided by a stenographer who records speech at the speed it is spoken. This information is sent to a computer, TV, monitor or a large screen. A separate projection screen can be attached for large group viewing. CART is used in many settings, including courtrooms, meetings, conferences, legislative sessions and schools.

Equipment & Technology Computer Assisted Notetaking (CAN) / C-Print

CAN (Computer Assisted Notetaking) and C-Print are services that utilize a typist to record the general message of a conversation or lecture for display on a laptop computer. CAN and C-Print are different from CART in several ways, because they are condensed forms of what is being said, whereas CART presents messages verbatim. CAN and C-Print use a typist to enter text, while CART is provided by a real-time stenographer or court reporter. CAN and C-Print are used in situations where individuals need some visual information but are not totally reliant on full-text transcriptions.

And the list goes on. Recent devices provide captions for those attending movie theaters. Cell phones along with their texting capabilities have opened up avenues for ‘instant’ communication…..for the deaf and hearing alike.

“Where there’s a will, there’s a way” holds true as creative minds continue to break down barriers. Seeking more information on devices for the deaf?  Contact us here and we’ll do our best to point you in the right direction. 




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About Evelyn

Evelyn Hunter is a SODA with years of experiential study in Deaf Culture. She attended Gallaudet University to immerse herself in this unique deaf world while working for the University and studying sign language to hone her skills. Evelyn has served in training, relationship sales, and marketing -- always seeking to expand awareness of Deaf Culture and the unique challenges the deaf face on a daily basis. The Sign Language Company has recently established a presence on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube and a website with a blog, as Evelyn coordinates the marketing and outreach efforts for the agency. Her goal is to attract new clients seeking exceptional service, while maintaining optimal relationships with clients who have selected The Sign Language Company for over 20 years.

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