[access-uk] Re: initial comments on window-eyes beta

Hi,

Thanks for the comments. I read the Guess What? Piece on access to
Powerpoint: Has not JAWS enabled access for some time? I wonder why GW have
taken so much time in catching up.

Cheers,

Mike

-----Original Message-----
From: access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of
Brian Hartgen
Sent: 21 October 2006 20:48
To: access-uk@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
Subject: [access-uk] initial comments on window-eyes beta


Hi

Following Graham's comments earlier on in the week relating to the 
announcement of the new Window-Eyes public beta, I thought having worked 
with it a little today I would share with list members my initial thoughts.

There is undoubtedly a lot of good things in this release especially with 
regard to support for Internet Explorer 7, and I think GW have done their 
usual excellent job in this area as they always have.

I think their PowerPoint support is superb.  I presented Window-Eyes with 
some slides containing both text and photographs, and it not only did a 
fantastic job at reading out the information in all of the panes, but of 
course in the Slide show view as well.  Window-Eyes was also very good at 
letting me know information pertaining to picture dimensions for example and

whether or not the slide would fit onto the screen.  The downside to that is

there is no way of reviewing the dimension information at a slower pace.

Unfairly I feel, some people who love Window-Eyes claim that its chief 
rival, JAWS for Windows, has many bugs when a version is initially released 
or indeed when it is in public beta.  No software package is perfect, either

mainstream or specialist, and accepting for the moment that W E is in beta, 
it does have some problems.

For example, when viewing the shared calendar on our exchange server, 
Window-Eyes insists I am not in the calendar when I use GW's new hot key for

accessing their calendar support (Insert+C).  Now I have to say that, by 
default, JAWS does not accurately read our shared calendar out of the box 
either, but with a lot of scripting on my part it now responds perfectly in 
every way.  But of course I have the facilities to do that with jaws.

However, undoubtedly the support for local calendars within Window-Eyes is 
good as they have created a "special" dialog box for us so that the calendar

can be viewed to its fullest extent.  One can select to view by day, week, 
month and can have access to a multitude of viewing options including the 
ability to determine blocks of free time.  The dialog comes with the usual 
Window-Eyes over-chattiness though.  For example, if you do check the box 
relating to announcing blocks of free time, as you arrow down Window-Eyes 
insists on first reading out the day and the date followed by the word 
"subject" followed by whether free time exists.  This is also the kind of 
information you receive when you arrow down the list view to obtain 
appointments and I would love to know if there is a way of filtering that 
"verbal clutter" out.

In Microsoft Outlook, I am unable to get Window-Eyes to read or focus upon 
any of the fields with the ALT+1 through to 7 keystrokes which either read 
or focus upon different fields, such as the subject or attachments field.  I

don't know why that is, but I do have the very latest service packs for 
Office 2000 and 2003 on several computers and I get the same results.  I 
figure it must be something I am doing wrong or misunderstanding because I 
am sure a feature which is prominently advertised would be able to work even

slightly.

As for context sensitive help information relative to an application, I 
personally cannot see any.  Pressing the new control shift question mark 
keystroke gives me the ability to add help information myself, but as far as

I can see there is no context sensitive help information for new users to 
specific application controls.

 Those are just some initial comments as I say, and are just restricted to 
the areas I have tested today on several machines with different versions of

Office installed.  I will be equally vocal to GW Micro in terms of the 
difficulties I have found, as only then can they put problems right if we 
tell them about those difficulties.  I shall also be praiseworthy where 
appropriate.  But I thought list members may be interested in reading these 
findings.

Brian Hartgen

MSN: brian@xxxxxxxxxxx
SKYPE: brianhartgen
SKYPE IN UK:  0208-133-7186
SKYPE IN US: 213-985-3581 


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