Blind Square is a combination Point of Interest poi and basic navigating app. It is not a free app, costing, $29. 99 at the time of this writing. However, its


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NameBlind Square is a combination Point of Interest poi and basic navigating app. It is not a free app, costing, $29. 99 at the time of this writing. However, its
A typeDocumentation
Blind Square

By Technology Association for Veterans with Visual Impairments

July 22, 2014
Description

Blind Square is a combination Point of Interest )POI) and basic navigating app. It is not a free app, costing, $29.99 at the time of this writing. However, its features and accessibility with Voice Over, makes the cost worth it. Blind Square provides the POI’s from Four Square, a social networking styled GPS service. One may find the address, phone numbers, restaurant menus, websites, to their destinations, or simply create their own. A recent update provided support for headsets with an action button, so you may access the entire app with the push of a button.
Quick Start Guide

Opening the app will cause Blind Square to immediately start speaking POI’s in your set search radius. Additionally, it will conclude with your current street address and general heading. Shaking your iPhone forces Blind Square to restate your current location’s street address and nearby intersections, if available. When you start walking, Blind Square periodically announces your street, nearby POI, and approaching intersections.
Screen Orientation

At the top of the screen, Blind Square displays six icons. From right to left, they are:


  • Search, which takes you to a screen with a search box for POI

  • Tools button, which opens a menus with options to hear your look around, location, recent places announced, intersections, GPS information, and weather

  • Four Square locations you can check into

  • Other, which presents options to review settings and information related to the app

  • Filtering, menu to select the amount of information Blind Square announces

  • Mute speech


Below these icons, one finds the method to adjust your search radius. With Voice Over, this feature works by flicking up and down on the screen. You may choose a search radius of 82 feet to 1.24 miles. Keep in mind that Blind Square will simply start announcing all POI’s selected in your filter within this radius.
Covering the majority of the screen, a vertical list of POI categories appears. These includes:


  • My Places, which allows you to add your own location viewable only on your device

  • Shared Places, displaying nearby POI’s shared with you

  • Arts and Entertainment, which includes art galleries to casinos to golf and movies

  • College and Universities, depicting items related to campus

  • Food, organizing establishments based on food genre

  • Night Life Spots, like clubs and bars

  • Outdoors and Recreation, showing lakes, parks, and monuments

  • Professional and Other Places, place to see nearby government entities, religious centers, Voting areas, public schools, and similar items

  • Residence, like apartment buildings and neighborhoods with distinctive names

  • Shopping Services, for grocery stores and other commerce venues

  • Travel and Transport, identifying garages, marked bus stops, subway entrances, and petrol


The bottom row on the screen features the current GPS accuracy in the middle. On the right corner, a button enables you to place Blind Square into sleep mode.

Settings, Tools, and Other Options

To use Blind Square the most effectively, its encouraged one reviews the various settings. This is located by tapping on Other and Settings. From here you may alter that feedback you receive when shaking the device, intersection alert distance, automatic sleep time, direction style, various speech options, and headset features.
Setting the Speech language, rate, and volume will greatly determine your overall satisfaction with Blind Square. Aside from numerous languages to select from, you have the option to use the default iOS voices for Siri or an array of Acapella voices. The author recommends that one should choose a voice different from the Voice Over and turn by turn GPS app voice you use. This helps separate the Blind Square announcements from other audio feedback you receive. Likewise, selecting a louder and slower volume and rate ensures clarity, so you do not miss an announcement.use

Headset Controls


For those using a headset with an action and volume controls, you can simply receive and interact with Blind Square with the pouch of the button. Please note that Blind Square will stop any other audio or media you have playing. To use this feature, simply press the action button, and you will start to hear an array of options. Press the action button again to interact with the desired option.
Searching and Navigating to a Point of Interest

This section will provide step by step directions to search for a POI, review’ a POI’s information, track a POI, and switching to a turn by turn navigation app like Apple Maps or Google Maps.


  • Select a type of POI you wish to travel to. This brings up a list of nearby POI’s in your search radius and categories to narrow searches.

  • Choose a desired location. This brings up information for hours, address, phone number, menus, and Four Square reviews.

  • Start Tracking will cause Blind Square to provide the straight line distance and direction to the destination. This is useful if you know the route, but just wish to hear basic directional information.

  • Plan a Route will switch you to a third party turn by turn GPS app like Apple Maps, Google Maps, and Navigon. The GPS app will already have your location and destination set, so all you need to do is tap on the start button.


Resources:

Blind Square in the iTunes App Store:

https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/blindsquare/id500557255?mt=8
Developers main page for Blind Square:

http://blindsquare.com
AppleVis.com review of Blind Square:

http://www.applevis.com/apps/ios/navigation/blindsquare

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