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Re: Helping Jaws (et al) pronounce our company name

From: David Poehlman <poehlman1@comcast.net>
Date: Wed, 24 Sep 2003 07:43:49 -0400
Message-ID: <001701c38291$1fc9e620$6501a8c0@handsontech>
To: "John Trollope" <John.Trollope@unumprovident.co.uk>, "'WAI Interest Group'" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

No tags exist for this but one thing that might help is aural css.  Jaws
might be supporting this as it is headed in that direction with its new
release due out in october and now in beta three at:
if you read the new features you will see that jaws 5.0 has a lot of new
things to offer.  You also have to take into account that with jaws, you can
use many different speech engines and other synthesis devices such as the
one I use (accent sa) formerly produced by aicomm corporation which I
believe no longer produces it.  I use it because it is much les draining on
the cpu than is eloquence and when I began my computer journey, there was no
software speech.  It also does not have the mushy sound that makes software
synthesis for the most part difficult to listen to for long periods of time
but I digress.

One thing you might want to be aware of is that most screen reader users
will get used to names that are pronounced differently than they might be
pronounced by someone or other synths.  When I first began using eloquence
on other computers, I actually did not understand some words although they
were spoken clearly because of the emphasis placed on different word parts.
In the case of Unum, I would not have known how to pronounce it unless I had
been told.  My last name is garbled by many synths and I have been asked
many times how to pronounce it and had to come up with some clever ways to
defeat the pronunciation rules of some synths.

In short, there is no easy to fix this at present but rather than providing
instructions for screen reader users on how to change their screen readers,
you might just say that your company name is pronounced as if the words you
and num were put together.  Num is short for number.  Now, if this
pronounciation is incorrect, it will illustarate the difference between
eloquence and accent.

One final thought,  to get to the dictionary manager, all you need do is
press ins on the number pad together with d.  To change the default
dictionary if you are not in it, press shift+ctrl+d to open it after
pressing num-insert+d.  To enhance your jaws using experience, turn off
numlock if you have not done so already.


Dave who is still working as hard as he can to enable technology and to
treat its mal-nurished and disabling conditions.

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "John Trollope" <John.Trollope@unumprovident.co.uk>
To: "'WAI Interest Group'" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Sent: Wednesday, September 24, 2003 5:36 AM
Subject: Helping Jaws (et al) pronounce our company name

I had an ear-opening experience listening to Jaws sputter out the contents
of our website. It gave a rather bad rendition of our company name "Unum"
which is said "ah-nim", severly clipping the "ah" so that it was more along
the lines of "ugh-nm". In Jaws, you can tell it how to pronounce words by
going to Utilities | Dictionary manager then clicking on "Add" (the relevant
entry for us would be "Unum" for actual word and "you num" for pronounce

Of course, I am going to propose that we write a page suggesting our users
with screen readers to do this for certain company and industry specific
words, however, are there any meta tags that Jaws can recognise for this?
Ideally, I'd like something like:

<meta tag="ScreenReader" ActualWord="unum" ReplacementWord="you num">

Are there any screen readers/ spoken browsers for online content which
support something close to this idea?

If not, perhaps it's an idea that this list could develop and then promote.


John Trollope
Senior Analyst Programmer
Management Services
Unum Provident
Milton Court
Dorking RH4 3LZ
http://www.UnumProvident.co.uk <http://www.unumprovident.co.uk/>
+(44) 1306 646 020
john.trollope@UnumProvident.co.uk <mailto:john.trollope@UnumProvident.co.uk>

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Visit our website at http://www.unumprovident.co.uk

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Received on Wednesday, 24 September 2003 07:43:58 UTC

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