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Download Jaws

From Alberto Piovani's article published in the mailing list of Porte Aperte sul Web, a community for accessibility to school-related websites - USR Lombardia.

Jaws for windows

JAWS is a Windows compatible software designed for persons with severe visual impairment. It is distributed by Freedom Scientific (in English), and by Subvision of Milano (in Italian), in a time-limited free trial version. Either in an artificial voice or, when duly set and coupled with a special display, through the touch-readable Braille system, JAWS reads what appears on the computer screen in several languages.

Here are a few directions and Jaws prompts to help you as you experiment with the software.

You can install Jaws 9.0, Italian version, after downloading it here: link

Since it is a free version, there is no customer assistance to go with it. Too bad! The trial version (nearly 100 mb) is just like the full version, but after forty minutes of use it will stop working and you will need to start it again.

If you own a previous version of Jaws, the prompts I'll list below will still work, although you might get slightly different answers the Web pages or PDF files.

Whether you install the new version or use an older one, do not change Jaws' default settings, except for the potentially bothersome auto-start settings.

While reading Web pages, depending on the virtualization of the page, you can experience an imperfect alignment of your cursor with the Jaws cursor, showing what is being read. It can also happen that while you see text on the screen, Jaws goes on to read in the next page.

With graphics (images or charts), when not correctly tagged, one of several things may happen:
A few Jaws Prompts:

(1) When moving the Jaws cursor with the Arrow keys, you will find that all links are read as a separate line. This is no error, but an aspect of virtualization meant to make pages easier to manage.

(2) Remember to lock the keypad. I hope I didn't leave out important prompts, but bear patience with me if I did. Remember that Jaws comes with a good and complete online guide. (Ins+F1 for the quick guide; Ins+F1+F1 for the full guide).

Yours sincerely.

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