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Hi :)
Sorry i didn't forward this to the right list earlier!  Have you had any luck solving the problems? 
 I'm not sure if you are subscribed to the right lists so i have made sure you are being CC'd so 
that you get the responses.
Apols and regards from
Tom :)  

From: les <>
To: Wes Will <> 
Cc: LibreOffice User Support Mailing List <> 
Sent: Wednesday, 20 February 2013, 17:03
Subject: Re: [libreoffice-users] Accessibility issues - BLIND USER

Hi, Wes,    
    There is an Braille institute in LA, just off the 101 near Universal
City as I recall.  They should be able to shed some light on these
    Here is their EMAIL address:

    Or you can contact a local institute near where you live and they might
be able to help.  

    There are other options in California, but I just know a bit because my
wife had a vision impaired friend.

    As my own vision is failing and I have a friend whose vision is also
failing, this topic will become more and more important to me as well.
Screen readers suck on even their best days, but given the

Good luck.

On Wed, 2013-02-20 at 01:33 -0600, Wes Will wrote:
Greetings.  Just signed up for the list.  Have NOT had the time yet to 
get to the archives and dig for prior messages to this list regarding 
blind users, so if this is already old news, please forgive me and drop 
a link to the pertinent archives.

I will assuredly be delving for this topic as soon as it is possible. 
I'll likely wait for daylight, it is presently 0100 hours here (U.S. 
CST) and it has been a long day.

The problem is that I have been talking LibreOffice up to the heavens to 
a blind friend.  He is stuck in a WinBlows environment, has the 
latest-version-but-one of the JAWS screen reader, and has been scorched 
by M$ Turd one too many times.  It -does- read through his screen 
reader, but their "ribbon" foolishness has made the thing completely and 
utterly useless to him.  Simple things that he has always been able to 
do with a keyboard shortcut (Ctrl-O for opening a new document for 
instance) no longer work.  One keyboard command might do one thing if a 
certain 'ribbon component' is active, and a completely different thing 
if another is active.  He needs a reliable productivity suite, and I 
think LibreOffice -ought- to be perfect for him.

Except that it ISN'T.  He installed it, and was greeted with SILENCE 
from his screen reader.  Keyboard commands, like that Ctrl-O, work fine. 
   It just won't read the screen to him.  Nightmare time for a totally 
blind person who just wants it to talk to him like all the other 
applications he uses.

So I start looking, and I find that there is a REQUIRED additional JAVA 
API that must be installed.  Roadblock ONE.  It's on an Oracle site, 
which ISN'T all that 'blind friendly' and requires license acceptance 
via a bloody MOUSE CLICK on the web page.  "MOUSE" and "BLIND" do NOT go 
together.  I can get him by that, eventually, by downloading it myself 
(done) and sending it to him, but then it goes to roadblock TWO.  The 
API installer is NOT 'blind friendly' either, requiring that he unzip 
the package, find the correct file for his OS, start it, and then answer 
(BY MOUSE-CLICKS AGAIN!!) several pages of information.  I cannot walk 
him through this, as I do NOT use Microsoft ANYTHING.  I cannot simply 
do it for him - he is in California and I am in Illinois.  There is a 
3000 kilometer gap between his keyboard and my hand.

Is there ANY WAY that the correct API can be embedded into the 
LibreOffice package, or put there as an option in the install process?

I.E. start the LibreOffice install; somewhere near the beginning be 
presented with "Add Accessibility Java Extension API to LibreOffice;" 
select "Accept Oracle License Agreement;" Continue installation WITH the 
added Java API automatically being unpacked and installed in the proper 

Or even a previously-accessibility-extended-install version of the 
LibreOffice suite installer.

Can anyone get me past these roadblocks?  I'm at a loss here, I DO think 
that FOSS software will work well for him, but getting it to actually 
WORK in the screen reader environment is already a messy, complicated 
thing for a BLIND MAN.

Are there work-arounds or things that can be done to accomplish this?

Another thing I noticed in the documentation for accessibility:  The 
JAWS screen reader Version listed as being compatible with the (JAVA 
Accessibility API-Enabled) LibreOffice suite was SEVEN...  They are up 
to version FOURTEEN, and he is using TWELVE.  Has anyone checked these 
out for compatibility?  Again, I cannot, since it is a Win-Only 
application.  If I can get my friend in California past this whole mess, 
I will gladly have him test it out for compatibility and report back 
here so the documentation can be updated.

Ideas?  Links to information?  Go suck an egg?  What should I do here?

Wes Will

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