The iPhone and iPod Touch have been truly amazing devices. They allow a level of freedom for people that can't or don't want to use a stylus to still be able to use a mobile device. They also make it more difficult to lose your stylus. This means that it can be very useful for children with autism.
The only problem: there hasn't been a specific app designed for autistic children. Until now, that is. I found an app that I hope is the first of many more similar apps to come: iConverse.
The premise behind iConverse is pretty simple: You have six icons that provide basic every day actions: Restroom, Sleep, Drink, Eat, Sick, and Help. The communication is basic, but it helps those who are unable to communicate verbally, or those who have not yet learned to communicate verbally, to do so.
When pressing on the icon, text covers the icon to indicate the selection, as does a verbal sentence that is played on the device. You can select either a male or female voice as well.
While it seems simple, it's much needed. Currently it's available in the Apple App Store for $4.99. I should note that there is software out there for special devices or the computer that will do the same thing, but has a high cost of over $1,000. This is ideal, because it's relatively inexpensive for both the device and the software.
I'm sort of disappointed, but only in the fact that I didn't develop it first (I've been working on learning Objective C just for something like this). Well, perhaps I'll build a custom bracer for the iPod Touch for my son's arm, should we need one for him all the time.