11. The Darci Card - Nifty 50
The Darci Card, as an adaptive technology, enables a physically disabled person to activate a computer with either an on-screen keyboard or Morse Code.
The Darci Card allows a variety of methods to control the computer, including a "sip and puff" switch that activates computer commands through breath control.
It also allows computer control through use of a head-mounted device that uses a light sensor and also through use of a joystick that can be activated by an extremity such as a foot or elbow.
The Darci Card existed before NSF became involved. However, NSF played a major role in helping to miniaturize the original Darci Card, which had been large and more difficult to use. NSF-funded work helped to make the Darci Card more usable and compatible with more computer systems.
The Darci Card has several advantages over other devices designed to accomplish the same function. For example, it is smaller (the size of a playing card), it can perform more functions and it costs half as much as other previous products.
Smaller, portable computers that are increasingly capable of greater computing functions enable wheelchair users to take their adaptive technology with them wherever they go.
Original publication date: April 2000