This month I’d like to take some time to talk about one of our most forgotten and sometimes most helpful pieces of equipment. That being said let me introduce you to the Optelec Spectrum Jr.
The Optelec Spectrum Jr. is a low vision reader that takes documents placed on the stage and enlarges them many times over. This allows people with impaired vision to more easily read documents that cannot be viewed in electronic form. It operates very similar to a microfiche machine in the sense that you place your document on the stage and move the stage with handles in order to adjust what is being shown on the screen.
The Optelec Spectrum Jr. has many features that users might find familiar, including adjustment knobs for focus, brightness, and contrast. Another feature of note is the reading line. This allows a user to place a line across the screen to help hold their place on the page while reading. Finally, for users who are color blind, there are a variety of color settings that will accommodate people who see some colors better than others.
For those who would like to use this device, it can be found in the library towards the computer lab area. Should you require any assistance or if you’d like a demonstration of the equipment, please feel free to contact the Instructional Technology Department located just behind the circulation desk in the library.