New features in Edge will help dyslexics

In the latest update on Windows 10 there are some features built into Edge that will help dyslexics. The first is the browser can read aloud and not read out code. Also words are highlighted as spoken.

Text to speech is the no1 feature that most dyslexics ask for. So that has given a powerful  tool at no cost to the user. It should help Edge to be the browser of choice for Dyslexics.

aloud

Another useful feature is  making use of Learning Tools to make the browser a more useful learning tool. By analysing the text for its component grammar elements it allows users to see what makes good writing.

reading in edge

Disabling programs on Startup in Windows 10

Another annoying issue is when programs that are installed startup automatically on your desktop. There is a way to stop this and it is via the Task Manager:-

  1. Press Ctrl+Alt +Delete
  2. Task Manager
  3. Go to more details and to the StartUp TAB. You click on the program you want to disable from startup and click the disable action button at the bottom right of the TAB. The next time you start your computer it will not run those items.
  4. If you need to restart them repeat 1-3 but instead of disabling the program enable them. task manager

How to add a program to the startup on Windows 10

Occassionally I find a technology solution that can help make life easier for the disabled user. This enables a program to startup automatically when the computer is switched on. This is useful for speech recognition programs as well as communication programs. Beware though, making system changes can effect the running of your laptop. I take no responsibility if this goes wrong for you!

In Windows 10 it is more difficult to find startup than it was for Windows 7.

First , find the program you want to put into the startp folder

By creating a shortcut from the windows start menu and putting it on the desktop it should be possible to put this directly into startup via this method

1. Copy your shortcut from the desktop

2. Win+R

3. Type: shell:startup

4. Paste into the startup folder

Job done!

Here is a handy video to show you the process:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htkkZGik-Lk

Why is it so important?

In order for those with physical difficulties in their hands to say have their speech recognition load up to the desktop on startup. This makes their access much more functional.

SprintPlus

SprintPlus is a help for dyslexia and those who struggle with reading, spelling and writing. Using text to speech it makes the connection between speech and writing which I like. As a teacher of special needs I would often see the value of making speech relate to writing as it made more sense to a cognitively challenged child if reading related to their own experience rather than books that do not.

Try SprintPlus on a 2 month trial at:-

www.sprintplus.co.uk

DWP Report on Assistive Technology

The government have issued a report on the benefits of using Assistive Technology in the workplace. Apart from the obvious benefits in terms of access and equality AT is becoming more affordable and more widespread through the use of integrating AT into mainstream software and hardware producers. The danger is that we think free always is the way to go. The truth is it depends on the individual and the personal choices that people make as to AT being effective. This is a key element which is not addressed in this report in my opinion. The good points refer to up to date technologies being used so training and information sharing is vital. The report has findings which I fully endorse.

DWP Report on Assistive Technology