RcScan is a text-based speaking communication aid intended for people who can read and want to use synthetic speech. This includes patients with ALS, cerebral palsy and motor aphasia. Text is input then voiced by keyboard, mouse, switches or eye-gaze. Five variants of Row Column Scanning are combined with subtle text prediction, abbreviation expansion and with the options Down Jumps and Down Accepts. Alternative Code is faster than scanning from the first hour of use and onwards. Supported languages are English, Spanish, French, Dutch, German, Italian, Portuguese, Swedish and user defined. Some of them have an English help function and captions that can be customized. One may use synthetic speech as well as stored speech and these may be independently purchased. Active Scanning with two or three switches is faster than Passive Scanning with a single switch and is as easily learned. Alternate Scanning and Mixed Scanning is effective with a single switch. Alternative Code allows fast input with either one, two or three switches and can be effected with eyes closed as well as with mouse swipes without clicking. With one switch is possible if the user can press it for short and long periods of time. Options Down Accepts and Down Jumps may speed up scanning even with a long pause time. The empty first column allows to input at ease and reduces errors. Text prediction and abbreviation expansion may speed up communication. A mouse may replace custom switches with either a long hold or with short right clicks to select from text prediction. Presentation on screen and voices are fully customizable and even include message banking. Limitations Even Active Scanning with stored text and text prediction is slow. Alternative Code is better, as is use with a touch screen, but RcScan does not compare well to using ones’ own voice to communicate. RcScan does not interface with other apps or OS-functions, offers no environmental control or access to social media and internet, and supports text only. For many languages, the contents of the stored text and of the abbreviations might be improved upon.
What's new in this version
Our research included intended users, see www.depratendecomputer.nl/englishnewsletter.pdf. Some wav-files are available for download at rcscan.com. http://depratendecomputer.nl/videoshello.htm shows some videos on selecting text with switches.
- Easy text based speaking communication app that gets faster with training. Supports keyboard, mouse, switches, mouse swipes and eye-gaze.
- Unique opportunities to reach clients with rare diseases for medical advertising
- Easily coupled to purchased switches as [ = Left ] = Right \ = Accept.