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Yes, windows shortcuts are important, but accessibility and
productivity for a blind person relies on being familiar with the JAWS
shortcuts and those built into a particular software application.
After learning a few dozen, I know of no blind end user that can
manage hundreds of keyboard shortcuts in their head. I believe
Microsoft Word has more than 1,000 keyboard shortcuts. It would be an
unreasonable expectation for a blind person to memorize most of these.
Students should be exposed to the JAWS help system that contains
useful information about how to optimize accessibility for a specific
program and how to bring up the menus of JAWS specific keyboard
shortcuts for that program. Often, knowing how to learn is more
important than memorizing the sequences in the accessibility recipes
you provided. This is similar for a blind person in learning to only
travel a specific route from one location to another rather than
learning the general skills of how to travel to any location. In
teaching route travel, the blind person is dependent on the trainer to
constantly teach new routes as their live and personal situations
I do a lot of advocacy projects and find that many people who say they
have accessibility barriers to software or information have received
formal technology access training and some have technology
backgrounds. Yet, few have reviewed the JAWS help system, listened to
the free training tutorials from Freedom Scientific, or searched
online for a solution. I know because I am able to quickly identify a
solution to their access problem that is found in these resources,
showing the person that the issue is their lack of knowledge rather
than one of asserting civil rights.
On 1/9/16, Paul D. J. Jenkins <email@example.com> wrote:
I think companies should encourage a no-mouse week in their offices! That
would be great! Of course, there would need to be some exceptions, but the
improvements in productivity over time are immeasurable!
From: David Moore [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Saturday, January 09, 2016 1:42
Subject: Re: Views on Keyboard Shortcuts to teach or, perhaps, emphasize
With people using laptops and tablets, it is important to know the JAWS key
commands when JAWS is set to laptop keyboard mode. You do not have to use
the num pad at all when using JAWS, because key commands have been added to
JAWS which makes it possible to not have a num pad at all. For example, caps
lock + K will read the current word as well as num pad 5. It is good to know
the difference between windows and JAWS key commands, because you can
perform a lot of tasks, like saving a file, without speech if you know the
command. Just think, sighted people would greatly benefit by knowing all of
the Windows key commands, because it is much faster to press a key command
then it is working with the mouse. I have shown many of my sighted friends
and my wife many key commands and they use some like alt + tab. Take care
and have a great one.
From: Gudrun Brunot
Sent: Friday, January 8, 2016 7:24 PM
Subject: Re: Views on Keyboard Shortcuts to teach or, perhaps, emphasize
Brian, I'm for learning as many shortcuts as possible. If that means that
you may have to emphasize what happens when you separate the six-pack key
from the numpad keys and other aspects, so be it. With practice, people will
get the hang of it.
From: Brian Vogel [mailto:email@example.com]
Sent: Friday, January 08, 2016 3:13 PM
Subject: Views on Keyboard Shortcuts to teach or, perhaps, emphasize when
[Edited Message Follows]
What follows is a rather philosophical question but that certainly
has practical implications that the cohort will know about a lot more
personally than I ever can. Hence this is the place to ask.
When I tutor on using JAWS I do not focus exclusively on JAWS and
its keystrokes because JAWS hovers on top of all other Windows programs and
assists in using those. My philosophy is that I want my clients to know as
many, if not more, keyboard shortcuts that are universally, or very close to
universally, applicable in all Windows programs. I want them to know that,
in almost all cases, ALT+F opens the file menu or equivalent, followed by S
saves a file, followed by A does a Save as, etc.
One of my clients, with whom I had a marathon 3.25 hour tutoring
session yesterday, is relatively new to using Windows Live Mail as well as
using PDF XChange viewer to perform OCR on the many image PDFs that still
get thrown his way. As a result, I worked him through certain tasks
step-by-step and create instructions in the same format, examples of which
will follow. It was only when we were conversing afterward, and he used the
phrase JAWS keyboard shortcuts when talking about conventional Windows
keyboard shortcuts that I thought it important that he had at least a basic
understanding that keyboard shortcuts do differ in what program layer, JAWS
versus a give Windows program, is responsible for the interpretation of
same. I want him to understand how to apply Windows keyboard shortcuts "by
extension" when he is playing around with a Windows program that's new to
him. Is this a mistake to try to make this distinction? Is it unwise to
not focus nearly exclusively on JAWS keyboard shortcuts for functions that
also exist independently as a different Windows keyboard shortcut? I'd love
to get the perspective of those who would know the pluses and minuses of
leaning one way or another.
What follows are a couple of examples of the step-by-step
instruction sets I've created, and they look more complicated than they
actually are because I try to break things down into simple single steps.
Once you know what you're doing most of these tasks can be done in a few
moments. I'll include the instructions for running OCR with PDF XChange
Viewer because it may be helpful to some here who have decided to play with
that program. All focus almost exclusively on using WIndows keyboard
shortcuts for the program in question with JAWS serving the role of
narrating what's happening while you do this.
Using PDF XChange Viewer to perform OCR on any PDF you receive that is an
image PDF, step-by-step:
1. Open PDF XChange Viewer from your start menu.
2. Hit ALT+F,O to bring up the file open browsing dialog.
3. Hit ALT+I to jump directly to the Look In combo box
4. Hit down arrow to get into the area that�s somewhat, but not exactly,
like the tree view in Windows Explorer.
5. Hit L until you hear, �Libraries,� announced.
6. Hit TAB two times, you should hear, �Documents�.
7. Hit SPACEBAR to select the Documents library.
8. Hit ENTER to open the documents library.
9. Hit the first character of the folder or file name you�re trying to
perform OCR on. Keep doing this with the first character until you hear its
10. Hit Enter to open the file or folder. If you�re
dealing with a file at this step go straight to step 11. Otherwise, do the
a. If you know the file is in this folder then use the �hit the first
character� technique to locate it and jump to step 11 once you have.
b. If you need to drill down another folder level go back to step 9.
11. Hit ALT+O to open the file in PDF XChange
12. Hit CTRL+SHIFT+C to open the OCR dialog box.
Immediately hit ENTER to initiate the OCR processing. The length of time
this takes depends on the size of the file being processed. JAWS does not
read the processing status box, but will announce the file�s name with star
after it when the processing completes. That�s how you�ll know it�s done.
13. Hit ALT+F,S to save the file and its OCR text
into the original file itself.
14. Hit ALT+F4 to close PDF XChange Viewer.
Creating a new folder in Windows Explorer, step-by-step:
1. Open Windows Explorer and navigate to the folder location in which
you wish to create the new folder.
2. Hit ALT+F,W,F to create the new folder itself.
3. Type in the name you want for the new folder you�re creating.
4. Hit ENTER to make that new name stick, and you�re done.
To find a specific e-mail message in WLM, step-by-step:
1. Hit ALT+O,FI which opens the message find submenu
2. You are presented with two choices in this submenu: Find Text and
Find Message. I will cover each of these briefly.
3. Find Text presents a dialog box allows you to enter a word, words, or
phrase that you know is somewhere within the message you�re trying to find.
Simply enter that text and skip to step 5.
4. Find Message presents you with a dialog box with a number of possible
attributes of the message you might want to search on, e.g., Subject, From,
To, and others. Tab through and fill in whichever of these attributes you
wish to include in the search. After you�ve filled in whichever are
pertinent, go to step 5.
5. Hit ALT+I to activate the Find Now key. This will cause a dialog box
to come up with the list of messages that match whatever you searched on, if
any exist. These are presented very much like your inbox message list, but
are composed only of messages that match the search criteria you entered.
When you hear the one you�re interested in as you move through them, hit
ENTER to open it.