EdWord: a Talking Word Processor for People with Low Vision

The program I want to tell you about now is an interesting one, a free talking word processor. Although it may not be quite as polished or refined as some commercial alternatives, EdWord may be exactly what many individuals need. The simplicity of EdWord's interface, and the attention paid to accessibility make it worth a look.

EdWord is a basic word processor, without the full range of features and options found in other programs. It is a full function word processor with all the essential features one would expect. The developers have done a nice job of making menus and toolbars accessible. For individuals with low vision, the interface is clear, uncluttered and adjustable in terms of colour, contrast, size, etc. All menus, menu options, and toolbar icons speak their names as the cursor moves over them. Once EdWord is open, the talking tooltip feature extends to everything on the desktop.

EdWord can speak each character as it is typed or each word when the space bar is pressed. Once a word is typed, EdWord will speak it when clicked with the mouse. Unfortunately, Edword does not read sentences or selected text.

User manuals, in MS Word format, are available for EdWord and all associated programs. EdWord is available for Windows 98 and later. . EdWord is part of a suite of programs from UMIST at the University of Manchester and Sense, "the UK's leading organization for people who are deafblind or have associated disabilities.

Click this link to visit the Software page of the Deafblind Online website to learn more about EdWord: http://www.deafblindonline.co.uk/software.html.

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