ICT and Special Needs - Sample Essay

A person with special needs is someone who cannot do a certain task without the help of others. An example of a special need is visual impairment. This is when someone has either bad eyesight or no eyesight at all. More often than not visual impairment can be solved by wearing glasses. Glasses are examples of how technology has made an impact on people with special needs lives. Technology has made a huge impact on people’s lives included those that have disabilities. People with special needs can now live their lives almost normally thanks to advances made in technology. For this coursework I am going to be concentrating on Mr.

James Green. Mr. Green is an old, retired man whose wife passed away a few years ago and has visual and hearing impairment. He also is beginning to lose his ability to stand up and use his legs. Mr. Green’s family live near by and often come to visit him to see how he is doing. However they are unable to look after him 24 hours a day so they have turned to technology to help Mr. Green. General Use Environmental Control System The Green family installed an environmental control system in Mr. Green’s house. The environmental control system controls the temperature in the house.

If the house is too cold then it will automatically turn on and make sure that the right temperature is in the house. Also if it is to warm in the house it will turn on the air conditioning to cool the house down. The environmental control system also opens and closes the curtains depending on whether it is night or day. It will also turn the lights on or off depending on whether or not he is in the room. Although it is mainly under the system’s control he can still have manual control. The problem with the environmental control system is that it only fits Mr. Green’s needs. Mr.

Green likes his house warm however his grandchildren would prefer a house which is a little colder. Also, the system is energy consuming so it creates an even higher electricity bill. Electric Powered Wheel Chair As Mr. Green is having trouble with his legs his family bought him a new state of the art wheel chair. This wheel chair is electronically powered so he does not have to use his hands to move the wheels. An onboard computer allows the wheel chair to climb the stairs safely. The wheel chair can safely gain access to any room in the house and can also leave the house without having to be folded up.

Another advantage of an electric wheel chair is that Mr. Green does not get his hands dirty while travelling around. One disadvantage is that although he can move freely in the wheel chair he is still finding it difficult to get on and off of it. Sky Plus Mr. Green used to have Sky digital however he could only watch one thing at once and sometimes he might miss a programme. With Sky Plus he no longer has to miss anything as Sky Plus can record another channel while Mr. Green is watching. He can also record programmes onto the Sky Plus box. Sky Plus also allows Mr. Green to pause normal TV and also rewind.

Another advantage of having Sky Plus is that if Mr. Green’s box is getting full then he can easily have everything written onto a VHS cassette. One of the disadvantages of having Sky Plus is that it is very expensive. It costs i?? 200 a year, not including the price for extra channels. Cordless Phones Mr. Green has a cordless phone in his house. Before getting a cordless phone Mr. Green would have to try to get to the nearest phone in the house and as he is in a wheel chair it used to take him some time to find it, by which time the phone might have already stopped reading.

The cordless phone allows him to use the phone wherever he is in the house. A disadvantage of carrying a cordless phone around is that there is a theory that the EM radiation released by the cordless phone is bad affects the brain. Use of Computer Mr. Green rarely leaves the house and so sometimes he gets lonely and bored. To solve this problem the Green family bought Mr. Green a computer with internet access. E-books The internet helps Mr. Green in many ways. Now that Mr. Green has access to the internet he has found that he no longer has to go to the library anymore.

With the internet he downloads e-books. These are just normal books that have been written onto the computer, normally using either Microsoft Word or Adobe Acrobat. A disadvantage to this is that he will be spending a lot of time in front of the monitor which can cause headaches. Another disadvantage is that not every book has been copied onto the computer so he might not be ale to download the book he wants. Also, it can take some time for newer releases to be put on the internet. Friends Reunited Another thing that Mr. Green uses the computer for is for finding old friends.

Mr.Green has subscribed to the ‘friends reunited website’ (www. friendsreunited. com). With this website Mr. Green has found a few old friends that he thought he would never see again. However although he has found a few he is not likely to find many more. This is because not everybody has subscribed to the site and there might even be some friends that do not know how to use a computer. Another disadvantage is that Mr. Green can’t be sure if the person he is communicating is an old friend, they could be a fraud. E-mail Mr. Green also uses the internet to write e-mails (electronic mails).

He mainly writes letters to his family in Australia. Mr. Green uses e-mails to communicate as it is a free, instant and reliable service. The service Mr. Green uses is MSN Hotmail (www. hotmail. com). Hotmail allows Mr. Green to store up to 2 megabytes (MB). Mr. Green finds that this is not enough, however he does not want to pay extra money for Hotmail’s extra service which allows him to store up to 10 MB. Another disadvantage is that Mr. Green gets a lot of junk mail. Hotmail provide a junk mail filter however it is not 100% effective. Mr. Green can also send attachments with his mails.