UDS-O About onscreen keyboard - display manager - dwelling

Francesco Fumanti francesco.fumanti at gmx.net
Thu May 5 21:30:20 UTC 2011

Hi Alan,

Thanks for your reply.

On 05.05.2011 22:05, Alan Bell wrote:
> Hi Francesco,
> thanks for the email, that was informative and timely.
> 1) The discussions around different options came about because of a
> suggestion from the upstream Gnome accessibility team that we should
> consider using the 'official' gnome on-screen keyboard which is now
> Caribou. So far I have been unable to install caribou and I am not
> sure what it's good features are really.  I think there should be one
> keyboard that serves as an accessibility tool, is the keyboard for
> tablets and touchscreens (including multitouch), looks good and can
> be used for innovative layouts such as the steno chording layout.

That would be the ideal situation, but I wonder whether it is possible to achieve it. I remember the situation with the onscreen keyboard GOK. It seemed to be targeted mainly at switch users and that fonctionality was hindering pointer users to have a smooth experience with it.

Moreover, GOK had a lot of options; do we really want to confront pointer users with options they do not need or do not even understand? You might reply that it might be possible to hide options according to its usage; but that will probably not be easy; especially if we also want a zeroconf onscreen keyboard.

By the way, what is the steno chording layout?

> One
> current challenge is getting the keyboard to type into the unity-3d
> interface (works fine in unity-2d) and this is mostly a unity issue
> although I wouldn't discount the possibility that some integration
> might need to touch the keyboard (things like the keyboard not
> zooming in and out with compiz zoom).

Yesterday, I wrote an email to the ayatana dev mailing list about the issue, but have not got any reply yet. I wonder whether it arrived at destination as it seems to be a dev only mailing list.

marmuta, the person who has done most of the development lately on onboard has a bit of time at the moment for onboard. Do you know who we should contact in order to solve the issue?

> 2)
>> Does this mean that LightDM is going to replace GDM?
> no, it means the possibility is going to be discussed at UDS. A lot
> of things get discussed and sometimes we decide not to do them - or
> maybe decide to revisit the possibility some releases later.

Does anybody of the accessibility team attend these discussions in order to make sure that the accessibility aspects are also taken care of?

> 3) that is a good point and some interesting suggestions, we already
> know it is too hard to start onboard without the use of a hard
> keyboard,

The onboard source package shipped with desktop files that would make onboard appear under the Universal Access menu. However, when packaged to create the deb, the source was always patched in order to have the Universal Access menu hidden by default.

I have not investigated yet, but since Unity, that changed the method of launching applications, this might not be necessary anymore.

> it would be ideal if dwelling could be turned on without
> clicking. (still not quite as bad as asking people to press space
> when they see the icon at the start of the installer to get to the
> screen reader install)

I would say both situations are quite bad for the affected users.

A real dwell user normally is not able to click; thus we cannot count on him to produce a click with some hardware device to enable dwelling (dwelling=automatic clicking after a timeout).

That is why I propose an item that itself reacts on dwelling to start the dwelling feature. The dwell applet for the gnome-panel had such an item, but as I already mentioned in my previous email, it was only a partial solution. Indeed:
- It was a solution only for the desktop session, not for the login screen. (On computers with only one user, a work around was to enable automatic login.)
- It was not a solution out of the box, as somebody able to click by hardware had to install the dwell applet on the panel, before a dwell user could use it.

For the sake of completness, the old GDM offered another approach to start some accessibility tools at the login screen: the user had to perform specific gestures with the pointer on the screen and depending on the gesture, a determined accessibility tool was started.This is not a good solution in my opinion, because there is no clue on the screen about the gesture feature and also no information about what gestures to perform. We are far away from an intuitive and obvious solution here.



More information about the ubuntu-devel mailing list