Re: File Explorer woes

Mani Iyer

Thank you Brian and Gene.  I am sorry I asked this question.


On Dec 6, 2021, at 2:17 PM, Brian Vogel <britechguy@...> wrote:

On Mon, Dec 6, 2021 at 01:53 PM, Gene wrote:
I don’t know where you can get good free instruction in Windows basics but what you are asking about fits into that category.
Indeed.  And material on Windows for Screen Readers is commonly and widely available.  YouTube has scads of videos (actually audio presentations, but the term videos is used for all YouTube media, because there is a video element, even if it's just a place holder graphic) on using specific screen readers with various Microsoft programs and with Windows components such as File Explorer itself.

Training materials from NVAccess are available at the NVAccess Shop Page.  I would presume that the NVDA Basic Training would have to cover certain aspects of Windows, but I have no idea as to what depth.  Gene NZ, the owner and maintainer of, has many tutorials covering a wide range of subjects, and it looks like some of them deal with Windows basics with a keyboard and screen reader (usually NVDA).

Gene is absolutely right that having training, preferably formal and carefully organized training, in how to use Windows when you are brand new to it is essential because it serves as the foundation for all else in the Windows ecosystem.

I do not know where Mani is located and what services may, or may not, be available to him or her (I'm guessing him) via something akin to what we have here in the Virginia Department for the Blind and the Visually-Impaired (DBVI) but if such exists its well worth seeing if training is available through them if it's something you need.  My typical job is private, one-on-one tutoring with individuals who need to learn how to use a screen reader after having lost their vision, but virtually all of them were computer users prior to having lost the ability to see, so teaching basic Windows concepts very seldom plays into the instruction.  It's generally presumed that they were proficient (for some definition of proficient) computer users in the past, and what the focus is on is learning to use a screen reader.

It's funny how this particular topic is the flip side of what I often deal with as far as field counselors, particularly brand new ones, go.  I'll often be asked if I can teach "just the screen reader" and I have to explain that there's not much one can teach about using a screen reader unless it's being used to access something else.  You may not need to actually teach a single thing about what it's being used to access, but you usually do, even if that's just all the keyboard shortcuts to replace all the prior functions that were "point and click.  Accessibility software has as its reason for being actually gaining access to something else, and you can't ignore whatever that something else may happen to be and focus solely on the screen reader itself when someone's new to a screen reader.

Once they have command of the screen reader, though, they should be able to recognize what are screen reader commands versus what are Windows commands versus what are commands for the application they happen to be using at that moment.  While all three will be in use in a back and forth manner when you use a computer, they are still separate things and knowing which is which makes life much easier when later questions occur, and allows you to isolate what it is you're having trouble with and want to ask about.

Brian - Windows 10, 64-Bit, Version 21H1, Build 19043  

The difference between a top-flight creative man and the hack is his ability to express powerful meanings indirectly.

         ~ Vance Packard


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