I had something else planned but had no time for the amount of research it would require

I promised you guys a blog post, so here you go. I had some thecnology thing planned but I didn’t get around to doing the research for it. I’m not going to tell you what it is because it could be my next post. Any way if you guys have questions about anything about what I’ve already discussed here feel free to leave a commeant. So that I know.

My Plans For This Week and more

I am planning not to post a blog tomorrow because of a dentist appointment. School starts this week. Don’t expect a post from me. That way if I don’t post I won’t feel bad. I’m planning on posting on Friday.
So far these are my plans for the week. Let’s wait and see if they work out. Maybe I’ll have time to post on Wednesday and Thirsday. I’m not making any promises. After this week, I will post when I get a chance. Though when I post will be on Fridays just because I also have the weekends. Again none of my plans are deffinate, so wait and see.
Thanks for your patience.

Flash players and Jaws

I know I’ve told you about websites that worked well, and some that didn’t work so well with jaws. I even told you how you could improve your website. What about Flash content? You know those players that plays videos on the internet on sites such as youtube. Yeah those, they don’t work so well most of them.
I figured this out several months ago when I was trying to read the chat for the live show I was doing. Up until then flash not working well with jaws hadn’t been a big problem for me. Now suddenly it was. It meant that I could only do a live show when my cousin was here so that she could read the chat for me. How was that a problem? At that particular time my cousin didn’t come to my house, that meant fewer live shows for me.
In addition I have been to websites where I had to have a sighted person click play for me because jaws didn’t work with that particular flashplayer.
As I was saying frusturated at this, I started asking around, you know sending out emails and stuff. I found out that there was no way I could read the chat but I did find that I could make my own flash player. Here is the information I have on that. I thought it might benefit you too.
I am only listing the strategies. However if you want to learn more about flashcontent and why it isn’t available. Coppy and paste the website below:
http://www.webaim.org/techniques/flash/
For the hearing impaired:
provide synchronized captions for audio which might convey content.
for Photo epilepsy:
Remove the strobing content that flashes between two and fifty-five times per second.
For moter disabilities:
1. Do not require fine motor skils.
2. Ensure that the content is keyboard accessable.
For Cognitive disabilities:
1. Give users who are viewing the content control over the time sensitive flash content
2. Give the users easy to use controls and navigation schemes.
3. What I think the most important thing is to be consistent.
4. Use the clearest, simplest language appropriate to the content, another important thing. Be honest who wants to view something if you can’t understand it?
For low vision:
1. Give your content plinty of contrast.
2. allow your content to scale to a larger size. Who want’s to view content that they can’t see especially if they have enough vision to be able to?
Blindness:
1. Please! Please!! ensure screen reader accessability or provide an alturnitive. We want to view it to.
2. Ensure keybored accessability to us as we might want to controll it like you might want to do. After thinking about this one it finally made sense. That’s the only reason I could think of for “keybored accessability.”
3. Do not interfear with screen reader, audeo and keyboard commands. Take it from someone who knows, that’s really annoying.
4. Provide textual equivalents for all non-text elements that convey content or provide a function. Having to watch something and not knowing what’s going on is very confusing. I’ve experienced this too.
I realize that flash content is not always designed with all of these things in mind… usually. If it were it could be universsilly accessable. That would be great.
There is plinty more things that I’m not going to write on here. One reason being that I’m tired and another being that if you wish to see examples of “keybored flash content” and things like that you’d have to go to the website any ways. So here it is again:
http://www.webaim.org/techniques/flash/
I would also like to point out that the content (strategies) is the property of the website above.

Where I've Been For The Past Week

Have you ever not wanted to be on the internet? Well I guess the better way of getting my point across is by asking, have you ever felt like you need a break from the internet? If you answered “yes.” then you know how I feel. I took a week long break from the internet. I ddid other things like reading a book. Though I wasn’t on the internet a lot I was on it some. Maybe I just updated my twitter account but that was about it. I’m back now and ready to post more blogs.
I never dreamed that I could get tired of the internet. It happens to everyone I suppose.

I Don't Like Toolbars!

For sighted people toolbars can be a useful thing. But for blind people they can be annoying.
Where are toolbars found? They can be found on web browsers such as firefox and on some websites such as America on line (aol) they can also be found on messengers such as msn.
I as a blind person do not like toolbars because they don’t work well with jaws. Well… actually they don’t work at all usually. In fact when I have to download something I usually choose not to install the toolbars. If I’m given that option. If not I go through the program if I know that it may contain toolbars and uninstall them.
I thought this would provide answers to anyone who was curious about how well jaws works with toolbars. I know I was for a long time until I started encountering them.
This was on my mind so I decided to write about it.
Happy uninstalling! lol. Just kidding.

I have nothing to talk about

I wanted to take a break from talking about jaws and accessable websites but I have nothing to talk about. Well… actually I do.
School will be starting for me in a couple of weeks. I thought I’d tell you that so you wouldn’t be expecting a blog post every day and then get disappointed when there isn’t one. Also if you haven’t noticed I don’t post on Saturday and Sunday, we all need a break some time. and those are the days I decided to take off.
By the way the first one that has today’s date on it, the one that says “508 law” that was supposed to be yesturday’s post. It was my fault I didn’t get it posted on time sorry. Hope I didn’t confuse anyone.

"508" law

Despite what you think the “508 law” isn’t at all what you might think it is. So what is it? Well it’s this piece of legislation which was signed by President Clinton in 1998 and is an amendment of The work force rehabilitation act of 1973. This act requires electronic and information technology which is to be purchased or developed by federal agencies to be accesible by people with disabilities. Yes as much as I hate to admit it being blind is considered a disability. The 1986 version of this law established non-binding guidelines for technology but it was the 1998 version which established binding and enforceable standards which are encorporated in to the Federal Procurement process.
This section doesn’t directly apply to private sectar websites, u. S. Federal sites, and even congress and judiciary. It doesn’t even apply to agencies who are using federal funds (generally) The goal of this is to make the same products available to everyone instead of having two versions of the same product. That makes sense to me. any ways Federal agencies must purchase electronic and informational technology that is accessible to it’s employees or to the public. Unless it is an undo burden on the Federal agency. The functional standards of this law require that a person who is blind or disabled to use your website.
For information see:
http://www.web-accessibility-tutorial.com/
To see how you can make your site accesible.
Note: all this information belongs to:
http://www.web-accessibility-tutorial.com/
And is their’ property.
I would also like to point out that if your website is not accessable people like me will not be visiting your website and will simply go some where else for the information that we seek. So if you want your market to increase I seriously reccamend that if your website isn’t accessable by now… it should be. There’s millions of us but with different disabilities but we all have the same goal. That is To serf the internet… without encountering websites that simply aren’t accessable to us.
P. S. I’ll try to come up with a better blog post tomorrow, promise.
The main reason I posted the website the first time is because there is a lot more information that I didn’t have time to put on this post. I also thought you guys might find another tutorial on there you might like as well.
Happy reading!

Some Websites That I Know Of That Work Well With Jaws

I’ll admit I don’t know of all of the websites that works well with jaws but here is just a few that I’ve found and use.
If you are blind or you know some one who is blind, or maybe your visually impaired and your looking for online stores or websites that cells products to the blind:
http://blindreaders.info/aids.html
Note: this lists places where you can get things such as checks and Jewlry.
Need a place to get Braille playing cards? This is the cheapest I’ve found them.
http://www.braillebookstore.com/
Note: they sell lots of other cool stuff too such as talking calculators.
Okay so maybe you are like me and you love twitter?
Http://www.twitter.com
But what if it’s not accessible to you? Then what?
There are several programs you can get. Here is the two I’ve tried.
Accessible Twitter:
http://www.accessibletwitter.com/
Note: This is a website there is no need to download anything.
McTwit:
http://mctwit.com/
Note: McTwit is a program which you have to download so if you don’t like being tied down to the web, this is great for you.
There are several which I didn’t put on here so if you don’t like either of these google “programs for twitter” or something like that.
Here is a website I found. It talks about living blind. Yes even I had questions about how I was going to do certain things in life.
http://www.livingblind.com/
Note: I have no relation to this website in any form except that I am blind.
I’m probably taking a big risk here but oh well.
If your like me and you like listening to the bible try this:
http://www.biblegateway.com/resources/audio/
Don’t know what an error means on your computer? I’ve been there.
http://whatdoesthiserrormean.com/
Note: I haven’t had to use this website yet but it’s good to know that it’s there in case I need it.
Recording For The Blind and Dyslexic
http://www.rfbd.org/
Note: this website provides audio books. again haven’t had to use it yet.
Freedom Scientific:
http://www.freedomscientific.com/
Note: This website not only is the place where you can order Jaws but where you can get useful information as well.
I hope I not only gave you some websites that work with Jaws but also helped you find some enterresting ones as well. Remember there is more websites then what I’ve listed here that work with jaws.
Happy Serfing!

Jaws and Accessible websites

Now that I’ve told you a little bit about Jaws What about the internet? Are websites accessible to us as blind people? The answer is both “yes” and “no” that’s because some websites are very accessible and some of them aren’t that accessible, or their not accessible at all. In fact when a friend or a family member says “you should sign up for this website it is cool.” My first question is “is it accessible with jaws?” to which most of them not knowing what I’m talking about answer with “huh?” then I have to explain that not all websites are “screen reader friendly” such as jaws friendly. My friends and family usually respond with “oh! Well… I don’t know.” The truth is all websites should be screen reader friendly it shouldn’t take much and it may keep you from being sued later. Don’t think that “being sued” would happen? Neither did Target’s website *most likely* when the got sued by The National Federation Of the Blind.
Information provided by:
http://www.webguild.org/2008/09/target-sued-over-website-developed-by-amazon.php
And also google. lol.
So how do you make a website accessible? Well first I wanna talk about the most annoying feachure on a website for both sighted and blind people alike. No it’s not loging in with the correct user name and password. lol. it’s solving those annoying sometimes frusturating captchas. Yes some websites such as twitter and myspace now have have audeo captchas. These are hard to understand for a sighted person and even a blind person. I know your supposed to type what you hear in the captcha but often what I hear isn’t in the captcha at all. Luckily I have come across somethings that help blind users solve capchas these are:
Solona (I think it can be used for internet explorer) these ar sighted people filling out these captchas
Note:
I do not use this site so I do not remember what browsers it works with. I knew once but don’t now I think it works with internet explorer.
http://solona.net
Webvisum
Note: I do use this one. It requires an invitation to join and does not work on all websites. It is use with Firefox.
http://www.webvisum.com
Now how about designing an accessible website?
The following information is taken from:
99.07.06: “Designing Accessible Websites for Blind and Visually Impaire”
http://www.yale.edu/ynhti/curriculum/units/1999/7/99.07.06.x.html
Note:
I did not know any of this existed so there for did not know anything about designing an accessible website. The only thing I knew at that time is that going on to websites that didn’t work with jaws really frusturated me. So there for all of the following information that follows Is Not my own and is the property of the website’s.

being accessible means that it is accessible to all individualls whether they have a print disability, lack motor skills or are blind. Problems for us include
1. we are enable to see graphics due to visual impairments.
2. We have difficulty navigating sites that have poorly unorganized directions. Don’t Do That!
3. Difficulty in the the use or availability of tecnology to access the web.
Web designers this is for you! We have special needs ranging from being blind to visually impaired and yes there is a difference. Visually impaired means that there is something wrong with your vision but u can still see. They can also have physical disabilities or can’t process information well. Yes your website can be colorful They do need to however be fully accessable by everyone. You may also have designs that provide content. Practice universal design because inappropriate use of html coding Can make a website unusable. Graphics can make it harder for us as blind individuals to move around a website but can help someone who has trouble understanding your site.
We as blind individuals can also do our part by doing the following:
Adjust your browser settings so that no graphics will show. You can also adjust other settings as well such as how large the font is. You can also download text only browsers such as Lyx (dos) though I don’t know of anyone who still uses dos. This was just an example. Please! PLEASE! look at the guidelines set up by different organizations, they’re there for a reason.
Here are 9 guidelines to help you get started. P. S. If you google “accessability guidelines” you’ll most likely find the organizations. I haven’t the time or the energy to do so. And the website I was looking at didn’t specify.
1. Make documents clear and simple. (that should be easy)
2. Keep a simple and consistant layout throughout the site.
3. Provide context and orientation information.
4. Provide clear navigation Mechanisms
5. Keep a simple background with good contrast. (if you have more than one background same thing applies no matter how many backgrounds you have.)
6. Use Standard Html.
7. Design large buttons.
8. Provide equal alturnatives to visual and alturnitive content.
9. Don’t! Rely on color alone. Oh yes and most important include notes about accesibility.
for more information on how to design an accessible website see:
http://www.yale.edu/ynhti/curriculum/units/1999/7/99.07.06.x.html
Even though this webpage was made for classroom use it’s still got some good information. It’s up to you to design a good and accessable website I’ve done my part. At least that’s all I’m going to do. The mission is now yours. read the page learn from it and appriciat it. There’s a lot more information on there that I didn’t include on here. Enjoy.
Happy developing.

What is jaws?

People in my videos have been asking “What is jaws?” it’s a screen reading program which uses synthesized speech so that blind, (me) visually impaired, and people who are print impaired will know what’s on there screen. Jaws stands for “job access with speech” (deffinition also answers their first question which is “how do you know what’s on the computer screen?”) with jaws I can do all most anything on the computer even access the internet. I can type in Microsoft word and I’m even typing this blog. However there is certain things Jaws can’t do like tell me for example whose picture I’m looking at (unless it’s named). that’s because Jaws is a “technology to speech” program. Meaning that it can only read text like a word document for example. I felt like before I could post the next blog you had to know at least a little bit about jaws.

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