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Carly’s cafe is a website that shows you what a cafe experience would be like through the eyes of someone with autism. You have heard the term ‘autism’ thrown around a lot, knowing that it can be a seriously inhibiting disorder, but how can anybody really empathize without understanding how debilitating the affliction is? Buckle up because it is truly some powerful stuff.
Carly Fleischmann is a 17 year-old with autism, but unlike most others with severe autism who are unable to communicate, she has a real voice found through typing. She has co-written a book, ‘Carly’s Voice: Breaking Through Autism,’ to explain what it is like to have the condition. The last chapter of this literal breakthrough novel has been transposed into a short interactive visual piece. The site attempts to simulate the kind of sensory overload a person with autism would through while trying to focus on different things in the cafe—from Carly’s dad to her sister to the barista, or even to a group of girls entering the cafe. It is an eye-opening experience.
Carly hopes to help people understand that what we see on the outside of somebody with Autism is only the fringe of their existence—what is happening on the inside is incomparable.