The University of Athens Speech and Accessibility Laboratory has made an online directory where people who are the handicap can download accessibility software programs to make their PC more friendly and helpful for their convenience. The lab has installed and tested over 160 applications, including free voice to text and speech software.
The disability software can be classified into 5 technology categories:
- Motor Disability
- Low Vision
- Speech Disability
Each entry adds the developer name, version number, a summarization, system essentialities, information about the installation, settings, and downloads (including internal and external links), and a screenshot.
The site provides three ways to search for applications: by assistive technology category, type of disability, or by alphabetical listing.
Following are profiles of some accessibility software programs.
Applications for Deaf & Hard of Hearing Pupils
ooVoo accessibility software program is an online communications platform that helps text chatting, video calls, and standard public network telephone calls with a prepaid account. Consumers can also record and send video files and connect with non-ooVoo users via Internet Explorer. User registration is needed.
Applications for Learning Handicapped Students
One of the most helping accessibility software programs is MathPlayer that enriches Internet Explorer for a better result of mathematical notation. Math displayed on web pages is written in Mathematical Markup Language (MathML). While using Internet Explorer, MathPlayer changes MathML content into standard math notation, such as one would find in a textbook. MathPlayer qualify users to copy and expand equations or hear them read in a large voice via text-to-speech. The application needs Internet Explorer 6.0 or above.
Ultra HAL Text-to-Speech Reader:
The Ultra Hal Text-to-Speech Reader reads documents in a loud voice. Users can from a variety of reading voices. The screen reader permits users to write, copy and open text files. Press “Read All” to hear complete documents read aloud. Those who are suffering from low vision can also read along. The application can also read what’s copied to the clipboard and save the text as a WAV file, and read all Windows menus and dialog boxes.
Apps for Blind and Partial Blind Students
The Non-Visual Desktop Access (NVDA) is an out of cost, open-source Windows-based screen reader made to bring computer access able to blind and partially blind users. NVDA’s built-in speech synthesizer allows users to communicate with all Windows operating system units. The main applications of NVDA support including Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Outlook Express, and Microsoft Calculator, Word, and Excel. A manageable version of NVDA is also feasible.
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The Multimedia Calculator demonstrates an onscreen calculator that allows users to select what function buttons will be shown. The numbers display in a contrasting color from the function keys to make the resolution better. The calculator has a 21-digit display. Settings permit users to hear each keystroke spoken audibly and to reverse the number layout.
The Pointing Magnifier is a mouse-activated magnifying glass that amplifies a circular area on the computer monitor. The user first moves a virtual lens with the mouse over the area they wish to enlarge. Then they put the cursor within the circle and click any mouse button. Everything inside the circle is enlarg; the cursor is pinned in place. Any mouse action a user then takes within the magnified circle returns the Pointing Magnifier to its actual size.
Apps for Mobility Infirmed Students
The Angle Mouse upgrades the productivity and mollifies of Windows mouse pointing for people with impaired motor skills. This app runs in the background. The Angle Mouse is “target-agnostic:” it constantly modifies the control-display (C-D) gain based on mouse movement. When the mouse moves straight, it moves immediately but when the mouse corrects abruptly, often near targets, it slows down, making targets easier to reach.
Tazti Speech Recognition Software:
Tanzi speech recognition software permits users to run applications and browse the web using voice instructions. Tanzi makes a voice profile for each user, enabling synchronic use by multiple people. Training the program by reading texts intensifies efficiency. Users cannot switch Tanzi’s default directions, but can produce additional ones and monitor their performance.
The ITHACA framework allows software developers and integrators to build computer-based augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) aids. ITHICA elements comprise word and symbol selection sets, message editors, a syntactic parser, scanning functionality, and a figurative language translation database.
Eldy – make Computer Interface Simple:
Eldy is aimed at people who are more than over 60 or who is the newbie to computer operations. It gives large, clear controls to permit writing of documents and email, sharing pictures and browsing the web. It may be of use to a partially sighted person involved in basic computer use. Now It is available for Windows, Mac and Linux computers, and some Android tablets. It has clear and easy instructions and video tutorials to help you get start.
One of the restrictions of Windows Magnifier is that it has no full-screen mode before Windows 7, and only in Windows 8 does it work with all color settings. The plus point of Lightning Express is that it provides full-screen magnification. It works with 32-bit versions of Windows XP, Vista and 7, and with desktop applications in Windows 8. A noteworthy flaw of Lightning Express is that it has to be downloaded or run from the Internet each day.
Accessibility software programs are very helpful for those who are new to operating technological stuff and handicapped people. They are friendly user programs through which people can learn and understand various things easily and enhance their capability.