Both of my hands have 2 fingers and a thumb, 3 total on each. Originally, there was just one plus a thumb, but doctors split the single digit, and made two out of it.

In grade school I played baseball. In high school I played football and went downhill skiing. For the past 15+ years I have played bass guitar.

For the past 10 years I have done martial arts, and have been teaching for the past 6+. Primarily Muay Thai with a dose of Western Boxing thrown in, a mix of Panantukan/Wing Chun/Silat/Boxing, another mix of mostly Filipino weapons arts (Kali, Eskrima, Arnis, Silat), and finally some Italian Fencing/Bolognese Side Sword (mostly Manciolino).

For all of my life, at least as long as I can remember, I have played video games (Arcade, Atari, Nintendo, XBox, WoW, LoL, Diablo, CS:GO, etc.) I love video games and would, one day, like to work in the industry. While it's not something I expect to happen over night, I would one day like to get to a point where I can provide assistance to as many people as possible.

In everything I do, I make modifications to what would be considered standard. I modified one of my bass guitars so that I could have a "5-string", it's the red one in the links below. I continually make modifications to the martial arts I do so that I can do them effectively, I also reverse those changes when teaching. For video games, I have been, slowly, writing down some of the changes I've made in a blog. Hopefully someone will find it useful someday.

I have done AMAs in the past, and was able to provide some perspective to, and hopefully help, a few people who were facing a similar situation.
I hope that this time around I will be able to help a few more people.

Also, someone always asks if I have videos of myself playing bass/video games, and doing martial arts. So, I included a couple of videos.

Ask away!!!

Playing Audioslave - Like a Stone

Playing Pentakill - Lightbringer

Proof 1, Proof 2, Proof 3

AMA from May

One last thing. An awesome Redditor (/u/jakijo) made these great gloves for me. Just wanted to say thanks, again!

Comments: 83 • Responses: 35  • Date: 

vektornaut20 karma

Hey man, I commend you for overcoming such a thing. Just curious with the bass playing, are you ever held back from playing more technical stuff, or do you find ways around it? You're a solid player, I watched both of your videos.

danmart119 karma

There are a few things that have been difficult that has made learning the song slow. I have a few tricks that I use, from time to time. Depending on the song I can change the tuning so that the fingering is closer together. Sometimes I'll use a capo (and remove it) for a lot of higher notes. For most songs, I slide, a lot.

wtafml16 karma

Okay well A.) props to you for being way more talented at way more hobbies than I am with all my extremities over here.

B.) Do you prefer people to come right out and ask what's up with your hands, or just to ignore it completely? A classmate of mine seems to have something similar, but it feels rude to ask about it. It also feels awkward to act like it's totally normal though (since I know that they know that I know that they only have a couple fingers and that I don't know why and probably want to ask...you know? heh)

danmart115 karma

Thanks!

I've been asked enough times that it doesn't bother me anymore. When I was younger, it would make me uncomfortable if it were a stranger. With people I knew, it was fine.

A-Grey-World8 karma

Is typing a pain? Do you use a normal keyboard?

danmart18 karma

Typing isn't too bad. Home row and all that stuff I learned in school doesn't work, so I had to ignore it.

I use a gaming keyboard, which is mostly normal. I can't stand using ergonomic keyboards. My hands cross the center all the time, so that extra space is annoying.

hardtimesatHardTimes5 karma

Although you obviously are an incredibly capable individual, do you still come across people who treat you like a child because of your disabilities?

danmart15 karma

When I was in my early 20s, I'd sometime get treated carefully, kind of like you'd treat a beginner, regardless of how much experience I had. Now that I'm older (and look it) I don't really get that anymore. Other than when I was a kid, I've never really been treated like one.

Honk_If_Top_Comment4 karma

Will listen to the Pentakill cover when I finish work.

As a League player who is currently platinum where are you ranked?

I know there are players who have made it fairly high with such disabilities before and it's always interesting to hear.

What champs do you play?

Feel free to check out /r/leagueoflegends if you're not already a subscriber too

danmart13 karma

I was Gold 5 in Season 4, unranked in Season 5.

I play a mix of champions, mostly because I like the way they play or the way Riot presented them (their lore). Nidalee, Quinn, Fizz, Akali, Braum, Diana, Fiora, Rengar, Jax, Shen, Taric, TF, Varus. There's probably more, but those are the one's I could think of.

Honk_If_Top_Comment5 karma

I'm always amazed by how simple but elegant TF's kit is.

danmart13 karma

It's simple, but so difficult to use optimally, and I can never hit the Gold card when I need to.....

Xplosionation1 karma

Reggie?

danmart12 karma

No, I'm older, taller, and worth substantially less than Reggie.

Milestailsprowe4 karma

How do you every get phatom limb syndrom like you have the regular amount of fingers?

danmart14 karma

No. I never had the fingers to begin with, so I don't have a reference point for the phantom limb.

little_effy4 karma

Hey! First off, it's really brave and touching of you to do this, it proves that people with disability can live a full and normal life. Hats off to you! As for my question, I'm a medical student, so I will face many patients with disabilities as well - what are the do's and don'ts when talking about it with patients? Is it better to be forthright? Is it annoying when people are too sympathetic? Also, is there any comments / criticisms that you have towards healthcare professionals that you have encountered so far? Many thanks, and I wish you well!

danmart12 karma

Thanks!!

This might just be me, but every time I got to see any doctor, I expect to be asked, even if it's not necessarily relevant. I'd be forthright, especially if it's relevant. Even if it's not, I personally, haven't seen the harm in being asked. The other thing is, not every person is going to know exactly what happened. It took me until I was 32 to request my medical files and go over everything from when I was born. You may end up asking someone who can only say, "I was born like that." Which is what I said for many years, when asked.

The only don't I can really tell you is, Don't act (truthfully or not) overly concerned. I don't really get annoyed when people do that, but it's not really a great impression either. I'm in my mid 30s (and look like it too), so unless I'm bleeding, I absolutely know about my hands and legs. On the other hand, sympathy can go either way. Personally, I'm flattered by the concern, but it's not really necessary. That's not true for everyone though. some people get out right pissed off, and I suspect it's that they either haven't fully accepted it (and are still angry about it), or they don't know how to handle/return the expressed emotions and it frustrates them. Both are normal, but it takes some time (experience) to get over.

Very few people in my life are overly sympathetic, so I don't encounter it very often. It hasn't become annoying to me, yet. I suppose, if I had to deal with it on a daily basis, it may become annoying.

Good luck in school!!

kevfitz17293 karma

Hello fellow Muay Thai intusiest, when training did you use modified gloves, and how would your hands affect your sparring and bag work?

Bet you are a awesome at grappling?

danmart14 karma

My hands fit into regular gloves well enough, but the smaller bag gloves fit best.

I have to be even more careful than others when punching a bag, at least with any curved punches. I have tweaked my wrist a couple of times. Not much of a difference when sparring either.

I don't grapple much. I don't enjoy it as much as other things, so I don't focus on it.

MjrMjr3 karma

Most expert level martial artists I know who practice striking arts have ridiculously large/hard knuckles. How do your fists measure up in this respect? If you got into a fight, would you let your hands go? If so, what are the odds you hurt your hands?

danmart13 karma

My knuckles are larger than normal, well not compared to the other martial artist I know. The odds are pretty good of anyone hurting their hands in a fight, and I don't think I'm much different.

MjrMjr3 karma

Thanks for the follow up.

If you are throwing a straight punch, what knuckle(s) do you attempt to strike with? Also, do you ever lift weights? If so, are you able to perform the barbell bench press and how much do you bench?

danmart12 karma

When I punch, I hit with both of them.

I don't lift weights. I have other exercises that I do, but none of them use weights.

thebarberstylist3 karma

Can you tell what digits your fingers are or would be if you had all five? like are they an index and middle finger?

danmart13 karma

It's really tough without a point of reference. If I had to guess middle finger and little finger.

ElGorrrdoGuapo2 karma

How's your day been?

danmart12 karma

Not too bad. Did some raiding tonight, and we did ok, but it could have been better.

How about yours?

8bitmadness2 karma

Which raid? my guild and I are still progressing HFC mythic, and we're at 11/13.

danmart12 karma

Heroic HFC. We're getting stuck on Archi, and people are getting bored so we're getting turn over, which means we have to spend time relearning, which causes people to leave..... It's a vicious cycle.

8bitmadness3 karma

thats raiding alright.

danmart12 karma

Yup, and when you get this late in the tier, it gets rough.

lawrruhh2 karma

Saw that you had a Twitch in your previous AMA. Do you still stream and how often?

danmart13 karma

I haven't streamed in a couple of months. After a few months of streaming, I found that I didn't have the personality for it. Even if people weren't there, I still felt like I HAD to be a certain type of person, and I stopped enjoying playing, so I stopped streaming.

I might pick it back up every now and then, but not right now.

Sylof2 karma

Are you right or left-handed?

danmart13 karma

Right handed.

Fuckyourmanticore2 karma

I grew up with a man who has a congenital defect where one of his hands never formed. He seems to have spent his whole life with that hand in his pocket or behind his back as much as possible. I wish an opportunity would arise for me to share with him that I've always thought his nubbin would be an amazing tool in the bedroom and that there are probably many other women thinking the exact same as I am. That is what I'm thinking about if I am staring at his nubbin. He has a perfectly amazing dildo arm. So my question for you is have your hands added any interesting aspects to your sex life? Any partners particularly aroused by your physical differences?

danmart11 karma

Nothing really special. My fingers have a bit of a curve which has potential, but any other person would be able to bend their finger that way too. So it's nothing extraordinary.

I have not personally met anyone who was overly aroused by my differences. Not to say that they aren't out there, I just haven't ran into them.

Bond---JamesBond2 karma

Did your parents consume too many recreational drugs? Cocaine, heroine, marijuana, ecstasy et cetera?

Is that corelated to deformed infants?

danmart12 karma

I don't think so. Doctors weren't, and still haven't as far as I know, been able to link these abnormalities with anything definitive.

Bond---JamesBond1 karma

  1. Were your parents obese?

  2. Has this happened in your paternal and/or maternal families before?

  3. Do any of your parents smoke cigarettes regularly?

danmart12 karma

  1. No, not at all.

  2. My grandfather had a sibling who was stillborn, but that's about it.

  3. I don't think they did during the pregnancy, but they definitely did after for a few years. They eventually stopped/started/stopped/started/and stopped for good.

zuperkamelen1 karma

  1. What is the "every day" chore or activity you find the most difficult because of your hands?

  2. Stemcell Research is probably the science that is the best bet for you to "get normal hands". Do you know of Stemcell Research and its possible possibilities, and do you in any way support it financially and/or endorse it?

danmart12 karma

  1. I can't really think of one. Things I do every day have become natural, so even if it's different, I don't notice. Although, with my leg, showering is difficult.

  2. It probably wouldn't work for me. The number of muscles, tendons, and nerves that would need to created, plus the current structure of my hand (that wouldn't be able to support extra fingers) is a huge barrier. On top of that, I've spent 34 years using 3 fingers, so my brain wouldn't even be able to comprehend two extra fingers. I think stem cell research has huge potential, but it can be used for better things than my hands.

zuperkamelen1 karma

Thanks! Very interesting to get your thought on it.

Good luck getting to challanger :P

danmart11 karma

I don't know if I'll ever get to challenger. I don't have the drive for it, and I'm not really a competitive person.

killtheintruders1 karma

What do you think are a typical/normal (I hope its not offensive) person taking for granted?

danmart11 karma

I'm sure there are a lot of things that we all take for granted, but it's difficult to pick out the differences between myself and others because I never experienced things in a normal sense. Without losing the ability to do things, it's difficult for me to say what is taken for granted.

With that being said, most everything is created with 5 fingers in mind. On occasion, I have to figure out how to use things that were not designed for me to use.

joapet1 karma

What's the most difficult thing you find doing with your hands? Doing up buttons? Opening beer cans? Pray, do tell.

danmart11 karma

Buttoning the cuffs on a shirt that I have on. I have to use one hand and while my left hand can do it without a problem, my right hand struggles. Which is odd since I am right handed.

Switchitis1 karma

Have you tried playing dota 2? It's the best man

danmart14 karma

I have, and at the time, I didn't like it. It was lacking some control options, so I stopped playing. It probably has probably implemented what I want for options by now, but I haven't had a chance to go back to it.

Prints-Charming1 karma

Symes?

danmart12 karma

Fibular Hemimelia and Complex Syndactyly

zushiba1 karma

You say you're a gamer and specifically call out WoW. I was wondering do you use any addons to make playing WoW easier? Do you have any suggestions for developers on how to make their games more accessible to people with disabilities?

I feel like this is something that's often overlooked in the gaming world.

danmart12 karma

I have an addon that I use for all my raid frames. When I heal, I have all of the healing spells bound to my mouse buttons + modifier keys (CTRL, SHIFT, and ALT). When I had my old MS Intellipoint mouse I was able to utilize 4 buttons, However, with my new mouse, I can only use 3 (I can't reach the side button anymore). I mostly play a Shaman healer so:

Left Mouse Mid Mouse Right Mouse
None Healing Wave Riptide Healing Surge
CTRL Chain Heal Unleash Life Earth Shield
SHIFT Purify Spirit

For the spells that aren't targeted on allies, I use the numbers and a CTRL modifier. Healing Rain, Healing Stream Totem, Spiritwalker's Grace, Healing Tide Totem, Spirit Link Totem, and Totemic Projection are on 1-6, and Ascendance is on 1 + CTRL. I have a bunch of other spells on my bars bound to various keys, but they are used very rarely. I also have a few macros made for various situations. The newest one is a mouseover to pass the Eye of Anzu, that I bound to CTRL+C since it's an easy button combo to get to.

I also have a couple of macro buttons on my keyboard, and I have bound one of the keys to /focus. That way, I can focus the boss during fights and cast various spells. For my Shaman, I will use Elemental Blast very frequently, with Wind Shear for interrupts, and the occasional Purge.

Different healers have different setups. Shamans probably have the least amount of bound spells, but have a lot of buttons.

For my Tanks and DPS, I still have raid frames, but they are mostly just to look at. I use the keyboard almost exclusively, as there just aren't enough buttons close to my left hand to have all of the abilities I need to use bound, and it's difficult for me to move and use my abilities.

My left hand controls movement and modifiers, while my right hand uses the numpad to do everything else. I have 0-9, +, -, *, and . all bound along with a CTRL modified button for each. For the most part, 0 is my interrupt, 1-9 are all of my commonly used abilities. The CTRL buttons are all useful, but not commonly used (movement, Raid CDs, and survivability CDs).

I know that a lot of people hate keyboard turners, but if you think in advance, it's not so bad. I rarely tank (or DPS) head on. I am always turned a little sideways, and ready to strafe to the side when I need to. So my movement isn't slowed down by turning. Except on my hunter because barrage lines you up with your target, but it has a cast time, so have time to readjust my angle with my mouse.

I have a couple of things set up on my raid frames, but they are not used frequently, Brez and MD mostly.

Voice chat is on `. I had it setup to work with a foot pedal, but it was a cheap one and broke. Oh well.


I have spent a lot of time thinking about accessibility, and have been applying to video game companies over the past few years with that in mind. Turns out that it's very difficult to get hired without a decent background related to the industry (it is extremely competitive), which I don't have. It's not impossible, and I haven't stopped, but I have been struggling to relate my experiences and work to what those companies are looking for. Even though it's what I want to do with my life, it's tough to get started.

With that, I think that many of the companies out there could target the low-hanging fruit fairly easily.

  1. Color blind mode. Wildstar went that extra step and provided a few different options for the most common types of colorblind. I know League of Legends has a color blind mode as well, but it's very minor. It's probably most important for visual cues in video games, but could be expanded upon to include a lot more of the game (that would be beyond "low hanging fruit").

  2. Keybinds, all of them. World of Warcraft, League of Legends, and Warframe have a nice setup. I have been able to bind anything to anything, and it works out great. The Witcher 3 was nearly unplayable for me because of the limited options for binding keys. This was an issue for far more people than just myself, and they patched it, very quickly. After that patch, I was able to bind everything I needed, and have had no problems.

  3. Dyslexic font options. It's not very common, but it probably should be.

They need to be careful to not to change how the game plays too much. There are just too many different variations in people that it's impossible to cover absolutely everyone. Even someone who is exactly like me might have different ways of doing things, and that might mean he/she would require different alternatives. I think that peripheral makers and other 3rd parties might be able to work with individuals to serve their needs better than the creators.

At the same time there are a couple of companies out there who have the resources to go beyond that, and perhaps provide some of that individual assistance to people. Their connections, intimate knowledge of the software, and resources (people and money) put them in a unique position to provide assistance that others just can't. Not to say that they should pour money at it, but providing a little bit of assistance would go a long way and, at the very least, would be pretty good PR for them.

And that, is something that I would love to do. I've tried to make it my life's goal, but it is far more difficult than I anticipated. Still working on it though.

zushiba2 karma

Wow that was way more information that I had anticipated. It's clear that you've given it a lot of thought.

Honestly as a somewhat fully enabled person myself, I had problems with The Witcher 3 on launch too. I just couldn't wrap my head around some of the default key binds and was happy that I could change them.

I know that WoW somewhat recently added a lot of color blind options for I think the 3 most common types of color blindness. I have no idea how successful they are.

Have you looked into any of the crazy MMO specific mice? There's a few that I'd think would be almost perfect for a usecase such as yours. The Roccat NYTH is fully modular, letting you place the physical buttons in different configurations, remove buttons or add different sized buttons. Then there's those mice with a hundred buttons on the side like the UtechSmart Venus or the Razer Naga. One of those might help you eliminate your keyboard turning. Though, we've had people in our raids that for one reason or another needed to use the keyboard rather than their mice and they seemed to do just fine. I think the whole "Keyboard turning" vs "Mouse Turning" is a similar argument to keyboard & Mouse vs Console Controller.

The reason I ask is not only do I have friends who've been in somewhat similar situations, thought not quite as extreme and because in my line of work I have to implement measures to support people with different abilities.

I'm a programmer at a college who's currently interim webmaster until we find a new one and I have to implement 508 Compliance.

danmart11 karma

Ya, I've had a few years to think about it. It's kind of difficult to write it down without a reason/direction, so when I have the opportunity I get out as much as I can.

I don't know much about their color blind modes either. I haven't had the opportunity to play with it, but from the options screen shots, it looks like it might just be name plates, although I hope it's more than that. Even in Wildstar, it was similarly small. I tried messing with the settings when I had played, and I didn't notice much of a difference. I can only assume that it was limited to nameplates and skill indicators.

I've looked at MMO mice and have mostly decided against them. They all have a very large shape, and some of them are slanted into a more ergonomic angle. I've found that the flatter mice are easier for me to manipulate, and the angled mice (like the Locitech MX518) tend to make my hand cramp and wrist hurt.

I think the Razer Ouroboros and the Roccat Kova have potential, but I have to find a place where I can test them out first. The Kova's not too bad, but the Ouroboros is a little to expensive to drop money on and then use as a paper weight.

The mouse is probably more important in PVP, but in PVE everything happens in relatively the same way every encounter. As long as you know what's going to happen, then there really shouldn't be much of a difference.

Hm, 508 Compliance..... I hope it doesn't go too much further. I hope that it doesn't get to the point where people are able to sue because someplace missed some sort of regulation. I'm all for making things more accessible, but when you give individuals the ability to sue over it, and profit from it, that's gone too far. It's happening more and more with ADA violations, and people are making money instead of making changes. At least 508 is just accessibility for publicly funded organizations, for now.

zushiba2 karma

That's a good point about PvE typically being the same each time. I prefer those encounters myself. I'm annoyed with Blizzards devs thinking that a twitchy game of hokey pokey is fun though. Some fights need to settle down imo.

The cashgrab from ADA violations is already in full swing. The only saving grace is that technology is catching up and actually making a lot of it obsolete.

Instead of having to code sites and applications in mind for screen readers and other devices, those devices themselves are getting better at reading non-compliant material.

They kind of have to, you can force government agencies to comply via federal mandate or lawsuit but private entities aren't required to make their sites accessible and small ones don't really have the budget to ensure they are in compliance.

danmart11 karma

I don't mind when they have a bunch of different mechanics in encounters, although EVERY encounter is a little excessive. The pace in Highmaul and Blackrock wasn't bad, but Hellfire is a bit much. What I've been annoyed by, at least when I tank, is the inconsistency in boss movement. It seems like they make some bosses react extremely slowly to movement (and you have to run a lot to move them). Then on other bosses, if you even think about moving, the boss runs around behind you.

It seems far more practical for the devices to have the capability rather than the source. It was one of the reasons that I specifically had those low-hanging-fruit. They are, for the most part, only changeable at the source, or, in the case of keybinding, allow external devices that much more access. Colorblind and Dyslexia are things that would probably be illegal to edit under most EULA, and if any of that is contained in packets that get sent to the server, you can guarantee a ban.

I used to work for a municipality, and I worked on some environmental compliance. I quickly found that the only way for regulations to change was for a group to sue the governmental agency that oversaw those regulations. In the end, it was never about the money, but about getting things changed. But what I've seen from a lot of the ADA lawsuits is an out of court settlement, and the only thing that changes is who's pocket has the money. It's usually not much, but it can be enough to shut down small businesses is. I'd hate to see that in the digital world, it would be a feeding frenzy.

RottMaster1 karma

Any chance your name was like spartan tom on Xbox live on the 360 3-5 years ago? Played cod and we chatted while playing the force unleashed?

danmart11 karma

No sorry, I never really much on Xbox Live, and I've never play COD.

qwerty3901 karma

Blondes or brunnettes?

danmart16 karma

If we ignore everything else, and personality, Brunettes.

Canttakethewhyfromme1 karma

Do you find it more difficult picking up chicks than what you think it probably would be like without any deformities, or does your badassery make it easier?

danmart15 karma

The badassery definitely helps. There was the occasional girl who I'd date and they didn't care, and I'm sure a few of the ones who turned me down, did so because of my hands. At this point in my life, it bothers me less than it used to. If they aren't attracted to me, for whatever reason, then that's their choice. It sucks, but I've finally (after many many years) gotten over it.

yieldi1 karma

U missing bones on the leg or only on ur hands?

danmart11 karma

Missing bones in both my legs. The Fibula and some Tarsals in the right leg, and the Fibula and.....a lot more in the left.

8bitmadness1 karma

for gaming, have you ever tried something like the razer naga?

danmart11 karma

Not yet. I'd like to try a few different mice out to see how they fit my hand, but they're so damn expensive, and I can't find a local store that has them for me to try out. The Naga is a little too big for my hand (I prefer a lower profile mouse), but the Ouroboros has potential.