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Christian Tiffert Former naval officer, spinal cord injury

Christian Tiffert

Former naval officer, spinal cord injury

Who are you and what are you doing?

I'm Christian Tiffert from Rostock. Before my accident in 2012, I was a naval officer in the German Armed Forces and I also lectured at the Helmut Schmidt University in Hamburg. Today I study Law and Good Governance at the University of Rostock. In my spare time I am very interested in Russia and I have been travelling for several weeks every year for the last 3 years to this diverse and interesting country - I give lectures about my experiences and report in my blog. I also found a non-profit association that collects donations to support projects for disabled children in Russia. For this I also organize charity concerts from time to time.

What do you use TubusOne™ for?

I use TubusOne™, or my "Pustefix" (Fast-puff) as I call it, mainly at the university. Usually I am a fan of the Bluetooth mouse built into my wheelchair, with which I operate the computer via a mouth joystick. In situations where this is not possible or I don't have my computer, I use my tablet (iOS) or smartphone (Android) and I operate those with the TubusOne™.

Have you tried similar instruments, software or communication devices?

For my computer I use the speech recognition software Dragon - this works great on Windows but unfortunately not so well on Apple products. I use it to write my emails or navigate on my computer, for example. But I usually use a mouth joystick when I need to navigate. With this joystick I also control my wheelchair or other devices in the house like doors or lights.

But all in all it is really difficult to find suitable devices that I can use in a wheelchair and without hands. A simple example is Siri: The idea is good, but you can't end calls with Siri, for example. So if I call someone and the voicemail goes on, I can't just hang up but have to listen to the whole voicemail. Also, shops specialising in severely disabled people are sometimes quite traditional and don't necessarily have all the equipment available. So I have to research a lot on the internet.

Did TubusOne™ change something in your social or private life?

As I said, I use TubusOne™ mainly for lectures at the university. Of course I can't use speech recognition for taking notes and navigating when the professor is standing in front and wants to explain something. I can simply take my tablet and TubusOne™ with me into the lecture to switch between different legal texts, take notes and so on. This is easy, fast and completely problem-free.

When I lie in bed in the evening and thus don’t have the mouth joystick from the wheelchair and my computer, I also use TubusOne™ to read, watch TV and play on my tablet. My next project is that I can control my doors and other devices from the tablet and thus also with my TubusOne™.

So my conclusion: TubusOne™ is really great. It is a real life saver for people in my situation. I use it every day and would not like to miss it.

What is your approach to life?

I always refer to my current life as a second life. After an accident like this you just know how quickly life can be over. In general, I am interested in a self-determined life. I am out there and I show myself. I want to be visible for other people and show how rich life can be - no matter the situation. And that doesn't mean that I want any special treatment - I just want to create an understanding and live my life. I study, I go to concerts, I meet with friends - just like everybody else. I also have pain almost every day, but still I feel good. I just try to have a positive attitude and charisma so that I can continue to enjoy my life.

What would you tell those who are considering buying TubusOne™?

If you use a device with a touchscreen - which I generally recommend - then TubusOne™ is simply indispensable. I know of no other product that works so well and so easily on tablets and smartphones. Simply great. And don't let the insurance companies put you off - they often categorically reject requests for aids. Then you just have to file an objection. It's annoying, of course, but in the end it's usually successful.