Thursday, August 21

JAWS 10 beta announced

Greetings. Today Freedom Scientific has released details about the upcoming JAWS version 10 beta cycle. This page has information on what's new in JAWS 10, information about the beta cycle, exactly what a "beta" is, and a link to go to the FS Cast for August 2008 which discusses all things new in the new version.

After reading over what's new in JAWS 10, I wasn't initially impressed. JAWS has had a habit in recent years of having a few features that just make me go, "Wow." However, at first read, I didn't find myself saying this. After listening to a little of the FS Cast covering this new version though, there are some things in the beta that look good to me and get me excited, whether they be things that I'll like or things I think my students will like whenever we eventually are teaching on this version at the training center. Some of these include the auto Forms Mode on feature, the ability to easily retrieve and install any of the JAWS Daisy training materials from the FS site, regardless of how JAWS was installed on the computer, and the ability to better manage the many Quick Navigation keystrokes available when using JAWS in a virtual environment, such as on the Web, in email, etc.

As noted on the page above, the beta is expected to be out the week of August 24. Also, as with the JAWS 9 beta from last year, during the beta cycle, you can have JAWS 10 installed without needing to worry about authorization for JAWS 10. However, if you don't regularly update the beta using the Check for Updates feature from the JAWS Help menu, or if you elect not to purchase version 10, it will run out at the end of the beta period. You can however download and use the full version of JAWS in the 40 minute demo mode, where it runs for 40 minutes and then you have to reboot the computer. If you can't afford to buy the full version of JAWS or the SMA, then you can still take advantage of it. Either way, this looks like a fairly good version coming. There will likely be a list, sounds like a rather long list from the FS Cast episode, of enhancements and fixes for JAWS posted when the beta goes online. That will be the really interesting part for me, to see what they've addressed and fixed from prior versions. FS doesn't always fix everything that they break in prior versions. At any rate, if you do try the beta and encounter a problem, please do use the beta problem reporting form that FS has on that beta page linked above, in order to report it. After all, if you never report it, then it's never fixed. Enjoy.

3 comments:

  1. Zaheer Sheikh2:42 PM

    Hey,

    I just read about the latest updates in Jaws 10.0. I really like the new forms mode feature, and new key combination for reading tables on a web page. I'm sure it will help me to navigate through web pages more quickly...

    I also listened the FSCast. At the end of the show, they mentioned that there is another big change in Jaws 10, but they will mention it in next show. I wish that they'll ship a pair of nice headsets, or office 2007 CD with Jaws 10... Lets wait and see what freedomscientific have for us...

    ReplyDelete
  2. Hey,

    I just read about the latest updates in Jaws 10.0. I really like the new forms mode feature, and new key combination for reading tables on a web page. I'm sure it will help me to navigate through web pages more quickly...

    I also listened the FSCast. At the end of the show, they mentioned that there is another big change in Jaws 10, but they will mention it in next show. I wish that they'll ship a pair of nice headsets, or office 2007 CD with Jaws 10... Lets wait and see what freedomscientific have for us...

    ReplyDelete
  3. Greetings. I don't think I'd hold my breath for a free version of Office 2007 as being the extra something special for JAWS 10. In the last few years, their definition of "cool new features" have kind of differed from mine, in that some of the features they've introduced I didn't see a real use for. Such as page summaries in IE or Word. It's not so much that I don't use them, but rather I can't see how someone would use them. I'm sure someone does, but I can't see the average user getting excited about custom page summaries and using that on a regular basis. Quick Keys on the web sure, but not some of the other things that have entered JAWS. To each his/her own I guess. Since they're dedicating an entire podcast to the new feature, that makes me wonder if its really worth having. We'll see I suppose.

    ReplyDelete