Sonar GNU/Linux merges with Vinux

Devin Prater r.d.t.prater at
Fri Mar 17 01:33:14 UTC 2017

My biggest problem with Fedora is the lack of packages. Coming from Arch, 
and the AUR, I'm used to having *all* of the Audacious plugins, including 
crystalizer and such, but Fedora only came with a few of them. Also, for 
packages like Emacspeak, you have to build the dependencies, DND builddep, 
for Emacspeak to even install, which I don't understand why. builddep 
wasn't needed on other packages, but it is with Emacspeak. Also, Boxing 
does not work with Fedora, and eSpeak-ng is... broken or only pulls down 
espeak or something. So, as I've said in IRC, I really recommend either 
Debian or Arch to work with. Arch, already having Fenrir, OcrDesktop, 
Emacspeak-git, Boxing support, all that, would be a fine place to start. I 
know, Fedora is that middle ground between cutting-edge and yearly update 
cycles, but really, it all depends on how much work we, the community, want 
to do. Getting Boxing working may even be impossible on Fedora, I don't 
know, but that would put any Emacspeak user off right then, or any user who 
is impatient for eSpeak to gain a *lot* more privity and a more natural way 
of speaking, *not* a natural voice. But, there are always other distros we 
can base ourselves off of, Fedora isn't the only alternative. I just think 
Arch would be a far better way to go, it's definitely be easier to start. I 
know Orca is developed on Fedora, and that might add a perceived wow 
factor, or a closeness with the developer, but again, Arch has the orca-git 
aur package, and their is, as some one said earlier, only one developer 
working on Orca.
The first big problem with Fedora is Braille. Brltty comes with the use of 
the API commented, so that new users will have to know how to work with 
config files, and how to uncomment things, just to get Braille with Orca. 
As a Braille display user myself, it was pretty disheartening.
Then, when I did get Braille working, I found that reading with it wasn't 
so fun after all. If I didn't press a key for a while, a key on the 
keyboard of the laptop that is, the screen would lock, and my reading 
material would be replaced by the lock screen. So now, I have my books and 
such on the display for reading in the word processor.
A more serious issue with the Braille display is copying things to it. The 
Various Ultra has internal storage. When I want to copy something directly 
to it, it says that it cannot. But there's a side-effect, everything on the 
storage media is deleted for some reason. So, I'll have to just use a flash 
drive as an intermediary between them. Yes, Linux has that effect on people 
after a while, you learn to just accept the flaws and deal with it, as you 
had to with Windows, because there's so little support, so little time, so 
little care. Especially with Braille, those who don't use it don't seem to 
care much, and those who use it can't do much to change things. At least, I 
can't, as I don't know a programming language.
Now for the most serious problem, Orca, for me, doesn't talk at the log in 
screen. It may just be from me uninstalling and reinstalling Orca and 
eSpeak so many times, and I may install another distro because of all this 
Discord, all these problems, but for now, I have to listen for the little 
pops of Pulse audio/alsa doing their thing to know when to press enter, 
type my password, press enter again. But I didn't wipe Windows from my 
machine just to run back to it, I will soldier on through this bleak 
landscape, because I see so much potential if we manage to do all this. 
Linux has the ability to grow, to get better, by our direct actions, not 
just emailing accessibility at and hoping that, besides the 
automated response, something will happen. I am, though, a rather sindical 
person. I don't expect Orca to have amazing Braille support, with 
formatting information shown by way of Liblouis, Audacious plugins being 
all there, Boxing working or Emacspeak folks waking up to the possibility 
that if they focused a little on helping with eSpeak, it may progress more 
than just bandaging bad pronunciación a. I'm not saying this or that 
project isn't getting anywhere, sure it is, but we need more help than what 
we have, a sighted Orca developer who knows not much about Braille, and a 
community of devs who probably don't even know we're considering their 
distro to be a base for ours. But, I'll sit back and wait and see what 
comes of all this, helping out where I can with documentation or user 
support, all that. I'm training to be an ATI, assistive technology 
instructor, so if y'all want what I can offer, as I've said in IRC where 
sometimes my voice is drown out by noise, then I'm here.

On March 16, 2017 6:37:05 PM Joel Roth <joelz at> wrote:

> Eric Oyen wrote:
>> ...we, as a community, don't have an actual unified distro
>> to call our own. Sure, Vinux is a decent distro, but it's
>> lacking a lot of useful features outside of accessibility.
>> I, myself, use Ubuntu primarily because of the larger
>> software repository. I have also had to help out my room
>> mate (who is definitely a Linux NewB) and Ubuntu was the
>> easiest to use.
> Hi Eric,
> I'm not sure how things are at present, but in the past,
> Debian has shown some commitment to supporting
> accessibility[1], including at the installer level[2].
> This is not the same as a special-purpose distribution, and
> I think the pages were written some time ago. Still I would
> think that some effort would be worthwhile, and would
> benefit all Debian derivatives, which could include
> a accessbility-centric distribution.
> 1.
> 2.
> Regards,
> Joel
> --
> Joel Roth
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