Transcription of Make It Easier to Focus on Tasks Demo

Welcome to the demonstration of how to Make It Easier to Focus on Tasks in Windows Vista.

Many accessibility settings in Windows Vista can make it easier to focus on reading and typing tasks.

To explore settings, open the Ease of Access Center in Control Panel by pressing the Windows Logo key + U.

Then, select "Make it easier to focus on tasks."

Here you'll explore:

  • Reading
  • Make it easier to type
  • Adjust time limits and flashing visuals, and
  • Set up Speech Recognition


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)


Remove background images if you find them distracting, or if they make the screen difficult to see.

Make it easier to type

Turn on Sticky Keys to press keyboard shortcuts (such as CTRL, ALT, and Delete) one key at a time, rather than simultaneously.

Many options are available for Sticky Keys.

Turn on Toggle Keys to hear a tone each time you press CAPS LOCK, NUM LOCK, or SCROLL LOCK.

These alerts can help prevent the frustration of accidentally pressing one of these keys.

Turn on Filter Keys to ignore keystrokes or slow down repeated keystrokes and adjust keyboard repeat rates.

  • Turn on Bounce Keys so that your computer will ignore repeated keystrokes
  • Choose how long the computer waits before accepting keystrokes (from .5 to 2 seconds)
  • Turn on and Set up Repeat Keys and Slow Keys to ignore brief keystrokes
  • Beep when keys are pressed or accepted, and,
  • Display the Filters Key icon on the taskbar

Adjust time limits and flashing visuals

Turn off all unnecessary animations if you find animations distracting.

Choose how long Windows notification dialog boxes stay open from 7 seconds to 5 minutes.

Set up Speech Recognition

Windows Speech Recognition empowers you to interact with your computer by voice.

Use Speech Recognition to dictate documents and e-mail, navigate the Internet, and command applications and the operating system by saying what you see. With speech recognition you can reduce the use of a mouse and keyboard while maintaining or increasing your overall productivity.

The Speech Recognition configuration page includes:

  • Start Speech Recognition
  • Set up microphone
  • Take Speech Tutorial
  • Train your computer to better understand you
  • Open the Speech Reference Card, and
  • Advanced speech options

These topics walk you through the process of adjusting your microphone, learning speech recognition commands, training the computer to understand your voice, and finding help when you need it.

This concludes our demonstration.

Tutorials are provided for the accessibility settings and programs demonstrated.

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