Fred’s Head from APH, a Blindness Blog

Fred’s Head, offered by the American Printing House for the Blind, contains tips, techniques, tutorials, in-depth articles, and resources for and by blind or visually impaired people. Our blog is named after the legendary Fred Gissoni, renowned for answering a seemingly infinite variety of questions on every aspect of blindness.

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Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Would you like to see a bigger cursor in your screen? What about a bigger computer keyboard?

With all the new features of modern computers it is always easy to enlarge or change the font and color of the text we see in our screen. But what about the cursor and other ICONS that are too small or almost impossible to see? This can create a problem, especially to people with visual impairments.

To assist visually impaired computer users, RJ Cooper has created the Biggy-Light: A piece of software that provides BIG, visible replacement cursors and other icon enhancements for both Mac and Windows environments.

The normal size of a cursor in the computer screen of a PC is usually 16x16 pixels. The RJ Cooper Biggy-Light software allows you to replace your regular cursor with a 32x32 or even 32x64 pixels cursor.

Biggy-Light also lets you choose big & bold replacements for several small, hard-to-see icons, such as the I-beam, the Wristwatch that appears in the Mac, or the hourglass that appears in Windows.

The designs are original and come in color. One example of the icon replacements is the hourglass: Biggy-Light turns this into a "Biggy coffee mug". Biggy-Light also increases the size of the double-headed arrows used by Windows, and the different versions (Mac and Windows) have other useful features.

In addition to "big cursors", RJ Cooper also has available "big keyboards". BigKeys keyboards are an alternative for those individuals with vision impairments, and those individuals with physical and/or cognitive disabilities.

All the keys measure 1-inch square, which is four times the normal size of those in a regular keyboard. There are different models and they come in color or black and white. The LX keyboard contains all essential characters. It is a 97 character keyset, and it is compatible with all major software packages.

For more information about BigKeys or a free demo version of the Biggy-Light software, contact:

RJ Cooper, Inc.
27601 Forbes Rd. Suite 39
Laguna Miguel, CA 92677
Toll Free: 800-752-6673
Phone: 949-582-2749
Fax: 949-582-3169

VisiKey Large Print Keyboards

VisiKey keyboards feature high contrast large print that is four times larger than standard keyboards. Customers span all age groups and range from the visually impaired to the average computer user.

The idea behind the keyboard is extremely simple: Larger lettering + high contrast = increased visibility for a more comfortable use. VisiKey's Enhanced Visibility Keyboard has filled the gap for the 50% of computer users that are not touch typists. VisiKey products offer:

  • HotKey Manager will allow users to further customize the 15 media keys to open any file or launch any program. Alternatively, if the user prefers, any or all buttons can be disabled.

  • The Visikey keyboard is 100% Macintosh compatible and programmable.

  • VisiKey keyboards are adopting a more traditional keyboard layout by standardizing the size of the enter key and increasing the size of the backspace key.

  • All plastics have been upgraded for a "heftier" feel, and extended product life. The "touch" of the keyboard has been enhanced to give you that quiet and firm "clickless" typing experience.

For more information, contact:

Jonah Senn
VisiKey, LLC
Toll Free: 866-683-2276
Phone: 423-265-9818, ext. 114

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