Sunday, November 22, 2009

Special education and assistive technology for OS X

Apple has revised two pages on their web site related to special needs (adaptive, assistive) technology:
The first two are now current with Snow Leopard, though I'm personally deferring an update to that Intel-only platform until either April 2010 or a new machine.

I don't see anything equivalent to Don Johnston's Co:Writer word prediction software, however 10.6 includes a new (I don't think this is in 10.5) word completion feature:
... Students can avoid spelling mistakes and reduce keystrokes with the word completion feature of the Mac. After typing a few characters, pressing the Escape key opens up a menu of words to choose from beginning with the characters they typed. It highlights correct word usage, and it’s available in most applications...
Co:Writer might work in an XP or Win2K VM, though I was unable to find any data on that.

Update: There is an OS X version of Co:Writer, it's being updated for 10.6. I realize that Don Johnston sales are almost entirely to schools, but I do think he might market it a bit. At the very least it ought to be listed on Apple's accessibility site. I'll write him about that.

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