Skip to Full Menu

Providing information, education, and training to build knowledge, develop skills, and change attitudes that will lead to increased independence, productivity, self determination, integration and inclusion (IPSII) for people with developmental disabilities and their families.

PBS Runs "Freedom Machines" Documentary On Assistive Technology
By Dave Reynolds, Inclusion Daily Express
September 13, 2004

NEW YORK, NEW YORK--Tuesday night, public television stations around the country will broadcast a film that examines the ways technology, accessible design and anti-discrimination laws help people with disabilities to be more independent and have equal access to the world around them.

"Freedom Machines", an independent film that is part of the PBS series "P.O.V.", features a number of technologies that are becoming increasingly more common, including "standing" wheelchairs, closed-captioning, descriptive audio, programmable keyboards, screen-text readers, IntelliKeys, Braille devices, and voice recognition software, to name just a few.

"The purpose of the film is to let people know that there are tools out there than can really make a difference in their lives," said producer Jamie Stobie, "and also to let them know that there are laws that have been passed that guarantee their rights to participate in this life and society on an equal footing with everyone else."

"Freedom Machines" looks at the activism that has led to laws requiring assistive technology in schools, along with accessible public facilities. It also shows how technology, universal design, and in-home care are helping people to move from nursing homes into the community.

The film features technologies that are just now being developed which will be flexible and adapt to the needs of different users or to the changing needs of the same user.

"We have so far to go on development of technologies," said Jackie Brand, the founder of the Alliance for Technology Access. "There is so much yet to accomplish."

"We have just gotten a glimmer of what's possible."

"P.O.V.: Freedom Machines" (PBS)
The Alliance for Technology Access


©2018 The Minnesota Governor's Council on Developmental Disabilities
 370 Centennial Office Building  658 Cedar Street   St. Paul, Minnesota 55155 
Phone: 651.296.4018   Toll-free number: 877.348.0505   MN Relay Service: 800.627.3529 OR 711   Fax: 651.297.7200 
Email:   View Privacy Policy   An Equal Opportunity Employer 

The GCDD is funded under the provisions of P.L. 106-402. The federal law also provides funding to the Minnesota Disability Law Center,the state Protection and Advocacy System, and to the Institute on Community Integration, the state University Center for Excellence. The Minnesota network of programs works to increase the IPSII of people with developmental disabilities and families into community life.