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Dear brain trust,

I have some vision-related problems with my computer setup at work and our IT and HR departments are ill-equipped to help. I've got a configuration -- a combination of OS settings (Windows), monitor settings, application settings, and lighting -- that kind-of sort-of works, but it's all stuff I figured out on my own. There may be better ways to solve my problems, and some of my problems are currently unsolved and getting in my way. Meanwhile, IT really wants to push me to newer versions that seem to be worse for me.

I would like to find a consultant who is knowledgable in both vision stuff and tech stuff, someone who can sit with me for a few hours and give me informed advice about changes to make. My ophthalmologist of course knows the vision stuff but is not a techie; the techies I know don't grok the vision stuff. I need to find someone who can hear "photo-sensitive" and "restricted focal distance" and "astigmatism" and the rest, understand what that means, and suggest approaches that have not occurred to me from walking the application menus and Windows control panel and Firefox extensions. Technical areas will include the gamut of Windows display settings including custom color themes, CSS overrides in Firefox, configuration of Office and (if possible) Adobe reader, and monitor settings, among things. (Bonus points if this person can make Eclipse suck less.) Once I find this person, I intend to push my employer to hire that person for a consultation. I don't expect to have to push very hard, but I also don't expect to get multiple chances on the corporate dime.

The problem is I haven't been able to find that person. My Google searches have turned up many many consultants who will help employers comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act -- they're compliance people, not usability people. (Also, most of them are about mobility issues.) And I've found folks who will build you accessible web sites (they say). This does not help. Clearly I'm going about this wrong.

So, dear brain trust, can you help me figure out how to search for help with this? And in the "hey, I might get lucky" department, do you, dear reader, know someone who could provide this service in Pittsburgh?
 
 
 
 
 
 
Thanks for the tip! I'll try that.