CoughDrop is a simple, modern AAC communication and support tool that empowers individuals and the teams around them. It is a full-featured communication app built for individuals with autism, cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, Angelman syndrome, Rett syndrome, or other complex communication needs. CoughDrop is flexible and configurable enough to accommodate the access and comprehension needs of many communicators.
CoughDrop users can install this app to access CoughDrop’s communication and reporting features on their mobile device. The app includes starter boards for different levels of communication, and boards with large or small buttons can be personalized using the rich symbol set, user-provided images or camera photos, user-recorded audio, speech synthesis, etc.
CoughDrop runs on multiple devices, so you can log in on your tablet, phone and computer and have access to the same communication tools and interface. In addition, users can be linked so parents, therapists and supervisors can access a communicator’s boards from their own devices to better facilitate modeling, and to make it easier to modify boards without taking away the communicator’s device. The built-in reporting and messaging tools also help the support team have a consistent strategy and know what’s working across locations and times.
With CoughDrop you can:
Personalize communication and access across multiple devices. Grow your vocabulary over time with a simple interface backed up by lots of help and training.
Work Offline with backup in the cloud so it’s painless to switch devices if something breaks. You can also share boards with others and open-license them for anyone to use.
Empower the team with reports that help everyone improve. Teams can collaborate and modify boards for each individual without having to take their device away.
Every voice should be heard
Some people are hard to hear — through no fault of their own. Many people need the assistance of technology in order for their voices to be heard. Unfortunately, a lot of that technology is hard to use, is hard to configure, and is crazy expensive. CoughDrop is a new AAC app that tries to fix that.
Why “CoughDrop”? Cough drops help you get back the voice you already had, but that maybe people couldn’t hear so well. They’re cheap and nobody looks at you weird when you use them. We want to help get AAC to that same point by providing affordable, approachable, simple solutions to complex communication needs that work for everyday use.
Learn as You Go
If you’re new to the world of augmentative communication, just about every part of it feels intimidating. How could you possibly know the right words and symbols to pick for an individual’s personal needs (and wants, and hopes, and wishes). Not to worry, they work with many different specialists to provide well-researched templates that will get you started. And just as importantly, they provide training resources for parents, caregivers, siblings… everyone involved in supporting an individual deserves to know what’s going on and how exactly they can help the communication strategies be successful.
Gathering data and working across devices is great, but there are still plenty of places where you won’t have a good Wi-fi connection. CoughDrop stores a user’s boards and logs on each device so the user can communicate offline with no interrupts. Everything syncs back up the next time there is an internet connection.
Personalization and Sync
Being tied to a single device is risky, especially when you’ve added lots of your own pictures or moved picture symbols around for personal use. Not only can you possibly lose your data and configuration, but if a screen cracks or a battery dies, you’re out of luck until it can be replaced. CoughDrop works across multiple devices and keeps content in sync for you so you don’t have to worry.
Create, Share and Reuse
Nobody wants to start from scratch when creating a set of communication boards. CoughDrop lets you easily discover and personalize communication boards created by others. And CoughDrop encourages open licenses of content and symbols, so you don’t have to wonder if you’re breaking copyright somewhere on accident.
CoughDrop is committed to making boards open and reusable. So much so that they started the OpenBoards initiative to work toward a standard file format for importing and exporting boards across all apps and devices, and they use that format as their native import/export format. When they have the freedom to build off of each other’s ideas and successes regardless of where they came from, everyone wins.
Having to take an individual’s communication device away from them in order to program it is a terrible thing, it takes away their voice. CoughDrop lets therapists, specialists, parents and other team members modify the communication set and even log session notes and messages in a place where everyone can benefit from them.
Sometimes it’s really hard to know what’s working and what’s not. Augmentative communication is an ongoing process of modifying and introducing vocabulary, and without good reports it’s difficult to be sure what needs to change. CoughDrop can log all communications and provide insightful reports based on time, location and vocabulary that makes it clearer for everyone just where to focus their efforts for the best results.
CoughDrop provides secure communication and storage of all boards, logs and user information. They do not share private information like user data, private boards and usage logs without explicit permission. They take user privacy extremely seriously because, at the end of the day, what they’re talking about is potentially recording everything an individual ever says. That kind of information deserves to be protected.
Most AAC systems are built on proprietary technology, which means you don’t really know how secure they are, it’s easier to get locked in and forced into their way of doing things. CoughDrop is open source and built with an open mindset, so you can see for yourself what goes into the system, and you always have easy access and exports for all your data.