This past fall, Obert took a class on assistive technologies. Coincidentally, in the first week the students took turns riding in wheelchairs around campus to better understand the challenges a paraplegic faces. Obert thought the exercise was superficial. “I understand the idea,” she says, “but at the same time it felt a little bit trivializing. People were like, ‘Oh, it’s so hard to open the door’ … and [that’s] such a small, tiny piece of what you actually have to deal with every day if you’re in a wheelchair.” Better, she says, to talk to people with a disability, to shadow them for a day and ask them about what they need. — Wheels on the Ground - Technology Review

Will Wade @willwade