6.8: Accessibility Settings
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Accessibility options are built into Windows to help users who may have trouble using their computers normally get a little more functionality out of their favorite OS. Though Windows 10 does innovate on many features we’ve come to expect from older versions of the operating system, for the most part, Microsoft has opted to keep much of the core functionality of its accessibility features the same to make it easier both on users and developers to adapt without much trouble in between the old system and the new. Even so, here’s how to manage all the accessibility options available in the latest update of Windows 10. (How to geek, n.d.)
For the blind or those with acute sight limitations, a Narrator is a vital tool that will read off the contents of any page, window, or application. Windows 10 has the capability to read the characters you type as you type them, playing audio cues when you click into new pages or applications, and reading off hints for controls and buttons which will assist sight challenged. At the bottom of the Narrator settings, users have the option to hear Microsoft David or Zira as the Narrator. (Howtogeek.com, n.d.)
Magnifier is another of the Windows Ease of Access features designed to assist anyone who either has trouble reading their screen.
Sticking with the concept of “making things easier”, Microsoft has opted to group all its visual accessibility features into the top three choices in the Ease of Access panel.
High contrast will drastically alter the overall color scheme so that text, images, application windows, and icons become easier to read for anyone who might have colorblindness.
The closed captions section can be used to customize how any closed captions in your local media players will appear during the playback of movies or TV shows. For those who have difficulties making out the white text against moving backgrounds, this allows you to choose between any color you’d like on the Windows color palette.
You can opt to change the font, the color of the text, or both at the same time if you have specific needs depending on your own vision requirements.
The keyboard options in Ease of Access offers up a wide range of customization that will help anyone with disabilities or special needs have exactly the PC experience they want every time they boot up and log in.
An On-Screen Keyboard is a great tool for anyone who’s using Windows 10 on a touch screen device or doesn’t want to use a keyboard. Sticky Keys will change your keyboard to treat any strikes of the ctrl, shift, or alt keys as a hold command, rather than a tap as it usually would. This is perfect for anyone who has issues maintaining finger dexterity for long periods of time (arthritis patients come to mind), or just users who are too lazy to manage to hold down more than a few keys at once. (Howtogeek.com, n.d.)
You may increase and decrease the size of the mouse cursor to make it more helpful to see your cursor.