Topics

braille me display not quite ready


Josh Kennedy
 

Hi,

I also sent this to national braille press in the hope there will be a firmware fix real soon… Here is a quick review of braille me. I really like it. Sort of. My issues?

  1. BrailleMe emits a loud smoke-alarm type beep when turning on, shutting off, system errors, and battery low. It’s loud and will be a big distraction in class, church, business meetings, and so on. They have to add an option to turn off all beeps and tones emitted by braille me.
  2. The five problem characters. Dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6. And uppercase and lowercase letters. Braille me reads uppercase letters-only as it stands now. If it sees lowercase letters in its brl or brf files, it ignores them. Braille me expects uppercase. It also expects and read this carefully with your arrow keys. For the five dot combinations listed above, it currently expects to see: @^[]\ … again read with your arrows or turn on all punctuation in the screen reader of your choice because I wrote at sign and caret and some other symbols used to drive braille devices. Braille me expects those. But if it sees, `~{}| … again use all punctuation… and if it sees lowercase rather than uppercase letters it just shows empty cells. This is a problem. Also, lack of word wrap, no compress whitespace and multiple linefeeds to make reading on displays easier, move by page either when hitting a formfeed character or move back and forth by 1000 characters or a braille page, that has to be added as well. Along with ability to add and delete your own custom bookmarks to make studying easier. When using with NVDA, and expand word at the cursor to computer braille is checked, it cannot show capital letters due to only a six dot cell. It cannot show dot7. I propose having capital letters in computer braille, i.e. letters with dot7 or any dot7 combinations to blink up and down. Also no ability to input any kind of braille into the computer. This should be added. Other than that. It’s fine. Other than that I am quite impressed with it! Cursor routing works great.

Josh

 

 

Sent from Mail for Windows 10

 

 

 

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Buddy Brannan
 

Hey Josh,

Besides NBP, you should send this info to Innovision directly:
Innovision <customercare@...>

I’ve also pointed out the loud beep. It is very loud. Sorry they haven’t addressed that. So…the uppercase only is a problem inside files? I was alerted that filenames must be all uppercase, but hadn’t had any files to check that I felt like renaming. 


On Jun 22, 2018, at 7:42 AM, Josh Kennedy <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

Hi,
I also sent this to national braille press in the hope there will be a firmware fix real soon… Here is a quick review of braille me. I really like it. Sort of. My issues? 
  1. BrailleMe emits a loud smoke-alarm type beep when turning on, shutting off, system errors, and battery low. It’s loud and will be a big distraction in class, church, business meetings, and so on. They have to add an option to turn off all beeps and tones emitted by braille me.
  2. The five problem characters. Dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6. And uppercase and lowercase letters. Braille me reads uppercase letters-only as it stands now. If it sees lowercase letters in its brl or brf files, it ignores them. Braille me expects uppercase. It also expects and read this carefully with your arrow keys. For the five dot combinations listed above, it currently expects to see: @^[]\ … again read with your arrows or turn on all punctuation in the screen reader of your choice because I wrote at sign and caret and some other symbols used to drive braille devices. Braille me expects those. But if it sees, `~{}| … again use all punctuation… and if it sees lowercase rather than uppercase letters it just shows empty cells. This is a problem. Also, lack of word wrap, no compress whitespace and multiple linefeeds to make reading on displays easier, move by page either when hitting a formfeed character or move back and forth by 1000 characters or a braille page, that has to be added as well. Along with ability to add and delete your own custom bookmarks to make studying easier. When using with NVDA, and expand word at the cursor to computer braille is checked, it cannot show capital letters due to only a six dot cell. It cannot show dot7. I propose having capital letters in computer braille, i.e. letters with dot7 or any dot7 combinations to blink up and down. Also no ability to input any kind of braille into the computer. This should be added. Other than that. It’s fine. Other than that I am quite impressed with it! Cursor routing works great. 
Josh
 
 
Sent from Mail for Windows 10
 
 
 
Sent from Mail for Windows 10
 


erik burggraaf <erik@...>
 

I've read this a few times and I am seeing issues that could largely be fixed or customized in the firmware.

Do I interpret correctly that the hardware itself is well built and allowing for personal preference, generally comfortable to use?

Thanks,

Erik

On June 22, 2018 9:45:44 AM "Buddy Brannan" <buddy@...> wrote:

Hey Josh,

Besides NBP, you should send this info to Innovision directly:
Innovision <customercare@...>

I’ve also pointed out the loud beep. It is very loud. Sorry they haven’t addressed that. So…the uppercase only is a problem inside files? I was alerted that filenames must be all uppercase, but hadn’t had any files to check that I felt like renaming. 


On Jun 22, 2018, at 7:42 AM, Josh Kennedy <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

Hi,
I also sent this to national braille press in the hope there will be a firmware fix real soon… Here is a quick review of braille me. I really like it. Sort of. My issues? 
  1. BrailleMe emits a loud smoke-alarm type beep when turning on, shutting off, system errors, and battery low. It’s loud and will be a big distraction in class, church, business meetings, and so on. They have to add an option to turn off all beeps and tones emitted by braille me.
  2. The five problem characters. Dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6. And uppercase and lowercase letters. Braille me reads uppercase letters-only as it stands now. If it sees lowercase letters in its brl or brf files, it ignores them. Braille me expects uppercase. It also expects and read this carefully with your arrow keys. For the five dot combinations listed above, it currently expects to see: @^[]\ … again read with your arrows or turn on all punctuation in the screen reader of your choice because I wrote at sign and caret and some other symbols used to drive braille devices. Braille me expects those. But if it sees, `~{}| … again use all punctuation… and if it sees lowercase rather than uppercase letters it just shows empty cells. This is a problem. Also, lack of word wrap, no compress whitespace and multiple linefeeds to make reading on displays easier, move by page either when hitting a formfeed character or move back and forth by 1000 characters or a braille page, that has to be added as well. Along with ability to add and delete your own custom bookmarks to make studying easier. When using with NVDA, and expand word at the cursor to computer braille is checked, it cannot show capital letters due to only a six dot cell. It cannot show dot7. I propose having capital letters in computer braille, i.e. letters with dot7 or any dot7 combinations to blink up and down. Also no ability to input any kind of braille into the computer. This should be added. Other than that. It’s fine. Other than that I am quite impressed with it! Cursor routing works great. 
Josh
 
 
Sent from Mail for Windows 10
 
 
 
Sent from Mail for Windows 10
 


Buddy Brannan
 

Hi,

Yes, the hardware is all right. I had some concerns about it when I got my preproduction unit (battery rattling around loosely, easily fixed), but I understand they’ve fixed some of that stuff, and you get a carrying case now…I haven’t got that yet, I hope to be getting a replacement unit with the hardware issues and firmware updates addressed. Hopefully Josh can comment on the case. 

One other thing to note: charging is not via USB. In fact, there is no USB charging at all. Charging is via a dedicated charging socket using some sort of laptop power supply, 19 volts at a couple amps…I forget exactly. Anyway, charging is fast, being done in an hour, which should make up for any sort of inconvenience introduced by not being a USB charger. 

On Jun 22, 2018, at 10:27 AM, erik burggraaf <erik@...> wrote:

I've read this a few times and I am seeing issues that could largely be fixed or customized in the firmware.

Do I interpret correctly that the hardware itself is well built and allowing for personal preference, generally comfortable to use?

Thanks,

Erik

On June 22, 2018 9:45:44 AM "Buddy Brannan" <buddy@...> wrote:

Hey Josh,

Besides NBP, you should send this info to Innovision directly:
Innovision <customercare@...>

I’ve also pointed out the loud beep. It is very loud. Sorry they haven’t addressed that. So…the uppercase only is a problem inside files? I was alerted that filenames must be all uppercase, but hadn’t had any files to check that I felt like renaming. 


On Jun 22, 2018, at 7:42 AM, Josh Kennedy <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

Hi,
I also sent this to national braille press in the hope there will be a firmware fix real soon… Here is a quick review of braille me. I really like it. Sort of. My issues? 
  1. BrailleMe emits a loud smoke-alarm type beep when turning on, shutting off, system errors, and battery low. It’s loud and will be a big distraction in class, church, business meetings, and so on. They have to add an option to turn off all beeps and tones emitted by braille me.
  2. The five problem characters. Dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6. And uppercase and lowercase letters. Braille me reads uppercase letters-only as it stands now. If it sees lowercase letters in its brl or brf files, it ignores them. Braille me expects uppercase. It also expects and read this carefully with your arrow keys. For the five dot combinations listed above, it currently expects to see: @^[]\ … again read with your arrows or turn on all punctuation in the screen reader of your choice because I wrote at sign and caret and some other symbols used to drive braille devices. Braille me expects those. But if it sees, `~{}| … again use all punctuation… and if it sees lowercase rather than uppercase letters it just shows empty cells. This is a problem. Also, lack of word wrap, no compress whitespace and multiple linefeeds to make reading on displays easier, move by page either when hitting a formfeed character or move back and forth by 1000 characters or a braille page, that has to be added as well. Along with ability to add and delete your own custom bookmarks to make studying easier. When using with NVDA, and expand word at the cursor to computer braille is checked, it cannot show capital letters due to only a six dot cell. It cannot show dot7. I propose having capital letters in computer braille, i.e. letters with dot7 or any dot7 combinations to blink up and down. Also no ability to input any kind of braille into the computer. This should be added. Other than that. It’s fine. Other than that I am quite impressed with it! Cursor routing works great. 
Josh
 
 
Sent from Mail for Windows 10
 
 
 
Sent from Mail for Windows 10
 



Brian's Mail list account <bglists@...>
 

Blimey. Sounds a bit half finished to me.
So what is so special about it, el cheapo, one assumes?
Brian

bglists@...
Sent via blueyonder.
Please address personal E-mail to:-
briang1@..., putting 'Brian Gaff'
in the display name field.

----- Original Message -----
From: "Josh Kennedy" <joshknnd1982@...>
To: <nvda@groups.io>
Sent: Friday, June 22, 2018 12:42 PM
Subject: [nvda] braille me display not quite ready


Hi,
I also sent this to national braille press in the hope there will be a firmware fix real soon… Here is a quick review of braille me. I really like it. Sort of. My issues?
1. BrailleMe emits a loud smoke-alarm type beep when turning on, shutting off, system errors, and battery low. It’s loud and will be a big distraction in class, church, business meetings, and so on. They have to add an option to turn off all beeps and tones emitted by braille me.
2. The five problem characters. Dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6. And uppercase and lowercase letters. Braille me reads uppercase letters-only as it stands now. If it sees lowercase letters in its brl or brf files, it ignores them. Braille me expects uppercase. It also expects and read this carefully with your arrow keys. For the five dot combinations listed above, it currently expects to see: @^[]\ … again read with your arrows or turn on all punctuation in the screen reader of your choice because I wrote at sign and caret and some other symbols used to drive braille devices. Braille me expects those. But if it sees, `~{}| … again use all punctuation… and if it sees lowercase rather than uppercase letters it just shows empty cells. This is a problem. Also, lack of word wrap, no compress whitespace and multiple linefeeds to make reading on displays easier, move by page either when hitting a formfeed character or move back and forth by 1000 characters or a braille page, that has to be added as well. Along with ability to add and delete your own custom bookmarks to make studying easier. When using with NVDA, and expand word at the cursor to computer braille is checked, it cannot show capital letters due to only a six dot cell. It cannot show dot7. I propose having capital letters in computer braille, i.e. letters with dot7 or any dot7 combinations to blink up and down. Also no ability to input any kind of braille into the computer. This should be added. Other than that. It’s fine. Other than that I am quite impressed with it! Cursor routing works great.
Josh


Sent from Mail for Windows 10



Sent from Mail for Windows 10


Josh Kennedy
 

here are all the reasons why braille me is not ready. note, this is also a google doc that i shared with innovision themselves. 
Note: if blind, turn on all or total punctuation in your screen reader in order to read this document. 
1. the five braille problem characters and capitalized letters or uppercase letters.
a. Currently for showing dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6, braille me expects to see @ ^ [ ] \ ... But many translators use ` ~ { } |  ... Braille me should also recognise these characters... 
b. Braille me if it sees `~{}| it just shows empty cells or spaces. 
c. Braille me shows empty cells for lowercase letters. Braille me should recognise lowercase letters because many translators use these, such as Braille Blaster.
D. When searching for text if for example, you want to find the word Tower. Braille me should, to be sure it finds what you want, it should look for: ,t[]  ,T[]  ,t{}    and ,T{} … 
2. suppress or remove all white space. 
a. extra carriage returns, blank pages in braille ready or embosser ready files, and multiple blank spaces take up space on 20 cell displays. Add menu options that when turned on will suppress extra space. 
3. page navigation.
a. Braille me should have page movement commands. Move by page should be defined as: move back or forward 1000 (one thousand) characters or until a formfeed character is encountered.
4. custom Bookmarks.
a. Add ability to add, clear, and jump to your own custom bookmarks in files.
5. Add ability to write in computer braille or raw text or .txt. There is no dot 7 so to compensate for this, make all uppercase computer braille letters blink up and down. blink time should be configurable. 
a. NVDA when using expand to computer braille should also have capital letters blink up and down.
6. NVDA.
a. blinking capital letters.
b. ability to write in braille into the computer.
c. ability to control computer with braille display keyboard, commands for function keys, alt, control, and so on. 
7. display emulation.
a. to work with jaws and other screen readers and devices, add option to emulate a Baum vario ultra 20 display, or baum displays. this should work with both USB and bluetooth, and be HID compliant.
8. adding languages.
a. add ability and documentation for adding languages. example, I want braille me's interface to be in German, or Icelandic braille. and I want to read braille and write in German or Icelandic braille in the editor. Or in Chinese and Japanese braille if I wish.
9. turn off all beeps and audio tones and audio indications.
a. the beeps are very loud and will be distracting in class, business and church environments. Add a menu option to turn these off. All beeps and audio tones emitted by braille me should have the ability to be completely turned off. Whether braille me is being turned on, shut down, errors occur. if braille me restarts or has a big error... no beeps should be heard. Braille me should be completely silent when beeps are off. 
10. better documentation for editing date and time. I had to play with braille me and teach myself how to edit date and time. explain to the user, first use cursor router buttons to place the cursor on the first number, use navigation buttons to set the first number. use cursor router buttons to move to the next number and edit it until time and date are set the way you wish and then press enter or dot8. 
11. When braille me turns on it displays “menu”, 
And then you have to press “enter” before navigating. To save time, as soon as Braille Me turns on, let us navigate right away. Also add first letter navigation, f, for file manager, s for settings and all menu options that start with s. To edit time easier, let us enter time and date using the braille keyboard such as: “#20:30  using dropped numbers and dots 1-5-6 for colon… In other words, computer braille. 
12. Ability to create, rename, and delete folders.
1. Ability to cut, copy and paste files into and out of user-created folders.
13. Inconsistent dot height.
1. Many dots are higher and lower than other dots. Additionally, some dots are at a slight angle in relation to other dots. Also when blank cells are created such as for spaces, or the absence of dots in order to create letters, example: If I write the letter m, dots 1-3-4… dots 2, 5, 6 stick out above the faceplate perhaps by one or two millimeters. This makes reading difficult. Please if you have to re-design braille me to make this change, but make it so that if dots are not needed such as in the letter m, dots 1-3-4, where dots 2-5-6 are not needed, same goes for spaces, that they are completely below the faceplate so that unused dots are not even felt or touched by the user.



Fernando Apan
 

Hi. Thanks a lot for sharing this note. It will be very useful for those of us thinking on geting a braille me display...
Cheers.

Fernando Apan.

El 23/06/2018 a las 08:19 a.m., Josh Kennedy escribió:
here are all the reasons why braille me is not ready. note, this is also a google doc that i shared with innovision themselves. 
Note: if blind, turn on all or total punctuation in your screen reader in order to read this document. 
1. the five braille problem characters and capitalized letters or uppercase letters.
a. Currently for showing dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6, braille me expects to see @ ^ [ ] \ ... But many translators use ` ~ { } |  ... Braille me should also recognise these characters... 
b. Braille me if it sees `~{}| it just shows empty cells or spaces. 
c. Braille me shows empty cells for lowercase letters. Braille me should recognise lowercase letters because many translators use these, such as Braille Blaster.
D. When searching for text if for example, you want to find the word Tower. Braille me should, to be sure it finds what you want, it should look for: ,t[]  ,T[]  ,t{}    and ,T{} … 
2. suppress or remove all white space. 
a. extra carriage returns, blank pages in braille ready or embosser ready files, and multiple blank spaces take up space on 20 cell displays. Add menu options that when turned on will suppress extra space. 
3. page navigation.
a. Braille me should have page movement commands. Move by page should be defined as: move back or forward 1000 (one thousand) characters or until a formfeed character is encountered.
4. custom Bookmarks.
a. Add ability to add, clear, and jump to your own custom bookmarks in files.
5. Add ability to write in computer braille or raw text or .txt. There is no dot 7 so to compensate for this, make all uppercase computer braille letters blink up and down. blink time should be configurable. 
a. NVDA when using expand to computer braille should also have capital letters blink up and down.
6. NVDA.
a. blinking capital letters.
b. ability to write in braille into the computer.
c. ability to control computer with braille display keyboard, commands for function keys, alt, control, and so on. 
7. display emulation.
a. to work with jaws and other screen readers and devices, add option to emulate a Baum vario ultra 20 display, or baum displays. this should work with both USB and bluetooth, and be HID compliant.
8. adding languages.
a. add ability and documentation for adding languages. example, I want braille me's interface to be in German, or Icelandic braille. and I want to read braille and write in German or Icelandic braille in the editor. Or in Chinese and Japanese braille if I wish.
9. turn off all beeps and audio tones and audio indications.
a. the beeps are very loud and will be distracting in class, business and church environments. Add a menu option to turn these off. All beeps and audio tones emitted by braille me should have the ability to be completely turned off. Whether braille me is being turned on, shut down, errors occur. if braille me restarts or has a big error... no beeps should be heard. Braille me should be completely silent when beeps are off. 
10. better documentation for editing date and time. I had to play with braille me and teach myself how to edit date and time. explain to the user, first use cursor router buttons to place the cursor on the first number, use navigation buttons to set the first number. use cursor router buttons to move to the next number and edit it until time and date are set the way you wish and then press enter or dot8. 
11. When braille me turns on it displays “menu”, 
And then you have to press “enter” before navigating. To save time, as soon as Braille Me turns on, let us navigate right away. Also add first letter navigation, f, for file manager, s for settings and all menu options that start with s. To edit time easier, let us enter time and date using the braille keyboard such as: “#20:30  using dropped numbers and dots 1-5-6 for colon… In other words, computer braille. 
12. Ability to create, rename, and delete folders.
1. Ability to cut, copy and paste files into and out of user-created folders.
13. Inconsistent dot height.
1. Many dots are higher and lower than other dots. Additionally, some dots are at a slight angle in relation to other dots. Also when blank cells are created such as for spaces, or the absence of dots in order to create letters, example: If I write the letter m, dots 1-3-4… dots 2, 5, 6 stick out above the faceplate perhaps by one or two millimeters. This makes reading difficult. Please if you have to re-design braille me to make this change, but make it so that if dots are not needed such as in the letter m, dots 1-3-4, where dots 2-5-6 are not needed, same goes for spaces, that they are completely below the faceplate so that unused dots are not even felt or touched by the user.




erik burggraaf <erik@...>
 

Hello, I enjoyed reading your comments, and I agree with a lot of what you had to say. However, I disagree with your assertion that Braille me is quote not ready quote. based on your comments, the only potential showstopper that I see is the fact that some of the dots do not go all the way down below the faceplate. I would be interested to know how many Braille me units you tested, and whether this issue appears on any other units. if anybody else has tested a braille me, I hope you will chime in and let me know. if you were saying that batteries and charging devices were catching fire, ports were collapsing, or the device was particularly susceptible to damage by dropping, then I would say maybe we need to go back to the drawing board here. However, most of the issues are software and firmware related. Many of these things can be tweaked in the context of the current device.

It's a great rundown of potential bugs, and  feature suggestions. However, I seriously doubt that all users need access to all of the features you specified.  Not all users need access to 25 different languages for example. many languages will not be considered for addition, until the countries that predominantly use those languages consider adopting Braille me. language switching on the Fly is also something that can and should get better over time.

support for entering text and using modifier Keys is important to me, but may or may not be important to somebody else.

It seems to me that you got really excited about a great new device, and created some unnecessarily and perhaps unreasonably high expectations for what it could do, especially in a first release. I don't know how well the Braille me stacks up to the orbit in all of the areas you specified for example. However, the orbit is 2 years behind production, and almost no one can get their hands on it. to me, that indicates that something about the orbit or its processes is quoteaccess technology world. We know they will put out great Hardware with Hokie software, and then make software improvements catch-as-catch-can. But we know those improvements will come.by comparison, I recently did a customer training on a braille sense Polaris for work. the only fully functioning app in the Braille sense Polaris right now as far as I'm concerned is the word processor. However, even the word processor is limited for example, it is not currently possible to print from the word processor without installing a third party app. the rest of the office apps that come with Polaris sweet are read-only apps, which basically convert spreadsheets and slideshows into HTML format with no formatting, and allow a user to read the information. the Wi-Fi utility that comes with the sweet does not support connecting to WPA2 Enterprise networks, and such corporate networks need to be connected through Android stock Wi-Fi utility, which in the Polaris, has some minor accessibility issues. Browsing websites with the on-suite browser app is extremely barebones. it does not currently support navigating by headings, tables, lists, and other HTML attributes. the Polaris supports installing third-party synthesizers, however, third-party synthesizers can only be activated and used in the stock Android outside of the proprietary application sweet. so, as much as I like the hardware in the Braille sense Polaris, when I think of the functionality I get from my HTC phone connected to a braille Edge, versus what I get from the firmware in the Polaris, I cannot help being extremely disappointed, especially considering the difference in price. Does that mean the Braille sense Polaris is not ready? Well, in my mind, yes I think it does. However, the customer I trained absolutely loved it. despite the high price and the extreme limitations, it does everything she wanted it to do, and it does so very well. Should GW micro have waited until they had a fully functioning set of onsweet apps before releasing the Polaris? Yes, in my opinion they should. However, we have a happy customer now, and the product is generating income for the company, which can hopefully be used to justify further feature improvements down the road.

Hims is a known quantity.  We know they consistantly put out great hardware with hokie software and make substantial improvements over time.  Innovision is an unknown.  We don't know what to expect, although they have been very responsive to me personally despite the fact that I haven't been able to go forward.  I completely understand your disappointment, but I suggest patience as this is a first release of a new product and is not going to have everything all at once.  I believe innovision is able to fulfill orders at this point, which is more than the cometition can say.  Others on list are reporting that early hardware issues are being addressed, and generally I have not heard evidence that the company acted in bad faith other than one third hand complaint from some one high up in a blindness organisation with a vested interest in a direct competeter product.

So all in all, I think based on what you wrote, the assertion of not ready gives an entirely false impression while your document conveys worth while information. 

Best,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 9:20:17 AM "Josh Kennedy" <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

here are all the reasons why braille me is not ready. note, this is also a google doc that i shared with innovision themselves. 
Note: if blind, turn on all or total punctuation in your screen reader in order to read this document. 
1. the five braille problem characters and capitalized letters or uppercase letters.
a. Currently for showing dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6, braille me expects to see @ ^ [ ] \ ... But many translators use ` ~ { } |  ... Braille me should also recognise these characters... 
b. Braille me if it sees `~{}| it just shows empty cells or spaces. 
c. Braille me shows empty cells for lowercase letters. Braille me should recognise lowercase letters because many translators use these, such as Braille Blaster.
D. When searching for text if for example, you want to find the word Tower. Braille me should, to be sure it finds what you want, it should look for: ,t[]  ,T[]  ,t{}    and ,T{} … 
2. suppress or remove all white space. 
a. extra carriage returns, blank pages in braille ready or embosser ready files, and multiple blank spaces take up space on 20 cell displays. Add menu options that when turned on will suppress extra space. 
3. page navigation.
a. Braille me should have page movement commands. Move by page should be defined as: move back or forward 1000 (one thousand) characters or until a formfeed character is encountered.
4. custom Bookmarks.
a. Add ability to add, clear, and jump to your own custom bookmarks in files.
5. Add ability to write in computer braille or raw text or .txt. There is no dot 7 so to compensate for this, make all uppercase computer braille letters blink up and down. blink time should be configurable. 
a. NVDA when using expand to computer braille should also have capital letters blink up and down.
6. NVDA.
a. blinking capital letters.
b. ability to write in braille into the computer.
c. ability to control computer with braille display keyboard, commands for function keys, alt, control, and so on. 
7. display emulation.
a. to work with jaws and other screen readers and devices, add option to emulate a Baum vario ultra 20 display, or baum displays. this should work with both USB and bluetooth, and be HID compliant.
8. adding languages.
a. add ability and documentation for adding languages. example, I want braille me's interface to be in German, or Icelandic braille. and I want to read braille and write in German or Icelandic braille in the editor. Or in Chinese and Japanese braille if I wish.
9. turn off all beeps and audio tones and audio indications.
a. the beeps are very loud and will be distracting in class, business and church environments. Add a menu option to turn these off. All beeps and audio tones emitted by braille me should have the ability to be completely turned off. Whether braille me is being turned on, shut down, errors occur. if braille me restarts or has a big error... no beeps should be heard. Braille me should be completely silent when beeps are off. 
10. better documentation for editing date and time. I had to play with braille me and teach myself how to edit date and time. explain to the user, first use cursor router buttons to place the cursor on the first number, use navigation buttons to set the first number. use cursor router buttons to move to the next number and edit it until time and date are set the way you wish and then press enter or dot8. 
11. When braille me turns on it displays “menu”, 
And then you have to press “enter” before navigating. To save time, as soon as Braille Me turns on, let us navigate right away. Also add first letter navigation, f, for file manager, s for settings and all menu options that start with s. To edit time easier, let us enter time and date using the braille keyboard such as: “#20:30  using dropped numbers and dots 1-5-6 for colon… In other words, computer braille. 
12. Ability to create, rename, and delete folders.
1. Ability to cut, copy and paste files into and out of user-created folders.
13. Inconsistent dot height.
1. Many dots are higher and lower than other dots. Additionally, some dots are at a slight angle in relation to other dots. Also when blank cells are created such as for spaces, or the absence of dots in order to create letters, example: If I write the letter m, dots 1-3-4… dots 2, 5, 6 stick out above the faceplate perhaps by one or two millimeters. This makes reading difficult. Please if you have to re-design braille me to make this change, but make it so that if dots are not needed such as in the letter m, dots 1-3-4, where dots 2-5-6 are not needed, same goes for spaces, that they are completely below the faceplate so that unused dots are not even felt or touched by the user.



Buddy Brannan
 

Hi Erik,

Good points, all. 

My preproduction unit, awaiting delivery for replacement at NBP, had just one stuck dot, a dot 4 on sell 15, or something like that. That dot would come up if you tilted the unit upside down, so there was clearly a small mechanical fault. I’m confident that the hardware will be fine, and firmware will follow on as well, especially with backing from NBP and others. While Orbit makes very nice braille, the delays in unit availability are discouraging. And my Orbit has, I think, developed a couple stuck dots, so need to work that out with APH before too long. 

Regardless, to have two low-cost braille options is phenomenal. If you had told me 10 years ago this would happen,’I’d have been hopeful but frankly skeptical. Besides the issues you mention below, I think it’s important to remember what these devices are, and also what they are not. They’re low-cost ways to get braille into more hands, at minimal cost, and with basic though useful functionality. Extras are just gravy. Or icing on the cake, but not gravy on the cake, because that would be gross. 

On Jun 23, 2018, at 11:39 AM, erik burggraaf <erik@...> wrote:

Hello, I enjoyed reading your comments, and I agree with a lot of what you had to say. However, I disagree with your assertion that Braille me is quote not ready quote. based on your comments, the only potential showstopper that I see is the fact that some of the dots do not go all the way down below the faceplate. I would be interested to know how many Braille me units you tested, and whether this issue appears on any other units. if anybody else has tested a braille me, I hope you will chime in and let me know. if you were saying that batteries and charging devices were catching fire, ports were collapsing, or the device was particularly susceptible to damage by dropping, then I would say maybe we need to go back to the drawing board here. However, most of the issues are software and firmware related. Many of these things can be tweaked in the context of the current device.

It's a great rundown of potential bugs, and  feature suggestions. However, I seriously doubt that all users need access to all of the features you specified.  Not all users need access to 25 different languages for example. many languages will not be considered for addition, until the countries that predominantly use those languages consider adopting Braille me. language switching on the Fly is also something that can and should get better over time.

support for entering text and using modifier Keys is important to me, but may or may not be important to somebody else.

It seems to me that you got really excited about a great new device, and created some unnecessarily and perhaps unreasonably high expectations for what it could do, especially in a first release. I don't know how well the Braille me stacks up to the orbit in all of the areas you specified for example. However, the orbit is 2 years behind production, and almost no one can get their hands on it. to me, that indicates that something about the orbit or its processes is quoteaccess technology world. We know they will put out great Hardware with Hokie software, and then make software improvements catch-as-catch-can. But we know those improvements will come.by comparison, I recently did a customer training on a braille sense Polaris for work. the only fully functioning app in the Braille sense Polaris right now as far as I'm concerned is the word processor. However, even the word processor is limited for example, it is not currently possible to print from the word processor without installing a third party app. the rest of the office apps that come with Polaris sweet are read-only apps, which basically convert spreadsheets and slideshows into HTML format with no formatting, and allow a user to read the information. the Wi-Fi utility that comes with the sweet does not support connecting to WPA2 Enterprise networks, and such corporate networks need to be connected through Android stock Wi-Fi utility, which in the Polaris, has some minor accessibility issues. Browsing websites with the on-suite browser app is extremely barebones. it does not currently support navigating by headings, tables, lists, and other HTML attributes. the Polaris supports installing third-party synthesizers, however, third-party synthesizers can only be activated and used in the stock Android outside of the proprietary application sweet. so, as much as I like the hardware in the Braille sense Polaris, when I think of the functionality I get from my HTC phone connected to a braille Edge, versus what I get from the firmware in the Polaris, I cannot help being extremely disappointed, especially considering the difference in price. Does that mean the Braille sense Polaris is not ready? Well, in my mind, yes I think it does. However, the customer I trained absolutely loved it. despite the high price and the extreme limitations, it does everything she wanted it to do, and it does so very well. Should GW micro have waited until they had a fully functioning set of onsweet apps before releasing the Polaris? Yes, in my opinion they should. However, we have a happy customer now, and the product is generating income for the company, which can hopefully be used to justify further feature improvements down the road.

Hims is a known quantity.  We know they consistantly put out great hardware with hokie software and make substantial improvements over time.  Innovision is an unknown.  We don't know what to expect, although they have been very responsive to me personally despite the fact that I haven't been able to go forward.  I completely understand your disappointment, but I suggest patience as this is a first release of a new product and is not going to have everything all at once.  I believe innovision is able to fulfill orders at this point, which is more than the cometition can say.  Others on list are reporting that early hardware issues are being addressed, and generally I have not heard evidence that the company acted in bad faith other than one third hand complaint from some one high up in a blindness organisation with a vested interest in a direct competeter product.

So all in all, I think based on what you wrote, the assertion of not ready gives an entirely false impression while your document conveys worth while information. 

Best,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 9:20:17 AM "Josh Kennedy" <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

here are all the reasons why braille me is not ready. note, this is also a google doc that i shared with innovision themselves. 
Note: if blind, turn on all or total punctuation in your screen reader in order to read this document. 
1. the five braille problem characters and capitalized letters or uppercase letters.
a. Currently for showing dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6, braille me expects to see @ ^ [ ] \ ... But many translators use ` ~ { } |  ... Braille me should also recognise these characters... 
b. Braille me if it sees `~{}| it just shows empty cells or spaces. 
c. Braille me shows empty cells for lowercase letters. Braille me should recognise lowercase letters because many translators use these, such as Braille Blaster.
D. When searching for text if for example, you want to find the word Tower. Braille me should, to be sure it finds what you want, it should look for: ,t[]  ,T[]  ,t{}    and ,T{} … 
2. suppress or remove all white space. 
a. extra carriage returns, blank pages in braille ready or embosser ready files, and multiple blank spaces take up space on 20 cell displays. Add menu options that when turned on will suppress extra space. 
3. page navigation.
a. Braille me should have page movement commands. Move by page should be defined as: move back or forward 1000 (one thousand) characters or until a formfeed character is encountered.
4. custom Bookmarks.
a. Add ability to add, clear, and jump to your own custom bookmarks in files.
5. Add ability to write in computer braille or raw text or .txt. There is no dot 7 so to compensate for this, make all uppercase computer braille letters blink up and down. blink time should be configurable. 
a. NVDA when using expand to computer braille should also have capital letters blink up and down.
6. NVDA.
a. blinking capital letters.
b. ability to write in braille into the computer.
c. ability to control computer with braille display keyboard, commands for function keys, alt, control, and so on. 
7. display emulation.
a. to work with jaws and other screen readers and devices, add option to emulate a Baum vario ultra 20 display, or baum displays. this should work with both USB and bluetooth, and be HID compliant.
8. adding languages.
a. add ability and documentation for adding languages. example, I want braille me's interface to be in German, or Icelandic braille. and I want to read braille and write in German or Icelandic braille in the editor. Or in Chinese and Japanese braille if I wish.
9. turn off all beeps and audio tones and audio indications.
a. the beeps are very loud and will be distracting in class, business and church environments. Add a menu option to turn these off. All beeps and audio tones emitted by braille me should have the ability to be completely turned off. Whether braille me is being turned on, shut down, errors occur. if braille me restarts or has a big error... no beeps should be heard. Braille me should be completely silent when beeps are off. 
10. better documentation for editing date and time. I had to play with braille me and teach myself how to edit date and time. explain to the user, first use cursor router buttons to place the cursor on the first number, use navigation buttons to set the first number. use cursor router buttons to move to the next number and edit it until time and date are set the way you wish and then press enter or dot8. 
11. When braille me turns on it displays “menu”, 
And then you have to press “enter” before navigating. To save time, as soon as Braille Me turns on, let us navigate right away. Also add first letter navigation, f, for file manager, s for settings and all menu options that start with s. To edit time easier, let us enter time and date using the braille keyboard such as: “#20:30  using dropped numbers and dots 1-5-6 for colon… In other words, computer braille. 
12. Ability to create, rename, and delete folders.
1. Ability to cut, copy and paste files into and out of user-created folders.
13. Inconsistent dot height.
1. Many dots are higher and lower than other dots. Additionally, some dots are at a slight angle in relation to other dots. Also when blank cells are created such as for spaces, or the absence of dots in order to create letters, example: If I write the letter m, dots 1-3-4… dots 2, 5, 6 stick out above the faceplate perhaps by one or two millimeters. This makes reading difficult. Please if you have to re-design braille me to make this change, but make it so that if dots are not needed such as in the letter m, dots 1-3-4, where dots 2-5-6 are not needed, same goes for spaces, that they are completely below the faceplate so that unused dots are not even felt or touched by the user.




erik burggraaf <erik@...>
 

Hi Buddy,

Did you observe this item Josh mentioned about unused dots being slightly tactile above the faceplate while reading braille?

Just wait til we have a brailleme and an orbit that support 150 languages, require two hours of training to guide users through their initial tour of the settings panel, and can survive being run over by a boldozer.

I wouldn't want gravy on cake, but why not gravy on meatloaf followed by icing on cake?  We deserve it don't we?

Have fun,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 12:46:43 PM "Buddy Brannan" <buddy@...> wrote:

Hi Erik,

Good points, all. 

My preproduction unit, awaiting delivery for replacement at NBP, had just one stuck dot, a dot 4 on sell 15, or something like that. That dot would come up if you tilted the unit upside down, so there was clearly a small mechanical fault. I’m confident that the hardware will be fine, and firmware will follow on as well, especially with backing from NBP and others. While Orbit makes very nice braille, the delays in unit availability are discouraging. And my Orbit has, I think, developed a couple stuck dots, so need to work that out with APH before too long. 

Regardless, to have two low-cost braille options is phenomenal. If you had told me 10 years ago this would happen,’I’d have been hopeful but frankly skeptical. Besides the issues you mention below, I think it’s important to remember what these devices are, and also what they are not. They’re low-cost ways to get braille into more hands, at minimal cost, and with basic though useful functionality. Extras are just gravy. Or icing on the cake, but not gravy on the cake, because that would be gross. 

On Jun 23, 2018, at 11:39 AM, erik burggraaf <erik@...> wrote:

Hello, I enjoyed reading your comments, and I agree with a lot of what you had to say. However, I disagree with your assertion that Braille me is quote not ready quote. based on your comments, the only potential showstopper that I see is the fact that some of the dots do not go all the way down below the faceplate. I would be interested to know how many Braille me units you tested, and whether this issue appears on any other units. if anybody else has tested a braille me, I hope you will chime in and let me know. if you were saying that batteries and charging devices were catching fire, ports were collapsing, or the device was particularly susceptible to damage by dropping, then I would say maybe we need to go back to the drawing board here. However, most of the issues are software and firmware related. Many of these things can be tweaked in the context of the current device.

It's a great rundown of potential bugs, and  feature suggestions. However, I seriously doubt that all users need access to all of the features you specified.  Not all users need access to 25 different languages for example. many languages will not be considered for addition, until the countries that predominantly use those languages consider adopting Braille me. language switching on the Fly is also something that can and should get better over time.

support for entering text and using modifier Keys is important to me, but may or may not be important to somebody else.

It seems to me that you got really excited about a great new device, and created some unnecessarily and perhaps unreasonably high expectations for what it could do, especially in a first release. I don't know how well the Braille me stacks up to the orbit in all of the areas you specified for example. However, the orbit is 2 years behind production, and almost no one can get their hands on it. to me, that indicates that something about the orbit or its processes is quoteaccess technology world. We know they will put out great Hardware with Hokie software, and then make software improvements catch-as-catch-can. But we know those improvements will come.by comparison, I recently did a customer training on a braille sense Polaris for work. the only fully functioning app in the Braille sense Polaris right now as far as I'm concerned is the word processor. However, even the word processor is limited for example, it is not currently possible to print from the word processor without installing a third party app. the rest of the office apps that come with Polaris sweet are read-only apps, which basically convert spreadsheets and slideshows into HTML format with no formatting, and allow a user to read the information. the Wi-Fi utility that comes with the sweet does not support connecting to WPA2 Enterprise networks, and such corporate networks need to be connected through Android stock Wi-Fi utility, which in the Polaris, has some minor accessibility issues. Browsing websites with the on-suite browser app is extremely barebones. it does not currently support navigating by headings, tables, lists, and other HTML attributes. the Polaris supports installing third-party synthesizers, however, third-party synthesizers can only be activated and used in the stock Android outside of the proprietary application sweet. so, as much as I like the hardware in the Braille sense Polaris, when I think of the functionality I get from my HTC phone connected to a braille Edge, versus what I get from the firmware in the Polaris, I cannot help being extremely disappointed, especially considering the difference in price. Does that mean the Braille sense Polaris is not ready? Well, in my mind, yes I think it does. However, the customer I trained absolutely loved it. despite the high price and the extreme limitations, it does everything she wanted it to do, and it does so very well. Should GW micro have waited until they had a fully functioning set of onsweet apps before releasing the Polaris? Yes, in my opinion they should. However, we have a happy customer now, and the product is generating income for the company, which can hopefully be used to justify further feature improvements down the road.

Hims is a known quantity.  We know they consistantly put out great hardware with hokie software and make substantial improvements over time.  Innovision is an unknown.  We don't know what to expect, although they have been very responsive to me personally despite the fact that I haven't been able to go forward.  I completely understand your disappointment, but I suggest patience as this is a first release of a new product and is not going to have everything all at once.  I believe innovision is able to fulfill orders at this point, which is more than the cometition can say.  Others on list are reporting that early hardware issues are being addressed, and generally I have not heard evidence that the company acted in bad faith other than one third hand complaint from some one high up in a blindness organisation with a vested interest in a direct competeter product.

So all in all, I think based on what you wrote, the assertion of not ready gives an entirely false impression while your document conveys worth while information. 

Best,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 9:20:17 AM "Josh Kennedy" <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

here are all the reasons why braille me is not ready. note, this is also a google doc that i shared with innovision themselves. 
Note: if blind, turn on all or total punctuation in your screen reader in order to read this document. 
1. the five braille problem characters and capitalized letters or uppercase letters.
a. Currently for showing dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6, braille me expects to see @ ^ [ ] \ ... But many translators use ` ~ { } |  ... Braille me should also recognise these characters... 
b. Braille me if it sees `~{}| it just shows empty cells or spaces. 
c. Braille me shows empty cells for lowercase letters. Braille me should recognise lowercase letters because many translators use these, such as Braille Blaster.
D. When searching for text if for example, you want to find the word Tower. Braille me should, to be sure it finds what you want, it should look for: ,t[]  ,T[]  ,t{}    and ,T{} … 
2. suppress or remove all white space. 
a. extra carriage returns, blank pages in braille ready or embosser ready files, and multiple blank spaces take up space on 20 cell displays. Add menu options that when turned on will suppress extra space. 
3. page navigation.
a. Braille me should have page movement commands. Move by page should be defined as: move back or forward 1000 (one thousand) characters or until a formfeed character is encountered.
4. custom Bookmarks.
a. Add ability to add, clear, and jump to your own custom bookmarks in files.
5. Add ability to write in computer braille or raw text or .txt. There is no dot 7 so to compensate for this, make all uppercase computer braille letters blink up and down. blink time should be configurable. 
a. NVDA when using expand to computer braille should also have capital letters blink up and down.
6. NVDA.
a. blinking capital letters.
b. ability to write in braille into the computer.
c. ability to control computer with braille display keyboard, commands for function keys, alt, control, and so on. 
7. display emulation.
a. to work with jaws and other screen readers and devices, add option to emulate a Baum vario ultra 20 display, or baum displays. this should work with both USB and bluetooth, and be HID compliant.
8. adding languages.
a. add ability and documentation for adding languages. example, I want braille me's interface to be in German, or Icelandic braille. and I want to read braille and write in German or Icelandic braille in the editor. Or in Chinese and Japanese braille if I wish.
9. turn off all beeps and audio tones and audio indications.
a. the beeps are very loud and will be distracting in class, business and church environments. Add a menu option to turn these off. All beeps and audio tones emitted by braille me should have the ability to be completely turned off. Whether braille me is being turned on, shut down, errors occur. if braille me restarts or has a big error... no beeps should be heard. Braille me should be completely silent when beeps are off. 
10. better documentation for editing date and time. I had to play with braille me and teach myself how to edit date and time. explain to the user, first use cursor router buttons to place the cursor on the first number, use navigation buttons to set the first number. use cursor router buttons to move to the next number and edit it until time and date are set the way you wish and then press enter or dot8. 
11. When braille me turns on it displays “menu”, 
And then you have to press “enter” before navigating. To save time, as soon as Braille Me turns on, let us navigate right away. Also add first letter navigation, f, for file manager, s for settings and all menu options that start with s. To edit time easier, let us enter time and date using the braille keyboard such as: “#20:30  using dropped numbers and dots 1-5-6 for colon… In other words, computer braille. 
12. Ability to create, rename, and delete folders.
1. Ability to cut, copy and paste files into and out of user-created folders.
13. Inconsistent dot height.
1. Many dots are higher and lower than other dots. Additionally, some dots are at a slight angle in relation to other dots. Also when blank cells are created such as for spaces, or the absence of dots in order to create letters, example: If I write the letter m, dots 1-3-4… dots 2, 5, 6 stick out above the faceplate perhaps by one or two millimeters. This makes reading difficult. Please if you have to re-design braille me to make this change, but make it so that if dots are not needed such as in the letter m, dots 1-3-4, where dots 2-5-6 are not needed, same goes for spaces, that they are completely below the faceplate so that unused dots are not even felt or touched by the user.




Buddy Brannan
 

Howdy Erik,

Gravy on meat loaf followed by icing on cake? Sounds like a pretty good plan to me! 

I didn’t notice any such anomaly with my display. In fact, all the dots went down nicely. While there were some dots that were slightly lower than others, these were likely within tolerances and not a huge deal. The only dot that I had trouble with was, as I said, the one dot 4 that wouldn’t come up on its own. By contrast, my Orbit was working great for several months, but one trip in a carryon bag to Minnesota and dot 6 on cell 7 is stuck down. And not long after coming home, two dit 6’s, on cells 1 and 3 respectively, are stuck in the up position. Definitely worth a service call, methinks. 

In any case, once all the little glitches get ironed out, I do believe both displays will be viable options. 

—Buddy

On Jun 23, 2018, at 3:26 PM, erik burggraaf <erik@...> wrote:

Hi Buddy,

Did you observe this item Josh mentioned about unused dots being slightly tactile above the faceplate while reading braille?

Just wait til we have a brailleme and an orbit that support 150 languages, require two hours of training to guide users through their initial tour of the settings panel, and can survive being run over by a boldozer.

I wouldn't want gravy on cake, but why not gravy on meatloaf followed by icing on cake?  We deserve it don't we?

Have fun,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 12:46:43 PM "Buddy Brannan" <buddy@...> wrote:

Hi Erik,

Good points, all. 

My preproduction unit, awaiting delivery for replacement at NBP, had just one stuck dot, a dot 4 on sell 15, or something like that. That dot would come up if you tilted the unit upside down, so there was clearly a small mechanical fault. I’m confident that the hardware will be fine, and firmware will follow on as well, especially with backing from NBP and others. While Orbit makes very nice braille, the delays in unit availability are discouraging. And my Orbit has, I think, developed a couple stuck dots, so need to work that out with APH before too long. 

Regardless, to have two low-cost braille options is phenomenal. If you had told me 10 years ago this would happen,’I’d have been hopeful but frankly skeptical. Besides the issues you mention below, I think it’s important to remember what these devices are, and also what they are not. They’re low-cost ways to get braille into more hands, at minimal cost, and with basic though useful functionality. Extras are just gravy. Or icing on the cake, but not gravy on the cake, because that would be gross. 

On Jun 23, 2018, at 11:39 AM, erik burggraaf <erik@...> wrote:

Hello, I enjoyed reading your comments, and I agree with a lot of what you had to say. However, I disagree with your assertion that Braille me is quote not ready quote. based on your comments, the only potential showstopper that I see is the fact that some of the dots do not go all the way down below the faceplate. I would be interested to know how many Braille me units you tested, and whether this issue appears on any other units. if anybody else has tested a braille me, I hope you will chime in and let me know. if you were saying that batteries and charging devices were catching fire, ports were collapsing, or the device was particularly susceptible to damage by dropping, then I would say maybe we need to go back to the drawing board here. However, most of the issues are software and firmware related. Many of these things can be tweaked in the context of the current device.

It's a great rundown of potential bugs, and  feature suggestions. However, I seriously doubt that all users need access to all of the features you specified.  Not all users need access to 25 different languages for example. many languages will not be considered for addition, until the countries that predominantly use those languages consider adopting Braille me. language switching on the Fly is also something that can and should get better over time.

support for entering text and using modifier Keys is important to me, but may or may not be important to somebody else.

It seems to me that you got really excited about a great new device, and created some unnecessarily and perhaps unreasonably high expectations for what it could do, especially in a first release. I don't know how well the Braille me stacks up to the orbit in all of the areas you specified for example. However, the orbit is 2 years behind production, and almost no one can get their hands on it. to me, that indicates that something about the orbit or its processes is quoteaccess technology world. We know they will put out great Hardware with Hokie software, and then make software improvements catch-as-catch-can. But we know those improvements will come.by comparison, I recently did a customer training on a braille sense Polaris for work. the only fully functioning app in the Braille sense Polaris right now as far as I'm concerned is the word processor. However, even the word processor is limited for example, it is not currently possible to print from the word processor without installing a third party app. the rest of the office apps that come with Polaris sweet are read-only apps, which basically convert spreadsheets and slideshows into HTML format with no formatting, and allow a user to read the information. the Wi-Fi utility that comes with the sweet does not support connecting to WPA2 Enterprise networks, and such corporate networks need to be connected through Android stock Wi-Fi utility, which in the Polaris, has some minor accessibility issues. Browsing websites with the on-suite browser app is extremely barebones. it does not currently support navigating by headings, tables, lists, and other HTML attributes. the Polaris supports installing third-party synthesizers, however, third-party synthesizers can only be activated and used in the stock Android outside of the proprietary application sweet. so, as much as I like the hardware in the Braille sense Polaris, when I think of the functionality I get from my HTC phone connected to a braille Edge, versus what I get from the firmware in the Polaris, I cannot help being extremely disappointed, especially considering the difference in price. Does that mean the Braille sense Polaris is not ready? Well, in my mind, yes I think it does. However, the customer I trained absolutely loved it. despite the high price and the extreme limitations, it does everything she wanted it to do, and it does so very well. Should GW micro have waited until they had a fully functioning set of onsweet apps before releasing the Polaris? Yes, in my opinion they should. However, we have a happy customer now, and the product is generating income for the company, which can hopefully be used to justify further feature improvements down the road.

Hims is a known quantity.  We know they consistantly put out great hardware with hokie software and make substantial improvements over time.  Innovision is an unknown.  We don't know what to expect, although they have been very responsive to me personally despite the fact that I haven't been able to go forward.  I completely understand your disappointment, but I suggest patience as this is a first release of a new product and is not going to have everything all at once.  I believe innovision is able to fulfill orders at this point, which is more than the cometition can say.  Others on list are reporting that early hardware issues are being addressed, and generally I have not heard evidence that the company acted in bad faith other than one third hand complaint from some one high up in a blindness organisation with a vested interest in a direct competeter product.

So all in all, I think based on what you wrote, the assertion of not ready gives an entirely false impression while your document conveys worth while information. 

Best,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 9:20:17 AM "Josh Kennedy" <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

here are all the reasons why braille me is not ready. note, this is also a google doc that i shared with innovision themselves. 
Note: if blind, turn on all or total punctuation in your screen reader in order to read this document. 
1. the five braille problem characters and capitalized letters or uppercase letters.
a. Currently for showing dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6, braille me expects to see @ ^ [ ] \ ... But many translators use ` ~ { } |  ... Braille me should also recognise these characters... 
b. Braille me if it sees `~{}| it just shows empty cells or spaces. 
c. Braille me shows empty cells for lowercase letters. Braille me should recognise lowercase letters because many translators use these, such as Braille Blaster.
D. When searching for text if for example, you want to find the word Tower. Braille me should, to be sure it finds what you want, it should look for: ,t[]  ,T[]  ,t{}    and ,T{} … 
2. suppress or remove all white space. 
a. extra carriage returns, blank pages in braille ready or embosser ready files, and multiple blank spaces take up space on 20 cell displays. Add menu options that when turned on will suppress extra space. 
3. page navigation.
a. Braille me should have page movement commands. Move by page should be defined as: move back or forward 1000 (one thousand) characters or until a formfeed character is encountered.
4. custom Bookmarks.
a. Add ability to add, clear, and jump to your own custom bookmarks in files.
5. Add ability to write in computer braille or raw text or .txt. There is no dot 7 so to compensate for this, make all uppercase computer braille letters blink up and down. blink time should be configurable. 
a. NVDA when using expand to computer braille should also have capital letters blink up and down.
6. NVDA.
a. blinking capital letters.
b. ability to write in braille into the computer.
c. ability to control computer with braille display keyboard, commands for function keys, alt, control, and so on. 
7. display emulation.
a. to work with jaws and other screen readers and devices, add option to emulate a Baum vario ultra 20 display, or baum displays. this should work with both USB and bluetooth, and be HID compliant.
8. adding languages.
a. add ability and documentation for adding languages. example, I want braille me's interface to be in German, or Icelandic braille. and I want to read braille and write in German or Icelandic braille in the editor. Or in Chinese and Japanese braille if I wish.
9. turn off all beeps and audio tones and audio indications.
a. the beeps are very loud and will be distracting in class, business and church environments. Add a menu option to turn these off. All beeps and audio tones emitted by braille me should have the ability to be completely turned off. Whether braille me is being turned on, shut down, errors occur. if braille me restarts or has a big error... no beeps should be heard. Braille me should be completely silent when beeps are off. 
10. better documentation for editing date and time. I had to play with braille me and teach myself how to edit date and time. explain to the user, first use cursor router buttons to place the cursor on the first number, use navigation buttons to set the first number. use cursor router buttons to move to the next number and edit it until time and date are set the way you wish and then press enter or dot8. 
11. When braille me turns on it displays “menu”, 
And then you have to press “enter” before navigating. To save time, as soon as Braille Me turns on, let us navigate right away. Also add first letter navigation, f, for file manager, s for settings and all menu options that start with s. To edit time easier, let us enter time and date using the braille keyboard such as: “#20:30  using dropped numbers and dots 1-5-6 for colon… In other words, computer braille. 
12. Ability to create, rename, and delete folders.
1. Ability to cut, copy and paste files into and out of user-created folders.
13. Inconsistent dot height.
1. Many dots are higher and lower than other dots. Additionally, some dots are at a slight angle in relation to other dots. Also when blank cells are created such as for spaces, or the absence of dots in order to create letters, example: If I write the letter m, dots 1-3-4… dots 2, 5, 6 stick out above the faceplate perhaps by one or two millimeters. This makes reading difficult. Please if you have to re-design braille me to make this change, but make it so that if dots are not needed such as in the letter m, dots 1-3-4, where dots 2-5-6 are not needed, same goes for spaces, that they are completely below the faceplate so that unused dots are not even felt or touched by the user.





erik burggraaf <erik@...>
 

Clearly it's an issue on Josh's unit, which means it could be an issue on others.

Josh, can you let us know if they get back to you on that one? Hopefully they see it, as it's buried right at the bottom of your list. To me, it seems like the most key factor. I would have listed it right at the top. In any event, hopefully there is an easy fix that can be done in service.

back to your regularly scheduled nvda talk I guess. thank you for indulging my curiosity, as I cannot currently get access to play with any of these displays.

On June 23, 2018 5:43:10 PM "Buddy Brannan" <buddy@...> wrote:

Howdy Erik,

Gravy on meat loaf followed by icing on cake? Sounds like a pretty good plan to me! 

I didn’t notice any such anomaly with my display. In fact, all the dots went down nicely. While there were some dots that were slightly lower than others, these were likely within tolerances and not a huge deal. The only dot that I had trouble with was, as I said, the one dot 4 that wouldn’t come up on its own. By contrast, my Orbit was working great for several months, but one trip in a carryon bag to Minnesota and dot 6 on cell 7 is stuck down. And not long after coming home, two dit 6’s, on cells 1 and 3 respectively, are stuck in the up position. Definitely worth a service call, methinks. 

In any case, once all the little glitches get ironed out, I do believe both displays will be viable options. 

—Buddy

On Jun 23, 2018, at 3:26 PM, erik burggraaf <erik@...> wrote:

Hi Buddy,

Did you observe this item Josh mentioned about unused dots being slightly tactile above the faceplate while reading braille?

Just wait til we have a brailleme and an orbit that support 150 languages, require two hours of training to guide users through their initial tour of the settings panel, and can survive being run over by a boldozer.

I wouldn't want gravy on cake, but why not gravy on meatloaf followed by icing on cake?  We deserve it don't we?

Have fun,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 12:46:43 PM "Buddy Brannan" <buddy@...> wrote:

Hi Erik,

Good points, all. 

My preproduction unit, awaiting delivery for replacement at NBP, had just one stuck dot, a dot 4 on sell 15, or something like that. That dot would come up if you tilted the unit upside down, so there was clearly a small mechanical fault. I’m confident that the hardware will be fine, and firmware will follow on as well, especially with backing from NBP and others. While Orbit makes very nice braille, the delays in unit availability are discouraging. And my Orbit has, I think, developed a couple stuck dots, so need to work that out with APH before too long. 

Regardless, to have two low-cost braille options is phenomenal. If you had told me 10 years ago this would happen,’I’d have been hopeful but frankly skeptical. Besides the issues you mention below, I think it’s important to remember what these devices are, and also what they are not. They’re low-cost ways to get braille into more hands, at minimal cost, and with basic though useful functionality. Extras are just gravy. Or icing on the cake, but not gravy on the cake, because that would be gross. 

On Jun 23, 2018, at 11:39 AM, erik burggraaf <erik@...> wrote:

Hello, I enjoyed reading your comments, and I agree with a lot of what you had to say. However, I disagree with your assertion that Braille me is quote not ready quote. based on your comments, the only potential showstopper that I see is the fact that some of the dots do not go all the way down below the faceplate. I would be interested to know how many Braille me units you tested, and whether this issue appears on any other units. if anybody else has tested a braille me, I hope you will chime in and let me know. if you were saying that batteries and charging devices were catching fire, ports were collapsing, or the device was particularly susceptible to damage by dropping, then I would say maybe we need to go back to the drawing board here. However, most of the issues are software and firmware related. Many of these things can be tweaked in the context of the current device.

It's a great rundown of potential bugs, and  feature suggestions. However, I seriously doubt that all users need access to all of the features you specified.  Not all users need access to 25 different languages for example. many languages will not be considered for addition, until the countries that predominantly use those languages consider adopting Braille me. language switching on the Fly is also something that can and should get better over time.

support for entering text and using modifier Keys is important to me, but may or may not be important to somebody else.

It seems to me that you got really excited about a great new device, and created some unnecessarily and perhaps unreasonably high expectations for what it could do, especially in a first release. I don't know how well the Braille me stacks up to the orbit in all of the areas you specified for example. However, the orbit is 2 years behind production, and almost no one can get their hands on it. to me, that indicates that something about the orbit or its processes is quoteaccess technology world. We know they will put out great Hardware with Hokie software, and then make software improvements catch-as-catch-can. But we know those improvements will come.by comparison, I recently did a customer training on a braille sense Polaris for work. the only fully functioning app in the Braille sense Polaris right now as far as I'm concerned is the word processor. However, even the word processor is limited for example, it is not currently possible to print from the word processor without installing a third party app. the rest of the office apps that come with Polaris sweet are read-only apps, which basically convert spreadsheets and slideshows into HTML format with no formatting, and allow a user to read the information. the Wi-Fi utility that comes with the sweet does not support connecting to WPA2 Enterprise networks, and such corporate networks need to be connected through Android stock Wi-Fi utility, which in the Polaris, has some minor accessibility issues. Browsing websites with the on-suite browser app is extremely barebones. it does not currently support navigating by headings, tables, lists, and other HTML attributes. the Polaris supports installing third-party synthesizers, however, third-party synthesizers can only be activated and used in the stock Android outside of the proprietary application sweet. so, as much as I like the hardware in the Braille sense Polaris, when I think of the functionality I get from my HTC phone connected to a braille Edge, versus what I get from the firmware in the Polaris, I cannot help being extremely disappointed, especially considering the difference in price. Does that mean the Braille sense Polaris is not ready? Well, in my mind, yes I think it does. However, the customer I trained absolutely loved it. despite the high price and the extreme limitations, it does everything she wanted it to do, and it does so very well. Should GW micro have waited until they had a fully functioning set of onsweet apps before releasing the Polaris? Yes, in my opinion they should. However, we have a happy customer now, and the product is generating income for the company, which can hopefully be used to justify further feature improvements down the road.

Hims is a known quantity.  We know they consistantly put out great hardware with hokie software and make substantial improvements over time.  Innovision is an unknown.  We don't know what to expect, although they have been very responsive to me personally despite the fact that I haven't been able to go forward.  I completely understand your disappointment, but I suggest patience as this is a first release of a new product and is not going to have everything all at once.  I believe innovision is able to fulfill orders at this point, which is more than the cometition can say.  Others on list are reporting that early hardware issues are being addressed, and generally I have not heard evidence that the company acted in bad faith other than one third hand complaint from some one high up in a blindness organisation with a vested interest in a direct competeter product.

So all in all, I think based on what you wrote, the assertion of not ready gives an entirely false impression while your document conveys worth while information. 

Best,

Erik

On June 23, 2018 9:20:17 AM "Josh Kennedy" <joshknnd1982@...> wrote:

here are all the reasons why braille me is not ready. note, this is also a google doc that i shared with innovision themselves. 
Note: if blind, turn on all or total punctuation in your screen reader in order to read this document. 
1. the five braille problem characters and capitalized letters or uppercase letters.
a. Currently for showing dot 4, dots 4-5, dots 2-4-6, dots 1-2-4-5-6, and dots 1-2-5-6, braille me expects to see @ ^ [ ] \ ... But many translators use ` ~ { } |  ... Braille me should also recognise these characters... 
b. Braille me if it sees `~{}| it just shows empty cells or spaces. 
c. Braille me shows empty cells for lowercase letters. Braille me should recognise lowercase letters because many translators use these, such as Braille Blaster.
D. When searching for text if for example, you want to find the word Tower. Braille me should, to be sure it finds what you want, it should look for: ,t[]  ,T[]  ,t{}    and ,T{} … 
2. suppress or remove all white space. 
a. extra carriage returns, blank pages in braille ready or embosser ready files, and multiple blank spaces take up space on 20 cell displays. Add menu options that when turned on will suppress extra space. 
3. page navigation.
a. Braille me should have page movement commands. Move by page should be defined as: move back or forward 1000 (one thousand) characters or until a formfeed character is encountered.
4. custom Bookmarks.
a. Add ability to add, clear, and jump to your own custom bookmarks in files.
5. Add ability to write in computer braille or raw text or .txt. There is no dot 7 so to compensate for this, make all uppercase computer braille letters blink up and down. blink time should be configurable. 
a. NVDA when using expand to computer braille should also have capital letters blink up and down.
6. NVDA.
a. blinking capital letters.
b. ability to write in braille into the computer.
c. ability to control computer with braille display keyboard, commands for function keys, alt, control, and so on. 
7. display emulation.
a. to work with jaws and other screen readers and devices, add option to emulate a Baum vario ultra 20 display, or baum displays. this should work with both USB and bluetooth, and be HID compliant.
8. adding languages.
a. add ability and documentation for adding languages. example, I want braille me's interface to be in German, or Icelandic braille. and I want to read braille and write in German or Icelandic braille in the editor. Or in Chinese and Japanese braille if I wish.
9. turn off all beeps and audio tones and audio indications.
a. the beeps are very loud and will be distracting in class, business and church environments. Add a menu option to turn these off. All beeps and audio tones emitted by braille me should have the ability to be completely turned off. Whether braille me is being turned on, shut down, errors occur. if braille me restarts or has a big error... no beeps should be heard. Braille me should be completely silent when beeps are off. 
10. better documentation for editing date and time. I had to play with braille me and teach myself how to edit date and time. explain to the user, first use cursor router buttons to place the cursor on the first number, use navigation buttons to set the first number. use cursor router buttons to move to the next number and edit it until time and date are set the way you wish and then press enter or dot8. 
11. When braille me turns on it displays “menu”, 
And then you have to press “enter” before navigating. To save time, as soon as Braille Me turns on, let us navigate right away. Also add first letter navigation, f, for file manager, s for settings and all menu options that start with s. To edit time easier, let us enter time and date using the braille keyboard such as: “#20:30  using dropped numbers and dots 1-5-6 for colon… In other words, computer braille. 
12. Ability to create, rename, and delete folders.
1. Ability to cut, copy and paste files into and out of user-created folders.
13. Inconsistent dot height.
1. Many dots are higher and lower than other dots. Additionally, some dots are at a slight angle in relation to other dots. Also when blank cells are created such as for spaces, or the absence of dots in order to create letters, example: If I write the letter m, dots 1-3-4… dots 2, 5, 6 stick out above the faceplate perhaps by one or two millimeters. This makes reading difficult. Please if you have to re-design braille me to make this change, but make it so that if dots are not needed such as in the letter m, dots 1-3-4, where dots 2-5-6 are not needed, same goes for spaces, that they are completely below the faceplate so that unused dots are not even felt or touched by the user.





Josh Kennedy
 

APH has been fulfilling orders for the orbit reader20 for the past 2 or 3 weeks now. if you go to shop.aph.org and put in the word orbit go to the orbit20 product page you can go ahead and purchase one right now if you want.