Posted by James E. McGillicuddy
Noon: The distaff members come out of solitary confinement at 12:10 PM when Incoming President Julie Pingston welcomes all comers to a “chat room” for a colloquy much enjoyed by early arrivals.
12:20 Call to Order for the rest of us inmates, which, in order not to interrupt we kept our microphones on mute, but not our cameras. Takes one back to the daguerreotype days those images.
12:22 Joel Hoffman For our Invocation read a poem by Sara Ismael “The concept of Normality” describing the personal emotional disconnection for the disabled from the “normal” world.
12:37 John Dale Smith offered a version of “God bless America” which from my speakers must have been recorded with a Crystal Set.
12:41 Visitors were introduced by Joel Hoffman followed by a Memoria for Jack Draper, a Rotarian for 67 years, from his son John and a letter from Sue Davis thanking us for the flowers for Jack. Two grand Rotarians lost within a month. We will adjust to their passing but Rotary will never be the same.
Incoming President Julie shared a brief bio assuring us we were in good hands and that the only key to the Rotary clock tower was in her possession. After assuring us she was not a lawyer, apparently atypical of Rotary Presidents, she explained the other newly elected area Presidents and her were Sympatico for the year.
12:47 Special music: Featured a huge Coast Guard brass band playing a medley of arm forces tunes that, again, my speakers couldn’t do justice but was amazing since they seemed to also be hiding in place from the evil Covid. Didn’t see the conductor so how they kept it together I’ll never know. But they did.
12:52 After being instructed how to pose questions of the speaker on “chat”
The Joel Hoffman show resumed as he turned to Janet Lillie to introduce our speaker. Sarah Swierenga PhD. Director of Usability/Accessibility Research and Consulting (UARC) apologized for Michael Hudson not being available so the topic was changed to “Can People with disabilities access your website and why it matters” While computer generated artificial voice, the original topic, was mentioned briefly most of the time was spend explaining the importance and exigencies of assuring that our web sites were accessible by the 20 % of adults with disabilities. Hearing, visual, physical and cognitive impairment require special adaptation of websites that can be a legal and social justice issue (see ADA and refreshed Section 508). Extensive grants and research in her lab have created guidelines available at WCAG and her website VARC.MSU.EDU. It was fun to hear someone with such passion and commitment to her discipline despite its esotericism.
Next week we will be visited by some serious power in the person of Nathan Triplett Rotary District Governor. Office on deck, ten shun.
Jim McGillicuddy's email is: