It has been great fun, and a wonderful opportunity to interact on air with like-minded technology enthusiasts. But the time has come for me to stand down from what is quite a commitment each week to research content and record Tech Talk. And this is why I have said goodbye as of the 2016 highlights show which goes out over the new year period.
First of all, my great passion in life is writing. I have achieved what has been a life-long dream to become a published author. Thanks to Jonathan Mosen of
I achieved that this month with the release of Braille On Display.
But I don’t want to stop there. I have other plans in the pipeline, so watch this space and see where we are a year from now.
Secondly, and this is my personal view, I think RNIB is taking blind and visually impaired people for granted in encouraging them to give their time for nothing. Shaun Preece and I have worked on Tech Talk for much of 2016 as volunteers, alongside Steven Scott, who is an RNIB employee. It is no secret that the voluntary contribution Shaun and I made this year has boosted the Tech Talk rating to well in excess of 25,000 podcast downloads a week. But we never received a penny for our efforts as volunteers, not even recognition from RNIB. So this began to irk me somewhat, and made me feel unappreciated. Many thousands of people volunteer in one way or another, but there comes a point when you feel you need to stick by your principles.
And finally, I also volunteer for the British Computer Association of the Blind, something that means a lot to me. As BCAB embarks upon new projects in 2017, I want to be a part of that, where we are all volunteers striving for the same goals.
With all the above in mind, therefore, I have decided to concentrate on my writing and BCAB commitments next year. I would like to thank all those who have read my Brown’s Bargains pages on this blog, and who faithfully downloaded the Tech Talk podcast. I wish Steven and Shaun well for future editions, and hope the programme continues to go from strength to strength. But, RNIB, do try to be a little more appreciative of your volunteers or you just might end up losing them!