All posts by Rolf

Taking and sharing iPad screenshots with one finger…

Skitch LogoScreenshots are a brilliant method to share information, especially for people with aphasia. However, the standard method to take a screen shot on an iPad requires some dexterity: you need to synchronise two button presses, using both hands – not necessarily and easy task.

Skitch (on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/skitch/id490505997?mt=8) allows you to easily take a screenshot, e.g. from a website, a photo or a PDF) and then share it using email, Facebook or other means. Here a quick intro on how to use it once you have opened it up:

Screenshot, Skitch interface when first opened
When you open up the app it will by default use the built in camera view to let you take a screenshot (i.e. a photo…). Tap the little photo icon in the bottom right corner to choose a different source.

Screenshot, Skitch, choose source
In order to take a screenshot of a webpage, choose the little compass – this opens a built in web browser.

skitch3
Now either type in a web address or search, using Google (top left and right text fields). Then use the button at the bottom right to “snap” – take a screen shot.

skitch4
You can annotate the image using any of the tools on the right hand side. These appear when you tap the little arrow on the right side towards the bottom of the image. Once your done, use the Share button in the top right corner and choose how you want to share, e.g. using your email.

Please let me know how you get on. Any feedback welcome!

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Accessible PDFs on the Kindle app

Kindle app iconI recently had to make a physical book that was long out of print accessible for someone using an iPad for single-switch-accessed reading. With the help of a colleague at Disability Services at Dundee University I ended up with a PDF file with embedded OCR information that should allow the reader for example to adjust the font size in the reading app. However, in order to access the underlying OCR information, you need to convert the document into the Kindle format. You can do this by placing the word ‘convert’ in the subject line of the email with the attached PDF that you send to your Kindle app. You can find the app’s email address under Settings in your app – but don’t forget to register the email address you’re sending from on the Amazon website first (under: Your Account/Manage your Kindle/Personal Document Settings/add a new approved email address). Good luck!

It’s sometimes so simple…

Accessing a website using the keyboard rather than the mouse should be easy. By using the ‘Tab’ key you can jump from link to link. However, on many websites your focus, i.e. the link you have tabbed to, is hardly visible, only framed by a thin dotted line if at all.

Screenshot of a button on a website with thin dotted focus outline

A simple change to the style sheet (style.css) can change this so keyboard users don’t get lost or loose their focus when tabbing through a website.

a:focus {
outline: 2px solid red;
}

Text link in focus with red solid frame

You might need to change other parts of the style sheet too to cover all different manifestations of links on the site, e.g. text link, buttons, etc.

Gaming and AT

Gaming and AT

There was a discussion recently on the CM AAC network on gaming and AT. Here some some of the links:

Speaking our Language

ImageAn article in Aberdeen University’s new magazine, Scientia (page 16-17), describes the use of Natural Language Generation (NLG) such as in our “How was School today…?” project. In the collaboration project between Aberdeen and Dundee we used an area of NLG, Data-to-text, to generate stories that could be used by children with complex disabilities to talk to their parents and peers about their experiences at school.