• Tag Archives Technology
  • An introduction and review of Qwitter.

    I know there’s some duplication on this blog at the moment with Listen and Learn Recordings, but this will die down soon as the Lal Recordings twitter account and the LALRecordings podcast become more active and used.

    The reason why I am writing tonight is to advertise the availability of the latest recording to be submitted to www.lalrecordings.com

    The introduction and review of Qwitter will explain the world of twitter, how twitter works for a user and how Qwitter makes things so much easier.

    Listen to the recording via the following link: http://www.lalrecordings.com/node/31

  • Listen and Learn Recordings is on Twitter!

    In more LALRecordings related news, I have recently set up a twitter account for this site. This will be used primarily to keep followers up to date with site updates and new recordings.

    This brings to three the number of methods you can use to keep up to date with new introductions and tutorials on www.lalrecordings.com . You can Subscribe to the podcast, Subscribe to the support mailing list and Follow us on Twitter.

    Don’t forget, we are always looking for more contributors for LALRecordings. If you have a topic you would like to share with others please get in contact with me or email info@lalrecordings.com .

  • support mailing list added to Listen and Learn Recordings

    I need to return some of my focus to www.LALRecordings.com for a while. Because I’ve been busy on other projects it had unfortunately taken a bit of a back seat.

    No longer though!

    I’m happy to announce that with the aim of increasing the level of community interaction on the site, I have created a support mailing list.

    I have to admit. I do not always have time to answer the dozens of mail I get every week. SO much so that the legitimit messages sometimes get missed.

    The idea of this new support mailing list is that when it gets going, users will help other users. When that’s not possible, then contributors to Listen and Learn Recordings will chip in and lend a hand.

    The support list will also be used to notify members of new recordings and keep people updated with list news.

    It is one of a number of iniciatives that I will be launching in the coming days and weeks to promote a community on www.lalrecordings.com

    If of course you would like to suggest a feature for LALRecordings that you think would help other users then please let me know.

    Some of the features I’m thinking of include a site blog, a members only forum, a comment facility for each recording and a notify only mailing list.

  • DigitalDarragh expands again!

    Without giving it much thought, or having a particular reason behind the choice, I’ve registered DigitalDarragh.im.

    This isn’t going to make a huge difference to how you access the site however now, you can visit


    And you’ll be taken to this website.

    I suppose, the main reason for that is……………………… hold on………………….. I’ll think of one………………………………………………….ok………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………no. I’ve nothing.

    I just thought it would sound cool.

    It doesn’t and now I have yet another domain.

    But still! if someone is taking a look around the internet, there’s one more little corner where you’ll find me now.

    DigitalDarragh? DigitalDisaster more like.

  • Jaws11 fun.

    So, the Jaws11 testing fun began today.

    I’ve found a few things so far that have already been sent via the bug reporting to FreedomScientific. It would be great if Jaws had an error reporting tool built in similar to that found in Window Eyes by GWMicro… But we can only live in hope.

    They’ve boasted that they’ve fixed a lot and added more features in this most recent version but I’m not impressed. In fact, I’m really unimpressed.

    Research it… A tool that cant even stand up to Qwitter, a tool made by a few people working in their spare time. No reflection on Qwitter, I think it’s a fantastic piece of work and if FS had any sense, they’d snatch up the developers behind it! Qwitter pulls back information via API’s and does loads with it. FreedomScientific reads an XML file and gives the information back in the virtual buffer! And even with that, they’ve only worked on a few feeds that are only of particular interest to their American customers. Utterly Utterly pointless if you ask me and as Stuart Lawler said today, is that really the job of a screen reader anyway? When they cant even provide access to widely used applications should they be thinking of branching out into this type of functionality? Not that I think this took them much time at all. It was probably a small project by one person to tick a box leading up to the release schedule for JFW11.

    Lets also look at their placemarkers enhancement. They’ve basically coppied the work done by GWMicro in Window eyes. Their basically searching for text / pointers on the page to find the place you want. So, their not just relying on the line number alone! well, well done FreedomScientific! It only took you two years to think of that? Wow!

    Next, look at their outlook message list customization. So, they’ve just rehashed the customize list view tool to provide a bit more customization. And they’ve released that in an entirely new version? Aren’t they great? Shouldn’t we be ever so greatful for all the work they’ve done on this release? OH. Then they actually admit that this is really similar to their customize list view feature. It just gets better and better.

    Their skype enhancements. Well, from what I can see, their skype enhancements are a load of rubbish. I’m running Skype 4.1 here and when I checked what scripts were running it said 3.x. Now, I don’t mind this too much. I know I can go download the version 4.1 scripts from the third party developer who I also must say has done a fantastic job on them but they’ve written it there on the page that they support version 4.1. Not from what I can see though.

    Jaws 11 now also supports UIA, the standard that has taken over from Microsoft Active Accessibility. This is something that has been out in the public domain for almost three years if not even longer than that. Microsoft have had that ready for companies like FreedomScientific to start working with since before they released Windows Vista! It’s amazing that their only supporting that now.

    I could go into more but I’m not going to bother at the moment.

    I’m not entirely annoyed with Jaws 11. There are some good features as well. The multable sound card support has been improved and jaws sounds during jaws tandem was improved also. But, I dont’ really understand how it took them an entire year to release what should have been done in the first place.

    If your interested, You can follow the Twitter updates by a number of Jaws11 users via the following link: http://twitter.com/#search?q=Jaws11

    Have fun.

  • Jaws 11 beta has been released.

    I think it’s fair to say that users of screen readers await new versions like a child awaits Christmas. It’s always great to see what’s going to happen next. What technology will be made accessible this time? What will they think of this year. will they fix the problems that we found in the last version. There are just so many things that can happen. Of course, I for one usually get let down. There have been problems with the support of Lotus notes 7.03 and 8 in Jaws for over three years now. I’ve also had problems with Jaws while using firefox and it doesnlt look like these two things will be fixed any time soon. However, my gripes aside, I’ll still download this Beta of Jaws 11 with the same anticipation and hope as I’ve done during every other version.

    Visit the FreedomScientific.com website to read more and get the download. You can also listen to FSCast with Eric Damery and Jonathan Mosen for a nice overview of the new features you can expect in Jaws 11.

    As always, I’ll provide updates and problem reports here while the beta is still out there.

  • Quick tip. jump starting PuTTY.

    Was thinking on the Bus that this must be possible and to my satisfaction, it is!

    Start PuTTY from the run box by dumping the executable in a directory that is in the windows path. for example, c:windows

    Now, create a profile in PuTTY named default and set any options you want.

    Finally go to run and type (putty where is replaced by the IP address you want to access.

    It is a really simple tip but one that saves me a lot of time.

    For you users of the jaws for Windows screen reader, here are another few tips you will find very useful if you need to use PuTTY.

    Firstly. There are a number of settings that can be applied to PuTTY to make it more functional:

    Firstly, in PuTTY, go to the behaviour page of the options. Shift tab until you get to the treeview and arrow down to behaviour. Now tab over to “Window closes on Alt + F4” and check it. Tab to “System menu opens on alt + space” and check that as well.

    Now go back to the session page, right at the top of the treeview and arrow to the address or hostname field and type the IP you will want to connect to. Note, you can override this setting by typing it manually in the run box as noted above. Now tab to the load or save settings list box and press the down arrow once to highlight the default option. Press tab until you get to the save button and hit enter on it. Now tab over to the open button and hit enter on it. Note, the settings will not save until you have established a connection to the remote computer.

    From then on, when you go to start then run and type PuTTY for example your default settings will be used.

    There is one more thing that you can do that will hugely increase the accessibility of PuTTY when using it with the Jaws for Windows screen reader. Add a little script to Jaws that will make it read the new text that is written to the window without you having to use the jaws cursor for everything.

    So, how do you do that? Simple.

    Firstly, go into Putty. start up a connection to make it easier on your self.

    Now, hit insert and 0 to make a new script file called PuTTY.jss. If your using a recent version of Jaws it may ask you if you want to make this file. Just hit enter to except it.

    Now paste the below 22 lines in to this file.

    Include “HjGlobal.jsh” ; default HJ global variables
    Include “hjconst.jsh” ; default HJ constants
    Include “HjHelp.jsh” ; Help Topic Constants
    Include “common.jsm” ; message file

    Void Function SayNonHighlightedText (handle hwnd, string buffer)
    ; NonHighlightedText Function for speaking all newly written nonhighlighted
    ; text.
    string TheClass
    let TheClass=GetWindowClass(hWnd)
    If GetScreenEcho () > ECHO_NONE ; Screen echo is on,
    && GetWindowsOS() == OS_WIN_NT Then ; operating system isn’t 95/98/ME.
    If (TheClass == “PuTTY”) then
    if (GetScreenEcho() > 1) then

    Now save and compile this file using control and s. If it doesn’t work for you, send me a comment with the part you’ve had problems with.

    Close the file with Alt and F4 and your PuTTY window should now speak for you properly.

    The other problem you will encounter is propper cursor tracking when reading or writing files. Jaws will not track the cursor for you properly at all within a console window. For that reason, I suggest you use a eally fantastic program called WinSCP. Download it… use it… and that’s all there is to it…. It’s really that simple.

    the only thing to keep in mind when your using WinSCP is that when your in a text file, if you press the alt key, the focus will change back to the main window. so when you want to leave a file and save your changes I find just pressing escape and agreeing to the prompt to save is the most efficient way of doing things.

    I hope you find that useful.

  • Twitter’s dead!

    Shock! Horror!
    Twitter has been down now for about two hours.

    I’ve seen it go down a few times before but never for this long.

    There’s only one possible explination.

    The world is coming to an end.

    We’re doomed!

    Anything you’d like to do before you kick the bucket, venture to that big kennel in the sky, walk toward the light, meet the big cheese etc etc etc?

    I’m going to do nothing. the loss of Twitter has me lost, depressed and alone.

    How will I survive?

    How will you survive?