Monday, September 10, 2007

Quick Accessibility tips for Windows and Mac

A large part of dealing with the public in the library setting is being prepared to make information accessible to everyone at any time....

A tall order indeed!

But have no fear, here are a few quick tips that I just picked up from my Information Literacy course:

Windows XP has three little accessibility features right there under their accessories that can help out in a pinch. Go to Start/All Programs/Accessories/Accessibility and you'll find a:

  • Magnifier (enhances hard to read fonts simply by mouse-over)
  • Narrator (reads onscreen text, not exactly THAT good but an option for a patron in need)
  • On-screen keyboard (very neat, test this out! it allows you to use your mouse to click on the letters of a virtual keyboard. helps when a patron may have limited mobility)

Apple also has some pretty extensive accessibility features available under /Applications/System Preferences/Universal Access.

Among the cooler features available through Apple:

There is certainly far better (and more expensive) technology out there that makes information more easily accessible to all users in this digital age, but knowing these little tricks can be useful on the fly (and the cheap)!