I know a young autistic man- age 22- 3 verbal words in his vocabulary- who uses a PICS-to-Speech synthesizer program on his IPAD to communicate. I don't have any video of him however. I will try to remember, next time I see him, to take some on my phone and upload to Youtube for the next time this debate comes up.
He's like my special needs son- "facilitating" him on his pad would be impossible, unless all you want him to click is "no dad". Heck, at 22, he's larger and more muscular than his father- getting him to do ANYTHING he doesn't want to do is next to impossible.
TYPING, on the other hand, I largely agree with you. PICS to speech is easy, especially for those who have already been using the cardboard version of PICS in school - tap on the little picture and it says a word. Tap on the lunch folder, then the peanut butter and jelly sandwich, then the glass of milk, and the computer says "Lunch SandwichPBJ Milk". Makes for awfully choppy sentences, usually full of nouns with few verbs. My special needs son, when he types, what he types has even less meaning in English than what he says.
It's not much good beyond "what do you want for lunch?" type questions. And it's NOT going to "unlock hidden creativity".