Monday, January 18

Additional JAWS Braille driver from FS

Greetings. I received the following announcement in my email Inbox and thought it worht sharing here. For those that use these displays, then this is good news. Enjoy.


Direct from the Freedom Scientific website:

JAWS Driver for Brailliant and BrailleConnect Displays
As you can see from Freedom Scientific's website, with one exception, all
the major Braille display manufacturers are participating in Freedom
Scientific's Secure and Compatible Braille Display Initiative. Under this
initiative, Freedom Scientific and Braille display manufacturers work
together to make sure that users get the best experience possible with
Braille. One manufacturer, who has yet to sign on, is Baum, and we know that
there are some Freedom Scientific customers who have been inconvenienced by
that. Because of this, Freedom Scientific has filled the gap by writing and
testing its own new 32-bit driver for those using the HumanWare Brailliant
or BrailleConnect Series of displays with JAWS 11. These displays are
distributed in English speaking markets by HumanWare, but they are
manufactured by Baum in Germany. This new Freedom Scientific driver will
work with both USB and Bluetooth.

If you have one of these displays installed on your computer and working
with JAWS 9 or JAWS 10, all you need to do is install JAWS 11, download and
install the driver using the link below, and then restart JAWS 11. It should
work as expected. If you have not used these displays before on your
computer, you will still need to install the system level drivers first
using the HumanWare CD that came with your display. Once that is done,
install JAWS 11, download and install this new driver, and restart JAWS, and
then everything should be working.

We still hope that Baum will come on board with the Secure and Compatible
Braille Display Initiative, as have other Braille display manufacturers, so
that we can complete support for 64-bit JAWS.

JAWS Driver for Brailliant and BrailleConnect Displays (32-bit) - 4.0 MB

Thursday, January 14

Save Wayfinder Access

Greetings. I received this message the other day regarding the Wayfinder Access product. I bought this product for my Nokia N82 phone a year ago. The times that I have used it, I have found it very interesting and helpful. Wayfinder Access was by far the cheapest and most afordable, other than the free packages that were under development, of the various GPS solutions out there for the blind. The next GPS product for the blind costs double the price of Wayfinder Access and though it runs on Windows Mobile phones, I don't believe that it can run on the Symbian platform. Hopefully another company will take up development and continue this great product. If not, then we might have seen the end of an era for a certain portion of the mobile blind population. Anyway, if you are inclined to help save the software or help continue its development and are on Facebook, then check out this group. Here's the message.


From: Darren Harris

Greetings all,

I do apologize for this cross posting but I feel that it is necessary.

I don't know how many of you have herd but the wayfinder access gps solution
for simbion based mobile phones is no longer available. Vodafone who own the
rights to wayfinder products have pulled the plug on it completely. They
have discontinued the entire wayfinder product line effectively in order to
create their own package. Which we believe is going to be completely
inaccessible to blind people.

Considering how accessible wayfinder access is to use as a product, we feel
that this is unacceptable action to be undertaken.

If you are on facebook, then I have created a group called (save wayfinder
action group). The purpose of this group is to bring a dedicated group of
people together so that we can constructively build a case in favour of
keeping access going as a product.

If you think and believe as we do that this product should be saved, then
please come and join in and help to build a case for this product.

It's not often that we come across a product that is in the adaptive market
and that is as cheap comparatively as access.

Please spread the word on other mailing lists as this is important.
Specifically the various phone and technology lists that there are out there
and anybody else who you think may benefit from this.

Thank you for your attention.

Booksense version 2 manual available

Greetings. As the title says, the version 2 manual for the Booksense is now available on the GW Micro site. Read below for more details. Note that the HTML version of the manual has been produced along with the other file format versions. The HTML version was completed after this message went out a few days ago. The HTML version has full support for heading navigation throughout the document, so that the user can read by part or individual section. these manuals can be read on a computer or on the Booksense itself. Enjoy.


Hello. Just to let you know that the BookSense manual is on our site
now. At this time, a text version and a zipped version is available.
We are working fast to convert this to html and Word as soon as
possible. This manual is for firmware version 2.0 of the BookSense. If
you want to read the manual in the document reader of the BookSense,
copy the manual text file to the Documents folder of the SD card or
flashdisk and read away.

Many thanks.

Raul A. Gallegos
GW Micro Technical Support Team

Monday, January 11

Booksense now supports RFB&D

Greetings. I received the following announcement from GW Micro earlier. This is great news for those students, be they in grade school, junior high, high school, college or graduate level, and professionals who may need RFBD materials in a more portable digital form. It took a while for the Booksense to add support for RFBD material, but now it's finally here. Happy reading!


GW Micro is proud to announce that the BookSense officially supports Recording for the Blind and Dyslexic (RFB&D). RFB&DAr is the leading accessible audio book library for students with disabilities such as visual impairment or dyslexia. BookSense customers can now take advantage of the large selection of textbooks available from the RFB&D service.

With the addition of support for RFB&D books, students can now instantly download textbooks from
and read the books on the BookSense. Textbooks are available from RFB&D's AudioPlus service, which has books in DAISY format. Students can choose from any of the 50,000 books, all of which are read by humans, so students get the benefit of an actual person reading the book.

Adding RFB&D support to the BookSense adds even greater capability to one of the most advanced eBook readers available to people who are blind or visually impaired. The BookSense XT is the only eBook reader for the blind to have built-in Bluetooth for wire-free listening while in the classroom, as well as built-in memory to make it easier for students to carry textbooks without the need to worry about memory cards.
Whether you own the BookSense or BookSense XT, both models support RFB&D. Your player must be authorized to play RFB&D content. This means you must become an RFB&D member. You can sign up by going to
or by calling RFB&D at 1-800-221-4792. Once you have become a member of RFB&D, you will need to authorize your BookSense player. To learn how to authorize your player, go to

If you have any other questions regarding the BookSense, please contact GW Micro at (260) 489-3671.

Friday, January 1

2009 Annual Access Awards

Greetings. Once again, the folks over at Blind bargains are doing their annual awards for the best of 2009 in accessible technologies, products, software and websites. Click here to view 2009 Access Award rules and submit nominations. This first period of nominations goes until January 14 at 5pm EST. Nominations can only be submitted once per person and per category. View the categories and consider what you want to nominate for which before making your submissions. Enjoy and good luck to all.