My very first MRI Scan

So, I wanted to talk about my first experience getting an MRI of my brain since I promised I’d follow up to those two posts I wrote about what happened to me. I would like to encourage you to visit this web site to better understand how these work. Also, I really enjoyed watching their videos, plus they recorded other experiments as well.
Anyhow, my ear, nose and throat doctor, whom I have seen since I was seven, back when he used the Rinne and Weber test using a 256-Hz and a 512-Hz tuning fork, saw me for the first time in six years. Also, when I was nine, he inserted a drainage tube in my left ear to try and clear up the fluid from my chronic otitis media. Then I was referred to see him back in 2010 because there was a significant decrease in my hearing, both in my left and right ears. I hadn’t seen him since then, but after what I went through back in 2016, I got to see him three more times. He agreed to do an MRI, as well as prescribe me some anti-anxiety medicine and send me to physiotherapy.
So, on Friday, 23 December 2016, I was given the order for my first MRI scan, which was to take place no more than half a mile away from where I was being seen. In fact, I was able to get an appointment very quickly. I also learned that the code most insurance companies used to identify an MRI scan was 7551 or 7552. I was really excited to get my first MRI scan, not only because I’ve read so much about it, but because I was taking one step closer to being able to 3D print a model of my brain, skull, and facial features.
I made arrangements to be picked up by my medical transportation provider on Tuesday morning, and we headed out to the medical plaza, which is similar to the main hospital, but it was more for out-patient use. My driver had a hard time locating the building because they went to one that was closed. So, I called them up, and we were able to get redirected to the right one. After stepping inside, I walked over to the registration desk where I took a seat as I filled out paperwork and handed over my insurance card. They got everything ready for me, and then, after about five minutes, I was guided up stairs to the third floor. They handed in my paperwork to the receptionist up there, and the same person led me to a row of chairs. After about ten minutes, the technologist (the same one I had spoken to on the phone when confirming my appointment) summoned me to the hallway where the imaging rooms were located. After making a stop at the restroom at my request, I swallowed one Percocet tablet I had gotten for wisdom teeth extractions, drank lots of water, and then I accompanied him to another room. There I found a locker where I could stash my belongings. I told him that I might not be able to hear him once my hearing aids were out. This is why I wish they utilised headsets like on a plane or helicopter. Later, I learned that their headsets were built like stethoscopes, meaning that they utilised air tubes. Anyhow, after everything was put away, I took my cane, since it was only aluminium, and the guy said it was not going to be attracted to the magnet. So we walked for about ten or so feet into the magnet room. We had to pass through two doors. The second door reminded me more of a soundproof booth. Still, it was a small tiled room with a table about a foot off the ground. After I got settled on the table, which felt like an arch to fit your back, like one of those changing tables, the technologist put a leg pillow to make my legs more comfortable and slightly elevated. Then he lifted the entire bed, but not before I tried feeling for the giant tube. He told me that it was located near the ceiling. So he elevated the bed to around five feet, and then he slid the bed back into the machine. I felt the sides of the tube, and it felt very smooth and cool to the touch. The entrance was like going into the bell of a French horn. The table was small enough to fit through the bottom of this opening. I imagine the coils are wrapped around the smallest part of the bell. If you stuck the insides of two French horn bells together, then I believe that is how it will feel, and what might cause the magnetic field to be generated around the bore. Oh wait! He also attached this headpiece that surrounded my head. It felt like bars were surrounding my face, but I could not feel them. Then he gave me some headphones, and a bulbous-like call button. Then he slid me into the tube and left the room and probably went next door to the control chamber. He tried talking to me through the intercom speaker, but I could not really make out what he said, but it sounded like, ‘still as a statue.’ Then I heard the low hum, knock, knock, knock, and then a whir as the machine was trying to find the best frequency to resonate with my body. That also included making low resolution images. This is called MR tuning. Once it has been tuned, it starts to work. Because I had headphones on, I could only hear the bass sounds of the machine. I could feel the side of the tube and the headpiece vibrate against my headphones. The pill I had taken before was already starting to make me feel more relaxed. After about twenty minutes, I was slid back out, and some gadolinium was slowly injected into my vein using a winged infusion set. Then the test continued for another ten minutes. After that test I was all done. He slid me out once more, removed the headpiece, headphones, and blanket, and then lowered me back to the ground. After I had my hearing aids put in, I was made aware of a hump, wump, hump, wump, hump, wump, hump, wump sound. I asked the technologist what it was, and he told me that it was the helium circulation system, keeping the coils from losing their conductivity.
A few weeks later, I ordered a Lyft to pick up the CD with my images in a DCM (diCom) format. Fortunately, I had gotten in touch with the biology instructor at Portland Community College, so I arranged to have those files sent. the first successful 3D print was made in early April 2017, which just consisted of my brain. I was hoping to send in my scan to an on-line library of other scans, similar to Thingiverse, but I haven’t found the right time to do it. We used a Tiertime Desktop Mini 3D printer.
So, there you go, my entire MRI and 3D-printing experience. And, let me finish this by saying that although I never had an MRI in my life until now, I thought I had invented the concept in my novel of my character lying on a bed, going to sleep and waking up, only to find that they were confined to a dark cocoon. And if that were not bad enough, they were six feet above the ground! So I was surprised to discover that this concept already existed. The MRI images the blood inside the brain, not the brain tissue itself. This is why a brain biopsy is still necessary, at least until we find some means of performing a stereotactic ultrasound.
Finally, I encourage you to look into getting a copy of your scans and have them 3D printed so you can study them. Perhaps we could have you work towards becoming a surgeon with blindness or other challenge contributing to the medical diagnostic imaging field! You could also help advance the bioengineering field by submitting models of your skin, skeleton, and other organs for use in various applications, like the cosmetic and reconstructive departments, too!

Check out these links for more information.

San Antonio Plastic Surgery

Get ready for some cuteness!


If you are assigned male at birth, click here to see how your face might look by submitting your picture.
Here’s a more in-depth explanation on how MRI and FMRI differ.
Enjoy!

My Impressions on Bullying and Harassment

When you hear about bullying or harassment, what emotions do you immediately feel? It can vary widely based on your schemas and experiences. Regardless, you should know what’s happening by peering into the points of view of others that differ from your own. How and why this happens will be described to the best of knowledge below.
First, bullying and harassment are not the same thing, although they may share similar meanings. Bullying refers to the constant act of picking on people who are believed to be inferior to the person doing it because they feel they possess a better status or trait than the victim. Things include age,intellect, gender, disability, race and ethnicity or nationality, even socioeconomic classes and more subtle things like microagression, especially in patronising certain individuals in a professional context.
Harassment is a criminal offence when a person continually or repeatedly does something of which the victim has persistently asked and told the harasser to stop. This may be a result of them wanting to stalk the victim for whatever reason, or simply because they insist on doing something the other person didn’t want. This latter type of harassment is more of an indirect form than one that is deliberate. Both are equally devastating, and there has been efforts to criminalise bullying, as well. Nevertheless, there are a broad number of motives as to why one would want to bully and or harass someone else, and I can tell you that there is likely no way I can cover them all.
How bullying and harassment affects a person in the long run depends on several factors of said person. If the person is mentally and emotionally stable, which is to say that they are totally self-confident and they have a positive outlook on their lives, they may feel somewhat impacted, but they would most likely vent and use other forms of expression to talk to other people to insure that the victim was not at fault. Others, however, may not have this kind of reaction, especially with those who have a lower intellect to emotion ratio. These type of people may suffer the most from an attack of a bully. Since they have little to no ability to reason and to think rationally, they often rely on their emotions to express how they feel and sometimes results in self-destructive behaviour. However, it is possible that a person could have their intellect reduced if the bully picked on the same person for an extended period of time. This type of change is called ‘neurosis’. If not treated, the person could end up sharing the traits of someone who would normally be a neurotic (more emotion than intellect). The opposite to neuroticism is psychopathy, which is someone who has more intellect and less emotion. It is also known that children who grow up with abusive parents may become abusive themselves, though they usually learn not to follow in their stead.
The remedies for dealing with a bully depends on the kind of person they are targetting, as well as the bully’s familial background, and possibly other things. you, the victim, are mostly psychopathic, you can find non-physical ways to intimidate the bully and make them submissive if possible. If you are primarily neurotic, however, you may have a harder time standing up to a bully since you would be too submissive, whereas the bully would usually dominate over you. Note that the majority of bullies are acting out of sheer cowardice and ignorance. However, there are things that you can do to help speak up for yourself and realise that there is nothing wrong with you, and that you will pull through. Be sure to address the situation at the micro-level if you can, rather than going all out and going to the macro level. Also, be sure to get plenty of evidence that would be significantly unfavourable to the bully, no matter how hard they would try and convince people that you were bullying them.
Things like mixed martial arts and other forms of sports (physical or mental) can be used to build confidence by stimulating all areas of a person’s brain, allowing for further development of intellect. Examples of when I was bullied or harassed and how I dealt with them are rather hard to find since I was able to get out of most situations. When I was younger, I was often made fun of because of my disabilities of blindness and severe hearing loss–even by people in the blind community! Some sighted children would make me bump into things, and they would laugh and taunt me. However, I did not experience a lot of emotions except for sadness and being upset in general. So, I thought of inflicting the same pain that the bully did to me, but I think that is normally not the best thing to do; I sometimes felt it would have been the right thing to do, because I wanted them to hurt just as they had hurt me. However, the line between wanting justice and revenge become blurred, and sometimes, whether you want to give someone a taste of their own medicine, two wrongs don’t always make a right. And, as aforementioned, hurting a bully first would be consider taking too big of a step… it should only be used if nothing else works.
The problem in many schools today is that both the bully and the victim end up getting suspension time because they have a zero tolerance policy for any physical violence. However, the law does authorise anyone to act in self-defence if the situation warranted it, and if the means of self-defence was proportionate to the offence As an example, you cannot choke someone to the point of near death simply because they punched you a few times. However, the attitude must always be, ‘I do not want to fight, period.’ You should always maintain this attitude even if others will call you chicken or coward These are all forms of peer pressure used to get you to conform to a dominant culture, and possibly, at the subconscious level, because they want to get you in trouble for fighting with them.
In conclusion, bullies often have fears of their own. Fear and lack of understanding makes us do strange and irrational things. Nobody can control how they feel inside, but anybody can choose how to respond to these emotions. Knowing this can help you to a great extent to gain positive power to defend yourself rationally. As usual, new methods are continually being invented by psychologists and sociologists, as well as politicians and other legal personelle. All these things will hopefully prevent bullying and harassment. This kind of behaviour cannot only occur in children, but more often than not, it can just as well happen with adults, too, especially if they do not agree with one another on any given situation and who has no ability to control their anger and frustration. The best thing that can be done is to realise who will be their true friends and who to stay away from. Visit the Stop Bullying web site for more information, and remember that there is always help. Simply dial +1(800) 275-8255 for the National Suicide Prevention Hotline. Two-one-one Info also provides resources for immediate need.
As always, stay safe!

An open letter to friends and family who are shocked to discover I’m a liberal… [reshare]

Not my words! Before I share this with you all, I wanted to let you know that I added some comments to better illustrate how liberals can agree on the same thing but from different angles.

I’ve always been a liberal, but that doesn’t mean what a lot of you apparently think it does.
Let’s break it down, shall we? Because quite frankly, I’m getting a little tired of being told what I believe and what I stand for. Spoiler alert: Not every liberal is the same, though the majority of liberals I know think along roughly these same lines:

You got that right! So, what exactly does liberal mean? The dictionary defines it, as well as its origin, to be free from restraint, liberation, and progression. It is believed that the more one is informed about the advances of science, the more progressive one will be. Being conservative basically means keeping onto things like traditions and customs, conserving moral values, and often not keeping up with the sciences.

  1. I believe a country should take care of its weakest members. A country cannot call itself civilised when its children, disabled, sick, and elderly are neglected. Period.
  2. I believe healthcare is a right, not a privilege. Somehow that’s interpreted as ‘I believe Obamacare is the end-all, be-all.’ This is not the case. I’m fully aware that the ACA has problems, that a national healthcare system would require everyone to chip in, and that it’s impossible to create one that is devoid of flaws, but I have yet to hear an argument against it that makes ‘let people die because they can’t afford healthcare a better alternative. I believe healthcare should be far cheaper than it is, and that everyone should have access to it. And no, I’m not opposed to paying higher taxes in the name of making that happen. *Canada and the UK seem to have little problem with this. Why?*
  3. I believe education should be affordable and accessible to everyone. It doesn’t necessarily have to be free (though it works in other countries so I’m mystified as to why it can’t work in the US), but at the end of the day, there is no excuse for students graduating college saddled with five- or six-figure debt. *Many countries let you study core classes that pertain to your field. This is much like how homeschooled children would be taught. Teachers need to teach because they really want to teach, not because they want to collect a paycheque.*
  4. I don’t believe your money should be taken from you and given to people who don’t want to work. I have literally never encountered anyone who believes this. Ever. I just have a massive moral problem with a society where a handful of people can possess the majority of the wealth while there are people literally starving to death, freezing to death, or dying because they can’t afford to go to the doctor. Fair wages, lower housing costs, get access to universal healthcare, affordable education, and the wealthy actually paying their share would go a long way toward alleviating this. Somehow believing that makes me a communist. *I believe in a classless society where truly disabled people can get the help they need, while those with manageable disabilities or inconveniences can get the support needed to be successful. It’s like a scale; if you’ve got too much on one side, you can simply remove some of the weight until it was balanced. Then again, perhaps hierarchising disabilities might not be the best approach by all means.*
  5. I don’t throw around ‘I’m willing to pay higher taxes’ lightly. If I’m suggesting something that involves paying more, well, it’s because I’m fine with paying my share as long as it’s actually going to something besides lining corporate pockets or bombing other countries while Americans die without healthcare… *or feeding our inmates who might as well be given the death penalty. We seriously need to get our government out of debt, or make it file for bankruptcy and start anew.*
  6. I believe companies should be required to pay their employees a decent, livable wage. Somehow this is always interpreted as me wanting burger flippers to be able to afford a penthouse apartment and a Mercedes. What it actually means is that no one should have to work three full-time jobs just to keep their head above water. Restaurant servers should not have to rely on tips, multibillion-dollar companies should not have employees on food stamps, workers shouldn’t have to work themselves into the ground just to barely make ends meet, and minimum wage should be enough for someone to work 40 hours and live. *In order for that to happen, though, we need to fix our economy.*
  7. I am not anti-Christian. I have no desire to stop Christians from being Christians, to close churches, to ban the Bible, to forbid prayer in school, etc. By the way, prayer in school is NOT illegal; compulsory prayer in school is – and should be – illegal). All I ask is that Christians recognise my right to live according to my beliefs. When I get pissed off that a politician is trying to legislate Scripture into law, I’m not ‘offended by Christianity’ — I’m offended that you’re trying to force me to live by your religion’s rules. You know how you get really upset at the thought of Muslims imposing Sharia law on you? That’s how I feel about Christians trying to impose biblical law on me. Be a Christian. Do your thing. Just don’t force it on me or mine. Just like it is illegal to sacrifice a person, it should also be illegal to impose restrictions that would be detrimental to human civilisation. *That obviously includes making so-called laws and policies that are unfavourable towards a minority group because of your religious upbringing.*
  8. I don’t believe that LGBTQ2SIA+ people should have more rights than you. I just believe they should have the same rights as you. *The same applies to all other minorities; that’s why I believe in the #AllLivesMatter movement.*
  9. I don’t believe illegal immigrants should come to America and have the world at their feet, especially since THIS ISN’T WHAT THEY DO (spoiler: undocumented immigrants are ineligible for all those programs they’re supposed to be abusing, and if they’re ‘stealing’ your job it’s because your employer is hiring illegally). I’m not opposed to deporting people who are here illegally, but I believe there are far more humane ways to handle undocumented immigration than our current practices (i.e., detaining children, splitting up families, ending DACA, etc). *There are certain Green Card eligibilities that pertain to skills in the science and art, as well as those seeking immediate refuge under the Violence Against Minorities Act. Besides, what would be the point of building a massive wall across the Southern border? It not only shows that you are discriminating against Mexicans, but it’s a largely flawed idea. Determined people would find ways over, under, and around it.*
  10. I don’t believe the government should regulate everything, but since greed is such a driving force in our country, we NEED regulations to prevent cut corners, environmental destruction, tainted food/water, unsafe materials in consumable goods or medical equipment, etc. It’s not that I want the government’s hands in everything — I just don’t trust people trying to make money to ensure that their products, practices, etc. are actually SAFE. Is the government devoid of shadiness? Of course not. But with those regulations in place, consumers have recourse if they’re harmed and companies are liable for medical bills, environmental cleanup, etc. Just kind of seems like common sense when the alternative to government regulation is letting companies bring their bottom line into the equation. We are actually doing much worse than we are for future generations if we continue destroying this planet. *But, George Carlin said that this planet has been through times much worst than we have. If you watch Legally Blonde II, or as I call it, Politically Blonde, you can get a good taste of how strong corporations are, and what could happen if we made animal testing illegal unless they were ethical, or what could happen to the economy if we outlawed cigarettes. It’s a wonder why we make so many laws that are favourable to corporations, but not so much for the consumer. Just look at net neutrality! That’s why we need to come up with alternative practices that are moral and ethical, and obviously something that will benefit everyone.*
  11. I believe our current administration is fascist. Not because I dislike them or because I can’t get over an election, but because I’ve spent too many years reading and learning about the Third Reich to miss the similarities. Not because any administration I dislike must be Nazis, but because things are actually mirroring authoritarian and fascist regimes of the past. *My question then is, why do some people still believe in the confederate flag? What would happen if we had a dictator who was extremely smart and ethical?*
  12. I believe the systemic racism and misogyny in our society is much worse than many people think, and desperately needs to be addressed. Which means those with privilege — white, straight, cisgender male, economic, etc. — need to start listening, even if you don’t like what you’re hearing, so we can start dismantling everything that’s causing people to be marginalised. WE must also have a fighting force that is open to everyone. *That includes making compulsary military service the same as jury duty–no one person should be given preferential treatment because of their assigned sex or gender. Similarly, if anybody tells you that they don’t like white Africans (those who talk ghetto), well, I’ve got news for you, buddy. All of us, our entire species, actually originated in Africa, at least by evidentiary record kept by scientists. So, whether you are white, Asian, or anything like that, then you are still an African, and so am I, because we are Africans by origin; we just moved around every few generations.*
  13. I am not interested in coming after your blessed guns, nor is anyone serving in government. What I am interested in is sensible policies, including background checks, that just MIGHT save one person’s, perhaps a toddler’s, life by the hand of someone who should not have a gun. (Got another opinion? Put it on your page, not mine). *I am thinking of requiring tests the way driving and ham radio do, but owning a gun is currently seen as a right, not a privilege, so having guns out in public would put others at risk. However, that is not to say that you have the right to use your gun in public irresponsibly without some training. I also proposed the idea of having smart guns with advanced sights and tracking, but many people have strong oppositions to the government spying and encroaching on their privacy, not to mention that they are supersticious about the mark of the beast because I suggested we use biometric sensors.*
  14. I believe in so-called political correctness *and euphemisms.* I prefer to think it’s social politeness. If I call you Chuck and you say you prefer to be called Charles I’ll call you Charles. It’s the polite thing to do. Not because everyone is a delicate snowflake, but because as Maya Angelou put it, when we know better, we do better. When someone tells you that a term or phrase is more accurate or less hurtful than the one you’re using, you now know better. So why not do better? *Even if it doesn’t make sense to you, take a moment to feel it from another person’s perspective.* How does it hurt you to NOT hurt another person? *I always like transparency. I do not want to use words that are vague or misleading, or that tend to screen out a particular group of individuals, which is why I will explain why you should say this instead of that. I know what some people will say..stick and stones will break my bones. Not always true! Also, I am extremely opposed to using gender exclusive language and will do whatever it takes to eradicate it, even if I have to make sacrifices for the way I approach the issue. This means that you cannot say things like he or she, he/she, s/he, etc. unless you also included a gender-inclusive pronoun. You will also not say men and women, women and men, unless you also said and those in between. So, beware, you have been warned!*
  15. I believe in funding sustainable energy, including offering education to people currently working in coal or oil so they can change jobs. There are too many sustainable options available for us to continue with coal and oil. Sorry, billionaires. Maybe try investing in something else. *Yeah, why don’t you do us a big favour and get an amateur radio licence, so you can just learn how to build your own self-containing life support system? As a matter of fact, that’s what the International Space Station is using for their power source, plumbing, food, and air supply. Go here for the perfect example.*
  16. I believe that women (cisgender and transgender) should not be treated as a separate class of humans. They should be paid the same as everyone else and who do the same work, should have the same rights as everyone else and should be free from abuse. Why on earth shouldn’t they be? *What about including our nonbinary folks, i.e. those who identify as neither male or female? We should also be using more harmony-based vocabulary, like saying reproductive choices instead of abortion, as Pete Buttigieg once said. I’m sure he said this because some trans-men may not like the term abortion, and because abortion generally has unwanted connotations. Also, don’t take this the wrong way, but I don’t want anything having to do with feminism. I personally find that term as arrogant as the #BlackLivesMatter. If you really want true equality, consider using the term egalitarianism or equalism.*
  17. *And, speaking of abortion, I have my own outside-the-box views on the matter. I think we need to consider medical abortions, i.e. abortions that are medically necessary as a human right, which would therefore make non-medical abortions a privilege. I also believe that as artificial wombs are further developed, we could transplant the foetus without killing it. If the government only funded medical abortions, then it would be your responsibility to cover a non-medical abortion. If you can’t afford it, too bad! Consider adoption, instead. Yes, I know that some people used to end pregnancies using coat hangers, but I would strongly discourage such practice. Also, think about it this way. If you let yourself get knocked up at a party without protection, you have made an irresponsible decision that will irreversibly change your life forever. The baby didn’t ask to be brought into this world or give consent, it was your own carelessness that did it! So, you might as well enjoy your work, or consider adoption. Now, if you were raped in the legal sense, you might have a different story to tell. Bottom line is. I believe in pro-choice, not pro-life or pro-birth or whatever.*

I think that about covers it. Bottom line is that I’m a liberal because I think we should take care of each other. That doesn’t mean you should work 80 hours a week so your lazy neighbor can get all your money. It just means I don’t believe there is any scenario in which preventable suffering is an acceptable outcome as long as money is saved.
So, I’m a liberal.

For the Young at Heart

As one who has researched and worked with children for a while, I often took notes about the way people behaved and why they behaved the way they did. I volunteered a little bit with the Children’s club in 2014, and I’d also like to self-reflect a little on consciousness when I was but an infant.
So, to start this out, I’d like to introduce you to the idea that babies can probably talk in their minds before their hyroid bone is lowered. Because of that, I thought it pretty interesting when I read how Louis Sachar described how the substitute with the third ear attempted to hear what was coursing through the baby’s mind. Since the baby had no organised language, they could only think in terms of sensations, much like how my brother would. He can’t see or hear, but he can still form thoughts and ideas with his other senses. But since Sharon M. Draper said in Out of My Mind, you need thoughts to have words, and you need a voice to express those thoughts, obviously my brother’s only voice is his behaviour.
As an example, a child may not have the necessary information to express their true feelings about what they really want. It’s common in many parent and child relationships. Neither the parent nor the child is able to establish a clear understanding for one another when one or both of them lack the vocabulary needed to express a certain emotion. That is exactly what happened in that book, so I highly recommend you read it, and look at the first scene when the protagonist is at the toy store, and again when she is trying to warn her mother towards the end.
Another thing I found fascinating was what would happen if we didn’t learn the things we took for granted. Here’s another example about my brother. Since he’s never learned any kind of abstract concept like time, how does he perceive time in his mind? What if we decided that we would teach our future children everything but a certain item? Let’s say that in a hypothetical situation, we had many groups ready to start raising children. One group focuses on eliminating colour, another group removes time, and another removes sound and music (which already exists in Deaf culture). How would these children act when someone outside their group exposed them to the concept they never learned growing up? I probably mentioned this when I was talking about how Jonas didn’t know what colour was in the Giver, by Lois Lowry.
So, if you have a child(ren), and you are at your wits end, I’d suggest that you find out when your child is misbehaving, what prompts them to misbehave, where they are doing this, why they are doing it, who is it that they are targetting, if applicable, and how to solve the issue once it has been found, possibly by redirecting the behaviour instead of spanking. https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/02/parenting/child-discipline.html As someone who has worked with a behaviour technician to develop a behaviour support plan for my brother, these things are very intriguing, especially since not a lot of people have experience working with deaf-blind individuals who do not communicate with words.
If a child is having problems at a strange place like a day care centre, perhaps it is the way that they are being treated, and maybe it is affecting their overall development by giving them false information that leads them to make assumptions. I think one of the best ways to intervene is to give the child something they enjoy doing, or provide extra stimulation for something they don’t like doing. For example, most children don’t like to do chores, yet they must grow up learning how to do them. This is called the Premak Principle. It simply states that you must do an unfavourable task first if you want to earn a favourable reward. I have found through my own experience that providing extra stimulation, such as listening to music or reading an audiobook can help surpass the time.
I’ve once thought of implementing a GPS system on bus routes that would be available on an iOS or Android app, or even a Windows phone app. It would work on the same principle that Uber and Lyft uses. Since today’s kids are attached to their MIDs, which I like to call the iWorld, I thought it would be great if they could get realtime updates of when their bus was coming and track its progress on a map. However, some opponents of this would say that if we did htis, kids would depend on their phones rather than their own self-reliable resources and learn responsibility. I mean, what if your phone died?
For many blind kids, where walking around is not permissible in a private daycare home, or even when visiting parent’s friends, one has to be stimulated in other ways because of the lack of sight. Based on my experience, I found that whenever I visited other blind people, the children there were treated as family instead of strangers, and they understood the need for extra stimulation that they could not otherwise obtain just by seeing. So as long as they behaved they were free to walk around and feel what was around them. When I was little, my mother used to take my brother and me to my paternal aunt’s house so she could work. Similarly, she always dragged me to her friend’s houses. Sometimes I’d stay in the car while she did whatever it was she needed to do. However, my aunt made me sit all day, every day, without anything to do. I couldn’t simply look around me and observe the action. I could’ve used the time to write in my diary, as my writing was exceptionally good in sixth grade because I’ve read a lot of classic literature during that time. However, I didn’t have a computer until a year later, and it was but a desktop. I didn’t get my first netbook until I was beyond old enough to stay at home alone, so it was already too late. If any of these apps were available at the time, like title=”Aira Homepage”>Aira, which tells people what’s happening around them through a trained agent, or Be My Eyes, which is solely based on volunteers, perhaps my life might have been more enriched.
Here’s an interesting experience I had when I was four years old. I remember living at a house that was a two-three storey building. I cannot remember which one it was. I remember exploring a vacuum cleaner, feeling a closet, and things like that. One day, I happened to be outside, and I climbed two fences that was out on the second deck. I was walking until I felt the floor disappear, and I plunged down-down-down. I do not remember feeling any pain except for a big jolt on my bottom half, but I remember crying pretty hard until I was eventually found. Someone must have seen me fall off the side of the house. I probably fell asleep or fainted, because it all felt like I was in a dream or haze. It was a miracle I could not feel pain because I was so distant, not to mention it was a long fall, yet I am still able to recall almost everything that happened to me. It was as if I were on sedatives 24/7! So, what do babies really remember? My mother told me a story about a time I was in Mexico when I was running down five steps. It is queer how I figured it out because I never recall. What happened was that I ran, and fell over the first step. I stood up and tried again. On the second step, I also fell, and so for the third, and fourth. However, when I got to the fifth, I did not fall. I slowly put my right foot out and noticed that the ground changed and so I did not fall this time.
Now, here’s something else I learned. According to some hypotheses I’ve read, children who grow up listening to intricate forms of music stimulate deep parts of their brain, which helps improve their personality (emotions, cognition, and identity). At this point in time, most children go with the flow. It won’t be for a few more years when they will have enough schemas to think for themselves. I would take this moment to approach this situation in a rational and logical manner, and briefly set your emotions aside to allow you to think more clearly. Some children sometimes like to test the limits to see how much attention they can get, because that also provides a sort of stimulation as well, even if that might be a bad form of stimulation. It’s all based on the reward and pleasure centres in the brain. Some people with ADD or ADHD respond better to punishment and intimidation instead of reward. Others are the opposite. Being swamped with several projects, though, I can wholeheartedly understand the pressure being added to meet everyone’s expectations in very little time. I’m sure there are some ways one can do to lessen the workload. People seem to be too fast-pace nowadays, so we do not have time for any family get-together traditions. That needs to come back.

My Fascinations with Digital Telecommunication Systems

Ever since I was about seven or eight years old, I learnt how to distinguish the sound of each note, hence how I developed my absolute pitch. At the time, I didn’t know that there were others like me, such as Joybubbles, a famous telephone phreak or phreak known for whistling into the telephone to make long-distance calls for free. However, I discovered that I could apply this perfect pitch to understand not only musical notes, but also use it for learning to dial the telephone, or recognise certain textures of sound pertaining to several digital modes such as fax machines or dial-up systems. At the time, I knew that these were tones that a person could associate with these things. When I started getting more technical in later years, I learned that computers used tones in various forms of frequencies and waveforms to communicate to each other audibly and mathematically through long distances. These tones also included different types of noise as well. That brings me to something I just discovered. Up to this point, I did not know that the emergency alert systems found on television and radio used tones to send encoded messages across the network, yet when I heard the tones I associated them with an emergency message, which actually turns out to be an added benefit because it sounds like an alarm. I did a bit of research and learnt that the series of tones I was hearing was called the specific area message encoding, or SAME. It is used by software-defined radios, so if you have an NOAA weather radio, you might see the text of the message on your screen. The mode that amateur radio operators would use is called AFSK, or audio frequency shift keying.
As blind people, and maybe some deaf-blind people, we tend to be more aware of our surroundings with our third or mind’s eye or ears. We are able to see and hear beyond, like in ‘The Giver’. This doesn’t mean that we cannot see and or hear physically, but it just means we are able to view the world differently. Perhaps that is why the ham radio community treats people with disabilities as VIP’s. I have been able to recognise speech synthesisers that you would normally find in screen readers on places like the public city bus, in movies, the ATM, and other keosks. Of course, this doesn’t mean that blind people are the only ones who know about it, for certainly there must be a number of abled people who know about these things, only the majority of them are not recognised by the general public. I know a number of amateur radio operators, and as mentioned in my post, blind people seem to develop their own culture that is devoted to the mannerism associated with radio communications. This leaves outsiders who cannot conform to the culture to be overwhelmed because we cannot understand their close-mindedness. I didn’t think I’d join them several years later, but I did, and I plan to help anyone else who might need it. I certainly don’t believe in the whole brogrammer thing.
I looked into the phantom flute phenomenon where, if you play two flutes in the high ranges, you will often hear a third flute that is not present. This is due to the resultant (sum or difference of two frequencies) that I was picking up. As a prospective piano tuner, I had to know what these were, and how they would get in the way when I was tuning really high strings. The same applies for dual-tone multi-frequency or DTMF tones. When you dial a number or letter, two given frequencies that are predetermine create a unique texture that allows a person to know what is being dialed. In FBI and other forms of criminal investigation, people like us who enjoy tinkering with data transmissions can listen to numbers being dialed so we can track the numbers of the party the person is calling. This same principle applies to people who are incapable of measuring heart and breathing rate save for the equipment they are using. Since I am pretty good at estimating beats per minute, I don’t think I’d really need something to tell me what it was. The same goes for counting drops in an IV line. When I learned how to differentiate beatings, I also learnt how to calculate frequencies that humans cannot hear based on how they feel. I could mention in a job interview that I can calculate a person’s heart rate, or a tremor based on my knowledge and muscle memory. I can calculate how fast a fly’s wing is buzzing while scientists had to use expensive equipment to do that. It’s a shame, because they could have matched the tones using a free programme like audacity and the recording of the insect’s wings.
While making these discoveries, I knew I wanted to try out a facsimile machine, and use dialup, despite the fact that people said those things were going out of date and that dialup was slow. It wasn’t because of the obvious that I wanted to use these systems, but it was because I was fascinated by the sounds it made when it communicated across the telephone line. Amateur radio operators have successfully connected to the internet using only their radios. So, if I wanted to send an E-mail whilst out in the wilderness, I could easily do that with the right equipment. I was wondering if, some day in the future, transhumans could decode various digital protocols the way we can already understand Morse code , without using implanted devices. CW, or continuous wave, is considered to be a form of digital data. I got inspired by this idea when someone told me that scientists would be able to upload brain waves that escaped from your ears into a database. They would burn those brain waves onto a CD, which would hold some form of music. Let’s say you are dancing. They would be able to record how your brain behaves when you dance. If they could copy that into a computer and replay it back in a room full of people, then everyone would start dancing because their brains would be decoding the brain waves, unless there were genetic markers that would only make it so you were the one to dance.
Update: I got my ham radio licence on 11 March 2019, though I took the test on 2 March. Part of the reason I’ve been wanting to get my licence for a long time was because I read a book by Victor Appleton, or whoever the real writer was, and one of the books was called Tom Swift and his Wireless Message, or, the Castaways of Earthquake Island. There, I learned about how some people built a wireless station to call for help, and how they were rescued in the nick of time before the island sank.
So, I have met other blind people who shared this same passion of mine, and we believe that if more people were interested in a certain way, not to the point where we know all about it, but to a certain extent, we could change the world in getting more people to pay attention more closely. What do you all think? I think we can learn how to be more aware of our surroundings if we just stopped retreating into our iWorld environment and get out into the real world, because the iWorld is for people who are close-minded and selfish and the real world is for people who really care. We need to keep onto empathy and compassion.