[K12OSN] A Symbol Writing Program

David H. Barr dhbarr at gozelle.com
Fri Jun 8 16:09:48 UTC 2007

> On 6/6/07, Deborah White <flickatomte at gmail.com> wrote:
> > I'm looking for an Open Source software program compatible with K12LTSP to
> > use with students who use augmentative communication devices and
> > communicate
> > primarily with symbols.  The commercial products include "Writing With
> > Symbols" by Mayer-Johnson and "Pix Writer" by Slater Publishing and
> > "Clicker" by Crick Software.

On 6/7/07, Tom Hoffman <tom.hoffman at gmail.com> wrote:
> Actually, just a good paragraph explaining the concept in general to
> someone completely unfamiliar would be a start.

>From glancing at these three programs, I see a few bullet points to pull from:
  - there is a "work area" consisting of a "symbol library", "symbol
area", and "text area"
  - a user types in the "text area", and these words are recognized
and displayed in the "symbol area"
  - a user drags symbols from the library into the "symbol area", and
the appropriate word is added to the "text area"
  - either type of story is "read" by the computer to the user
  - throw in some standard spell / grammar checking, dictionary
customization, file / share / publish dialogues, etc.

Have I misunderstood the purpose of this type of program?  Are there
significant features I've missed?  If this thing were done
internationalized from the start, it could be a great education tool
in -any- language.

Call it the crusoe language tool (crusoelt) after the passage in Defoe
where Friday and Crusoe establish communication by identifying common
objects.  A natural fit for K12LTSP, OLPC, or any other F/L/OS
learning package.  Is there already a tool out there like this?


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