Re: Refreshable Braille Display Help #msftaccessibility #NVAccess



Hmmm, where do we begin…

Typically, when users request support for a braille display, it is usually an existing product or a product that is about to be released to the general public. If we do get this request, NVDA developers would contact the product manufacturer and ask for protocol documentation so we can learn how the screen reader should communicate with the braille display.

A few questions:

  • Is your board an example of a braille display idea you are prototyping at this competition?
  • Is your board recognized by operating systems when you connect it to a computer i.e. shows up in Linux, Windows, and macOS as a hardware device?
  • Is your braille display board working with other screen readers such as Narrator in Windows, VoiceOver in macOS and iOS, Talkback in Android, Orca in Linux GUI environments and what not?


I advise taking the following steps:

  1. Try making sure your board is recognized by computers, specifically ones running Microsoft Windows (NVDA is a Windows application).
  2. Try making sure components of the board is working properly such as input and output modules, power, connectors and other user visible components.
  3. Make sure any input and output modules are working properly when connected to a computer system – try using hardware debuggers to make sure the computer can see what’s going on when you perform actions on the board.


Only after the braille display board is working properly should you consider letting NVDA talk to it (I assume the board is working properly, but just to make sure), and to do so, you need to define a protocol layer – communicating to NVDA what your braille display’s input module will do, and letting NVDA talk to the board and get things shown on the output module.





From: <> On Behalf Of just1brill@...
Sent: Monday, November 25, 2019 9:06 AM
Subject: [nvda] Refreshable Braille Display Help #msftaccessibility #NVAccess



We are a group of students entering our country's top science exhibition, doing our project on refreshable braile displays, as we were interested in the idea of making the computer more accessible to all. We came across NVDA and found out it was perfect for what we stood for and needed.

But, we are having trouble making our board compatible with NVDA and was wondering if anybody could guide us on how it could be done or if it can be done at all. I understand this may be quite a complex topic, especially over messaging, but even help on where to turn to for advice would be great. We understand that other displays have been made compatible also.

Any help at all would be greatly appreciated and would be extremely beneficial.


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