Technology designed for the deaf is often created by people who can hear. Rockville, Md.-based Viable has a different approach: The company is run by hearing-impaired managers, including chief operations officer Jason Yeh. It has built a Web-based video communications unit filled with features for the hearing impaired.
The unit not only displays a signing person, but it also shows a second feed of the other signing party so both communicators know who is speaking when. Better yet, the units are portable and can function with PC-based versions of the same software. This all sounds straightforward enough, but these features are advances in the world of enabling technologies. Sometimes it takes people who can't hear to actually listen.