Doggy Countdown – iDog

So there was mention in a comment thread about getting pictures of another dog who is at school right now, for her puppy raiser. Carin asked if my phone has a camera, and it does but it shuts down my screen reader. I got to thinking that I’d really rather get video while I’m at school, because while pictures are nice for sighties, they don’t really do much for me, and videos have audio.

I’ve thought about how, in the future, I’d do pictures, how to keep track of what is what since you can’t label them when you take them, and what a holy pain in the butt it would be, not to mention how hard it would be to be sure to get the dog in the frame.

So I started looking at those USB video cameras that have gotten popular with the birth of youtube, but none of them had great reviews and I don’t know enough about cameras anyway.

Then I remember B telling me the latest iPods take video now. How I didn’t know this, I have no idea. So I went and looked up the iPod Nano 5G and wow. They sure do take video! And with spoken menus, it should be accessible. It works just like all other iPod functions, using the center button to start and stop video taping. Since the menus are spoken, I can just scroll to video and whamo. I might even be able to add effects lol!

So, I broke my Amazon rule and ordered one yesterday. If it works the way I hope, it’ll be perfect. My cats can be test subjects while I’m playing with it, which means I’ll ahve video of them to take with me.

So, for you folks who have uploaded videos to Blogger, does it work ok? I don’t want the videos embedded because then they are not accessible to screen readers, at least not mine. Should I just make a youtube account?

It shipped today, so I should have it by the 27th. It’s coming USPS which sucks, but I got the free super saver shipping this time lol!

26 days!

24 Comments

Filed under accessibility, Amazon, apple Inc, cats, cool product, Doggy Countdown, Doggy Diaries, plugs, pooch preparation, proud geek, puppy raisers, screen reader, treat for me, youtube

24 Responses to Doggy Countdown – iDog

  1. L^2

    How exciting, a new toy! I’m not so great at getting good video, but it is fun to try. 🙂
    And I’ve never had good luck uploading videos to Blogger, so I always end up uploading it to my youtube or photobucket account and then copying the code over to embed it into the post. I know that makes it inaccessible for some screen readers, but I haven’t done enough video on my blog to figure out a better way, yet. So, I’m interested to see what other people recommend.

  2. Ro

    There have been a couple people to post videos on their blogs that work great. For me, it comes out as a link that I can click on and it opens a viewer. I don’t know if others can play the video right from the blog or not. I want to do it however they do it, but now I can’t think of who did it. Actually I think it was Sadia and Mimi who have had videos I can just click. If I do a youtube page, I’ll just link to the video that way, because then it starts automatically for screen readers. I’ll be interested to see what others ay, too. I can’t wait to play with it. Timmy is going to be a great test subject because I can get him to meow a lot hehe! Oh and someone told me the video is like dvd quality.

  3. Oh my goodness, YAY! I’m so excited for you (and for me ;p). I can’t wait to see all the videos you get, and we will get to see a video of your dog right away instead of waiting until you get home! My brother has the 5th generation nano and he loves it! My favorite parts are that you can listen to music without headphones and unlike other ipods, you can listen to the radio! The only downfall is that recording and watching videos kills the battery life. So be ready to charge it regularly! :D!

  4. Ro

    Yeah I really, really hope it works. I posted on my blind Mac forum but only got one reply in email, and he said something about needing sighted assistance for the video. He said you can get audio though. What’s the difference? I think maybe he just meant getting a good video, I’d need help. But as long as I aim where I hear a dog, I figure it will work lol! I hope I have plenty of time to play with it before I go, and it would be so great if I can get video of Gabrina. Do you think they’d let me get video of her, if she’s not matched in my class? I hope so! I also hope I have no problems transfering video and stuff. There’s quite the learning curve with all this talking stuff, but hopefully I know Apple well enough now. The difference will be that it’ll open a different program, not iTunes to manage video. Maybe I should play with that program before I get the iPod.

  5. How fun!!! You are SO addicted to Amazon, Ro! Ha ha! Well, someone’s gotta keep this economy aloft! Soon, they’re going to change their name to Am-ro-zon.

    I’m glad you’re able to click the videos in my posts. I just use the button in Blogger to upload a video to my post. It’s right next to the button for uploading a photo. Sometimes, a long video can take a while to upload, so I try to keep them short.

  6. Ro

    Hehehe Amrozon, too funny. Ok, good to know that’s how you do it. I just get a clickable link. Does the video appear in your blog, like can someone watch it right from you blog, or does it open a viewer for everyone?

  7. Ok, so I have loaded 2 posts with videos in them, the first one I embedded from youtube and you couldn’t view that one so I had to post the youtube link under it remember? The second one (of Alfie and Egypt) I loaded directly into blogger (which you have to go in and use the old editing format in order to get an upload screen) that one is accessible for VO but the quality was terrible. All the videos were from the same camera so I know it wasn’t that.. just stuff to think about I guess.. Thanks for the comment by the way, I love how you always tell us your emotions you get while reading lol.

    Maybe you can show B my post and tell him how nice it must be lol.. put thoughts in his head hahaha!

  8. Oh by the way I love that you are going to start doing videos, Darrell loves his video camera and loves to hear himself in the videos haha.

  9. Ro

    Ok, good to know. So the video quality was bad when you uploaded to Blogger? Hmmm. Interesting. Maybe I should just link to youtube videos. Or I could embed the video and link. How did you embed? Where di you paste the code, right in the body of the post? I know where to find the embed code, just wonder where to paste it. So if I embed and include a link, it should be good for everyone.

    Why doesn’t Darrel blog and post his videos?

    Oh, I thought about totally gushing over your post to B but he’d probably just say “uh huh, cool” hahaha! We have a botanical gardens here too hehe!

  10. I’d just say do the YouTube thing. You could probably put the code anywhere in the body of your post if I were to guess. But then it would do that flash movie thing you hate.

    You could probably get an instructor to point the iPod for ya. If Gabrina isn’t in class, they probably wouldn’t have you journeying over to the kennels just for fun, but I guess you could try and ask, but I have my doubts. Once you have your dog, going over to the kennels is friggin chaos. The dog will go nutsorama in there! That’s why they make you do obedience in the kennels one day. Yeek. At least they did for us.

  11. Ro

    Eh, I’ll experiment when I get it to see if I can get the cats in a shot on my own. I’m stubborn that way haha!

    We can hope that Gabrina will be matched when I’m there, if she doesn’t get matched in this next class. Hopefully, if *I’m* not her person, her person won’t mind 😉

  12. Ok, since it has come up a couple times, I’m going to step up on my soap box for all commenters and not just you. You are there to get YOUR guide dog! You are there to form a bond with YOUR new dog. People asking you to look for their puppies in training, take pictures and such is taking away from what you are there for.

    Plus, as I told you privately Ro, all this internet sharing does put all of us puppy raisers at risk for losing the little info we get about our dogs in training. It has happened before – we got NO info while the dogs were in training for a while. No phase reports. Nothing! Because we (raisers) were passing out too much info to you guys (students coming in to class). Problems have been caused going the other way too.

    As much as I would love to get a Poppy update, she is not why you are there. If you cross paths with her, give her a hug if it is appropriate and whisper to her that her Mama loves her (Damn those tears! Again!). But, don’t ask about her. Don’t look for her. Don’t seek her out. I will see her at graduation with a person who, I pray, spent the entire time there focusing on her, getting to know her and loving her to bits.

    If a dog you know is matched with a classmate, its not fair to put the other handler in the position where they are on the spot with the raiser from day 1. One of my best friends is going to class in April – a class that Poppy may be in. I don’t want her to talk me up to Pop’s person. I would totally die of excitement if she is matched with Pop, but when she isn’t (because they would both require a brain transplant to be compatible), I want Poppy to focus on her new partner. And I don’t want her partner to worry that my friend is reporting back to me all that is happening.

    Putting the pressure on you to find our dogs isn’t fair to you. And putting additional pressure on a student in class because you know their dog’s raiser isn’t fair.

    OK. Off my soap box now. 🙂

  13. Like Carin said..I kinda doubt that if Gabrina isnt in your class they won’t let you see her. It never hurts to ask though, just say you have never seen that dog in your life so it won’t harm her training :)! If they do it would be awesome! but if not it won’t be the end of the world, I just have to practice patients! I sure hope she is matched by the time you get there, I really hope she is matched with you or in your class! Then when I come out for graduation we can meet!!
    I’m really just excited that you can make videos during your class experience. I want to pretend like I’m at the campus since I’ve never been there!

  14. Ro,
    This has nothing to do with your post but about your comment on one of my posts. 😀 Anyway, at the rate Fullerton is going I wouldn’t be surprised if he was class ready by the time you go out there. . . but, unfortunatly he is doing his training at the Oregon campus. 🙁 Bummer, I would love it if you could get one of my puppies. Good luck!!

  15. People who embed videos make me want to hurt things. I’ve never seen an embedded player that looks nice from a JAWS point of view. The nicest one is YouTube’s, but it still sucks mightily. the only button that’s truly accessible is the Play/pause button, which means that if you decide you don’t want to watch an entire video for whatever reason you can’t make it stop, meaning that you have to reload the page. And then half the time when you do that you lose all of the flash content which means you have to reload it again if there are multiple videos embedded on the same page. Carin and I will always just write links to videos that will open in a new window, that way you’re still on our site and you can just close out the new window if you get sick of watching something.

    All of that doesn’t even get into the other issues with embedding, things like players that are set to show a certain way making them invisible to most screenreaders, players that come up in a frame and appear to have no buttons, players that have buttons none of which are properly labeled causing you to have to take a wild guess as to which button starts the damn video, plus the making it annoying to scroll by keyboard issue. Some of those players have a zillion buttons and it takes forever to get down through them to find some useful content.

    I’m sure one of us could show you how to write links pretty quickly, it’s not that hard. Anything to stop at least one person from embedding their videos.

  16. I’ve never had a problem loading movies onto blogger,
    The movie will be in the post (which I posted it in) and all you do is click play to watch.
    I don’t know if you would be able to work it or not though, so if you know how to do YouTube then you might want to stick with that!

    Wow the days seem to go by quite quickly; pretty soon you will be back with your new dog!

    Toby’s Trainer
    SEGDI Raiser

  17. Ro

    Cassie, those are really good points, and things I wasn’t even thinking about. I think it’s so easy to get caught up in the excitement of new friendships here, falling in love with these pups through their blogs, getting friendly with the raisers, etc. I think it’s easy to forget the primary purpose of why we all are doing what we’re doing, to match a guide to a handler. Period. The benefits of the internet are vast, especially in my case, having the ability to get loaded up with information before I go, but I can absolutely see how it can be harmful as well. You are right about pressuring the handler of any dog I know about; that would not be fair. And it’s very true that I will be so focused on my own dog and my own training that I will have room for little else haha! It’s easy not to even think about all this stuff. The training cds I got have mentioned how people are blogging about their experience, and to take caution in talking about others. It goes so much farther than that. Thank you for reminding me 🙂

    Maddie, I’m sure you’ve read Cassie’s reply, so I think we have our answer. Looks like the only way it would be appropriate for me to share about Gabrina is if I get her. But if I meet her, I can secretly know that I know her hehe!!

    I didn’t know Fullerton was in OR. ah well, we’ve seen what can happen when I obsess about dogs who I’ve read about hehe!

    On the techie end, I will definitely play with the best ways to post videos. I only wish I had gotten the iPod a little sooner so I’d have more time to play with it. If worse comes to worse, I’ll just to youtube for now. I know it’s not accessible but at least the video will start. I can give a link to the accessible youtube site that I like too, though I can’t link to videos directly on that site. You just have to know what to search for.

  18. The excitement gets all of us Ro! We are so emotionally invested in these dogs that it is easy to focus in our babies over the “big picture.”

    I thought of two examples from my own interactions where bringing up my knowledge or relationship with the dog could have damaged relationships.

    While visiting a friend in class on a Sunday, I saw another friend’s puppy with his new person – who was correcting for nothing, talking to him like he was scum, etc. Going back to the raiser with that would have tainted her feelings about this person before they met. Of course I told my raiser friend all about it after the student was sent home and the dog was put back in training.

    On the other end, one of my friends was given a dog that made me wonder what the insturctors were thinking. This was SO the wrong dog for this person – or at least she was as a puppy. If I had told my friend my feelings about that dog, the partnership would have been doomed from the start.

    Likewise, I would be devastated if someone revealed Poppy’s puppyhood to her new partner (you would never know she’s the same dog her first raisers knew). The person with that knowledge wouldn’t go home with Pop despite her being a totally different dog now.

    21 years of raising has shown me a lot. I want to protect those initial days of binding between student and dog. Not just my dog, but all of them because it is what I would want for my baby.

  19. Ro

    Yikes. Those experiences are definitely frightening to think about. I’m so glad that student was sent home without the dog, ick! Just like with anything in life, it is so good to have experienced leaders showing us the way. You are that for a first time handler and early raisers as well.

    I can attest to the fact that hearing things makes one leary. I’ve had to ignore several threads on my email list about dogs and their bad behaviors. People telling stories about their guides eating clothes and counter surfing. It was really, really scaring me. Then I started thinking about how a lot of that has just got to be the handling, and I talked to Dave about it. He was in agreement. He reminded me that it takes a stern but gentle hand with dogs, no matter how well trained. He talked about how the school will advise me to keep my dog on tie down or on leash for the first few weeks, how important that is, and how a lot of handlers will deviate from this. No wonder those unwanted behaviors bloom. Knowing why these things are advised will make it easier for me to adhere to that, so that is one of the benefits of all my online interaction.

    But there is also the negative experiences I’ve read about, and how that freaked me out, and someone not so determined might have ran screaming lol.

    So yes, it’s good to keep what we know about these dogs secret until the bonding begins. Absolutely.

  20. Wow Cassie, thank you so much for sharing! I hadn’t thought about it in that way at all. I was just focusing on the fact that I miss Gabrina, not on the fact that Ro seeing her could potentially mess everything up! I will just have to wait until graduation to hear about her just like everyone else. I am really thankful that you shared your thoughts, that’s the reason we have leaders for! You have 21 years experience raising compared to my (not even) 2 years. Any and all advice is always welcome!

  21. I’m glad this whole thing was brought up. I was sort of leaning in that direction, but didn’t have the guts, nor the words, to say what I wanted to. I even think I went too far in my blog mentioning everybody else’s first names and their dogs’ names in my journals. But that was back when the world still felt pretty big, and I thought there wasn’t a chance in hell that anyone who knew anything would find the blog. And it was back before they had the blogging clause in there.

    And you will have some trials and tribulations, we all do. But you’re awesome, and determined as all hell, so they will be but learning opportunities.

    Yeeee I’m all excited for you.

  22. Ro

    I’m really glad this came up too. And I understand about not having the guts to speak up. That’s where it’s so important for our experienced folks like Cassie to point these things out to us with words that are firm, yet gentle, just like handling a puppy hehehe!

    I’ll definitely be careful while I’m school to only write about me and my dog with only vague references to other people if it’s absolutely necessary. I think I’ll aslo be like, I’d like to blog this, are you cool with that? Like if someone has a cool experience with their dog or something.

    It’s all so similar to how we handle it in my meetings, there’s a protection thing. And how I don’t go spouting off what group I’m apart of and stuff, because it’s part of our traditions. Back when it was fonded, we only had to worry about newspapers and radio and now we’ve got the internet to contend with. Which is why my image will most likely never find it’s way onto this blog.

    The internet is still so new even though we’ve all used it for years. Still so many adjustments and things to consider.

  23. Yup, because social media is even newer than the internet. Facebook is going to spawn a whole heap of legal issues for years to come.

  24. Maddie, I am so happy you were not insulted by my comments! It’s so hard not to get caught up in the chance to connect with our babies!

    As for having the guts to say something… I’ve been thinking it for a while. And I emailed Ro away from blogs and lists about it. Then, I realized that I wasn’t being fair to her either. How can you say no who is SO super excited about the potential of getting some connection to their baby. Who can say no to that?!? I wouldn’t be able to if I were her. So, I decided to go to those of us asking her to do the looking. 🙂 Just changed my audience to help be more fair to Ro.

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