Modifying Warty for blind/vision impaired use.

Luke Yelavich themuso at
Wed Oct 20 07:51:59 CDT 2004

Hi all
As some of you may have noticed, there is now an accessibility 
documentation area on the Ubuntu wiki. From discussion with various 
Ubuntu developers, I understand that accessibility for Ubuntu is going 
to be worked on for future Ubuntu releases.

What I would like to do for the present however, is create a small 
derivitive of the official Warty ISO, with a few accessibility 
modifications, such as console screen reading support. This certainly 
doesn't require a lot of work. as the majority of the modification 
involves patching the kernels with the Speakup screen reader. Other 
blind people have done the same thing for Debian CD images in the past, 
and the screen reader doesn't modify any part of the kernel, say the 
build files to allow Speakup to be built either into the kernel, or as 

I want to do this, to allow my blind and partially sighted peers to 
enjoy what Ubuntu has to offer, even if they can't entirely access X. I 
am mainly referring to things like laptop support configured off the 
bat, automatic mounting of removable media, etc.

With a little more work, it would even be possible to offer a working 
Gnopernicus out of the box, which to date, no distro has done properly,
however I feel this is not as important at this stage.

I intend to go ahead and do what I have outlined above, and make it 
available to the blind/vision impaired community. I am wondering if 
the Ubuntu developers and management are interested in my work, as it 
could certainly be a basis from which a truely accessible derivitive of 
Ubuntu could be developed.

If any developers are interested in helping me, I would also appreciate 
your assistance.

Thanks for creating such a wonderful Linux distribution and good luck 
with the final release.


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