OrCam MyEye Helps Richard be More Independent

2020-07-02 | By Orcam Staff

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OrCam MyEye Helps Richard be More Independent - OrCam

Richard is one of the tens of thousands of OrCam users from around the world who have regained their independence and improved their quality of life. The most important change in Richard’s life, thanks to OrCam MyEye, is his ability to get back to work regardless of having low vision. Here is Richard’s story, in his very own words:

Richard’s Story

Richard standing in front of a desk and pointing ata piece of paper for the OrCam MyEye 2 to read it to him

My name is Richard and I live in the Chicago suburbs.I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Marketing and a Master’s degree in Business Administration. I am also married with three children (two of whom are in college).   ­­­­­


My vision loss is due to a condition called Cone Dystrophy, which is an inherited degenerative eye condition that impacts the central and color vision. The central vision is where most of my focus is at, making reading very difficult. I also can’t see facial details or distinguish colors and contrast well.


I started noticing this at about age 40, though I still had 20/20 vision. Odd but true. I would lose an object in my central vision such as a tennis ball or golf ball. Then I would see it again. It made my favorite sports difficult to play. As the condition progressed, the blind spots became bigger and bigger. About five years ago, it reached a point of becoming a true disability.


This disability was very hard on me, as the only career I knew demanded driving and computer work. I knew nothing about adaptive technologies that could help me, and as I could no longer do my job, I found myself unemployed with no concept that I could ever do those things again.


During my unemployment, I began learning about adaptive technologies that could help me. The first technology device that I found was an electronic magnifier that could enlarge fonts and reverse contrast for reading.  Though it was a great help for reading off a piece of paper, it offered no help on my computer.

Becoming Employed Again

Close-up of Human Hand

Unemployed and not knowing how I could learn to work again, I heard about The Chicago Lighthouse and reached out to their Employment Services Program for people with disabilities to help find a job.  They ended up hiring me internally, believing that my Consumer Goods background could be beneficial to their Industries Manufacturing program.


I am a product manager at the Chicago Lighthouse Industries.  Over the past 40 years, The Chicago Lighthouse has hand-built more than six-million clocks.  Each and every one of them is built with pride by people who are blind!  My role is to help expand our product offerings to help ensure continued employment for people with vision impairments.


At The Lighthouse, I was introduced to a computer software program called ZoomText, which can magnify what is on the screen, reverse color contrast, and read out loud some of what I was seeing. This was a great help! But even that limited what I can read on my computer. It doesn’t help me when I am away from my desk and there are limits to what it can read even when I am there. I had also played around with other electric eyewear devices that offered some benefits, but they were big and intrusive.


The Chicago Lighthouse has an outstanding assistive technology center that helps people with vision loss find the best options available to meet their individual needs and enhance their independence.  Knowing my struggles were reading when away from my desk, they recommended the OrCam MyEye as a solution.

OrCam MyEye

OrCam MyEye 2 is the best assistive technology device to help with age related vision changes

The OrCam MyEye proved to be the perfect device, as it helped me not only at work but also in my personal life. At work, the device helped me to read documents from anywhere, whether at my desk, at a meeting, or during my commute on the train. It was also extremely beneficial when attending meetings, as with the device I could finally follow along with PowerPoint presentations and other visual materials.


Since the device is so small and discrete, I felt comfortable wearing it outside of work as well while doing activities that I enjoy the most. During a trip to the art museum, I was thrilled to be able to read information about the artists and their work. It had been so long since I was able to access this information. It also helps me when I’m at restaurants with my family and friends, as I can now read the menu on my own, and when I’m shopping as I can use it to identify products and read labels. The OrCam MyEye helped me to regain my independence.