Audiobooks Made Easy – BARD Express

Learn About BARD Express

Excerpt from Jan. 2017 Newsletter By David Ward

So the BARD Express Application is brand new; that means nobody has used it yet, so we’re all in the same boat figuring out how it works. But I think you’ll find it much easier than that older way of doing things described earlier in the News section. We’re going to install this new application on all workstations in the Tech Center, so you can come in and get some practical hands on experience. As mentioned above it pretty much takes care of everything; no need to go to the website or use Humanware Companion for file transfers. Below are some links to some Youtube videos talking about BARD Express.

An Introduction to BARD Express

BARD Express: Browsing the BARD Collection

BARD Express: Setting & Changing Preferences

BARD Express: Managing Devices

BARD Express: Transferring Materials to a Cartridge

BARD Express: Tips & Tricks

There are a total of 9 How-To videos; for a full listing see the link below.
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLpAGnumt6iV5ycDQt9YGoQnd9uIXNU0pa

Is BARD Express the only way to get your BARD Books? No, you can still use the old way as outlined before. However, the BARD Express application gives you better feedback about downloads in progress and much more. Additionally, if you’re a NVDA user you might have found Humanware Companion a little buggy; it appears from preliminary testing you won’t have this problem with BARD Express. Oh, I almost forgot, there is also the BARD Mobile App. This is an App you can install on your Apple Device, Android Device, or Amazon Fire Tablet. This App has been around a while but I thought I’d mention it just in case some hadn’t heard of it yet. Anyhow, I hope that gives you an idea of its feature set; see the link below to download the application. The application is designed to run on computers running Windows XP all the way up to Windows 10.
https://nlsbard.loc.gov/bmm/BARDExpressInstaller1229.exe

Picture of David Ward

David Ward
Assistive Technology Instructor
david.ward@newvisionroa.org
j j j

February 2017 Technology Newsletter

New Vision News and Updates

Calendars: All of our 2017 Large Print Calendars are either in the mail or already spoken for. We ordered 5,000 Large Print Calendars this year. And roughly 3,500 of them we distributed ourselves, to Virginia Residents. Thanks to our volunteers and staff who made this possible. And a special thanks to our donors who make this program possible!

Holidays and Inclement Weather Closings: Should Roanoke County or Roanoke City Schools be closed due to inclement weather we too shall be closed. Additionally, we’ll put a notice on the answering machine here at New Vision. That’s at 540-985-8900.

Braille Calendars: You can order 2017 Braille Calendars by emailing the following Non-Profit your address and request a calendar. calendars@actionfund.org

News

Are you a screen reader user? If so would you like to make 20 bucks. J.J. over at the Blind Bargains website mentions a survey for screen reader users that pays $20 for those who qualify. See the link below.
http://www.blindbargains.com/b/16684

Have you ever tried to prepare you own taxes? J.J. over at Blind Bargains mentions several ways to do it and online accessible services and forms. See link below for his article.
http://www.blindbargains.com/b/16669

Interested in an accessible TV experience. Check out this article that links to a video about a new set-top-box that DISH offers customers. See link below.
http://www.blindbargains.com/b/16668

Big News

There’s big news. ZoomText 11 was just released at the end of January. This is quite a rebirth of the product visually and functionally. If you’re a screen reader user likely you’re thinking I’ll just skip this section. But there’s one thing you might want to know first, especially if you have friends with failing eyesight. JAWS the screen reader, version 18, and ZoomText 11 are officially compatible. That’s to say if you have a friend who loves ZoomText but might need to start moving over to more screen reader like tools this offers a easier transition, where they can use both. Ok screen reader users you can skip this section now if you want.

So what’s the big deal with ZoomText 11? There is a cosmetic difference but that’s typical of most upgrades. Here’s what might flip you lid. Almost all if in fact not all keyboard commands have changed. Yeah, that’s right it is all different. I’ve been using ZoomText for 17 years, it is all new. So we’re all in the same boat. So you might ask, “Why change the keyboard hot keys?”. A lot of the keyboard shortcuts were really starting to show their age; you might have experience some of the same problems I have in recent years. Conflicts with browsers and Windows 10. Here’s one that constantly got me, I’d be trying to adjust the zoom level using the CTRL Key with the mouse scroll wheel and I was forever changing the Browsers Zoom level seperate from the ZoomText magnification level. And needless to say with Windows 10 there’s a few conflicts as well.

So the new ZoomText Model of keyboard commands uses a modifier key technique similar to JAWS. A modifier key is a key that you use in combination with other keys for a specific application, in this case ZoomText. Now the problem the old ZoomText was running into was the CTRL Key and ALT keys were being used as modifier keys. The conflict came in when Browsers, Web Applications, Microsoft Word, and Windows 10 wanted to start using these keys. So back to an example of a modifier key scheme on JAWS the modifier key is the Insert Key. The Modifier key in ZoomText 11 is the Caps Lock key. Now you might say, the Caps Lock key, are you crazy! I need that key! Well the industry has decided you don’t, get use to using the Shift key for capital letters. No, really you can still use the Caps Lock key but its a bit more of a chore to do so now. But in all seriousness, Google Chromebook laptops have replace the Caps Lock key functionality, NVDA offers an option to use the Caps Lock Key as your primary modifier key, and lastly the Magic Magnifier uses the Caps Lock key as it’s modifier key. Ok, enough about the modifier key and down to what you need to know.

Out of the box ZoomText 11 will not, I say again, will not import you ZoomText 10 settings. So if you love your 8x Magnification with Inverted colors, guess what ZoomText 11 won’t automatically import those settings. Which is to say you start with a default configuration. This starts you off at 2x magnification. Now at this point you’d use your keyboard commands to crank up the magnification but remember, they’ve all changed so the way you use to do that is no longer the new way to do that. So you could get stuck pretty quick, hopefully I can help you avoid that.

So here are a few of the primary keyboard commands you’ll need to get things back to where you need them.

  1. Caps Lock Key + the up arrow key will increase magnification.
  2. Caps Lock Key + the down arrow key will decrease magnification.
  3. Caps Lock Key + the letter C will activate color enhancements or color inversion.
  4. Caps Lock Key + ALT Key + Enter Key will toggle the voice on and off.

Now to turn on ZoomText assuming it isn’t set to start automatically you’ll press Ctrl Key + Alt Key + Shift Key + letter Z key. Now depending on your ZoomText 10 installation this may or may not work out of the box. But you’ll find on Windows 10 especially that CTRL Key + ALT Key shortcuts often can run into conflicts so it seems adding Shift to the mix seems to help avoid this. That’s a long way to say the days of CTRL + ALT then a letter for your shortcut are pretty much gone at least on Windows 10.

So for more about ZoomText 11 see the heading below named ZoomText 11.

Podcasts

Check out episode 89 of the Blind Bargains Qast. Shelly and the gang talk about the ATIA conference, the ZoomText Digital Certificate problem, NVDA’s new blog, and much more. See the link below.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq089.mp3

Blind Bargains Episode 87 is part 1 of a two part break down of the amazing A.T. news from the 2016 year. Topics discussed include the Fire TV Stick, Google Home vs. the Echo Voice Assistant, and much more. See the link below.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq087.mp3

Blind Bargains Episode 88 is part 2 of the A.T. news review for the 2016 year. Topics discussed include Object Recognition Apps, the Orbit Reader, Microsoft’s Narrator, and the new even bigger VFO Corporation. See the link below.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq088.mp3

On episode 9 of The Parallel podcast Shelly talks to two gurus about Windows 10 and Microsoft. Jeff Bishop and Joe Steinkamp are deeply entrenched in the Microsoft world and the new innovations comming from the Microsoft Accessibility team. I haven’t listened to this one yet but it is on my to do list. See the link below.
http://media.blubrry.com/parallelpodcast/p/traffic.libsyn.com/shellyspodcastgr8vey/09_DownArrowApproach.mp3

To hear more of Shelly’s work on The Parallel Podcast check out the following website. You can navigate by heading to find different episodes. See link below.
http://parallelpodcast.com/

ZoomText 11

Here’s some helpful guides and videos about using ZoomText 11.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Et4i2yQc7pA

iPhone & iPad Apps

Check out the AppleVis’ Unlimited Newsletter for January 2017. Read about the new Autour App for recognizing visual surroundings and objects. Or read some neat break downs about games or updates made to AiPoly or other apps. See the link below.
http://www.applevis.com/blog/apple-apple-tv-apple-watch-braille-gaming-ios-ios-apps-mac-apps-macos-news/applevis-unlimited

Did You Know?

If you are a ZoomText user and you are moving to 11 you’ll likely need a new serial code. The serial code unlocks the software and tells the company your a paying customer. You’ll likely receive this serial in the mail if you have an active software maintance agreement. Otherwise you can run the software for 60 days in demo mode.

Amazon Smile Program

Picture of Amazon Smile Logo If you’d Amazon to make a donation to New Vision everytime you make a purchase you can use the link below to sign up for the Amazon Smile Program. Follow the step by step directions. A more complete set of directions, for screen reader users, will be included in the next newsletter and on our website. See link below.
https://smile.amazon.com/ch/54-1210770

Local News and Events

Reoccurring Events: Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) meets the third Wednesday of each month. The next meeting of the Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) will be on Wednesday the 15th of February at 7:00 PM. For more information contact Dianne Decker at rdeckerjr2@cox.net.

Your Thoughts

If you have any thoughts about what could be mentioned in an upcoming newsletter or comments on this newsletter feel free to reply or fill out the following form. See the following link.
http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

Contact Info

New Vision 4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (South Park Office Building)

Phone: 540.985.8900

David Ward – Assistive Technology Instructor for the Tech Center

j j j

January 2017 Tech Center Newsletter

New Vision News and Updates

Calendars: All of our 2017 Large Print Calendars are either in the mail or already spoken for. We ordered 5,000 Large Print Calendars this year. And roughly 3,500 of them we distributed ourselves, to Virginia Residents. Thanks to our volunteers and staff who made this possible. And a special thanks to our donors who make this program possible!

Holidays and Inclement Weather Closings: Should Roanoke County or Roanoke City Schools be closed due to inclement weather we too shall be closed.

Braille Calendars: You can order 2017 Braille Calendars by emailing the following Non-Profit your address and request a calendar. calendars@actionfund.org

News

The “Cisco Academy for the Vision Impaired: More Than an Education” is a indepth article by Jamie Pauls. He looks into and describes the CAVI school that covers everything from becoming a computer technician, routers, NVDA, VoiceOver on a Mac, Microsoft Office and much more. Some of these classes are free and some have a small cost. There’s even a set of classes for becoming an Audio Editing guru. In case you didn’t know it the Blind Bargains Podcast, SeroTek Podcasts, and Main Menu all have blind Audio Engineers; an they sound fantastic. Anywho, check out Jamie’s awesome article at the link below. https://www.afb.org/afbpress/pub.asp?DocID=aw171104

Check out Shelly Brisbin’s article about the Nearby Explorer App that recently came to the Apple App Store. This is a App produced by the American Printing House for the Blind. See the link below. https://www.afb.org/afbpress/pub.asp?DocID=aw171105

Big news all you audiobook fans!! There’s a new App for your computer that works with the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped’s system. This online downloading system is well known to most of you as BARD. Students in our Tech Center, here at New Vision, have been downloading books forever using this online service. Typically, students would use a browser of their choice, login, download, and use an App like Humanware to sync their book over to a USB Drive. This new Application called, BARD Express, simplifies the whole process. In short it eliminates the need to use the browser, put in your password evry time, and to use Humanware; It can all be done in the new BARD Express App. To read more about the BARD Express App see the link below. https://nlsbardpractice.loc.gov/LOC_02/BARDExpress.html

More about the new BARD Express App will be found below, under the heading “Did You Know?”.

Podcasts

Check out Blind Bargains episode 85. J.J. and Joe talk about Microsoft’s new Accessibility roadmap, for Windows 10. Topics include Braille support for Narrator. Additionaly, the team talks about NVDA’s newest release 2016.4. Lisa and Ricky have an interesting discussion about fitness trackers. This and much more at the link below. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq085.mp3

This Main Menu Episode has Jeff Bishop talking with Neva Fairchild, at The American Foundation for the Blind Center for Low Vision, out of Dallas Texas. They discuss the centers model home with various tools and simple design choices that make it easier for Low-Vision or Blind residents. See the link below. http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-12-16

The Roku Audio Guide, the Audio Game Hub, Google Home Assistant, and a math equation tool for Braille users. This and much more on Episode 84 of the Blind Bargains Podcast. See the link below. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq084.mp3

Randy in this episode of Main Menu discussed his new Amazon Echo Dot and some handy tips and tricks. On the later half of this episode Jenine discusses her Buzz Clip and AI App. See the link below. http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-11-11

Join Jonathan Mosen on FSCast 135, this episode marks 10 years of episodes. This is a pretty cool episode with a lot of clips from professionals around the world that use JAWS. I found this a very touching episode. See the link below. http://podcast.freedomscientific.com/FSCast/episodes/FSCast135-Celebrating_10_years_of_FSCast,Karen_and_Andrew_Zeman,Ryan_Jones.mp3

Have you ever backed up your JAWS Settings? If not you might want too. In this FSCast Episode you are walked through the process. See the link below. http://podcast.freedomscientific.com/FSCast/episodes/FSCast134-Trelle_Dandridge,Christine_Chaikin.mp3

iPhone & iPad Apps

Check out the AppleVis’ Unlimited Newsletter for December 2016. Topics include several new BlindFold games, by Kid Friendly Software; such as a Monopoly like game and a Trivia Game. See the link below for more. http://www.applevis.com/blog/apple-applevis-braille-gaming-ios-ios-apps-news-opinion-reviews/applevis-unlimited-whats-new

Did You Know?

So the BARD Express Application is brand new; that means nobody has used it yet, so we’re all in the same boat figuring out how it works. But I think you’ll find it much easier than that older way of doing things described earlier in the News section. We’re going to install this new application on all workstations in the Tech Center, so you can come in and get some practical hands on experience. As mentioned above it pretty much takes care of everything; no need to go to the website or use Humanware Companion for file transfers. Below are some links to some Youtube videos talking about BARD Express.

An Introduction to BARD Express

BARD Express: Browsing the BARD Collection

BARD Express: Setting & Changing Preferences

BARD Express: Managing Devices

BARD Express: Transferring Materials to a Cartridge

BARD Express: Tips & Tricks

There are a total of 9 How-To videos; for a full listing see the link below. https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLpAGnumt6iV5ycDQt9YGoQnd9uIXNU0pa

Is BARD Express the only way to get your BARD Books? No, you can still use the old way as outlined before. However, the BARD Express application gives you better feedback about downloads in progress and much more. Additionally, if you’re a NVDA user you might have found Humanware Companion a little buggy; it appears from preliminary testing you won’t have this problem with BARD Express. Oh, I almost forgot, there is also the BARD Mobile App. This is an App you can install on your Apple Device, Android Device, or Amazon Fire Tablet. This App has been around a while but I thought I’d mention it just in case some hadn’t heard of it yet. Anyhow, I hope that gives you an idea of its feature set; see the link below to download the application. The application is designed to run on computers running Windows XP all the way up to Windows 10. https://nlsbard.loc.gov/bmm/BARDExpressInstaller1229.exe

Kroger Community Rewards

Your Kroger Plus Card can be a powerful tool for supporting local organizations in your community. New Vision recently registered to be a beneficiary of the Kroger Community Rewards Program. Kroger will in turn donate toward our mission everytime you, as a registered user, make purchases at their stores on hundreds of items.

If you’d like to see how to sign up, see the link below. http://newvisionroa.org/news/use-kroger-plus-card-support-us/

If you are a screen reader user then follow the link below for directions. These directions should apply whether you’re using NVDA or JAWS. http://newvisionroa.org/?p=540&preview=true

If you need additional help feel free to phone us here at the office.

Local News and Events

Reoccurring Events: Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) meets the third Wednesday of each month. The next meeting of the Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) will be on Wednesday the 18th of January at 7:00 PM. For more information contact Dianne Decker at rdeckerjr2@cox.net.

An additional thought from Dianne, “Please note that on January 18, 2017, Ms. Julie Akers with Humanware will be the speaker at the Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) to demonstrate some exciting new visual aids. The meeting is from 7:00-8:30 p.m. at the Lions Sight Foundation Building/Eyeglass Recycling Center at 501 Elm Ave., SW, Roanoke.”

Your Thoughts

If you have any thoughts about what could be mentioned in an upcoming newsletter or comments on this newsletter feel free to reply or fill out the following form. See the following link. http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

Contact Info

New Vision 4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (South Park Office Building)

Phone: 540.985.8900

David Ward – Assistive Technology Instructor for the Tech Center

UNSUBSCRIBING: If you desire to unsubscribe to this mailing list simply reply with unsubscribe in the title and/or body of the email.

j j j

Directions for Kroger Community Rewards for Screen Reader Users

Enrolling New Vision as a Beneficiary of Kroger’s Community Rewards Program

Screen Reader Directions

Note: Enrolling in the Community Rewards program will not affect your Kroger Fuel Points in any way. Screen Reader Note: These directions were tested using the FireFox Browser, NVDA 2016.4, and JAWS 18.

  1. Go to www.kroger.com using your Web Broswer of choice. Typically Internet Explorer or FireFox are good choices.
  2. Press the TAB Key until you hear the Sign In link. The Kroger webpage contains active content so at periodic intervals you’ll hear “you’ve scrolled to the next promotion”. Simply Ignore these audible announcements. The Sign In link is located after the Search Button and before the Registration link. Should you need to register your Kroger card follow the directions below; under the heading Kroger Registration using a screen reader.
  3. On the Login page your cursor will automatically be placed in the email address field. There is no audible notification making this clear except perhaps a chirp from your screen reader telling you that you are in an edit field. Simply proceed by typing the email address that you registred with Kroger. Then Press the TAB Key to go to the password field. Type in your password and press enter. (Note: If you have mistyped either of these it will result in an error. And you will need to re-enter these credentials.)
  4. On the next page you’ll need to hit your TAB Key until you find a link with your First Name. This link should be located in the same place as the Sign In link was located. After the Search Button and before the Sign Out Button. Press Enter or the Space Bar once you’re on the link with your First Name.
  5. This brings up your personal settings page. Press the letter H Key to jump down the page by headings. You are looking for the heading entitled Community Rewards. 5.Once you’re on the Community Rewards Heading you’ll press the down arrow to get to the Enroll link. Alternatively, you could press the letter U (for JAWS) or the letter K (for NVDA) to get to the Enroll link. Once on the link press the Enter Key or the Space Bar. 6.On the following page you’ll need to enter the organzation name you wish to benefit from you entering the program. Press the letter E Key to jump to the edit field. This edit field will clearly state this is where you enter your organzations name or number. Press Enter to begin editing this field this may or may not be required depending on your screen reader.
  6. Type in the number 86856, which is our ID number for this program. Then press the Enter Key.
    • Note: If you in the Roanoke, Virginia area you can simply enter New Vision instead of the organization ID Number. Outside our area though, this will result in numerous results. Example: Churches with a similar name.
  7. There won’t be much telling you anything has changed but the organzation name has now appeared below.
  8. To select New Vision you can press the TAB Key until you hear Radio Button. Once on the Radio Button press the Enter Key or Space Bar.
  9. Once you’ve press Enter or Space Bar you should get feedback that you’ve selected Voice of the Blue Ridge Inc. DBA New Vision.
  10. Press the TAB Key once and this should place you on the Enroll Link or Button. Press Enter or Space Bar.
  11. Congradulations you’re done! Thank you for your support. If you want to make sure the final action is setup correctly you can press the letter H to jump down by headings again. Listen for the heading entitled Community Rewards. From this point you can arrow down through the organization you presently have set to be a beneficiary.

Kroger Registration using a Screen Reader

  1. Go to www.kroger.com.
  2. Use your TAB Key to get to the Registration Link. This is located right after the Sign In link.
  3. Use your TAB Key to get to the required fields that have to be filled out for your registration. Alternatively, you can press the letter E Key, in JAWS, to get to the edit fields quickly.
  4. You will need to fill in your email address, a password of your choice, and specify a local Kroger Store as your main store.
  5. At this point you can TAB down to the Create an Account button or link and press Enter or the Space Bar.
  6. On the following webpage you can enter your Plus Card Number or an Alternate ID. The Alternate ID or as its called Alt ID is a phone number that has already been registred with a Kroger Plus Card. It is recommended that you get sighted assistance and enter you Kroger Plus Card number.
  7. Press the letter E Key to jump to the first Edit Field. This is clearly labeled as the edit field for you Plus Card or Alt ID. If you are in JAWS you’ll have to press the Enter Key to begin editing the field. If using NVDA you likely won’t need to press the Enter Key.
  8. Enter you Plus Card Number . The Kroger Plus Card Number is located on the Kroger Card, both the wallet size one and the keyring version.
  9. Once done press the TAB key to go to the next edit field.
  10. This field wasn’t labeled in our orginal tests but it is simply a field where you enter you last name.
  11. After entering your last name press the TAB Key and you should land on the Save Button. Press the Enter Key once your on this button.
  12. At this point a confirmation email will be sent to your email account. No additional action on your part is required.
  13. You done! Thanks for your support.
j j j

December 2016 Tech Center Newsletter

New Vision News and Updates

Your Financial Support is Appreciated

Community support has been vital in achieving our mission. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, it has only been with our donor’s generosity that we are able to provide our necessary services. Your support is desperately needed more than ever so that we might continue to fulfill our critical mission for those with visual impairments.

A donation of:

  • $25 can provide large-print calendars to 12 individuals with significant vision loss.
  • $50 can provide special frequency radios to 2 listeners of the Radio Reading Service.
  • $100 can provide 5 hours of audio information via the Dial-In News Service.
  • $500 can provide more than 15 hours of individualized instruction at the New Vision Adaptive Technology Center.

No donation is too small! We welcome your contribution in any amount, and it is tax deductible! For your benefit and to help us finish the year well, please consider donating by December 31.

By Mail: New Vision, 4504 Starkey Rd Ste 120, Roanoke VA 24018
Online: https://www.paypal.me/newvision

Holidays and Inclement Weather Closings: The Tech Center will be closed on Monday December 26th and Monday January 2nd. These days follow the Christmas and New Year’s Holidays. Should Roanoke County or Roanoke City Schools be closed due to inclement weather we too shall be closed.

Braille Calendars: You can order 2017 Braille Calendars by emailing the following Non-Profit your address and request a calendar.
calendars@actionfund.org

News

Here’s a recent Press Release from the NFB on the new regulations governing nearly silent hybrid cars. See the link below for the full article.
https://nfb.org/national-federation-blind-applauds-issuance-pedestrian-safety-enhancement-act-regulations

Podcasts

Have you heard of the Google Home Appliance? Its brand new and a direct competitor to the Amazon Echo. So the Google Home operates as a Virtual Voice Assistant and sports many features comparable to the Amazon Echo. On this Blind Bargains Episode, number 82, you’ll hear J.J. and Joe talk about its features. See the link below.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq082.mp3

Joe Steinkamp was also interviewed on ACB Radio’s Main Menu Program about the Google Home. Check out the team from Main Menu as they put the Google Home through its paces. See the link below.
http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/podcast/2016-11-11.mp3

Check out Main Menu’s program where they inteview Dr. Robert Carter from “The Tech Doctor” podcast. Dr. Carter takes the crew through his experiences over the years with Macs, iPhone, Windows, DOS, and JAWS. Have a listen at the link below.
http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/podcast/2016-11-04.mp3

This Blind Bargains episode, number 80, has Jeff Bishop on to discuss his recent trip to the Microsoft Campus. On this episode you’ll also hear J.J. and Joe talk about JAWS 18, the new MacBook Pro, and the Microsoft Surface Event. See the link below for this and much more.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq080.mp3

In this Mac Accessibility Roundtable Podcast hear the team talk about the new MacBook Pro, Paypal, Siri, and the future of the Apple laptop. See the link below for episode 121.
http://maccessibility.net/podcast/maccessibility_rt121.mp3

In episode 120 of the Mac Accessibility Roundtable hear the team talk all about the Apple Press Event. The event started off by discussing accessibility and hear the team breakdown the topic. See the link below.
http://maccessibility.net/podcast/maccessibility_rt120.mp3

Shelly Brisbin is a blind author and journalist. Her most recent work is the iOS Access for All Book. She recently was a pundit on the Daily Tech News Show. Listen to her talk about accessibility in a mainstream setting with Tom Merrit. The youtube link below jumps you part way into the episode where Tom turns to Shelly to ask some questions but after the conclusion of the episode Shelly and Tom continue to have an awesome discussion. Have a listen at the link below.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhoHroVvdp8&feature=youtu.be&t=23m12s

New Vision Interview

Picture of John Netzel. Wearing Suit.
We recently had the opportunity to record a 30 minute interview with WRVL – “The Journey” which broadcasts throughout the Roanoke and Lynchburg region. The interview aired this past Saturday at 6 AM, December 3rd. See the links below, where the interview was broken out into three segments.

Interview Segment 1

http://download.liberty.edu/wrvl/peck0.mp3

Interview Segment 2

http://download.liberty.edu/wrvl/klvv0.mp3

Interview Segment 3

http://download.liberty.edu/wrvl/b4k6e.mp3

Student Spotlight

The following article is soon to be published in a Veteran’s Affairs publication, about one of our students, Leonard Hubbard. See the article below.

A Veteran’s Personal Journey: Horsemanship And Therapeutic Riding

Picture of Leonard Hubbard on horseback. Next to fence outside with two other people.
Leonard Hubbard, 57, a consumer of the HUD VASH Program since 2012, has been challenged by the “ups and downs” of addiction throughout his life, including homelessness and impaired sight. Now enjoying the rewards of sustained sobriety which include stable housing, improved health and consistent family support, he sought what he describes as “something to fulfill my idle mind.”

Machele Huff, a Salem VAMC Social Worker and a Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International Certified Riding Instructor, responded to the Veteran’s interest in riding a horse. According to Hubbard, “I was raised on a farm and I had never ridden a horse before. Just a mule.” Sparked by the Veteran’s request, Ms. Huff connected the veteran with a Paint Thoroughbred mare nick named ‘Tay Tay’ who had recently retired from competing as a show hunter With this mare, he learned how to safely groom and lead a horse. “I fell in love with ‘Tay Tay.’ I learned how to lead and take care of her. She was the first horse I had ever been around,” Hubbard describes.

Subsequently, Ms. Huff and the Veteran’s HUD VASH case manager, Katie Poulos, brought to the Veteran’s attention the Ride with Pride Therapeutic Riding Center in Staunton, Virginia which had a Veterans Riding Program. Hubbard then independently completed his referral packet and secured his medical clearance to ride. “ I received a scholarship to attend the program during the summer and the fall sessions.” Hubbard’s sessions began in June 2016. “Since being in the program I have learned how to care about things other than myself. I have learned how to care about people more through caring about the horse. It helps me with my sobriety and when I have nothing to do, I can think about the horse. Now I have something to look forward to it in the week and now next spring,” according to Hubbard.

For Hubbard, the most difficult aspect of participating in therapeutic riding was “making up my mind to do this because of my mental health issue. Some people think you can’t do certain things when you get older and that’s not true. When I put my mind to something I can do it. The most rewarding thing is the reaction I get from the horse, case workers and my riding instructors when I can control myself and accomplish something I want to do.”

Since his sixteen week participation in the Ride With Pride Program, Hubbard has now learned how to ride various gaits on the different horses that are assigned to him. “I have learned how to maneuver the horses through cones, change directions in the arena and ride a figure eight.” He also participates in trail riding on the center’s grounds as part of his riding lesson.

Each week, Hubbard prepares for his next riding lesson by reviewing videos taken on his phone. With the assistance of adaptive equipment provided by the Salem VA’s Visually Impaired Services Team, he is able to review his weekly riding progress at home.

Recently, he was invited to compete in Ride With Pride’s Therapeutic Fall In-House Show. According to Hubbard, “it is gratifying to actually engage with something you have never been around before. I think it’s amazing when you can care for something and the horse lets you know that they realize you are caring for them.”

The Ride With Pride Veteran’s Riding Program is made possible by various Veteran Service Organization donations in the Staunton, Virginia area.

Respectfully Submitted,
Machele Huff, LCSW

iPhone & iPad Apps

Check out the AppleVis’ Unlimited Newsletter for November 2016. Are you an adventurer? Then you might enjoy playing a game as Edward Blake, a Blind Knight, in medieval times; Or perhaps a Gladiator in Roman times. These games and much more are discussed in this months AppleVis Newsletter. Object Recognition Apps and the new MacBook Pro are also discussed. See the link below.
http://www.applevis.com/blog/ios-apps-mac-apps-macos-news-opinion-reviews/applevis-unlimited-whats-new-and-noteworthy

Local News and Events

Reoccurring Events:
“The Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) will hold its annual Christmas banquet on Wednesday, December 21, 2016 at the clubhouse of the Cave Spring Lions Club, located at 4801 Merriman Rd., SW, Roanoke. The evening will be catered by Adell’s of Rocky Mount, with music by the 3-D Trio. Reservations required by December 14, 2016. For information, directions or reservations please contact Dianne Decker at rdeckerjr2@cox.net” from Dianne Decker.

Your Thoughts

If you have any thoughts about what could be mentioned in an upcoming newsletter or comments on this newsletter feel free to reply or fill out the following form. See the following link.
http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

Contact Info

New Vision
4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (South Park Office Building)

Phone: 540.985.8900

David Ward – Assistive Technology Instructor for the Tech Center

j j j

October 2016 Tech Center Newsletter

October 2016 Technology Newsletter

New Vision News and Updates

Large Print 2017 Calendars: You can start requesting your 2017 large print calendars! We encourage you to get your orders in early while supplies last. The easiest way is to complete the online form. Please, email us for a link to this form. We will also accept requests by using the post card on the back of the old calendar, but please note that the mailing address should be changed to New Vision, 4504 Starkey Rd Ste 120. Roanoke, VA 24018. This year we’re making a special effort to make sure our supply of calendars has the most effective reach to Virginia residents with visual impairments. Our priority will be individual distribution to visually impaired Virginia residents, one calendar per individual, and group distribution only to those agencies or groups who are contributing to support our mission. Agencies or groups who wish to receive calendars should contact us by phone (540-985-8900) to request an allotment. As a benchmark, a donation of $25 can provide large-print calendars to 10 individuals. Donations can be made online at https://www.paypal.me/newvision.

Braille Calendars: You can order 2016 Braille Calendars by emailing the following Non-Profit your address and request a calendar. calendars@actionfund.org

Additional Braille News: A local library in Roanoke had several encyclopedia volumes donated and their looking for a home for them. If you’d be interested please touch base with us here and we can give you the library’s contact info.

Events: Our largest fundraising event this year is Talent Challenge for Charity at the Hotel Roanoke, November 12. The event features live painting by world renowned Blind painter John Bramblitt as well as fun entertainment by local “Stars”. Groups and individuals can purchase tickets online at https://www.talentchallengeforcharity.com/talent-challenge-buy-tickets.php.

Volunteer Spotlight

In this new feature we’ll endeavor to give you a little behind the scenes view into the hard work our volunteers put forth for our various programs. In the photo below you’ll see Ken Wright, a GE retiree. He and Les Brown, also a GE retiree, help with our Radio repairs.

The GE retirement program is assisting Virginia Voice, in Richmond, with repairing some of their radios and told them about New Vision, in Roanoke. Les Brown reached out to us. We are so thankful for their time and willingness to help us. And we thank our other volutneers for their industrious efforts as well. Picture of Volunteer Ken Wright working on a radio

News

Buddy Brannan recently wrote up on his blog about his experience with an accessible Samsung TV. That’s right, a TV where the menu’s are read out too you audibly. See his blog entry about it below. https://t.co/83TrfmTfZ9

If you’d like to hear his little audio walk-through see the link below. http://buddy.brannan.name/blog/wp-content/uploads/Samsung-TV-Demo.mp3

If your interested in finding out more about iOS 10 and the new iPhones you might check out the link below. It takes you to the show notes for Blind Bargains Episode 73. Joe Steinkamp includes a lot of helpful links to various sources. See link below. http://www.blindbargains.com/bargains.php?m=15880

Podcasts

In this Mac Accessibility Round Table the knights discuss iOS 10, Apple TV updates, and Watch OS. See the link below. http://maccessibility.net/podcast/maccessibility_rt117.mp3

Check out Blind Bargains Episode 74. Humanware’s Victor Reader updates are discussed, NVDA’s new tutorial on Microsoft Word, and a controversial subject about Screen Reader detection. This and much more at the link below. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq074.mp3

Check out this AppleVis podcast about the new featues in iOS 10 for iPhones and iPads. See link below. http://www.applevis.com/sites/default/files/podcasts/AppleVisPodcast1004_0.mp3

In this Blind Bargains Episode learn more about the Orbit Braille display, the new NVDA release, JAWS 18, and iOS 10 features. This and much more from J.J. and Joe at the link below. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq073.mp3

iOS Update for iPhones

The newest version of iOS is out. That’s the software that runs on iPhones and iPads. This new version is version 10. It can be installed on devices as old as the iPhone 5 and 5c. Two new features include the ability to turn off the automatic speakerphone feature that sometimes comes on while making a call. That always drove me crazy by the way. Secondly, and wait for it.. wait for it.. that’s right we now get a new pronunciation dictionary! That’s right! You can now tell it how to properly pronounce your friends names or other commonly misprounced terms. There’s much more, so be sure to see the link below for a in-depth listing of iOS 10 features and bugs. http://www.applevis.com/blog/apple-braille-ios-news/what-s-new-ios-10-accessibility-blind-low-vision-and-deaf-blind-users

Here’s a series of podcasts from Cool Blind Tech that speaks more on specific points connected with iOS 10. This update affects iPhones, iPads, iPod Touches, and Apple TV devices. See the show titles below that double as links to the episodes.

iOS 10: A Swipe Through the Major New Features

Signed, Sealed, Delivered: Mail Has Amazing New Features In iOS 10

Don’t Touch That Remote! I’m Watching Apple TV

This Browser Has Teeth: Exploring Safari On iOS 10

iOS 10 What’s new: Emergency Bypass

Raise To Wake In iOS 10: It’s Alive

New Voices In iOS10: The Voices In My Head Saturday, September 17, 2016 8:40 AM

iOS 10 What’s new: Rock Your Clock

Don’t Take The Long Way Home: Disable Press Home To Unlock On iOS 10

iOS 10 What’s new: It’s Time To Move It!

iOS 10 what’s new: Big Changes In The Messages App

iOS 10 What’s new: Braille Screen Input Catching Up Thursday

The above was an amazing amount of content put out by the team over at Cool Blind Tech. But there’s more so feel free to check out there website below or the RSS Feed. http://www.coolblindtech.com

iPhone & iPad Apps

Check out the AppleVis’ Unlimited Newsletter for September 2016. See the link below for the full listing of Apps and products being discussed this month. http://www.applevis.com/applevis-unlimited-whats-new-accessible-apps-september-2016

Student Spotlight

In this new feature we’ll seek to occasionaly mention some local experiences from our Tech Center.

Recently, a former student was able to complete an adoption of a child. And on the other end of the spectrum another former student was able to get some accessible training materials so she could enter the state run training classes for those interested in adopting a child or serving as foster parents. We’re thrilled to see the success and continued achievements of our students.

Did you know?

Did you know? That Podcasts are syndicated on-demand audio recordings that can be automatically downloaded. Podcasts are an extension of RSS (Real Simple Syndication) feeds. In short say you love a 15 minute daily news summary from NPR or you love to listen to the Blind Bargains Podcast every week. These are all available as Podcasts via the Google Play and Apple iTunes Stores. Meaning if you subscribe to the free Podcast feed your device will automatically download the newest episode so you can listen at your conveince and always have the newest content at your finger tips. Podcasts are even available on the Victor Reader and Amazon Echo. If you’d like to know more feel free to contact us.

Windows 10 Bugs

We’re not sure if this is a bug. But it most certainly seems to affect users of ZoomText on Windows 10. Especially, if you depend on the reader functionality. I’ve heard several students say that ZoomText isn’t giving them the level of audio feedback they were accustom too. Now I suspect the new ZoomText Fusion doesn’t have this problem but that’s just a guess. However, a free solution is to combine your use of ZoomText with one of the following screen readers: NVDA, Windows-Eyes (for Office), or Narrator. We’ve been trying NVDA with ZoomText with two students in the Tech Center with good results. It seems to result in more detailed descriptions of content, espically if the user is using the mouse a lot.

Tech Center Workshops

We’re entertaining ideas about having more workshops now that we’re in our new space. What technology topics, with an accessibility twist, might interest you?

Let us know what you think either at the Tech Center when you attend classes or via the link below. Or feel free to respond to this email.

Local News and Events

Reoccurring Events: Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) meets the third Wednesday of each month. The next meeting of the Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) will be on Wednesday the 19th of October at 7:00 PM. For more information contact Dianne Decker at rdeckerjr2@cox.net.

Your Thoughts

If you have any thoughts about what could be mentioned in an upcoming newsletter or comments on this newsletter feel free to reply or fill out the following form. See the following link. http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

Contact Info

New Vision 4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (SouthPark Office Building)

Phone: 540.985.8900

David Ward – Assistive Technology Instructor for the Tech Center

j j j

September 2016 Tech Center Newsletter

September 2016 Technology Newsletter

New Vision News and Updates

Tech Center News: The Tech Center will be closed for the week of September 19th through the 23rd.

In other news, we recently purchased a Amazon Echo for the classroom and are having a tons of fun figuring out how to use it. The Amazon Echo is part of a small line of hardware appliances manufactured and sold by Amazon. The Echo is a Voice Assistant device. It allows you to give a variety of voice commands to receive your news, hear podcasts, find telephone numbers and addresses of local business, and much more. If you’d like to know more feel free to shoot us and email or swing by sometime. See the link below for a video about the Amazon Echo and its features. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KkOCeAtKHIc

Large Print 2017 Calendars: You can start requesting your 2017 large print calendars! The easiest way is to complete the online form below. We will also accept requests by using the post card on the back of the old calendar, but please note that the mailing address should be changed to New Vision, 4504 Starkey Rd Ste 120. Roanoke, VA 24018. This year we’re making a special effort to make sure our supply of calendars has the most effective reach to Virginia residents with visual impairments. Our priority will be individual distribution to visually impaired Virginia residents, one calendar per individual, and group distribution only to those agencies or groups who are contributing to support our mission. Agencies or groups who wish to receive calendars should contact us by phone (540-985-8900) to request an allotment. As a benchmark, a donation of $25 can provide large-print calendars to 10 individuals. Donations can be made online att https://www.paypal.me/newvision.

Please contact us via Phone, Email, Twitter, or Facebook for a link to the online form.

Braille Calendars: You can order 2016 Braille Calendars by emailing the following Non-Profit your address and request a calendar. calendars@actionfund.org

News

Do you know a Blind person who’s expecting? Check out this service to get a 3D Printed image of your ultrasound, for one Euro. See the link below to learn more. http://www.blindbargains.com/bargains.php?m=15842

Check out this article by Scott Davert about the Nearby Explorer App from the American Printing House for the Blind. Here’s a brief description from the App Store: “Nearby Explorer is a full featured GPS app designed for use by people who are blind. Instead of just providing directions, it describes the environment in ways comparable to reading signage or observing road characteristics.” This App is available on iOS and Android devices. To learn more and see links to the App store see the link below. http://www.blindbargains.com/bargains.php?m=15797

Wish you could quiz youself on your Braille knowledge? With this new Amazon Echo skill you can! Read more at the link below or give it a try next time you’re in the Tech Center. http://www.blindbargains.com/bargains.php?m=15796

TalkBack on Android has added several features including a pronunciation table. Learn more at the link below. http://www.blindbargains.com/bargains.php?m=15754

Podcasts

Check out Blind Bargains Episode 71, entilted “Echoes Of Herbs And Spices”. J.J., Joe, and Scott have many topics they tackle. Scott talks about his Amazon Echo Dot and the remote control with a built-in microphone. The Android 7.0 update, MAGic 13 update for Windows 10, and the Tip of the Week about turning text easily into audio files are all discussed. See the link below. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq071.mp3

In this Blind Bargains Episode 72 the team discusses an HD Radio with talking controls, Angie’s List, Amazon Home and Home Advisor services for getting those home repairs and other things done around the house. There’s also a nice discussion about training with assistive technology products. See the link below. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq072.mp3

Check out this episode of Cool Blind Tech as the team talks about the Anniversary Update to Windows 10 and its accessibility features. See the link below. https://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/traffic.libsyn.com/coolblindtech/VIP_-_Talking_About_Whats_Hot_and_Whats_Not.mp3

In this Cool Blind Tech listen as Alex demonstrates some new accessibility features in iOS 10 for various Apple Devices. See the link below. https://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/traffic.libsyn.com/coolblindtech/iOS10_-_A_Swipe_Through_the_Major_New_Features.mp3

In the Mac Accessibility Round Table podcast listen as the team discusses the past 5 years since Tim Cook took over Apple. Also hear about the Orbit Reader 20 and the new Apple TV Remote App. See the link below. http://maccessibility.net/podcast/maccessibility_rt114.mp3

Hear the follow-up from the Knights of the Mac Accessibility Roundtable as they discuss the September 7th Apple Announcement. Topics include the new iPhone and Apple Watch. See link below. http://maccessibility.net/podcast/maccessibility_rt116.mp3

In this episode of Main Menu listen as the team discusses low-tech solutions for making things accessible around the house. See the link below. http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-09-02

Ever wondered where the nearest bus stop is? What about what restraunts you pass by while in the car? Wouldn’t it be just great if I could point my cell phone in a particular direction and it tell me what’s accross the street? The App Nearby Explorer was recently released on iOS; listen as it is demonstrated in this episode of Main Menu. See the link below? http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-08-26

Comic books for Blind folks! You must be kidding, Nope. Take a listen to this interesting interview with Guy Hasson, founder of Comics Empower, on this episode of Main Menu. See the link below. http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-08-19

This is a must listen. Microsoft has been making steady improvements to accessibility tools in Windows 10, especially the recent Anniversary Update. Listen as the Main Menu team and friends talk with the Microsoft team responsible for these improvements, namely screen reader, Narrator. See the link below. http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-07-29

iPhone & iPad Apps

Check out the AppleVis’ Unlimited Newsletter for August 2016. Apps discussed this month include Blindfold Bowling With Friends, Blindfold Greeting Card App, Castro Podcasting App, and Nearby Explorer App. See the link below for the full listing of Apps and products being discussed this month. http://www.applevis.com/blog/apple-applevis-ios-ios-apps-news/applevis-unlimited-whats-new-accessible-apps-august-2016

Did you know?

The Apple TV which opperates much like a Roku has VoiceOver Built-in. This means you could navigate with a remote control and have menu items read out to you when you’re trying to find that Star Trek episode you wanted to watch on NetFlix. Additionally, the newest Apple TV has SIRI with voice command controls.

Tech Center Podcast and News

This is a low-quality audio walk through of installing the new Microsoft Windows 10 Anniversary Update, from our instructor David Ward. He had one hiccup he dealt with. That being that Narrator switched to automatically starting upon reboot which could interfere with other screen-readers. Take a listen at the link below. http://goo.gl/wnr4UY

Windows 10 Bugs

In addition to Edge accessibility issues we’ve noticed, here at the Tech Center, that Google Chrome hasn’t been working to well with JAWS. This as best as we can tell is unique to Windows 10’s version of Google Chrome.

Tech Center Workshops

We’re entertaining ideas about having more workshops now that we’re in our new space. What technology topics, with an accessibility twist, might interest you?

Here are some ideas I’ve had but feel free to give me your feedback at the comments link below.

  • Board Game Night! Not so much a workshop but for those of you who use Braille are you interested in playing some old favorites like Monopoloy, Uno, or something else?
  • How to protect yourself Online? Avoiding fraud and your financial information from being stolen.
  • How to use an Amazon Fire Tablet to read books, play audiobooks, watch movies, and read email for $49.
  • How to rent movies, watch TV shows, using an Apple TV, Xbox, and/or Amazon Fire TV.
  • Apple Devices Advanced Workshop. We’d cover power features of iOS and Apps. Such as image recognition Apps, custom keyboards, Braille Reference tools, and the like.

Let us know what you think either at the Tech Center when you attend classes or via the link below. Or feel free to respond to this email.

Local News and Events

Reoccurring Events: Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) meets the third Wednesday of each month. The next meeting of the Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) will be on Wednesday the 21st of September at 7:00 PM. For more information contact Dianne Decker at rdeckerjr2@cox.net.

Your Thoughts

If you have any thoughts about what could be mentioned in an upcoming newsletter or comments on this newsletter feel free to reply or fill out the following form. See the following link. http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

Contact Info

New Vision 4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (SouthPark Office Building)

Phone: 540–985–8900

David Ward – Assistive Technology Instructor for the Tech Center david.ward@newvisionroa.org

j j j

June 2016 Tech Center Newsletter

June 2016 Technology Newsletter

New Vision News and Updates

News: New Vision has moved! Our new address is 4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (SouthPark Office Building). This location is accessible via RADAR Bus, whether you’re located in the City of Roanoke or in Roanoke County. Our Office suite is located in a complex beside the Carilion Wellness Center, formerly Roanoke Athletic Center (RAC). Our offices are located on the ground floor, in the front eastern section. The new Tech Center classroom space was completed ahead of schedule and is now all setup to go! So there won’t be any need for students to enter the office from the side entrance; instead simply use the front entrance.
When Arriving on RADAR
Picture of SouthPark Office Complex
When entering the grounds on a RADAR bus you’ll pull into the parking lot servicing the Carilion Wellness Center; hang a left and you’ll find the complex on the right. I’ve been told at this point there is signage that says “SouthPark Office”. The Address 4504 is located in large letters beside the front entrance. Some photos are shown below of the new facility which we hope to serve us for many years to come. Picture of the Front Entrance of the SoutPark Office Building.

Important Note to Students: The Tech Center is up and running. Despite some heating and air duct work we got done this past Tuesday, the 31st, we’re back up and running. We are also looking to update the Tech Center with some new workstations and equipment so stay tuned in!

Additional News: New Vision will be participating in the First Friday event. We’ll have volunteers from New Vision helping out and we’ll be a beneficiary from the event. First Friday’s has expanded to include the first and third Friday of the month, during the summer season. We’ll be participating on August 5. Stay tuned via our Facebook page or Twitter to learn more. Below is a link to the events webpage.
http://firstfridaysroanoke.com/not-for-profit-organization-va/

Podcasts

Check out Blind Bargains podcast number 63. Here you’ll hear JJ and Joe talk about Google IO conference, free courses from Deque, and an interview with the Makers of the Guardian Circle App. Oh, I almost forget you’ll hear about Pickles the guide cat. See the link below for more.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq063.mp3

Apple’s been making some further strides in the accessibility field. Learn more about their new described video offerings in this episode of Blind Bargains, episode 62. Additionally, you’ll hear about some of the new accessibility tools being sold in the Apple Online store; this includes a refreshable Braille display. This and much more, please see the link below.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq062.mp3

On episode 61 of Blind Bargains hear about the NFB’s settlement with Uber and about ZoomText now supporting Microsoft Office 2016. See the link below for more.
http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq061.mp3

Check out this Main Menu episode dated May 27th. We’ve already got our socks blown off with the $49 Amazon Tablet. Take a listen to this episode where Peter Korn, Accessibility Architect, and Mark Mulcahy, Developer on the VoiceView Team talk about something new. VoiceView, is a screen reader, that is now running in Beta on the Amazon Fire TV. The Amazon Fire TV is a set-top-box for your TV that allows you to stream movies and TV shows. See the link below for more.
http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-05-27

In this episode of Main Menu Scott Davert shows off the Amazon Echo Dot. Two popular apps, Roger and Alexa get together. Dan Kysor talks with Mike May about Seeing Eye GPS and then Larry Skutchan tells us about Nearby Explorer another GPS app. See link below.
http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-05-20

Tech Center Workshops

We’re entertaining ideas about having more workshops now that we’re in our new space. What technology topics, with an accessibility twist, might interest you?

Here are some ideas I’ve had but feel free to give me your feedback at the comments link below.

  • How to protect yourself Online? Avoiding fraud and your financial information from being stolen.
  • How to use an Amazon Fire Tablet to read books, play audiobooks, watch movies, and read email for $49.
  • How to rent movies, watch TV shows, using an Apple TV and Amazon Fire Stick?
  • Apple Devices Advanced Workshop. We’d cover power features of iOS and Apps. Such as image recognition Apps, custom keyboards, Braille Reference tools, and the like.

Let us know what you think either at the Tech Center when you attend classes or via the link below. Or feel free to respond to this email.
http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

iPhone & iPad Apps

For more about what’s going on in the App Store check out the latest AppleVis Unlimited Newsletter for May 2016. A few neat Apps discussed include a BBC Music App and the Big Finish Audiobook App. See the link below for more. http://www.applevis.com/blog/accessories-advocacy-apple-apple-tv-apple-watch-applevis-assistive-technology-braille-ios-ios

Did you know?

That in Microsoft Word you can select text and press the Control Key and the letter D to access the Font dialog box. From here you can quickly modify a font for a specific section or an entire document. Additionally, you can use the F12 key to prompt Microsoft Word to open the Save As Dialog box. I find this last shortcut, especially useful, it saves you several confusing steps in Microsoft Word 2007 and above.

Local News and Events

Annual Lake Event: Saturday June 25, 2016, at Claytor Lake State Park they’ll be the annual Lions on the Lake Event. This is presented by Blacksburg Breakfast Lions Club. Here’s a little about the event from Mrs. Ament.

“The Blacksburg Breakfast Lions Club is hosting the annual ‘Lions at the Lake’ event for visually impaired individuals. People of all ages are welcome especially children, to enjoy boat rides and being out on the lake, snacks and good company. Family members are of course welcome as well.

When: Saturday, June 25, 11 am to 2 pm, at Claytor Lake State Park, Picnic Shelter 2 (see map overleaf) If you, your family member or a friend are blind or visually impaired and are interested in more information please contact

Suzanne Ament seament@radford.edu
Tel: 540-381-0963″

Annual Picnic Event: Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) meets the third Wednesday of each month. The next meeting of the Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) will be on Wednesday the 15th of June at 7:00 PM. This will be the Picnic in the Park, that RAVE holds annually, it will be held at Waldron Park. For more information contact Dianne Decker at 540.562.0455 or at rdeckerjr2@cox.net.

Your Thoughts

If you have any thoughts about what could be mentioned in an upcoming newsletter or comments on this newsletter feel free to reply or fill out the following form. See the following link.
http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

Contact Info

New Vision 4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (SouthPark Office Building)

Phone: 540–985–8900

David Ward – Assistive Technology Instructor

j j j

May 2016 Technology Newsletter

May 2016 Technology Newsletter

New Vision News and Updates

Picture of SouthPark Office Complex

News: New Vision is moving! New Vision will be moving to our new location during the month of May. Our new location will be at 4504 Starkey Rd. Suite 120, Roanoke, VA 24018 (SouthPark Office Building). This location is accessible via RADAR Bus, whether you’re located in the City of Roanoke or in Roanoke County. Our Office suite is located in a complex beside the Carilion Wellness Center, formerly Roanoke Athletic Center (RAC). Our offices are located on the ground floor, in the front eastern section. Since some of the adjoining suites are under renovation it will be most prudent to enter from the side entrance. This is located on the eastern side of the complex or the side opposite of the Carilion Wellness Center. When entering the grounds on a RADAR bus you’ll pull into the parking lot servicing the Carilion Wellness Center; hang a left and you’ll find the complex on the right. The Address 4504 is located in large letters beside the front entrance but you’ll need to continue around the edge of the building to the side entrance. Some photos are shown below of the new facility which we hope to serve us for many years to come.

Picture of SouthPark Office Building and arrow pointing to the Eastern Portion of the bulding as a temporary entrance

]2 SouthPark Office Building

Important Note to Students: The Tech Center at our Melrose Avenue location will be closed Thursday May 19th, and the following Monday and Tuesday (23rd & 24th). So you’ll want to cancel you RADAR appointments. You’ll also want to cancel your recurring RADAR pick-ups and specify a new schedule for our new address. If you are a student with an afternoon classes please be sure to setup you arrival time for 1:30pm and not 1 o’clock as might have previously been the case. We plan to reopen at the new location on Thursday the 26th. If for some reason we are unable to open the Tech Center that day and have to postpone til the next week. we’ll be sure to let our students know.

Additional News: New Vision will be participating in the First Friday event. We’ll have volunteers from New Vision helping out and we’ll be a beneficiary from the event. First Friday’s has expanded to include the first and third Friday of the month, during the summer season. We’ll be participating on May 20 and August 5. Stay tuned via our Facebook page or Twitter to learn more. Below is a link to to the events webpage. http://firstfridaysroanoke.com/not-for-profit-organization-va/

Assistive Technology News

The CSUN conference ushers in what has been called the “The Year of Braille”. Check out Shelly Brisbin’s coverage of this event. See the link below. http://www.afb.org/afbpress/pub.asp?DocID=aw170402

Interesting rumor that Apple’s going to display and sell a limited number of accessibility accessories that can be used with their products. Read the article at the link below. http://appleinsider.com/articles/15/12/20/apple-stores-to-feature-accessibility-products-in-early-2016-report-says

Do you sometimes find Microsoft Word a challenge? Or do you fell like you could be more productive but not sure how. Check out this write-up by Jamie Pauls about the MLWordTips App. This App is designed to help Microsoft Word users who use screen-readers to be more productive. Learn more at the link below. https://www.afb.org/afbpress/pub.asp?DocID=aw170403

Check out this interview with David Woodbridge. Mr. Woodbridge is known internationally for his podcasting and tutorials about iOS devices. If you want to know about a new apple product or feature that affects VoiceOver users there is a good chance Mr. Woodbridge has recorded a tutorial about it. See the link below for more. < http://www.afb.org/afbpress/pub.asp?DocID=aw170407>

Podcasts

In Blind Bargains Qast episode 59 learn about Mystic Access and NVDA. This episode contains an interview with the Mystic Access team who puts together audio tutorials on various products, such as the Amazon echo. This episode also discusses the new iPhone SE. See the link below for more. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq059.mp3

In Blind Bargains Qast 58, learn about updates to Microsoft Window’s Narrator, Facebooks automatic labelling technology for photos, Talkback 4.5, and a voice assistant app. See the link below. http://www.podtrac.com/pts/redirect.mp3/www.blindbargains.com/audio/bbq058.mp3

On this April 22nd Main Menu program hear an interview with David Raistrick and Amanda Tolson, from En-Vision America. They’ll be talking about the ID Mate Galaxy, a sophisticated bar scanner, and about Scriptalk for medication bottles. Also in this episode you’ll learn about an amazing deal the American Printing House for the Blind has setup for students wanting to get JAWS. See the link below. http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-04-22

In the April 8th episode of Main Menu learn about The Voice Dream Reader updates and the Amazon Fire Tablet. See link below. http://mainmenu.acbradio.org/file.php?method=download&episode=2016-04-08

I’ve never mentioned this podcast before. Check out the Maccessibility Roundtable Podcast. In this episode Josh discusses his iPhone 7 theory, hear a discussion of what to expect at WWDC Conference, and a interesting discussion about User Interfaces and Apple. See the link below. http://maccessibility.net/podcast/maccessibility_rt107.mp3

In Episode 106 of The Maccessibility Roundtable Podcast, team discuss the Amazon Fire Tablet. See link below. http://maccessibility.net/podcast/maccessibility_rt106.mp3

Tech Center Experiments

At the Tech Center we recently got a Amazon Fire Tablet. The Fire Tablet has a built in screen-reader called VoiceView and a built in Zoom. These features seem to work pretty well with the pre-installed Apps especially the Kindle bookstore. All of this for an amazing $39.

The following tablets are listed as supporting these new accessibility tools and are part of the Amazon Product line.

  • Fire HD 6 (4th Generation)
  • Fire HD 7 (4th Generation)
  • Fire HDX 8.9 (4th Generation)
  • Fire (5th Generation)
  • Fire HD 8 (5th Generation)
  • Fire HD 10 (5th Generation)

To read more about accessibility on the Fire Tablet line see the link below. https://www.amazon.com/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=201829320

We’ll be testing more of the Fire’s features in the classroom feel free to come by and have a look.

iPhone & iPad Apps

Check out the April 2016 AppleVis Unlimited newsletter. Several video games are mentioned along with a famous Password Manager App. A NetFlix App update and Stop Watch among many more things are mentioned in this edition. See the link below. http://www.applevis.com/blog/advocacy-gaming-ios-apps-iphone-news-opinion/applevis-unlimited-whats-new-accessible-apps-april

Did you know?

You can get the same voices that you use with JAWS with NVDA. NVDA is a free screen-reader, designed by a non-profit in Australia. Below is a reseller of the Eloquence and Vocalizer voice packages for NVDA. See the link below. http://www.atguys.com/store/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=20&products_id=231&zenid=9891f6d282c44ee9f2d6cd8b71fb83e6

Additionally, Windows-Eyes allows for free use of their screen-reader if your a Microsoft Office user. If you own a copy of Microsoft Office 2010 or newer you can get a free license. See the link below. http://www.windoweyesforoffice.com/

Resources

Microsoft isn’t standing still with its release of Windows 10. Windows 10 is constantly getting updates. But what might be surprising is its also getting updates to the assistive technology built in. A recent update included updates to the built in screen-reader called Narrator. You can read more about these updates as they come out on the official Microsoft Blog listed below. See the link. https://t.co/vBLfh60rhE

Local News and Events

Reoccurring Events: Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) meets the third Wednesday of each month. The next meeting of the Roanoke Alliance for the Visually Enabled (RAVE) will be on Wednesday the 18th of May at 7:00 PM. For more information contact Dianne Decker.

Your Thoughts

If you have any thoughts about what could be mentioned in an upcoming newsletter or comments on this newsletter feel free to reply or fill out the following form. See the following link. http://goo.gl/forms/9WXsbr3jPp

Contact Info

New Vision 3435 Melrose Avenue Roanoke, VA 24017

Phone: 540–985–8900

David Ward – Assistive Technology Instructor for the Tech Center

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