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Avoiding Microsoft’s Upcoming Automatic Internet Explorer 7.0 Update

October 26, 2006 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

Since the current versions of much of our assistive technology do not yet fully support Internet Explorer 7.0, most blind and visually impaired users may want to avoid installing the browser upgrade at this time. See IEBlog : IE7 to be distributed via Automatic Updates! for more details on Microsoft’s plans for providing this update.

In the meantime, follow these steps to avoid the automatic update on Windows 2000, 2003 or XP:

  1. Click the Start button.
  2. Point to Settings and choose Control Panel.
  3. Choose Automatic Updates.
  4. The default setting is to automatically update without prompting. Select one of the following options instead:
    • Download updates for me, but let me choose when to install them.
    • Notify me but don’t automatically download or install them.
  5. Click OK.

Note: You will now be notified before any updates are installed. Watch the list and uncheck Internet Explorer 7 when it appears.

Categories: Microsoft

VIP Conduit Now Compatible with Internet Explorer 7.0

October 19, 2006 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

This important information is provided by Parker from VIP Conduit concerning the availability of an updated voice chat client that is compatible with Internet Explorer 7.0.

If you have installed Internet Explorer 7 and can’t access the chat rooms, you need to download and install the latest version of the client.  It was updated sometime back but the download was not forced. Just click on the download the Communicator link on the rooms page to obtain a version of the client that will function properly with Internet Explorer 7.0.

Categories: Uncategorized

Beware: Internet Explorer 7.0 Not Fully Supported By Some Current Screen Readers

October 18, 2006 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

Microsoft has released Internet Explorer 7.0 this morning, but you may not want to jump on the banwagon yet. It is known to work well with Window-Eyes 5.5, but is not fully supported by other current screen readers such as Freedom Box System Access and JAWS 7.1. It will be necessary to await an upcoming release of an upgrade of these screen readers for Internet Explorer 7 support. In some cases, full screen reader support for Internet Explorer 7 is going to require payment of an upgrade fee if the user does not hold an active Software Maintenance Agreement with the vendor. Before downloading and installing Internet Explorer 7, please, do yourself a favor and ask your screen reader maker if they fully support the latest version of this web browser before plunging ahead. Taking this prudent step may prevent a lot of unnecessary grief.

Categories: Uncategorized

BlogLines Officially Announces Accessibility Improvements

October 16, 2006 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

We thank the developers of BlogLines for once again restoring access to the service to us. The following announcement now appears on the BlogLines home page.

We believe in providing the best service for each individual. To that end, we recently released some changes to the tree in the left pane to make things a bit easier on those with visual impairments.

The folder toggle icons now feature an alt tag which dynamically changes, letting a screen reader know the state of a folder. In addition, we changed the markup for folder labels, making it easier to navigate within the tree.

Last, a special thanks to Darrell Shandrow and Jeff Bishop for their help with the new tree.

– The Bloglines Team

Categories: Uncategorized

President Bush Proclaims October 15 White Cane Safety Day

October 13, 2006 • Darrell Shandrow Hilliker

WHITE CANE SAFETY DAY, 2006

A PROCLAMATION

BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Our Nation believes in the promise of all our citizens, and we must work to ensure that the opportunities of America are more accessible to every person.  Many Americans who are blind or visually impaired use white canes to enable them to enjoy greater mobility, engage in productive work, and participate fully in all aspects of life.  On White Cane Safety Day, we celebrate the many achievements of Americans who are blind or visually impaired, and we recognize the white cane as an important symbol of their determination and independence.

My Administration remains committed to removing barriers that confront Americans with disabilities.  Since we launched the New Freedom Initiative 5 years ago, we have worked to improve access to community life, expand educational opportunities, strengthen training and employment services, and promote the development of technology for people with disabilities.  We are building on the progress of the Americans with Disabilities Act and working to make America a place where all citizens have the opportunity to realize their full potential.

The Congress, by joint resolution (Public Law 88-628) approved on October 6, 1964, as amended, has designated October 15 of each year as “White Cane Safety Day.” NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim October 15, 2006, as White Cane Safety Day. I call upon public officials, business leaders, educators, librarians, and all the people of the United States to join as we work to ensure that the benefits and privileges of life in our great Nation are available to Americans who are blind or visually impaired, and to observe this day with appropriate ceremonies, activities, and programs. IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this     twelfth day of October, in the year of our Lord two thousand six, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-first.

GEORGE W. BUSH

Categories: Uncategorized