Talking Tech 22nd May 2018

May 22, 2018

Round-Up from Google IO


Robot calling human called Duplex,

Google Assistant getting 6 new voices (US language only),

Smart compose for Gmail based on Duplex,

Google Maps and AR with visual position (pointing the correct way when walking),

Google News,

Robot manners encouraging children to say please (similar to Alexa),

Tackling tech addiction with a new Android Google Dash Board to monitor your phone usage (this may be coming in iOS 12 as well for Apple),

Navigation bar similar to iPhone X for such as taking users between apps  and the home screen.


Accessibility at Google IO


Covering new accessibility options in Android P listening, Accessibility menu, Lookout app for blind low vision, selected speech wnow with OCR and new Accessible API’s, accessibility testing and accessibility scanner to check accessibility, user research for example Android will allow users to adjust vibration level on screen due to user research by Google, Voice Access will be coming out of beta, Google to release accessibility options in the Android Accessibility Suite as one package.


Google’s Assistant 6 New Voices


To me they sound a bit creepy smile.


Google in Australia now can give you NRL, and AFL Games, Scores etc.


You can now check when and how your fav team went when it is going to go in the NRL and AFL in Australia.


Announcing LookOut - Helping people who a blind Find Out About The World Around Them


JAWS and Firefox V60 now All Good Again


Ray Pearse App Update


Ray discuss’s a few apps that he has been testing over the last few months.



How to Subscribe to Jonathan Mosen’s Daily Fibre Show


Besides catching up with the Daily Fibre when it is aired, you can now subscribe to a podcast of the show.


Talking Tech 15th May 2018

May 15, 2018

Vision Australia and Aira Launch Aira in Australia


Upcoming Themes at the Vision Australia Tech Hub in Parramatta with Tech Fridays


I will be running a series of themed Tech Friday events up until the end of June.


18 May - fitness and health tracking options.

25th of May - reading book options.

1 June - getting the most out of the iPad.

8th of June - using the various smart speakers.

15 June - using the various smart assistants in smart phones.

22nd of June - getting the most out of the Mac.

29th of June - recommended Android and iOS apps.


Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD) 2018


About GAAD can be found at:


Event pages for GAAD can be found at:

Items Released around Microsoft Build Conference


Just a note, Microsoft is making it clear it doesn’t care if your using iOS, Android, Mac or Windows, it just wants you to utilise its software services.


5 Biggest Announcements from Microsoft Build


Microsoft your phone,

Microsoft layout,

Hay Cortana meet Alexa,

Microsoft running your meeting, and

Ai for Accessibility.


Microsoft Launching 25 Million Dollar AI Program for Accessibility


Trailler for the Microsoft Film - re-imaging Accessibility


Film for Microsoft on Global Access Awareness Day.


Today in Technology film from Microsoft - The History of Braille lives on


The History of Screen Readers  and How to Make your Windows Application Accessible by Doug Geoffrey


JAWS and Firefox V60 now All Good Again


Talking Tech 1st May 2018

May 1, 2018

The Windows 10 Spring Update rolling Out


Microsoft is rolling out the Spring (or in our case Autumn) Windows 10 RS5 update.


For the latest JAWS, Zoomtext, and Fusion users there doesn’t seem to be an issue with the latest update to Windows if your running the latest versions of these packages.


Listen to FSCast 152 concerning the update, may still be an issue for Dongle users.


As far asNVDA goes, doesn’t seem to be an issue if your running (again) the latest version of NVDA.


As always, if your not sure, don’t update until you have spoken to your assistive tech person.


Mothers day Gift Ideas


As usual, here are a number of tech ideas for Mothers Day.


Samsung range of Smart TVS that include accessibility including Voice Guide (screen reader)


Samsung Powerbot Vacuum Cleaner (can run stand alone or from your Smart Phone/app)


Apple TV (will need an Apple and iTunes account)


Google Home


Apple Watch (for existing iPhone users otherwise need to purchase an iPhone)


Tile Tag Tracking Device (needs smart phone app to track/play sound on items in your house)


Olitech Large Print Mobile Phone


Explore 8 Portable Video Magnifier


Talking microwave

Hope you find some of these suggestions useful.


Talking Tech 24th April 2018

April 24, 2018

In this weeks show, in acknowledging ANZAC day, we speak with Tony Wu on how Vision Australia can support DVA customers with technology to assist in everyday activities.

Please contact your local Vision Australia office or Vision Australia main customer number 1300 847 466 for more information.


David and Stephen were contemplating the other day if we had to lay out on a table how many gadgets an iPhone or smart phone in general has replaced, what would those devices be? 

Here is the list they arrived at:


AAC (Augmentative Alternative Communication) devices.

Bar code reader.

Books, newspapers, and magazines.



Clock (plus alarm).

CD or other music player.


Computer for mail, web browsing, word processing, and other activities.

Daisy player.

Deaf communication.

Digital recorder.

DVDS (movies (audio described or closed Captioned).

Electronic hand held magnifier.

EFTPOS (Apple Pay).


GPS device.

Kitchen (or general) timer.

Keyboard (Braille, QWERTY, hand writing or other input method).


Light detecter.

Note currency identifier.



Note taker.


Reading machine.

Reference works (dictionary, encyclopaedia, recipes etc).

Remote control.

Smart speaker.

Stop watch.




Video camera.

Weather station.


Would make a fantastic picture smile.


Talking Tech 17th April 2018

April 17, 2018

In this weeks show, Stephen and David catch up with Michelle Eunson (Strategic Business Development Manager) Vision Australia about the Vision Store, and her recent trip to the CSUN Technology conference earlier this year and what this means to Vision Australia and the products sold through the store.

The store can be accessed by: 

1300 847 466.

David catch’s us up on his experience with his new partners iMac and comments upon how easy it was to use the Migration Assistant to transfer content from the older iMac to the new system.


Talking Tech 10th April 2018

April 10, 2018

We finish off a discussion from last week concerning the Os updates across Apple devices.


Aira - sighted support through a smart phone/smart glass’s via a subscription service in the US, starts pilot trial from May 1 in Australia, New Zealand, and Uk.  The pilot will not include the smart glass’s (will be using the smart phones camera), and will cost $89 for 200 minutes per month for the length of the pilot (6 months).

For Further information or to sign up for the pilot commencing from May 1 2018 use the following link (NB spots will be limited so you may not get in):


David talks about Sam, is named Samsung Powerbot robot vacuum cleaner that he has had now for several months.

A great way of keeping the house clean, particularly when you have a dog inside.

For further information on the Samsung Powerbot vacuum cleaner, use the following link:


Speaking of recent or new gadgets, this week David talks about his soon to arrive iMac which is quite nicely spec’d out.


Finally for this weeks show, David and Stephen talk about the Autour GPS app for giving meaningful information on what is around you: very similar to the Sound Scape app which is currently available in the US.


Talking Tech 27th March 2018

March 27, 2018

Blind Bargains Website Now Putting up Their Audio Interviews from CSUN 2018


Audio demos so far: Commute Braille E-reader, , ElBraille, NuEyes light weight wearable Smart Glass’s, Buzz Clip V2.0, 

Two notetaker announcements via Blind Bargains - BrailleSense Polaris Mini, and the ElBraille 40 is now available.


Community Sourced List of CSUN Presentations in Google Docs


Announcing FlickType Keyboard and Looking for Beta Testers


The Official Gold Coast Commonwealth Games 2018 App - A Good Example of an Accessible App


A Little Tip I learnt at Work: Use a Headset with your Phone to Voice Answer Calls


Product Highlight from Vision Australia Vision Store - Olitech Easy Mate+ Large Print Mobile Phone


A simple large print mobile phone with a talking keypad and easy to read display with no bells and whistles.


Apple Proposes New Accessible Emoji’s


Talking Tech 20th March 2018

March 20, 2018

Microsoft Hack for Good Sydney 

March 8 and 9 2018 (in conjunction with Social Ventures Australia)


I was lucky enough to attend and judge Hack4Good at PwC’s Barangaroo offices last week with 12 of Microsoft’s  partner organisations participating hosted by David Masters from Microsoft.

The event focused on hacking solutions for people with disabilities.

There  were three winning teams: Humanitix who are transforming their event platform so that those with a disability can clearly communicate their accessibility needs to event organisers, Clinic to Cloud who proposed a personal disability passport to easily communicate with service providers, and PwC who explored the use of Microsofts cognitive services to clearly communicate the emotions of users during a  Skype call for those who may not be able to see or hear.

With one in five Australians living with a disability today, it was inspiring to see the commitment to accessibility from Microsofts  partner community. 

A big thanks to PwC for hosting the event and to Leonie from the Deaf Society of NSW, Rocco from KPMG, Kenny from Microsoft, Dianne from Social Ventures Australia and David Masters for their invaluable guidance to Microsoft  teams over the course of the hack.


Skype Accessibility from the Skype Blog


From the Skype blog, Microsoft will be working hard to improve accessibility of Skype arose iOS, Android, Mac and Windows, and are urging people to give them feedback.


A Reminder the CSUN 2018 is on This Week


If you use Twitter and you want to follow what is going on with CSUN, follow the Hash Tag CSUNATC18.

We’ll have lots to talk about next week from CSUN.

A great resource for news and audio interviews from CSUN 2018 is Blind Bargains who will be bringing us news and interviews.


Apple’s first Coding Session for Blind or Low Vision Students at the Texas School for the Blind and Visually  Impaired March 7 2018


Apple Experts visited the school and took students through coding in Swift Playgrounds to flying drones.


Apple’s Education Event in Chicago on March 27


We have know idea what the event is about which is being held at a  school in Chicago and is aimed and creativity for students and teachers, , but chances are that because its education, we’ll see new iPads, and MacBooks  announced.


WWDC (World Wide Developers Conference) Apple Set for June 4 2018


As this is a software developers conference, we’ll see updates across all of the OS platforms - iOS, Watch os, TV OS, and Mac OS.  Rmour is that Apple will be focussing mainly on security and stability improvements in iOS 12.


JAWS 20108 Update March 15 2018


I think the great improvements in this update of JAWS is that JAWS can now unmute the sound card via JAWS key plus Escape (JAWS’s screen refresh), drivers for the Orbit reader, and added  a new layer command to turn Screen Shade  on/off JAWS key plus Space plus F11.


Google Assistant now Available on the iPad


Just search for Google Assistant on the App Store on your iPad and you can start using the assistant the same way you can use it on your iPhone.


Tell Me About vision Australia Now on Google Home


Information about Vision Australia and our services can now be obtained from Google Home, just ask:

Hey Google Tell me about Vision Australia.