Re: The future of NVDA


Thank you.  I should clarify a point I made.  It is faster to skim a document by sight.  But straight reading or listening may be as fast for a blind person.  I haven't asked sighted people about this, but I generally listen at about 350 words per minute and I can listen without loss of comprehension, though its more taxing, at about 400 words per minute.  Others can listen at faster speeds, I gather, without loss of comprehension.  I don't know how taxing faster listening is for those who do so without comprehension loss.  I don't know what the average sighted person's speed is of reading a computer screen.  The statistic I've heard is that the average reading speed for a sighted person is about 300 words per minute. 
But the inefficiency is to try to skim using speech or Braille compared to sight and to edit as well.  I don't know how many blind people realize this, but a sighted person can review a document, find something that needs correction, such as a word to be changed or a phrase to be altered, click the mouse wherever he wants to make the change, and thus immediately move the cursor to that place.  That is much faster than listening to a document or skimming a document by speech and moving to the place, moving by line, if necessary,  then by word, then by character if the edit is not at the immediate beginning of a line or at the very end. 
I believe that Braille displays in general, have a feature that allows you to move the cursor to where you are reading and that would be much more efficient than speech so I won't compare Braille movement in editing to sighted people since I don't know enough about it. 

I wanted to clarify that straight reading can be done very efficiently by speech or by Braille if the person is good at fast listening or reading.  My other comments don't need to be changed.
And keep in mind that I'm discussing working from the keyboard and using a screen-reader for speech in the comments I modified.  My comments about using voice commands to do such things are unchanged.

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, June 01, 2018 10:16 AM
Subject: Re: [nvda] The future of NVDA

Hello Gene,
You are so correct, having been a sighted person, I agree, it is far quicker to read a document visually than to hear it read out, the eye can assimilate information far beyond the capabilities of the ear and far quicker.
You also explain vividly the nightmare of trying to edit  with voice commands.
I spent years learning to touch type, I learn from sighted friends and relatives that they mainly use one or two fingers to type onto a keyboard on a touch screen, progress?
Like most things, we are stuck with voice output to read things, as blind we don’t have much choice, so a mixture of technologies is the way to go, we use the things that suit our needs and leave others to do the same, I’ve said it before, Long live NVDA.
Best Regards, Jim.
From: Gene
Sent: Friday, June 01, 2018 11:43 AM
Subject: Re: [nvda] The future of NVDA
Your friend is so biased that his opinions about Window-eyes and JAWS are highly suspect.  And he so much wants something to be so that he extrapolates without considering very important factors.  Whatever happens to keyboards, some sort of ability for sighted people to do things on a screen in other means than speech will remain, touch screens, for example.  Consider some examples:
Consider reviewing a rough draft.  Which is faster?  A sighted person is not going to listen to an entire document being read, looking for alterations to make in a draft nor is he/she going to waste time telling the word processor to find the phrase, and continue speaking from the stop of the phrase until he says start to define the end of the phrase, then take some sort of action such as delete it.  If he wants to delete a phrase, what is the person going to do, move to a passage using speech, mark the start of the passage with speech, then mark the end of the passage with speech then say delete, then say insert and speak a new passage?  The same with copying and pasting from one document to another, 
And such operations are also far more efficient using a keyboard.  I should add that I haven't used programs that operate a computer with speech.  If I'm wrong, and people who use such programs know I am wrong, I await correction.  That's how things appear to me.
What about file management?  Consider using speech to tell a computer you want to delete fifteen noncontiguous files in a list of two hundred.  Consider how you might do it with speech as opposed to using a keyboard. 
And considerations of speed and efficiency are true when using the keyboard and a screen-reader as well.  I've mainly discussed sighted users because innovations are developed for sighted users. 
Speech will become increasingly popular and powerful.  It won't replace visual access and manipulation in computers. 
I don't use spread sheets but I expect those who do may point out how cumbersome it would be to use speech with a spread sheet to perform any somewhat complex series of operations with a screen-reader and some may want to comment on the visual comparison.. 
As for JAWS versus Window-eyes, I won't say much but it's not the fault of JAWS if the person was misled by his college advisor to learn a screen-reader that has always been a far second in terms of its use in business and institutions.  He should take his anger at FS, if he must spend so much time and energy being angry, and direct it where it belongs.  I could write paragraphs about why JAWS was dominant, some of it because it got started first in the DOS screen-reader arena, some of it because it built up all sorts of relationships with institutions, and some because it was better for more employment situations than Window-eyes.  How many years did Window-eyes refuse to use scripts and limit the functionality of the screen-reader in a stubborn attempt to distinguish itself from JAWS?  Finally, what did they do?  They used scripts, which they didn't call scripts, but apps.  They weren't apps, and language should be respected.  Words have meanings and you can't, as one of the carachters does in Through the Looking Glass, use any word to mean anything desired. 
But enough.  I'll leave the discussion to others from this point unless I have something additional to add.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, June 01, 2018 2:45 AM
Subject: Re: [nvda] The future of NVDA
voice commands, fine, but how does your friend check what he has ordered? just a leap of faith, or a sort of screen reader which tells him, think about it.
By his closing your friend is a Trekkie, [star trec fan]
Best Regards, Jim.
Sent: Friday, June 01, 2018 5:40 AM
Subject: [nvda] The future of NVDA

Hello NVDA community. It’s Sky. I wanted to ask you guys a question.  Will NVDA be incorporating voice commands in into the screen reader? Because a friend of mine has told me that in three years everything is going to be voice activated. Yes we have dictation bridge for Voice activation, but what my friend means is that in three years, the computers, etc. will all be done via Voice activation without a keyboard. Here is what he has to say.

From: bj colt [mailto:bjcolt@...]
Sent: Thursday, May 31, 2018 8:12 AM
To: Sky Mundell
Subject: Re: CSUN


Hi Sky,


I just received an email from my local supermarket. I do an on line shop there every week. From today I can order it via Alexa, Google home and other apps using voice only ordering.


I did say this is the way forward. With Amazon and Google competing, this voice activation is going to be the next huge thing in computing. I've said this for a while as you know. The next step is using actual programs/apps via voice activation. Just watch my friend. VFO is finished, on the way out. They won't be able to compete in an open market. Not as huge as this one. Just imagine my friend. At the moment I have my favorites in a shopping list. Think about the key strokes I need to use to get to them? Then additional items. I have to do a search of often up to 40 products with a similar name. arrowing down, tabbing down. Then adding them to my shopping basket. Going through the dates for delivery and times. Then all the key strokes in using my card details authorization process. All done with our voice. At least quarter of the time normally spent shopping This does spell the end of VFO.


Everything is going to be voice activated in the next 3 years. There isn't any other way for web developers to go.


Progress sometimes my friend is slow but when it starts, it is like a high speed jet aircraft. Nothing stands in it's way.


There will be some people who won't change. Or use both methods to carry out tasks. Now VFO have to utilize jws to act on voice commands. With Dug in Microsoft. I can see VFO being left thousands of miles behind. Then when they introduce pay monthly fees. The very fast extinction of jws and other products will come to a very sudden and dramatic halt. They may think they have the market share for programs relating of the blind. They don't any more and they are the ones who are blind and not us.


Live long and prosper, John


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