Orca [Fwd: Announcing v2.17.1]

FYI...Orca v2.17.1 was posted today.
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* What is Orca?

Orca is a free, open source, flexible, and extensible screen reader that
provides access to the graphical desktop via user-customizable
combinations of speech, braille, and/or magnification.  Orca has been
been developed by the Sun Microsystems, Inc., Accessibility Program
Office via continued engagement with its end users.

Now that Orca is part of the GNOME Desktop, we've decided to adopt the
GNOME versioning scheme to make it easier to correlate Orca releases
with GNOME releases.  As such the Orca 2.17.x series are designated for
the GNOME 2.17.x releases.

The Orca v2.17.1 release contains a number of enhancements plus some
rather aggressive refactoring in the areas of support for UTF-8 and
unicode.  We believe Orca v2.17.1 is relatively stable, but we look
forward to feedback from our users outside the en_US locale.

* What's changed for Orca v2.17.1?

2.17.1 - 14-Oct-2006

* Implemented RFE 361167: add use of Insert+r and Insert+c as a means
  to specify dynamic column headers and dynamic row headers in Open
  Office spreadsheets.

* Fixed bug 361747: provide support for the 'weight' text attribute.
  Also make sure that character text attributes are handled correctly.

* Implemented RFE 319657: In gedit, Orca now speaks the context of 
  search ('find') results.

* Implemented RFE 339789: Added code to "Where Am I" to report the 
  number of items in menus and submenus as well as the current 
  position of a menu item or menu in its menu.

* Fix for bug 350523: In gcalctool, give preference to accessible name
  of a button over the text that is being displayed on a button.

* Added use of Python logging API to log speech and braille at the 
  INFO level.  This will dovetail in with the larger testing work
  being done for GNOME.

* Fix for bug 350219: provide announcement when you create a new 
  document for the very first time in Open Office.

* Fix for bug 354785: read the entire line in the "Process Fields" 
  preferences table in gnome-system-monitor. Fix involved a rework 
  of how table cells are brailled and spoken.

* Fix for bug 349954: do not make assumptions that UTF-8 strings
  contain only single byte characters.  Handle this by converting
  to the Python unicode type before doing processing such as
  string length and character analysis.

* Added 'getText' method to script to provide a means for the script
  to work around shortcomings in some accessible text implementations. 

* Exploratory work on the Gecko.py script to help debug and provide
  an understanding of what the Gecko AT-SPI implementation is providing

* Added ZONE support for goBegin and goEnd functions of flat review
  (thanks Joanie Diggs!)

* Improvements to the test harness.  NOTE: as a result of the GNOME
  Boston 2006 Accessibility Summit, we may revise this harness as
  the overall testing strategy for GNOME develops.

* New and updated translations (THANKS!):

    et      Estonian             Ivar Smolin

* Where can I get it?

You can obtain Orca v2.17.1 in source code form at the following URL:


From the Sun Microsystems, Inc., Accessibility Program Office,

Willie Walker, Project Lead
Mike Pedersen, User Interface Design
Rich Burridge, Core Development and Scripting
Lynn Monsanto, Core Development and Java Platform Support
Michele Budris, Program Management

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