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JAWS for Windows 5.0 Update Features and Enhancements, etc.

From: Joe Clark <joeclark@joeclark.org>
Date: Tue, 16 Mar 2004 14:48:43 -0500
Message-Id: <a06001f44bc7d08d7d904@[]>
To: WAI-IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>


>  PlaceMarkers
>      * The JAWS 5.0 update introduces a new PlaceMarker feature called
>        Custom Page Summary. If this option is enabled, JAWS automatically
>        reads any and all PlaceMarkers and their associated names for each
>        HTML page you visit. The purpose of this is to allow you to just
>        hear user-defined information on specific HTML pages rather than
>        having a Say All start when you open the page. This should be very
>        useful for HTML applications in particular. [...]
>Internet Explorer
>      * JAWS fully supports MathPlayer 2.0. If you want to read math
>        content in Internet Explorer, download MathPlayer version 2.0 or
>        later. For more information about MathPlayer, visit
>        [12]www.dessci.com.
>      * JAWS now supports Adobe PDF documents embedded in Web pages. JAWS
>        provides access to the document's toolbars and other functions so
>        that you can view the surrounding Web page content along with the
>        PDF document.
>      * JAWS now reads the table caption and summary before announcing the
>        number of columns and rows in the table. This lets you use table
>        navigation keys as soon as you move past the line describing the
>        number of columns and rows.
>      * If a table contains a caption tag with no closing tag, JAWS no
>        longer mistakes the entire table for a caption.

(showing evidence of screen-reader dependence on valid code)

>       * Flash content is no longer truncated when simple accessible nodes
>        follow nodes with structure, such as list boxes.
>      * JAWS can now find group names in non-standard HTML code.


>      * Long descriptions for images now work correctly.
>       * JAWS now indicates HTML attributes (such as OnClick and
>        OnMouseOver) in Braille Structured Mode.
>      * You can now define language-specific punctuation definitions so
>        that punctuation symbols are spoken correctly when reading
>        multilingual text using a multilingual synthesizer.
>      * JAWS uses the proper language when reading variations of the
>        German language.
>   [...]
>Speech and Sounds Manager
>      * When a scheme is set up to announce color changes in text, JAWS
>        only announces the color that changed. JAWS no longer announces
>        the color that did not change. If both the text color and
>        background color change, JAWS announces both new colors. If only
>        the background color changes, JAWS announces the new color and
>        then says, "Background."
>      * JAWS comes with two new schemes. The Colors scheme announces color
>        changes in text, but no other font or attribute information. The
>        Colors and Attributes scheme announces both attributes and color
>        changes, but no other font information.
>      * Various issues have been fixed that caused voices not to return to
>        the default setting after voice changes when using the
>        Proofreading scheme.

>JAWS for Windows 5.0 Features and Enhancements
>New in JAWS with Internet Explorer
>Automatic Language Detection in HTML
>    Your multilingual synthesizer will switch to the appropriate language
>    on the fly, provided the HTML author has used the proper language
>    tags. This feature is turned on by default, but you can disable it in
>    the Configuration Manager under HTML options or via the Verbosity
>    Options dialog. For an example, visit the following Spanish Web Site:
>    [21]www.once.org
>Navigating by Heading Levels is More Intuitive
>    When navigating by headings, searches for subheadings stop if the
>    next/prior heading belongs to a different section. For example, if you
>    are navigating through a group of level 3 headings using the
>    Navigation Quick Key 3 on the numbers row, then reach a new heading at
>    a higher level, JAWS will stop and you will be informed that you have
>    reached a new section. Previously, you could have found yourself at a
>    level 3 heading in another section without knowing that the section
>    changed.
>Position Information for Radio Buttons in HTML
>    JAWS will now properly identify which radio button is selected and how
>    many are available in the group. This assumes the HTML has been
>    written correctly using the name attribute to determine which radio
>    buttons go together.
>Position Information for List Boxes and Combo Boxes in HTML
>    JAWS now has support for position information when in virtual areas.
>    This means that you will get information about how many items are in
>    the particular control and which one of these items is currently
>    selected.
>Customize how Form Field Prompts Are Identified
>    This new option is available in the Verbosity dialog box or in the
>    Configuration Manager. It allows you to customize what gets reported
>    as prompts for various form fields on the Web. Since there are many
>    possibilities for HTML authors, the ability to customize this has been
>    requested.
>Personalized Settings for Any Web Site
>    This feature is one you'll surely appreciate if you use the Internet.
>    Have you ever wished that you could adjust something in the verbosity
>    options for a certain Web site, without impacting how JAWS will sound
>    on other sites? Wouldn't it be great if the next time you returned to
>    that web site, those special settings were remembered for you? Well
>    now you can use the new SHIFT+INSERT+V dialog to display a list of
>    settings you can personalize for that specific domain.
>    The dialog lists the site name, or as much of it as possible, as the
>    caption. When entering any page on a personalized site from another
>    location, you'll hear the message: "This web site has been
>    personalized." Care has been taken so that pages within the same site
>    (based on the URL) will not repeat the message. It is repeated only
>    when entering a site from an unrelated page.
>    While not all verbosity options will be offered in this feature, HTML
>    options such as page refresh, graphic rendering, links, image maps,
>    lists, tables, block quotes, etc., will all be available.
>    Let us emphasize that this feature is not foolproof. There may be some
>    situations where these Web features may not work, due to the dynamic
>    nature of the Web in general. If you change a setting using the
>    regular INSERT+V option, it will not be saved in your personal files.
>INSERT+TAB now reveals all Verbosity Options for many HTML Elements
>    Within virtual buffer areas, you can now use INSERT+TAB to reveal all
>    setting options for graphics, text links, Form Fields, and Buttons. If
>    you're on a link, graphic (outside an image map), or button, press
>    INSERT+TAB repeatedly to hear the control spoken with the available
>    "verbosity" options.
>    The first time you press INSERT+TAB, you will hear the control as is
>    with your current settings. As you press INSERT+TAB again, JAWS will
>    cycle through the available settings for the given control. As you do
>    this, you hear the control again, which may or may not sound
>    different,
>    followed by a message in the message voice which tells you the setting
>    being used.
>    Example: "Freedom Scientific Logo" Graphic (message voice) "Alt tag".
>    Of course, should you be using a scheme in JAWS to have these controls
>    spoken differently, all your custom speech/sound rules will be
>    followed
>    by JAWS. If you press any other key, JAWS resumes normal
>    functionality.
>    Use this feature on several different graphics on the same page so you
>    know how to personalize verbosity settings in JAWS for these various
>    items for the current web site, using the Personalize Web Settings
>    feature described above.
>Added the INSERT+F3, Virtual HTML Features Dialog
>    There are currently two options in this dialog: PlaceMarkers and
>    Personalized Web Settings. We will be adding other items to this list
>    in future releases of JAWS. The main purpose of this list box is for
>    users who seldom use the features and can't recall the specific
>    keystrokes to launch them.
>Jump to HTML Table Cell
>    JAWS now has an option that lets you identify a particular cell in a
>    table (based on row and column coordinates) and quickly move to that
>    location. To try this feature, go to a table while in Internet
>    Explorer or On-Line Help and press the letter J. This displays a
>    dialog box called Jump To Cell. Type in the particular column and row
>    that you want to go to, separated by a comma. Press ENTER to jump
>    right to the cell. This is very similar to using the F5 Go To feature
>    in Microsoft Excel. This can be very useful in large tables that you
>    use often.
>New MSAA Support for Extended Select List Box in IE and Other Applications
>    When you land in extended select list boxes, you must use the Windows
>    command SHIFT+F8 to turn on the noncontiguous select option. In IE, if
>    you're using the Virtual Cursor, you must also turn on Forms Mode.
>    Previously, if you arrowed up and down, you would sometimes hear extra
>    highlighted text from a selected item farther up in the list. Now,
>    since we strictly use MSAA in these cases, this extraneous speech is
>    no longer present. JAWS will say, "Not selected," if the control is
>    not selected, but it will speak the item. If the SHIFT+F8 option in
>    Windows isn't turned on, you won't hear "not selected."
>New in Popular Application Support
>All new support for Accessible Java Applications
>    JAWS support for applications written using Sun Microsystems' Java
>    Access API has been greatly improved in version 5.0. JAWS now speaks
>    every accessible object available through Sun Microsystems Java
>    Accessibility Bridge version 1.0.4. JAWS has added functionality to
>    simulate the JAWS cursor in Java applications. Also new is the virtual
>    buffer view of Java applications, making many of them as simple to use
>    as JAWS on the Internet. Freedom Scientific recommends using JAWS 5.0
>    with Java Accessibility Bridge version 1.0.4 and the Sun Java Runtime
>    Environment version 1.4.1.
>New Scripts Have Been Written for Microsoft Access 2000 and XP
>    This is an area where there has been many requests for fixes and
>    improvements. Based on the MS Object Model, we believe you'll find
>    Access 2K and XP to be much better.
>    [...]

(plus other features)

Note that they're still trying to get basic HTML support right, and 
that valid code makes their job easier.


     Joe Clark | joeclark@joeclark.org | <http://joeclark.org/access/>
     Author, _Building Accessible Websites_ | <http://joeclark.org/book/>
     Expect criticism if you top-post
Received on Tuesday, 16 March 2004 14:52:29 UTC

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