How long does it take to learn to use a MinSpeak-based AAC system?

This blog post contains extracts from a message that I posted to the CM-AAC-Forum in 2009, as one of many contributors to a lengthy discussion about “Icon vs Text Based Communication Systems”. This was was one of several branches of a thread that had originated with a discussion about word prediction software.

The question, “How long does it take to learn to use a MinSpeak-based system?”,  is just as valid for any other AAC system, but there is a particular reason why I am concerned about the MinSpeak question.  This is that I have been quoted as reporting in 1989 that it took 200 hours of direct therapy to teach a cognitively intact adult to use a MinSpeak system fully.  I was a bit baffled by this as I did not recall ever have said any such thing and could not imagine where this “fact” had come from.
Continue reading “How long does it take to learn to use a MinSpeak-based AAC system?”

What a great example of total communication!

I want more details! About the blink-system, the communication aid Adam uses – and more poetry, please.


Brilliant AAC role model and only 10 years old – fantastic!

Amplify’d from

10-year-old wins award for poetry written by blinks

Brian Donnelly
17 Jul 2010
A blind boy who suffers from major health problems has won an award for his poetry, which he writes by a process of blinking to choose words and syllables.
Judges, however, were unaware of the incredible feat by Adam Bojelian, aged 10, until he reached the semi-finals of the competition.
  • ADAM BOJELIAN: Told the award ceremony of his love of writing.
Although Adam instigated his highly personalised means of expression from a very early age, the story of how he taught himself the technique is reminiscent of The Diving Bell And The Butterfly, a memoir by French journalist Jean-Dominique Bauby, which he wrote by blinking his left eye after a stroke.
Adam told the audience: “It is really hard telling people what you are thinking by blinking, but I love writing poems”.
He delighted the audience by reciting – using his computer-generated voice – one of his three entries, entitled a A Silly Poem.
A Silly Poem, Adam Bojelian 2010
At my school the green fish digs a hole and chases the dog down the road.
In the yard the big dinosaur laughs out loud and tells me a joke.
I laugh.
Later that day I saw a bug eat my teacher for lunch.
The lion reads a book in a tree and then, a scientist with a monkey drives a car too fast through the air.
In my dream, I catch a spaceship to the moon.
I go off looking for hot dogs.