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Transcription of Ease of Access Center Demo

Welcome to the demonstration of the Ease of Access Center in Windows Vista.

The new Ease of Access Center in Windows Vista provides a convenient, centralized location to adjust accessibility settings and programs to make your computer easier to use.

Open the Ease of Access Center in Control Panel by pressing the Windows Logo key + U.

Or, select:

  • Start
  • Control Panel
  • Ease of Access, and
  • Ease of Access Center

The Ease of Access Center includes:

  • Quick access to common tools
  • Get recommendations to make your computer easier to use, and
  • Explore all settings

Quick access to common tools

The Quick access to common tools section lets you quickly start Narrator, Magnifier, On-Screen Keyboard and High Contrast.

The list is read aloud and scanned automatically.

Start any of these four tools from the Quick Access Center, and they will turn off after you log off or shut down.

To start these tools automatically every time you log on, turn them on under the Explore all settings categories.


Narrator is a text-to-speech program that reads what is displayed on your screen, the contents of the active window, menu options, or the text you have typed. Narrator lets you customize the way screen elements are read.

Choose the text Narrator reads aloud such as:

  • Keystrokes
  • System messages, and
  • Scroll notifications

And, choose Narrator voice settings including:

  • Speed
  • Volume, and
  • Pitch

(Narrator voice)



Magnifier is a magnification program that enlarges a portion of your screen in a separate window to make it easier to see.

Choose the magnification level from 2 to 16 times the original.

For convenience and better visibility:

  • Invert the colors
  • Move the Magnifier window anywhere on your screen
  • Choose a docking position which places the magnifier window at left, top, right, or bottom of your screen, and
  • Adjust the tracking focus so that it follows the movement of the mouse cursor, keyboard focus, or text editing

On-Screen Keyboard

On-Screen Keyboard displays a visual keyboard with all of the standard keys on the screen. Instead of relying on the physical keyboard to type, you can select keys using the mouse or another pointing device, a small group of keys, or just one key. Several keyboard layouts and views are available to promote faster typing, or to give access to the maximum number of keys.

Choose from:

  • Enhanced or Standard Keyboard layout
  • Regular or block lettering on the keys
  • 101, 102, or 106 keys

Three different typing modes can be used in On-Screen Keyboard:

  • Clicking mode
  • Hovering mode, or
  • Scanning mode

In Clicking mode, click the on-screen keyboard keys to type text.

In Hovering mode, use a mouse or joystick to select a key by hovering over it. In Scanning Mode, On-Screen Keyboard continually scans the keyboard highlighting a line of keys. Pressing any keyboard key, or a single switch, selects the line. Then, On-Screen Keyboard begins scanning the individual keys in the line and the desired key is selected with the same keyboard key or switch.

To make the On-Screen Keyboard keys easier to see, change the font, font style, and font size from the Settings menu.

Turn on ClickSound to hear a sound when keys are pressed.

High Contrast

High Contrast is a display option that heightens the color contrast of some text and images on your computer screen, making those items more distinct and easier to identify.

There are a number of color scheme combinations to choose from.

Get recommendations

An optional questionnaire is available when Get recommendations to make your computer easier to use is selected.

Questions relate to:

  • Eyesight
  • Dexterity
  • Hearing
  • Speech, and
  • Reasoning tasks

Based on your answers, a custom list of recommended settings is provided to make it easier to see, hear, and use your computer.

Explore all settings

Under "Explore all settings" are seven categories of accessibility settings and programs.

Detailed demonstrations of each of these categories are available.

This concludes our demonstration.

Tutorials are provided for the accessibility settings and programs demonstrated.

For more information, visit the Microsoft Accessibility Web site at:

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