Most people at some point have heard of or have met someone who is Autistic. Autism is a developmental disorder that affects the brain's normal development of social and communication skills. It is estimated that about 1 out of 110 children will be diagnosed with Autism, of which, 60% will be unable to verbally communicate their thoughts, wants, needs. The inability to communicate severely impacts every aspect of their life, from the quality of life, development of social relationships, and education. This also leads to greater frustrations that result in more behavior problems.

In today’s society, blogging and involvement in some kind of social networking platform, appear to be the popular choice for social communication. Autistic people with communication difficulties will therefore be unable to participate in this form of social communication, much less a new concept called Phlogging. Phlogging is blogging via a phone, a device that most everyone has in his or her pocket. What a cool concept! All the person has to do is call an iPadio phone number, from any phone, from any part of the world to broadcast their voice back to their website and/or any of the major social networking platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Blogger, and Wordpress. There’s no need for a computer, much less, an internet connection to blog. Ipadio offers about 50 free phone numbers that can be accessed around the world.

You might be asking yourself, “But how can an Autistic person who is verbally challenged use a phone?” This communication barrier can be resolved by using an application called TouchChat by Silver Kite. TouchChat is an application that falls under the category of Augmentive and Alternate Communication (ACC) and it allows individuals who cannot speak to communicate by choosing from various icons from a visual display on the phone. Words, phrases and messages are spoken with a built-in-voice synthesizer or a by playing back a recorded message. TouchChat can also be customized to allow the user more personalized buttons and pages. Access to a greater amount of vocabulary is available by either purchasing more page sets from iTunes, or by subscribing to iShare where page sets can be downloaded from a community of TouchChat users.

So by combining the use of TouchChat and iPadio, people with Autism who has verbal communication difficulties, can now access social networking sites and blog via a phone and take part in the new craze called phlogging!





Reference articles:
http://www.aacandautism.com/why-aac
http://www.ipadio.com/page.asp?section=31&sectionTitle=Phlogging
http://www.silver-kite.com/touchChat/