Version 9 Release Date Announced as 12th March 2008

6th Mar, 2008

Man using a laptop with his arms in the airThe eagerly anticipated Version 9.01 software solutions of Dolphin's SuperNova, Hal, Lunar and LunarPlus are scheduled for release on the 12th March 2008.

Dolphin is delighted to be able to publicly launch the next evolution of our world class assistive technology software at the world's largest AT conference, the 23rd Annual International Technology & Persons with Disabilities Conference (also known as CSUN).

Dolphin users have been telling us that their favourite and most important application is the internet. So development for version 9.01 has been squarely focused on usability and performance when browsing the web.

Closely steered by Dolphin's Blindness Product Manager Dave Williams, version 9 has just completed a rigorous beta test period with our international team of testers. As ever their feedback has been invaluable.

So what's new in version 9.01? Read on to find out what's in it for you.

 

All New Document Object Model Support
Dolphin's developers have completely re-engineered our Microsoft Internet Explorer Document Object Model (DOM) support. This major overhaul has provided superior responsiveness when browsing web pages using the Dolphin Virtual Focus. The new Microsoft Internet Explorer support improves navigational consistency and accuracy for users relying on Virtual Focus speech and/or Braille output on web pages. The new support also enhances stability on more complex and poorly written web pages.

All new Internet Explorer Quick Navigation Keys
A whole host of new and intuitive quick navigation hotkeys have been added to version 9 to enable our users to do what they love the most, surf the web quickly and easily. These much requested keys allow you to move the focus between the next and previous element such as button, link, edit area etc within a web page.

Whilst in Interactive mode CAPS LOCK can be used in conjunction with the quick navigation hotkeys to navigate by any of the elements listed below.

Choose from the following extensive list selecting CAPS LOCK + letter as listed below for forward navigation through the webpage. Alternatively SHIFT + CAPS LOCK + letter as listed below to navigate backwards through the webpage.

B Button
C Check box
D Different
E Edit area
G Graphic
H Heading
L Link
N Text block (blocks of text divided by non-text objects such as links, graphics etc
P Paragraph
R Radio
S List box
T Table
U Un-Visited Links
V Visited Links
X Control

Where an element is not present the screen reader prompts with an appropriate error message and retains the current focus and position. For example "Not found".

IE Quick Navigation Keys DocA new Internet Explorer Quick Navigation Keys will be included in full box edition of version 9 alongside the existing Quick Reference Guide.

The Internet Explorer Quick Navigation Keys Reference Guide can also be downloaded in a format of your choice from the Dolphin website.

Cut, Copy and Paste Announcement
Whilst in Live mode the version 9 screen reader announces text cut, copied or pasted from the Windows clipboard. Should that data be write protected version 9 will announce the failure to cut or copy text. Moving folders or files? Version 9 will also announce the number of objects you cut, copy or paste.

The Speech Preferences dialog now includes a checkbox which can be used to disable clipboard announcements. The new Clipboard key mappings dialog allows users running non English operating systems that don't use the default key assignments of CTRL C, CTRL X and CTRL V, to adjust the hot keys to their local cut, copy and paste settings.

All new Dolphin List Utility
Version 9 offers a consolidated list of popular document elements into one handy single multi-page List Utility.

To launch the new multi-page dialog with a single hot key press CAPS LOCK +TAB from all the applications that are currently supported, Internet Explorer, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word.

The new dialog can easily be navigated using standard Windows conventions CONTROL+TAB and CONTROL+SHIFT+TAB to move between the various tab sheets.

These Tab sheets offer the user a convenient list of the following document elements:

  • Links
  • Headings
  • Revisions
  • Objects
  • Comments
  • Frames
  • Tables
  • Controls
  • Spelling errors
  • Grammar errors.

Each of these lists can be sorted in document order or alphabetically. In addition the user can choose to perform a variety of actions on each element including route Virtual Focus, Left Click and Right Click.

The utility can also be launched on the expected page with legacy hotkeys such as CAPS LOCK + 1 for the list of Links etc.

A screenshot of the Dolphin list utility on the summary tab sheet. The dialog contents reads Link: 54 links, Heading: 9 Headings, Frame: 0 Frames, Table: 0 tables, Control: 2 Controls

A screenshot of the Dolphin List Utility on the useful Summary tab sheet.

A screenshot of the new Dolphin List utility in action on the Dolphin website. The Links tab sheet is open and the first line of text says "54 links in Dolphin-Home" followed by a long list of link titles and their urls. Beneath that there is a pull down list box called "Sorting Method". The sorting method selected in this instance is "Tab Order". Beneath that are 5 buttons in right to left and top to bottom order are Left Click, Right Click, Route VF to, Cancel and Help.

A screenshot of the new Dolphin List Utility using the Links tab sheet.

The new Dolphin List Utility is open on the Tables tab sheet whilst browsing the Dolphin website. The particular page includes a large table of the available synthesisers and their voices for each language of Dolphin product. The list utility indicates there is 1 table on the page entitled Dolphin Hal Screen Reading Voices. The dialog then list what the 1 table is ie "table showing which voices come with each language etc etc". The Sorting method list box is set to "Tab Order" and a further 3 buttons are available in Route VF to, Cancel and Help.

The new Dolphin List Utility is open on the Tables tab sheet whilst browsing the Dolphin website.

A screenshot of the Dolphin List Utility in action in Word. The Summary Tab sheet is showing that there are 8 links, 16 headings, 5 spelling errors, 5 grammar errors, 0 revisions, 1 tables, 0 objects, 1 comment.

The List Utility includes a Summary list that details the number links, headings, spelling errors, grammar errors, revisions, tables, objects, comments on the other tab sheets.

Improved Support for Office 2007 Ribbon
Version 9 offers enhanced support for the Office 2007 Ribbon bar.
An all new Dolphin online tutorial for Office 2007 will be made available for Dolphin users upon the release of version 9.01.

All New Braille Tables
In addition to Dolphin's existing substantial list of Braille tables, The following Braille tables have been added or updated for Braille output and Braille input.

New and Updated Braille Output Tables

  • French Code for the UK (for English students studying the French language)
  • French Grade 1
  • French Grade 2
  • German Code for the UK (for English students studying the German language)
  • German Grade 2 (updated)
  • Norwegian Grade 1
  • Norwegian Grade 2
  • Spanish Code for the UK (for English students studying the Spanish language)
  • Swedish Grade 1
  • Swedish Grade 2 (levels 1 and 2)
  • Unified English Braille Grade 1
  • Unified English Braille Grade 2

New and Updated Braille Input Tables

  • French Grade 1
  • French Grade 2
  • Norwegian Grade 1
  • Norwegian Grade 2
  • Swedish Grade 1
  • Swedish Grade 2
  • Unified English Braille (Grades 1 and 2)

Unified English Braille has been adopted in Australia, New Zealand, Nigeria and South Africa and is due for consideration in the UK in April 2008.

Miscellaneous Braille Fixes
In addition some fixes to the Braille output when navigating and selecting cells in Microsoft Word tables have been made. Braille display should now accurately show the selected cells when selecting down a column.

Support for Terminal Services
Version 9 reintroduces support for Windows Terminal Server and Citrix MetaFrame operating systems, allowing blind and visually impaired computer users the same excellent access to applications running on remote thin clients, as well as Windows desktop terminals.


Want to put Version 9 through it's paces for yourself? Download a demo or order a trial CD from the 12th March.

Check out Dolphin's the new Office 2007 online tutorial.

Join us at CSUN in LA where you can meet the team or drop by on one of our presentations.

Order your upgrade online now using Dolphin's secure cart.

Find your local Dolphin dealer.