Internationalizing Screen readers.

Jackie McBride abletec at
Fri Nov 4 03:49:30 UTC 2016

Jeffery, you don't tell us what synthesizer you're using w/Orca, but
the truth is it's the tts engine that really handles the language
aspects, as opposed to the screenreader itself. ESpeak, Flite, etc,
all have I18N capabilities, I believe, & these are all being used
w/Orca. I'm not familiar w/sbl, but here again, if it will work w/a
different synthesizer than what you're currently using, give that a
try & see if things are better.

On 11/3/16, Devin Prater <r.d.t.prater at> wrote:
> Emacs, with Emacspeak, can handle most, if not all, Unicode characters,
> even emoji!
> On 11/3/2016 9:24 PM, Jeffery Mewtamer wrote:
>> English is the only language I'm fluent in, and among the languages I
>> know more than a few words of, many of those words have been imported
>> into English anyways, but I still come across enough non-Latin text
>> for short comings in internationalization to be annoying.
>> In graphical mode on my desktop, I use Orca(do there even exist
>> graphical screen readers for Linux other than Orca), and it handles
>> non-English Latin text well enough, but for some non-Latin character
>> sets(such as Greek, Hebrew, and Arabic), it can only read
>> character-by-character instead of string characters into words, and
>> for others(such as Chinese and Japanese), it can only identify the
>> character set and then repeat the word "letter" for each character in
>> the string, and then there are some characters Orca can't identify at
>> all and just reads the Unicode code point in Hexadecimal.
>> This can be particularly annoying when reading wiki pages that are
>> heavy on foreign terms that are displayed both in their source
>> language and Romanized.
>> My text-mode screen reader, SBL, has even bigger issues, reading
>> pretty much all non-ASCII characters as "thorn", and can't even handle
>> things such as accented Latin characters or the curly versions of the
>> single and double quotes.
>> If anyone knows anything I could try to improve these, it would be
>> greatly appreciated.
>> If it matters, I'm running a system customized from Knoppix 7.7.1,
>> which is based on Debian.
>> _______________________________________________
>> Blinux-list mailing list
>> Blinux-list at
> _______________________________________________
> Blinux-list mailing list
> Blinux-list at

Jackie McBride
Website Hosting, Repair, & Development
Author of the Book
"My Site's Been Hacked, Now what?: A Guide to Preventing and Fixing a
Compromised Website" Where Visionaries & Technology Unite for Good

More information about the Blinux-list mailing list