Fixed the installation bug: should now install smoothly when
downloaded directly from the site:
On Sun, Dec 11, 2016 at 7:15 PM, David Griffith <daj.griffith@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Given the positive experience I had with using Speak On as A Front End for
the RNIB Newsagent website I thought I would have another look at the
Webbie Accessible Gutenberg application.
This application similarly tries to act as an simplified Front End for the
Project Gutenberg public domain eBook website.
The headline of my experience using this app over the weekend is that, with
the variety of voices now available with Jaws, and even the free and low
cost voice options with NVDA I think Accessible Gutenberg may be a forgotten
gem of a program which is highly suited for ebook reading, especially if
used in conjunction with a Windows Tablet.
To my surprise this application appears to have been dropped from the main
Webbie Accessibility Bundle for some reason. I did however find a link for
an installer but when I ran this installer it oddly told me that I already
had a newer version of Accessible Gutenberg installed, which I certainly did
In the end I got around the problem by downloading from the Webbie Website
an old Webbie 3 version of the Webbie Portable package for use wiht USB
For simplicity I simply copied the entire Portable folder created into my
existing Accessibility and Webbie Apps folder into my Program Files 86
folder on my C drive and created a shortcut to Gutenberg.exe and put it on
I ran the program more in hope than expectation, fully expecting the
problems which may have prompted its removal from the main Accessibility
Apps bundle to rear its ugly head.
To my surprise on Windows 10 at least I have found using the app extremely
smooth and without problem. This is not a long term assessment as I have
only downloaded and sampled 4 books but the experience has been very
positive so far.
When you open the Gutenberg App you are offered three main interfaces.
The first interface is Catalog view which allows you to browse the entire
Catalog of the thousands of ebooks available on Gutenberg.
You can opt to have the books sorted by Title or by Author.
To make the list more manageable the catalog is organised in a set of
alphabbetical lists. So you will have Author A, which will open a list of
all authors beginning with A, Author B and so on.
Once in the list of authors and their associated book titles you can cursor
up and down to browse the gbooks available for download.
As even in this sub-divided lists there are at least hundereds if not
thousands of entries a search function is essential and this is easily
provided by pressing Control F and entering your search term which will jump
you straight to the book you are looking for.
Once you have found the book you want you can simply press enter which will
download the book and make it available for reading.
This puts you in the Book interface.
The book opens, then pleasingly with all the disclaimers etc from Gutenberg
edited out with simply the book contents available for normal reading.
The Reading Keys are simlar to that available in Notepad. The really
powerful feature of this app which I had not previously appreciated is that
you can have full freedom to edit the text of the book you are reading and
add notes if you would wish.
Impressively the program seems to autosave all the notes you insert
automatically and are available when you next open the book.
Unfortunatley Jaws could not read, as in Notepad, by paragraph, but I think
this is a Jaws limitation and not the program's fault.
There is an automatic bookmarking feature whereby if you close the book, you
will find, on re-opening it that you are in the place where you left off
Whilst there is no formal bookmarking function beyond this in reality you
can easily set bookmarks due to the ability to insert notes into the text
you are reading.
So in one book I was reading I set a bookmark by simply typing *1 and
I then closed the book and application.
I re-opened the application and book and pressed control F for find again
and inserting * in the search jumped me straight to my first bookmark.
In book view you also have full freedom to save the book for use outside of
the program as a normal text document. So if paragraph reading is really
crucial you could open this text document in Word and use the support Jaws
ffers for reading by paragraph in that application.
The third interface is a Downloaded Books Library which shows all the books
you have downloaded from the Gutenberg Site.
To switdch between interfaces you can either use the view menu or control L
for catalog view, control D for downloaded books library or control B for
I have not yet Tested Accessible Gutenberg with NVDA and Window-Eyes.
With the caveat of saying that I have only just used the app forbrief
reading excursions it does seem a forgotten gem of a program. I hope that I
do not now encounter a problem which will leave me with egg on my face!
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