an eagle flying over a gorge The only limits are those of vision.

Richard Turner's Home Page

Last updated September 8, 2021

Welcome to my web site. The primary purpose of this site is to offer some help to other blind or visually impaired people. There are a few things of interest to others, I hope.

So, below you will find links to some resources, quotations, and whatever else I decide to add. I hope you find something interesting and possibly even useful.

In case you are wondering why I have 42 in the name of my web site. It isn't that there were 41 turner.coms ahead of me. My favorite number is 42, thanks to the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. I have a small sound sample from the BBC Radio version of the book: answer.mp3

an eagle in flight
"The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy has this to say on the subject of flying.
There is an art, it says, or rather, a knack to flying. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss."
--Douglas Adams, from Life, The Universe and Everything, p.59



Obi-Wan Kenobi with Richard's face
"May the force be with you" - The Gadget Guy."






iDevices from Apple

In November of 2009, I purchased my first iPod Touch 64GB. I liked the idea of having a built-in screen reader, PDA functionality, as well as a music and audio book player. I am now using the iPhone SE 2nd Generation, also called the SE 2020, daily and loving it!

For those who are not familiar with the iDevices, the first accessible iPod Touch was the Third Generation, which came out in late 2009. They were the 32 GB and 64GB models. They have Voice Over built-in, which is the Apple Screen Reader. Most of the apps (short for applications) that come from Apple are quite accessible with Voice Over. The first iPhone with VoiceOver came out earlier that year in June, 2009, but at that time, my attitude was, who needs a cell phone?...I figured out that I did in 2014 with the iPhone 5S.

iOS Gestures and Keyboard Commands

Here are Word and a couple Excel files of the VoiceOver gestures and keyboard/braille commands, mostly from the iOS user guide. I added the common braille commands for VoiceOver on the Mac. And I've included the new Voice Control commands list.

Speaking of braille

I have put the lyrics to UEB Ain't Hard To do: A Farewell Song to Nine EBAE Contractions on its own page with a recording done by a TVI in New York named Mark Brady. Enjoy. The song was written in 2013, by Judy Matsuoka.

UEBAin'tHardToDo.html

The Sight Of Touch

I have a detailed explanation of how the Visual Cortex is involved in discriminating sounds and touch plus excerpts and the transcript from a PBS show.
TheSightOfTouch.html

Useful Apps

I used to teach the Apple iDevices at my job as a Rehabilitation Instructor for the Blind. I believe the Apple devices are the best accessible device going right now and I have compiled a list of apps that have been tested with VoiceOver. Below is a link to the list which I hope to keep updated fairly regularly.
Useful Apps

AirPods Max

I put together some information on connecting and using the AirPods Max and thought I would share it with whomever wants it in Word.

AirPodsMaxConnectionAndUsage.docx

I received my Airpods Max on March 26th, 2021. I think they are great! I am also impressed with how they sound to others on phone calls. I decided to do a sample recording using Just Press Record. You can hear it below.

Just Press Record Sample

I describe the "Case" for the Airpods Max in this short mp3 file.

Airpods Max Case Description.mp3

Voice Dream Reader Overview

Voice Dream Reader is my favorite app for reading books and other file types. I am putting this here because Voice Dream is also one of the more powerful apps and can be a little daunting at first. My overview is just that, an overview to help someone get a handle on the layout and some basic functions. It is in a word document and can be downloaded by right clicking the link and choosing save as.

VoiceDreamReaderVersion413Overbiew.docx

Bookshare

Bookshare is my favorite source for books in all categories. They often get books the same day the hard copy/eBook is available to sighted readers. Also, they now have a verynice selection available to people who live outside the United States.
In the United States, it is $50 per year or free to students or people receiving training from a Rehabilitation Agency.
here is the main web site link: Bookshare main page
Here is the International web site: International Bookshare

Scanning Stands

In case you are interested in the different scanning stands available for use with OCR apps, here is a list of currently available stands: Scanning Stands

Orbit Research Information

I've combined information for purchasing the various products from Orbit Research, downloading firmware updates, and the zoom meetings into a separate page which you can access at this link: Orbit Research Information

Audio Description resources

The American council of the Blind maintains the most up-to-date list of programs with Audio Description (also known as Video Description.) Here are some direct links to some popular lists.

Disney Plus titles with description Apple TV Plus shows with Audio Description Broadcast TV with Audio Description Movies in the theater or on DVD with audio Description Netflix shows with audio Description UK TV show Schedules Amazon prime audio described Movies and TV shows iTunes audio described Movies and TV shows

Other resources for Audio Description

Described Movies from Jeff

Jeff Rutkowski is someone who has provided a lot of movies and TV shows audio files for live streaming or downloading. Here is the first paragraph from his web site followed by the link.
Welcome to my described movies page. To listen to any of these movies, simply click on or press enter on the link. If you wish to download them, access your applications menu and select the "save link as" or "Save target as" option. Please note: I try to make sure that all links listed on this page work, and few to no duplicated movies exist but, I may have missed a few here and there. If you find duplicate links or links that lead to a non-working movie, feel free to contact me at jrutkowski7 at gmail Jeff Rutkowski's Described Movie's page

Audio Vault

Audio Vault is another site that is also linked from Jeff Rutkowski's page, but here is the direct link. Note, you have to sign up for a free account to download described audio files from the Audio Vault, much like the way the Blind Mice Movie Vault works, only easier.
Audio Vault.net

Blind Mice Mega Mall Movie Vault

Once you have established a free account you can go directly to the Movie Vault where they have MP3 files of movie soundtracks with audio description.
To create an account, go to their main page: Blind Mice Mega Mall Then, you can use the next link to go directly to the movie vault. Note, you will have to login but then you will be on the movie vault page.
Blind Mice Movie Vault

Most TV's now have the ability to turn on the Audio Description channel, often it is the Secondary Audio Programing feature under the audio controls. If your TV does not have that, check with your cable company about how to access their content with audio description.

If you are an xFinity customer you can call their accessibility help desk: 855-270-0379

If you have an iPhone, go to Settings, General, Accessibility. In the section titled Media, you can enable Subtitles and Captioning. Only enable that if you want VoiceOver reading the captions. The next item is Audio Descriptions, it defaults to off, double tap to turn it on using VoiceOver. This way, things you stream with audio description should play the audio description automatically. Some services will require you to select description from the audio controls within their app.

Here are some links related to Apple products that you may find helpful:

UEB Punctuation

I have put together a list of most of the UEB punctuation in more or less alphabetical order. If you right click on the following link and choose save as, you can save the .brf file to use on your braille device.

UEBPunctuationAlphabetical.brf

Hadley Institute for the Blind Instructional Videos

Hadley has been adding a lot to their instructional videos. The link below will take you to their videos page where you will find videos on topics like:

  • iPhone and iPad
  • Android
  • MS Windows
  • MS Office
  • Apple Watch
  • Apple TV
  • Exploring the Mac
  • Swift Playgrounds
  • Digital Talking Book Player
Hadley Instructional Videos

Apple Related Books

A man named Michael Fier, has written a book to help someone from the very beginning with no experience with Apple devices, through to a pretty complete understanding of the iOS system and the use of VoiceOver. He has made it available in many formats on his Blog, but here is a link to an ePub version of his book that will work in Voice Dream Reader or any ePub reader, followed by a link to his blog.
PersonalPower-The-iOSEdition.epub Michael Fier's blog where you can get the file in Word, ePub, PDF, or RTF formats

The National Braille Press has a page with most, if not all of their technology books in one place. Anything by anna Dresner or Judith Dixon are worth considering in the Apple world. They also have books about Windows etc.

NBP Technology Books

Ringtones

iPhone X Ringtone

Here are two links to the M4R file of the new iPhone X Ringtone. First, is an MP3 version so you can play it easily, then, a direct link to the M4R version, if you want to download it, you will need to right click and select Save Target As.
ReflectionRingtoneFrom-iPhoneX.mp3
ReflectionRingtoneFrom-iPhoneX.m4r

Go Cubs Go RingTone

In honor of the Chicago Cubs winning the 2016 World Series, I clipped out part of the Steve Goodman song, "Go Cubs Go" and saved it as a Ringtone for iOS. Right click on the zip file to save it on your computer, then unzip it and add it to iTunes: 01GOCUBSGORingTone.zip

Tones from the Galaxy S6 converted to m4r for iDevices

On the VIPhone Users List, mark Taylor posted a link to get the tones provided by The Android Soul.com site which contains the link to the original .ogg files used on the Android phones. I have converted those original files to m4r format for use on the Apple devices. But, I want to give credit to the Android Soul web site for providing these files.

The m4r versions are in the zip file "s6tones.zip" available here:
s6tones.zip The original ogg files are available here: The Android Soul download




Windows Related items

Jaws Voice Assistant Commands

Here is a link to get the Jaws help section in a Word document with Tables. You can bring up the context menu and save it as a document, or just open it and save it:

Jaws Voice Assistant.docx

Jaws Laptop Keystrokes

I put the Jaws Laptop Keystrokes into an Excel file as I personally find this a more accessible format than in the Jaws help topic.
Here is the Excel file:
JawsLaptopKeystrokes.xlsx

Narrator Keyboard Commands

Here is a link to a Word .docx file of the Narrator Keyboard Commands, Touch Gestures and Scan Mode.
NarratorKeyboardCommands,TouchGesturesAndScanMode.docx

Appendix B: Narrator keyboard commands and touch gestures

Below I have put the information from the word document above into an Excel spreadsheet with several sections. I am putting two paragraphs I left out of the excel copy here for reference.
There is a table of contents with hyperlinks to the main sheet. I'm new at this, so it should open on "Sheet 2" which is the table of contents and is above sheet 1. If you just want to manually jump to sheet 1, use the Control+PageDown command. To get back to the Table of Contents, use control+PageUp.

Narrator key:
You can choose what modifier key you want to use in Narrator commands. Both the Caps lock and Insert keys serve as your Narrator key by default. You can use either of these keys in any command that uses the Narrator key. The Narrator key is referred to as simply "Narrator" in commands. You can change your Narrator key in Narrator settings.

Narrator Scan mode basics To turn scan mode on and off, press Narrator + Spacebar. When scan mode is turned on, use the Up arrow key and Down arrow key to navigate apps and webpages. Press Enter or Spacebar to activate an item that you want to use, such as a button in an app, a link in a webpage, or a text box.
Scan mode turns on automatically when you use Microsoft Edge to browse the web. It also turns on automatically when you open any Windows app where you turned it on before. If you turn scan mode off for an app, it will remain off for that app until you turn it on again. Scan mode automatically turns off in edit fields so you can enter text. Press up or down arrow again to leave the edit field and resume scan mode. Scan mode commands
When scan mode is turned on, use the keys in the Scan Mode section to navigate apps and webpages.
Note: If you are hearing silent stops in scan mode, this may be because Narrator is stopping at a punctuation mark. You can increase your punctuation verbosity by pressing Narrator + Alt + Plus sign (+) or Minus sign (-).

NarratorKeyboardCommandsTouchGestureScanMode.xlsx

Chrom Browser Tutorial for Jaws by David Moore

Here is a word document formatted with headings of David Moore's excellent tutorial on using the Chrome Browser with Jaws.
ChromeBrowserTutorialByDavidMoorewithHeadings.docx

Microsoft Edge Keyboard Shortcuts

Here is an excel spreadsheet that I created from the Microsoft Edge shortcuts provided by Mike B. on the Jaws users list.

MicrosoftEdgeKeyboardShortcuts.xlsx >

Keyboard Shortcuts for Windows 10

Here is a Word Document that uses Tables and Headings for the extensive list of keyboard shortcuts from the Microsoft support page.
KeyboardShortcutsinWindows10.docx

Windows 10 Calculator keyboard commands

I put a list of commands that was shared on the Jaws users list into a word file in a table and in an Excel spreadsheet. Both are in this zip file: Win10CalculatorKeyboardCommands.zip

WordWeb Pro

Wordweb is a dictionary that you can have running in the background to make it easy to look up definitions, synonyms, etc., from just about anywhere on your computer. It is very screen reader friendly. Check it out at: www.wordweb.info
It is also available for iOS or Android, search the App Store or Google Play store for Wordweb.



Mixology Corner

Here is a new page I'm BUILDING with my first, original, cocktail. I hope to add more

MixologyCorner.html


Accessible Games

Below will be a link to some of my favorite games, but before that, in memory of Jim Kitchen, I converted many of the commercials he used in his games to ringtone files for anyone who might want them. They are mostly from the Baseball game, my personal favorite.
Jim Kitchens Ads.zip

Accessible games Here you can read about some of my favorite accessible games.



Quotations

Quotations Here you can read some of my favorite quotations.



Humor

Tom Lehrer recorded a hit novelty song in the 50-s and again in the 60's which he called, "Poisoning Pigeons in the Park." Someone programmed the DeckTalk speech synthesizer to sing it. Before you listen to DeckTalk, if you have not heard the original, here is a YouTube link to a performance by tom Lehrer from 1998.
Tom Lehrer live The DeckTalk MP3 file is about 1 minute and 50 seconds. Here it is:

Poisoning Pigeons in the Park sung by the DeckTalk synthesizer

I received a variation on the old Abbott and Costello "who's on first" routine a few years ago. I decided to produce it with different speech synthesizers using Window-Eyes and GoldWave. The link below will play the mp3 file. Enjoy.
Hu's in China.mp3
Here is the text version in an MS-Word document: Hu's_in_China.doc



Resources

OPTACON

I recently learned that the OPTACON has an active users' list, places to repair them, and a movement to get a new OPTACON type machine created. If you are interested, here is some information.

OPTACON Repair in the U.S.

Richard Oehm
Oehm Electronics
2194C GALVESTON AVENUE
SAN JOSE, CA 95122-3617
Tel: 408-971-6250
FAX: 408-271-9188

OPTACON USERS' LIST

To subscribe to the OPTACON users' list, send an e-mail with the word subscribe in the subject to:
optacon-l-request at freelists.org
by replacing the word "at" with the @ (at) sign.

Bible Study Resources

A few years ago, I discovered a Ministry that is providing a vast array of Bible Translations, study materials and reading materials for free to print disabled people. It is called Optasia Ministry. Here is a partial quote from his web site:

Our Vision:
We aim to provide resources that will help equip Christians with disabilities to serve in Christ's church.

We provide biblical study tools and other ministry resources in a digital form that can be read by screen reading computer software, giving persons with visual disabilities access to materials that are not usable for them in print form. A list of available material is listed on our web site or is available by contacting us.

Because we are operating under the Chafee Amendment of the US copyright law we are able to provide copyrighted material free to those who qualify for our services. Those wishing to receive our material will be asked to affirm that they have a visual disability or other disability that necessitates the use of the alternative formatted documents we provide.

Optasia Ministry web site







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