ELIA Newsletter - October 04, 2017

Fast Company 2017 Innovations in Design Awards

Fast Company awarded ELIA Life Technology two honorable mentions in their 2017 Innovation in Design Awards for the categories Graphic Design and Social Good. ELIA was also featured in their article “The Complicated Quest to Redesign Braille” last week. The piece touches upon braille advocates and their skepticisms of ELIA Frames, and features Thomas Reid, a vision loss advocate who quickly became fluent in ELIA Frames.

Byron Johnson - Research & Operations New Hire

Byron Johnson has joined the ELIA Life team to help manage our Research and Operations efforts. He recently completed his graduate studies in Behavioral Neuroscience (BN) at Queens College (CUNY), and will lead the company’s basic research efforts, including curriculum development. He will also have a role in operations, including preparations for an upcoming Kickstarter, ELIA keyboard testing and data analysis, and grant writing. The lead graduate student in his lab, Byron came highly recommended by his graduate advisor, Andrea Li, Ph.D.

Incubator Membership

ELIA Life Technology has been chosen for membership in the 2017-2018 programs for the NEW INC design incubator and the FutureWorks hardware incubator. Through these organizations, the company has access to cutting-edge prototyping and fabrication facilities, as well as more traditional facilities and equipment. Speaker and networking events, investor pitch presentations, as well as professional development and mentoring are also part of the two programs. Strategic planning, marketing, PR, and graphic and video design services will also be available.

Events and Community Building

Kickstarter/Hackaday Presentation and Discussion ELIA Life’s Andrew Chepaitis presented the keynote address at Kickstarter ‘s World Maker Faire week meetup with their hardware community partner Hackaday. The presentation shared the ELIA Frames Alphabet and our new TouchPrinter with the group, and was a great opportunity to answer questions, discuss our approach. and discuss new opportunities for collaboration. Kickstarter has also invited us to launch a fundraising campaign for the ELIA Frames Alphabet, where they will provide guidance through Futureworks. Several ELIA advisors have led successful Kickstarter campaigns and will collaborate with us to ensure that we achieve success.

ELIA CEO Andrew Chepaitis presenting to the crowd at the Kickstarter Hackaday event.

ELIA CEO Andrew Chepaitis presenting to the crowd at the Kickstarter Hackaday event.

Maker Faire

ELIA Life exhibited at this year’s 8th annual World Maker Faire New York at the New York Hall of Science. In a booth space sponsored by Futureworks, our team provided ELIA Frames and TouchPrinter demonstrations for thousands of inventors, technologists, and science enthusiasts. ELIA's CEO Andrew Chepaitis was interviewed by the MAdE Podcast, a media collective that places making, architecture, design, and equity at the forefront of their stories.

ELIA CEO Andrew Chepaitis being interviewed for MAdE podcast.

ELIA CEO Andrew Chepaitis being interviewed for MAdE podcast.

Brooklyn Public Library and UX Community

The NYC ELIA Life Technology Team met with representatives from the Brooklyn Public Library where they shared helpful information on library engagement, usability issues, and universal access to texts. Our goals are to form collaborations with the library and affiliated organizations, and to ensure that we are providing content efficiently. Ultimately, we wish to launch pilot programs at libraries for people to learn and read ELIA Frames, and conduct an ELIA Keyboard study. We will share progress as those efforts move forward.

ELIA CEO Andrew Chepaitis hosting a UX Meetup group.

ELIA CEO Andrew Chepaitis hosting a UX Meetup group.