special access technology chapter 7 on screen keyboards
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Special Access Technology Chapter 7 On-screen Keyboards

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Special Access Technology Chapter 7 On-screen Keyboards. Kristen Eklund & Jolene Hyppa Martin. Introduction. Later chapters focus on individual areas of on-screen keyboard use Our chapter introduces many terms relating to this topic

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Presentation Transcript
  • Later chapters focus on individual areas of on-screen keyboard use
    • Our chapter introduces many terms relating to this topic
    • Uses terms standardized by the Common Terminology for Switch Controlled Software (ACE Centre, 1990)
    • These terms are shown initially in yellow
  • On-screen keyboards
    • Any keyboard displayed on a computer screen
    • Accessed using pointing devices or switches
    • Not just the “qwerty” keyboard
      • Floating palettes for drawing programs
      • Shortcut menus
      • Toolbars
      • Pull-down menus
      • Clip art menus
      • Specialized pop-up menus
      • “qwerty” keyboard displayed on the screen
      • And much, much more!
  • The items presented for selection by an on-screen keyboard are called a selection set
    • Items are also referred to as:
      • Cell
      • Key
      • Button
    • Selection set is also referred to as:
      • Grid
      • Setup
      • Window
      • Layout
  • When a scanning program is used, a highlighter indicates which item is currently available for selection
  • Items in selection sets may be text or graphics or both
  • Items can be selected by:
    • Point and click
    • Dwell
    • Scanning and switch use
  • Goal is to enable user to use standard programs such as:
    • Word processor
    • Database
    • Spreadsheet
    • Drawing programs
    • Games
    • Email
    • Web browser
who might use an on screen keyboard
Who might use an on-screen keyboard?
  • Early writers
  • People who have difficulty using a keyboard
    • Limited ROM
    • Poor fine and/or gross motor control, but able to use head pointing device (CP)
    • Good head control, but poor limb control (SCI)
    • Combination of physical and other problems
    • Impairments resulting in ability to use only one or two switches
  • Individuals with specific reading or writing difficulty
    • Helped by visual and/or spoken prompts
    • Word prediction
selection set design layout
Selection Set Design & Layout
  • Arranging the items in the selection set is an important consideration
    • Goal is to choose the best arrangement for client
    • Most programs offer many selection set options
    • Many of those that don’t can be changed by using selection set editor program
selection set design layout1
Selection Set Design & Layout
  • Some options include:
    • QWERTY keyboard layout
      • Suitable for those familiar with this layout
      • Good for those who need access to all the keys on a standard keyboard
      • Confusing for young users & beginners
      • Unlike actual keyboard, little or no speed advantage of this layout in an onscreen format
    • Alphabetic layout
      • Better for young users and beginners
      • Always faster than “qwerty” for those familiar with alphabet, but not “qwerty”
    • Frequency of use layout
      • Easier & faster
      • Good for those with learning difficulties
selection set design layout2
Selection Set Design & Layout
  • Word selection sets
  • Phrase selection sets
  • Graphics
  • Pictures
  • Symbols
    • All of these options may include synthetic or digitized speech prompts or other visual/auditory prompts to assist with selection
selection set appearance
Selection Set Appearance
  • Things to consider:
    • Size
      • Larger items may be necessary, but that decreases total item options
    • Item spacing
      • Items placed further apart may be selected with better accuracy
    • Shape
      • Items arranged in a single line
      • Items arranged in a grid
      • Items arranged in a flip chart
      • Items arranged in a custom design
selection set appearance1
Selection Set Appearance
  • Frame Style
    • Square
    • Round
    • Button
      • Changing frame can be helpful to differentiate type or function of items
  • Color
    • Aid in visual discrimination
selection set appearance2
Selection Set Appearance
  • Text Font
    • Lower case is preferred for young children
    • Simple upper/lower case for most adults
      • Rachel’s example in clinic class
  • Highlighting and Prompting
    • Visual
      • Customized foreground/background color or graphic changes
      • Avoid low contrast color combinations
    • Auditory
      • Helpful for those with visual, learning or perceptual difficulties
      • Bells, beeps other sounds
      • Digitized or synthetic speech
        • Speech MUST be synchronized
  • Three methods of selection
    • Pressing the mouse button
    • Switch
    • Dwell (wait time)
  • Feedback of selection may be auditory (beep) or visual (flash on screen)
  • Selected by “pressing for action” or “releasing for action”
keyboard actions
Keyboard Actions
  • Send text
    • Word processing
  • Send graphics
    • Insert pictures or symbols
  • Cursor keys and control key combinations
    • e.g., bg Hello there bg (start and end of line)
    • e.g., bP is a print signal
  • Sticky keys
    • Control + letter (e.g., control + c = copy)
acceleration features
Acceleration Features
  • Prediction
    • Most frequently or recently used words
    • Reduces number of selections while increasing the speed of writing
  • Abbreviation Expansion
    • Short abbreviation stands for longer word
  • Smart Punctuation
    • Automatically adds spaces after punctuation marks and capitalizes the first letter
  • Scrolling word lists
    • Lists of words beginning with each letter
computer program control
Computer/Program Control
  • These features improve speed and increase ease of use
    • Automatic startup
    • Save/load user settings
    • Open set automatically with application
    • Open application
    • Switch applications
speech sound actions
Speech/Sound Actions
  • Two types of speech
    • 1- digitized (recorded speech or sound)
    • 2- synthetic (computer generated)
  • Most programs have speech control to change voice, pitch, volume, etc. of speech
selection sets
Selection Sets
  • Selection set editor
    • Program for creating and changing settings
  • Instant editing
    • Changed automatically without editor program
  • Editor accessible by user
    • Special access to program to edit sets
  • Import text file to selection set
    • Load file and creates word-bank selection
  • Selection sets supplied and available
    • Ready-made selection sets
problems with selection mouse or pointing device
Problems with Selection (mouse or pointing device)
  • Difficulty hitting small items on the screen
  • Accidentally selects items next to the intended selection
  • Can move the mouse, but can not operate the mouse buttons
  • Difficulty seeing the mouse pointer on the screen
  • Writing is slow
solutions to these problems
Solutions to These Problems
  • Practice
  • Slow mouse speed
  • Increase spacing between items on the screen
  • Use another switch
  • Use dwell select
  • Increase the size, shape, or color of the mouse pointer
  • Onscreen highlights
  • Use acceleration tools, use frequency of use layout
learning to use on screen keyboards
Learning to Use On-Screen Keyboards
  • Make it simple and fun
  • Start with large targets and gradually fade to smaller targets
  • Sample Programs for Learning
    • Living Books
    • Kid Pix (drawing programs)
programs using on screen keyboards
Programs Using On-Screen Keyboards
  • Most are suitable for the computer-literate
  • Many are expensive
    • EZ Keys for Windows ($1,000)
  • Each specialize in specific areas
    • (e.g., graphics, speech, writing, classroom)
other programs
Other Programs
  • Wivik
    • Program designed for independent access without focus on speech output
  • EZ Keys
    • Designed for users with communication impairment because of speech output
  • Discover
    • Windows and Macintosh compatible
programs for the classroom
Advantages of Programs designed for classroom use include:

Low cost

Text and graphics

Restrict access to certain users

Ready-made selection sets

Programs for Classroom Use:

1- Clicker

Inexpensive, compatible with all computer systems, designed for classroom use

2- Windows Switch

and Point

Inexpensive, effective, flexible

Programs for the Classroom