Letter to freedom Scientific regarding unexceptable Jaws authorization requirements.

The following email was written in response to a mail from the technical support superviser for Freedom Scientific. Please note, I have nothing against anyone in Freedom Scientific. I appreciate that they are all doing a demanding and difficult job and I would not like to single any one person out. It is for this reason that I have removed all references to names in this post.

With that said, I have objected along with hundreds of others over the authorization scheme employed by Freedom Scientific to protect Jaws licenses. This authorization system is too restrictive and does not take into account the varying needs of the user base.

I call on everyone who has access to Email to send messages of complaint to support@freedomscientific.com to request that this unworkable authorization system is updated with the next version of Jaws.
At minimum Jaws users deserve one or all of the following:

  • The ability to uninstall authorizations so that they can be re-clamed on another PC.
  • The number of authorization keys should be reset to five every time an SMA is purchased or upgraded.
  • If a valid authorization is found but the count is at 0 then Jaws should run for a day with this set up to allow Freedom Scientific to get back to the user so as to ensure productivity or efficiency is not impacted.
  • Alternatively, adopt a scheme such as that used by a compeditor.

Hello,

Although I appreciate that you have taken the time to respond to me, As I am operating within the terms of the license I strongly object to the idea that I should purchase a dongle so as I can work around limitations that have been added that do not take into account professional and demanding users such as myself.

I strongly encourage Freedom Scientific to recognise the environments that their users work in with the aim of upgrading their approach to product licensing and authorization. I will also take this opportunity to reiterate something that I have written many times in the past. Companies such as Microsoft, Symantec, Adobe and indeed smaller companies such as Sowsoft, Manage-Engine and Quest enforce licensing using very effective solutions. I understand the reasoning behind this validation however rigidly sticking to an authorization system that is so very obviously failing to meet the requirements of both Freedom Scientific and its customers is counter-productive and frustrating.

Again, This complaint and objection is not aimed at you. I understand that you are operating within the limitations and policies of Freedom Scientific. I would thus request that this is forward to relevant individuals with a request to give serious and fair consideration to my request. It is unrealistic, unfair and indeed completely unjustified to request users to follow this process of explanation and justification when they have provided Freedom Scientific with a substantial amount of money throughout the continuing life of the product.

I do not believe my concerns and requests are unjustified and I look forward to a response from Freedom Scientific.

Darragh Ó Héiligh

Sent: 10 May 2011 15:08
To: Darragh Ó Héiligh
Subject: RE: Authorization count.

Hello Darragh,
Thank you for your e-mail. In order to protect our customers such as yourself, our system will only allow the resetting of 1 activation when there has been a high number of resets recorded by a user. your records indicate you have gone through 11 keys in as many months. As this is highly unusual reset activity, the system will not allow more than one reset, unless over ridden by a supervisor. Since you just to 1, I will go ahead and reset to 2 more. I just wanted to explain so if this high reset activity continues, you will understand why any of our representatives will only be able to give you 1 activation.

I would strongly recommend you obtain a dongle due to your high demand for activations. This is a hardware device that plugs into a USB port, and will provide uninterrupted authorization. This sounds like something you could benefit from. Please contact your dealer about the purchase of a dongle.

Best Regards,

Director of Tech Support

________________________________________
From: Darragh Ó Héiligh [mailto:d@digitaldarragh.com]
Sent: Monday, May 09, 2011 4:47 PM
To: Freedom Scientific Technical Support
Subject: RE: Authorization count.

Why is this the maximum allowed at present?

Unless you doubt the validity of my usage why has this policy been changed?

I appreciate your rapid response however this authorization system simply does not work for me when you take into account that I work with technology and a large portion of my hobbies relate to technology also. I call on Freedom Scientific once again to change this.

Thanks

Darragh ó Héiligh

From:
On Behalf Of Freedom Scientific Technical Support
Sent: 09 May 2011 21:44
To: Darragh Ó Héiligh
Subject: RE: Authorization count.

Dear Darragh

Thank you for contacting Freedom Scientific Support.

Your activations for serial number: 12345 have been reset to 1, the maximum aloud at present. Please reactivate.

Your authorization number is:
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Your JAWS® screen reading software 12.0 authorization number is:
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

There are two ways to activate JAWS, through your Internet connection which is the easiest or through FSACTIVATE.com.

To activate over the Internet:

1. Make sure you are connected to the Internet.

2. Bring up JAWS 12.

3. When the activator comes up, press Spacebar on the “Start Activation Button”.

4. Press Spacebar to continue.

5. Tab to “Enter Authorization Manually Button” and press Spacebar.

6. Press Spacebar on the Activate button.

7. Choose “Now Using the Internet recommended”.

8. Tab to Next and press Enter.

9. Type your 20-digit Authorization number in the edit box below. and choose next to continue.
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

10. After the license is successfully retrieved, Tab to Finish and press Enter

2. Authorizing using FSACTIVATE.com.
If the instructions above did not allow you to activate successfully, please go to:
http://www.FSACTIVATE.com
After downloading and installing JAWS 12, choose run in demo when the activator comes up.

To authorize JAWS, you will need both your JAWS 12.0 authorization number, and your locking code that must be obtained from JAWS Help, About JAWS for Windows.

Next go to

http://www.FSACTIVATE.com

Read the information on this page and then press enter on the continue Activation button.
Locate the Link Retrieve an Activation License code based on your Authorization number and Locking code and press Enter.
To obtain your Activation License code, please follow the instructions on this page.

You will be asked to enter your JAWS 12.0 authorization number. This number is below.
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Copy and paste the authorization number above into the designated location on the FSActivate page.

To locate your locking code,

1. press Insert J to open the JAWS Window.

2. Press Alt+H for help then A for About JAWS for Windows.

3. Press the tab key and you will find the locking code.

4. Select and copy this code into the designated spot on the FSActivate page.

Click on the submit license request button. You will get a 120 digit code in response. Copy this code to clipboard.

Run JAWS 12.0 . When the client activator comes up, choose activate from WWW.

Copy and paste the 120 digit code you received from FSActivate.com into this field and click on submit license request. Your JAWS version should then activate and authorize properly.

If you have any additional questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us.
Thank you for choosing Freedom Scientific!

If replying to this message, Be sure to include all previous correspondence pertaining to this issue so that we might more quickly assist you.

Kind Regards,

Technical Support Specialist
Freedom Scientific
Phone support: 727 803 8600, option #2
E-mail Support: support@freedomscientific.com
Visit our website at:
http://www.freedomscientific.com

Our Mission
To develop, manufacture and market innovative technology-based products
and services that those with vision impairments and learning
disabilities use to change their world.
________________________________________
From: Darragh Ó Héiligh [mailto:d@digitaldarragh.com]
Sent: Monday, May 09, 2011 4:18 PM
To: Freedom Scientific Technical Support
Subject: Authorization count.

Greetings,

Due to an issue upgrading to builds of Windows 7 prior to 7600 to 7601 I am required to reinstall Windows on a second PC. You may have in your records that I required an authorization reset recently for this same reason. At that time I provided screen shots and other related information to validate that the computer I was reinstalling on was exactly the same.

I require 1 additional authorization to be used when I reinstall Jaws in the next few hours after the reinstallation of Windows 7.

Serial number: 12345
Locking code: 100-00000

As a side note, it would be very useful if I could uninstall the authorization independently as I would then not have to contact you to get my authorization count reset.

Finally, in case there is any doubt I am continuing to operate within the terms of the license: Extract follows:
“The Licensee may install and use the program on more than one machine, but only one machine may be used at a time.”.

Screen shots proving that I have uninstalled the product license now follow.

Your assistance with this request is very appreciated

Screenshots were removed.


24 Responses to Letter to freedom Scientific regarding unexceptable Jaws authorization requirements.

  1. So to clarify, are you saying that when you deauthorise a computer, Freedom Scientific isn’t notified?

    • Avatar DigitalDarragh
      DigitalDarragh says:

      Yes. You are correct. Even when you use the remove product activation option no action is taken to recognise that you have done so. Therefore, when you reinstall the authorization you lose yet one more key.

  2. There really needs to be some give on fs’s part here. I work as a computer repair /network admin person and don’t use their software anymore because I am constantly changing hardware and working on different systems.
    fact that removing a key from a system doesn’t reset your counter makes it entirely impractical for someone who works on a variety of systems and changes hardware alot. also, this safenet system is far too sensative to system changes. updating a bios firmware should not reset a key but it does.
    until there is the ability to remove a key from a system, I will not even consider using JAWS in my daily work.
    a dongle is not always an option and the

  3. I just wanted to register my agreement with you. Freedom Scientific’s copy protection is far too restrictive, and until I upgraded to windows 7, I was unaware of the fact that deauthorizing the product wouldn’t restore an authorization key. How silly is that? What is the point of deauthorizing if it doesn’t restore a key for future use. This is only one of my many problems with FS at the moment. I’m also very displeased with the amount of money charged for the SMA agreement; it makes it very cost prohibitive for non-corperate or government users to keep their software up to date. I agree with you that at the very least, our authorization keys should be reset to five every time we’re required to pay that rediculous fee. I’m not even sure I’ll be renewing my SMA, although I want to, I’m currently unemployed, so am not sure I’ll be able to afford it.As far as I’m concerned, for as much money as we have to pay, the customer service, and indeed, the product itself should be a lot better than it is.
    I sincerely hope that Freedom Scientific does change their polocies and looks into ways to improve their technical support without just giving stock answers that rarely solve a customer’s problems.
    I personally see a lot of blind folks giving up on PC’s and switching to macs where the screen reading software is built into the operating system. I certainly plan to get a macbook as soon as finances permit,. Assuming I’m able to become proficient in the use of a MAc, I’ll probably only use my PC for tasks which currently aren’t possible on the mac.
    Bottom line: I think that if FS doesn’t change a few things, they’re going to lose what little business they have from non-government purchases of jaws.

  4. Avatar Andrew
    Andrew says:

    Hi,

    I am in the same boat as most people here. I also have a problem at work, because when my copy of JAWS was purchased, it was purchased with a network authorisation key, so I could use it on more than one machine. This key got a single user option, however, due to this; I only ever get one authorisation token at any one time to use. Whenever the machine at work gets rebuilt, which does happen on a schedule, I have to get the authorisation key back from the FS reset department. To reset the key back to a regular single user stand-alone license will cost the company around £70, a price which I am not willing to pay.

    Even worse is the fact that due to my job, I have a dedicated machine to use in a secondary disaster recovery office. This machine is not used often, and again is rebuilt on occasions. Whenever this second system is rebuilt, I have to speak to the dealer support office in the UK, because the FS tech support won’t reset the activation, as I have installed the product on a second system, which is apparently contradictory to the license terms, even though this second system will never be used at the same time as the primary system.

    I am all for the company wanting to protect their intellectual property, and guard against software piracy, but each time I have to go through this process, I feel as though I am bucking a trend, or doing something illegal, which I feel is inexcusable for a paying customer.

    Andrew.

  5. If you ask me that’s just another way of fs getting more money from you with those dungles. I am curious, speaking of dungles, how much does one cost?

  6. I would just like to point out that you are not restricted to using a product that fails to meet your needs. There are plenty of other solutions that are not so harsh in their validation checking. In Windows there are a wide variety of solutions, including the free and open source NVDA which requires no validation at all. If you must use a paid proprietary solution there are several options that may be a better match for your needs. These solutions include System Access, and Window-Eyes. Part of the reason JFW has such a hold over the blind community is the unwillingness of people to abandon the product when there, in my opinion, better solutions available. I personally have not used Jaws in many years. I would strongly encourage you to consider a different solution for your screen reading needs. I personally use Orca with Vinux full time. For more information:
    http://www.vinuxproject.org/

    • Avatar DigitalDarragh
      DigitalDarragh says:

      I most certainly agree. There are certainly a lot of alternative choices out there however no one product can offer the functionality that require every day. I have written about this at length a number of times in the past ten years however to briefly summerise, the functionality I require is:

      • Must have fantastic remote desktop support.
      • Must be able to give me the ability to shaddow and interact with another users desktop without logging them out. This solution must be transparent and accountable. ncryption is also a major requirement.
      • Must support a meriod of Microsoft, Symantec, HP, Dell and VMWare applications and systems.
      • Must provide a very configurable scripting and configuration engine.
      • Must work reliably using console applications such as PuTTY.
      • Must provide the most efficient access possible to the web.
      • Must have first class support for visual studio.
      • Must provide accessibility and usability for Lotus notes products and domino server administration tools.

      That’s only a rough outline however not one application can do this. One other application has advertised that it now has support for remote assistance however this is not a suitable solution as it does not provide adiquit access to the secure desktop and the encryption it uses is far from adiquit.

  7. Couldn’t agree more with this post. Another thing I can’t stand about the licencing method is the idea of standard and pro licences, with the only differences being the operating systems each licence is able to be authorised on and the ability to use terminal services, again, for more money. I fully understand that the AT market is a very small one and that companies such as FS need to make money, but as far as i’m aware they’re one of the only companies, if not the only company who use this kind of model, charging extra for little add ons such as terminal services which the majority of the other venders include as part of the licence. Also, the majority of home users probably can’t afford nearly $1000, which makes having 2 different licences even more pointless than it already is.

  8. I am fully in agreement with you here. I have had to deal with freedom Scientific multiple times regarding this rediculous policy. I remember the old Quella authorization days prior to jaws6.0, when you could reclaim authorizations. I’ve had to replace hardware, which has resulted in me having to reset authorizations. I’ve had to do system reloads, resulting in the same thing. We use to get 5 keys, so why do we now only get 3 with no way to put a key back should we need to do so for reformats or hardware changes. Why hasn’t FS been willing to explain why they are so strict when we pay loads and lots of money for the product! Who cares how many resets I’ve had in 5 years, if I request one, give me all my activation keys! Not everyone wants to carry a dongle with them and take up a USB port just to load their screen reader! I’m glad I’m not the only one who feels this way, but because of this nonsense, I likely won’t be renewing my SMA, and I’ve been with them for almost 10 years! I’d love to hear an honest explanation from freedom Scientific as to why they treat their customer so poorly when it comes to providing keys and resets! If I worked for FS, I’d give the customer a reset, no questions asked, and I’d reset them back to 3 or 5, or whatever the customer got when they ordered the product as it should be! Only giving a customer 3 keys when the slightest change may cause you to lose one and not be able to reclaim is just silly. Finally the 40 minute demo mode seems silly to. Whatever happened to the 30 day fully functional demo they were going to have back in the jaws5 days?

  9. Avatar Grace KingGrace King
    Grace KingGrace King says:

    I also find this practice unacceptable. I was told that my laptop needed three authorizations because it deauthorized whenever I turned off bluetooth and wireless. When Windows 7 was mysteriously eating activations I had to burn through three at a time in order to use my laptop. Now I am flagged as someone who has used too many authorizations and am only allowed one key per reset.
    I believe this is not acceptable because Freedom Scientific tech support has told me that hthey have no other solution for me than to use my dongle, or three keys which they won’t give me.

  10. Hi,

    I started replying on Twitter, but at Darraghs request am making my thoughts more formal here.

    First of all, the reason why FS have the practices they do could be long and drawn out by their PR Team discussing the complex area of Licencing. The short answer is the practice continues because people continue to give them their custom. Be that through a necessity, (sometimes a perceived and not reality), lack of willingness to put in the effor to learn a new way of doing things, or financial, again sometimes by not thinking it out rather than genuine poverty. I’ve seen several posts here and in other places over the years saying things like, “I cant’ aford a new solution” “I keep paying for my SMA and am unimpressed with the product”. To those people, you are your own worst enemy! FS is a large AT Corporation who are in it for profit, that’s the nature of business. There are issues surrounding things like Remote Access, Scripting etc. Window Eyes offers support for Remote Access using Microsoft Terminal Services and if you are fortunate enough through a Citrix Server. As well as now offering a similar feature to the JAWS tandom. In-terms of scripting Window Eye’s supports mainstream scripting, variables and all. not a propriatory system like the scripting in JFW.

    Back to licencing. In one of my former roles as a Systems Engineer I worked on maintaining our licencing policies as part of our AUP. Although FS have every write to protect their product they as usual take a bullish approach and hurt their customers. We can label it as sinical, but if a miracle happened and FS decided to change their licencing they would be crowing from the hills, what a marvelous innovation this is. It would be backslaps for all. They would dthen stick you with the bill by taking an SMA of you, and possibly a gradual, igramental increase in the products price. Justified by themselves to allow for piracy. Again I have to look back at Window Eyes. A much smaller company who offer a far more generous licencing system to most of the Western world.

    The only way to get a large concern like FS to listen is a contstant, diliberat effort on the part of it’s current and potential customers. Pull your finger out, leave the emails, Tweets and Face Book alone for one day. Take a few hours at night after a hard day at the office, and teach yourself one of the alternatives. As previously mentioned there are free solutions. They might not offer some features that the larger commercial products do, but seriously… How many out there use these features and have a product that is way beyond their requirements?

    I do think JFW does things better than the competition. Some of this is comfort zone stuff, some is genuine. However, it’s not enough to warrant me giving them my money.

    In closing I’ve mentioned Window Eyes. It is not without it’s faults either as a product. Window Eyes IMHO isn’t all that it’s fanatics crack it up to be. (Yes JFW guys there are some on the other side too) :P).

  11. In a short note, I have been an FS customer for a number of years myself, however feal this practice which FS continues to use, is quite enough. I have expressed my concerns to them, many times, with my last SMA upgrade, I put my foot down, and requested a full reset count, as i too have been threttoned with a dongle option. I work with technology on a daily basis and as a result, end up making hardware changes all in the name of improving my systems performance. in short, I too am fedup, experamenting with other options within virtual operating systems, and as soon as i find an option that meets all my needs, I will no longer require jaws and it’s awfull authorization scheme. over the last 12 years i have provided too much of my hard earned money to them, and have had nothing but issues since day one. unable to uninstall licenses, minor hardware changes requiring re-activation, laptops with Dual video graphics cards “Power saver, and high performance GPU’s bluetooth issues, and the list just goes on and on. then having them tell me to use a dongle on my laptip which is ment for portable use makes it seem impractical to work with my laptop at all, not only will i run the risk of loosing my dongle, every time i use it on the road, I also risk in transport forgetting to remove it, from the laptop, causing dammage to it. “accidents do happen, and the biggest one has been the continued investment into a product i keep hoping that improves upon it’s self with each release”!

  12. I agree! Freedomscientific is rigid! I have sent them a letter and I encourage others to do as well. I hope they will listen. feel they will not.Which I

  13. This is just sad. You pay a grand for a screen reading solution, and they won’t even give you some key resets? In any proprietary environment dealing with virtual machines or a lot of hardware changes on the same system, that is just silly. Hey, you’ve changed out your motherboard because you work at ASUS for instance, and they want you to test out some new feature of the board, or whatever. Nope, can’t do that without having to finger up a dongle, cuz FS is more concerned with making a buck than having a satisfied customer. The worst thing I’ve seen is when your wireless gets turned off in some systems, JFW deactivates and gets all annoying. So what, am I not allowed to read books on the plane, clearly away from any wifi network and must use another damned key to activate it again? This is just wireless, it’s not like I’m cloning a motherboard and doing all sorts of nasty evil things! It’s jsut wireless! FS needs to stop being so pissy.

    Oh, and i wonder what will happen with JAWS 13. Will there be customizable startup wizards that you can make wipe your own ass when you reboot your machine? If possible, stop uusing the shark, get away from that nasty thing. Nasty nasty bloated, puffy, evil-grinning, monstrosity of corporate hideousness and corruption. Stay away, boycott it, hate on it, report bugs against it, and pose a general attitude of disgust whenever Greedom Science Fiction is even mentioned. This is the only way to make them stop doing stupid shit and start making a stable, customer-friendly, more enjoyable product to use.

  14. `yeah. first of all, $2000 was rediculus amount to psy fort a screen reader. I bought JAWS ’cause i didn’t wanna learn NVDA. $400 for teremanal survises and sitrix support is just crasey. $200 to get on the SMA I previously learned the mac and it took me a year, so don’t really wanna learn something new. all i use windows for now is audio games, and web brousing..

    it seems every time a new version of jaws comes out in public beta, one feature is singled out. when the beta was JAWS 10, it was jaws tandom. it didn’t allow the transmition of system sounds at the time. FS was aware of the problem and it was fixt in JAWS 11. when the beta was jaws 13, convinant OCR was hipped. though this is a useful feature, that’s why we have abbyy fine reader and kurzwiel. and, when jaws 14 came out in beta, support for windows 8b was the main highlited feature. I couldn’t get jaws installed on windows 8, ’cause it wouldn’t stopn configuring. then the elowuence driver couldn’t be found after restart. then, to bring this to topic, jaws wouldn’t authorize in windows 8. I’ll see if the afor mentioned buggs are fixt in version 14.0.404.Z

  15. now with JAWS 16, Freedomscientific are modafying their licensing system. they are getting of jaws standard, and basing the new jaws additions on personal/work, eduational, etc. in the new jaws home user addition, this works on all windows home additions and pro as well, not just home versions. they say they’re doing because of Microsoft moving away from the home additions of windows. as prof that fs is starting to listen to their custamers, they are enhancing the convenient OCR feature, to scan entire pdf documents, not just a screen at a time. but as for licensing, no wonder there is piracy. it’s just too expensive, and if you get a dongle, they remove ILM keys and your left with just a dongle for authorization. as for command serch, VoiceOver had that since snow leopard, so I don’t see it as a dealbraker. hopefully freedom scientific will have a really good feature in jaws 16 that is innovative. haven’t seen that since I bought the product in 2011. and also in their training, they should demo how to use remote access through sitrix, terminal services, and microsoft remote desktop. their documentation on this is extensive, but still doesn’t show remote access in practice. back to licensing, the afore mentioned features are going to be probably bundled with jaws home user addition, so they’re getting red of charging extra for it.

  16. Avatar Sky Mundell
    Sky Mundell says:

    Hi, I have to agree with everyone here. FS’s licenceing scheme, in my opinion, is too rigid, and has been for a long time. I understand how you guys are feeling as I went through the same problems with the auth system as many of you. As a result I have drifted towards window-eyes, and nvda, but I still use jaws for one thing, and that is only in my recording studio with CakeTalking from dancing dots. I am also glad that they are fixing their licenceing practices, but honestly this should have been done years ago. Their is simply no excuse to have to re-authorize, etc if you change out your motherboard, etc. also I have seem the auth system kick in for no other reason. For example, I was using my school laptop, and jfw was working fine. This was in 2008, then, I shut down jaws, then restarted it, then it said activation dialog, and I was like what? what just happened

  17. Avatar Daniel Macdonald
    Daniel Macdonald says:

    fs is making JAWS perchasible through a monthly payment plan. whi’ll this is a welcome change, they still don’t address the authorization system. I went to add the aditional features in windows 8.1 like hyper terminal, active directory, etc. after I did that and rebooted my system, my locking code suddenly change. I had to reauthorize and I lost a key because of it. I’m the guy who wrote about the price of jaws, the SMA, remote access and terminal survices, and the price of that and a dongle. I live in Canada, in case you were wondering.

  18. I am in complete agreement with all of you when it comes to FS being to harsh on there paying clients. in my country 1 of your dollars is 10 of my rands. you hurd me right In south Africa it is even more costly then in the US. the needs that i would have since I M a pc tech and enthusiast, and, on top of it, working in the type of job ware i have to play the role of i.t. guys, means there’s going to be times i need to either rebuild, or reinstall windows.
    this was why I switched away from jfw and only use it when abselutely needed.
    FS license does not take these things in to account. when ever you deal with them they treat you like sheep. FS regards there clients as such. my reason for this is. look at the way they responded to the mail. of the person who posted his concerns to tech support. the huge issue with FS is that they are funded by institutions and governments. furthered more. we, the end user, are the reason this nasty trend, also continues. if we stop using there product or made an effort to minimize our dependence on it, this will go a long way. how ever. i, also am quick to say that it is not always an option. how ever, something has to give some ware along the line. let us hope it will be FS. jaws has once been the best of the best. but not any more. i will not go in to technical details here. but believe me, it has become bloated? huge in size. and unneeded over complicated. implementing features that could have been done versions ago. and holding back, to the next SMA is also highly unacceptable. yet its being done.

  19. I fear that FS are taking the p|$$. As of JAWS 16, I discover that contrary to prior expectation, I no longer have the means to run both dongle and ILM at the same time. That means that when you purchase an upgrade to a dongle, you’re stuck with it–you can’t then activate your serial number for a permanent use. Upgrading to support both appears to require two independent purchases, though whether of full product or upgrade I am as yet unclear.

    The ridiculousness of FS’s posturing is why I created the @nonscientific Twitter account. Check it out for a few laughs, but I’m too depressed even to comment on this issue. As a long time Window-Eyes and Supernova owner, and now the user of a Mac but seriously considering going back to Windows (mostly, it must be said, for technological rather than accessibility-related reasons), I regret that until Window-Eyes pulls its finger back out, JAWS really is the only credible option, especially for notebook computers. And I’m fairly sure FS knows this. NVDA and SA are, with the greatest respect to their advocates, not even comparable to VoiceOver and probably will at some point be outperformed by Narrator if M$ ever release an OS people want to use. But support them with donations anyway because they’re awesome.

    Anyway, yeah. Much sadness. FS really are a bunch of high-flying sharks, and as long as they’re unwilling to compromise, we’re pretty much stuffed until the technology vendors take the problem in hand and run with it. Until then, the best we can do appears to be to encourage development of the other options, and make do with some of the inconvenience.

  20. Avatar Sky Mundell
    Sky Mundell says:

    Hi. I must agree with the last posters. I am very disgusted with these outrageous policies that they put in. I actually had a dongle to run on my laptop in the jaws 5 days. This was long before the ILM scheme. it still seems like they are charging still for a home edition, that runs on windows 7 home and pro but also charging more for the professional version which has no differences in it at all in my opinion

  21. Avatar Sky Mundell
    Sky Mundell says:

    Hi. I also wanted to add that in Colombia, FS has a deal in Colombia where people can get jaws and magic for free. I certainly do applaud that, however it isn’t for all countries, like the w.e for office deal.

  22. fair points. jaws is a brilliant program , my issue is I don’t understand why if you say have jaws 14 you have to pay the price of two upgrades to jaws 16. I am currently running jaws 13 and to upgrade to 16 it’s looking at 700 dollars and when 17 comes out it will go up again. can anybody explain this to me. maybe I’m missing something