What is accessible to a large percentage of the population, is not necessarily accessible to the blind or visually impaired. Consider how you use your eyes on the computer, tablet or smartphone day-to-day and you’’ quickly realise their needs to be some adaptations to websites to make them friendlier for users.
So, how do blind people use a computer?
Blind people can't use a mouse on a computer because it requires hand coordination. Instead, they have to use keyboards on a laptop or the computer to access different websites?
How Blind People Use The Internet
To use the web, blind people rely on screen readers - software that reads the text sent to the monitor and passes this information over to the speech synthesizer or the braille line. Some blind people use text-based web browsers such as Lynx or voice web browsers, instead of browsers with a graphical user interface in combination with a screen reader. Blind people must use strategies for fast navigation, such as passing through titles or links to web pages using the "Tab" key instead of reading each word in a row.
Equipment for blind people and visually impaired persons divide into devices for primary use of computers and aids for reading printed material Then for printing in the Braille letter and printing tactile graphics and aids for everyday life. Blind people can use the computer in two ways - special computers for blind people or standard computers that have specific software add-ons such as screen reader and speech synthesizer.
The most significant innovation for blind people when using a website is that blind people can use a PC, tablet or smartphone using software called screen reader. Screen readers convert the contents of the screen and user actions to the text. The text thus obtained is:
- Pronounced using a speech synthesizer
- Displays on braille row - display
- Or a combination of both
There are also a lot of useful mobile apps for blind people. Fantastic and, most importantly, a helpful and useful application to help people with no vision called ”Be My Eyes.” When you download the iPhone app, you will have to say if you can see or you are a blind person, so the program knows if you need help as a blind person. If you log in as a volunteer, a blind person can ask you for help, and the application searches the network to find who is ready to help.
The requested assistance can be varied - from identifying the label or nutritional values in a shop to what is written on a street sign. When an application finds a volunteer, it connects it to a blind person, and they are then associated with a call.
WebbIE is a web browser for blind people who use the screen reader to browse the Internet. It contains Affiliate Programs, such as Podcatcher and RSS News Reader, to allow you to read the latest news and hear plenty of radio and podcasts. It is entirely free to download it and use it.
Today's technology has progressed a lot, and it’s still advancing with the introduction of more mobile applications and websites that are adapted to people with disabilities, particularly those who have vision problems or are completely blind.