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Audio Description to Allow the Blind to “See” the Total Eclipse
August 16, 2017
Source: American Council of the Blind (ACB)
The Audio Description Project, an initiative of the American Council of the Blind (ACB), along with the Mid-Tennessee Council of the Blind, the Tennessee School for the Blind and the Tennessee Performing Arts Center, announces an opportunity for blind people world-wide to experience the upcoming total eclipse of the sun.
On Monday afternoon, August 21, at exactly 1:27 p.m. (Central Daylight Time, CDT), the sun above Nashville, Tennessee will disappear from view. The sky will go completely dark. But through the use of succinct, imaginative and vivid language – audio description – the event will be accessible to the millions of people who are blind or have low vision, or anyone who wishes to experience a verbal version of the visual.
Between 1:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. (Central Daylight Time, CDT) on August 21, Dr. Joel Snyder will host “A Total Eclipse — Audio Described!” on ACB Radio. Snyder, the director of ACB's Audio Description Project, will present an hour of songs (“Ain't Got No Sunshine,” “Here Comes the Sun,” “Blinded by the Light,” “When The Sun Goes Down,” etc.), interviews and special guests — with the main event being described live from the Tennessee School for the Blind between 1:15 p.m. and 1:45 p.m. (CDT). Trained audio describer, Nashville-based Julia Cawthon, will describe the eclipse as it happens and provide a vivid “translation” of the visual event into words for the benefit of anyone who tunes in.
“Audio description uses the spoken word to provide access to visual images that would otherwise not be accessible to people who are blind or have low vision,” stated Kim Charlson, president of the American Council of the Blind. “Audio describers help make so many aspects of our culture accessible. We're delighted to sponsor this program on August 21 and help people experience this important event.”
How to access the broadcast at ACB Radio Interactive: Go to http://www.acbradio.org/interactive and select “Click Here to Play.” Then be sure to select the link that opens the player that you use to listen to music or stream internet radio stations. You can also listen on any telephone by dialing (605) 475-8130 and select option 4. If you are using an iOS device such as an iPad or iPhone, install “ACB Link”; open the app, select the radio tab and then tap on the menu button. Select “live streams” and “ACB Radio Interactive,” select the play button and the stream will launch.
Additional information about ACB’s Audio Description Project is available at: www.acb.org/adp.
More information about the Total Eclipse (Source: Minnesota State Services for the Blind):
Eclipse Soundscapes, from NASA's Heliophysics Education Consortium, features audio descriptions of the eclipse in real time, recordings of the changing environmental sounds during the eclipse, and an interactive "rumble map" app that will allow users to visualize the eclipse through touch. Web: http://eclipsesoundscapes.org/
NASA produced a braille book entitled, "Getting a Feel for Solar Eclipses." Tactile graphics in the book provide an illustration of the interaction and alignment of the Sun with the Moon and the Earth. Learn more on NASA's science education page (Link to video with captions, 1:00 minute) Web: https://science.nasa.gov/news-articles/NASA-s-Braille-Book-Getting-a-Feel-for-Solar-Eclipses
An article from The Atlantic magazine features Diaz Merced, an astrophysicist who is blind, and Tim Doucette, a blind computer programmer and amateur astronomer with his own observatory. The article, How Blind Astronomers Will Observe the Solar Eclipse, describes the creative ways each is using to experience the eclipse. Web: https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2017/08/experiencing-eclipses-without-seeing/535551/
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