Blind vs. mainstream distros

Linux for blind general discussion blinux-list at
Thu Apr 27 21:47:24 UTC 2017

eric oyen here…

Really? the mac can't provide a talking interface during installation? um, plug in the install media, wait 30 seconds and press cmd+F5. the entire installation from beginning to end is completely accessible.

Now, OS X does have some failings here. In single user mode (X key during boot), speech will not be available until a GUI comes up. So, any kernel messages that crop up indicating a problem will be missed. The same can be said for "safe mode". I and others have been trying to convince apple that it would be a good idea to have some kind of speech support right at kernel load. so far, we have been largely ignored.

Anyway, as for OS X not being accessible during install, complete fallacy.

Hell, in the recovery mode, CMD+F5 works and I have voice. so, even recovery mode is accessible.


On Apr 27, 2017, at 4:28 AM, Linux for blind general discussion wrote:

> Tony Baechler here.
> I have two major problems with this argument, namely what Chris says in that Talking Arch should be a separate project. I feel strongly that speech and Braille should be part of all boot media for all mainstream distros unless it wouldn't be practical, such as for very small systems or due to space limitations on the boot media.
> First, I guess it's just me, but pressing a key or two at the boot prompt really isn't a big deal. My boot loader lets me pick what OS I want to boot. I have to press a number for the partition I want. If you use GRUB and want to boot into recovery mode, you press the down arrow, whether you're blind or sighted. If you want to boot a custom Linux kernel command line, you type it in. Pressing the letter "s" and Enter to start speech in Debian and Slackware is hardly what I would call an inconvenience. Granted, I agree that I would rather not have to press aspecial keys, but if it keeps most people happy (the sighted don't want speech) and allows an accessible install, it's fine with me.
> The second major problem I have is that unless I'm mistaken, it's still impossible for the blind to install Windows without help. Much of it can be automated and maybe Win10 has Narrator during the install, I'm not sure. The point is speech doesn't start automatically and there are far more keys to randomly press to get speech. In the past, I had someone install Windows for me before I could install a screen reader. One area where Linux shines is there are distros which only require a key or two at boot to have a fully talking installer which is identical to what the sighted use. Even the Mac can't do that, although one can start VoiceOver during the installation.
> On 4/24/2017 8:21 AM, Linux for blind general discussion wrote:
>> Kelly Prescott here.
>> It takes a lot of effort to make a boot environment talk...  I know, because
>> that is what I am working on.
>> I am not speaking of Linux, I am speaking of a boot loader.
>> When I finish my boot loader, then it might be realistic to have a normal
>> arch cd with some boot options.
>> Until that happens, I agree with Chris.  I don't like to boot and guess what
>> to type and when.
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