[orca-list] Hello and screen reader questions

Hi everyone,
    A quick introduction is in order!  I'm a visually impaired software developer who primarily uses Windows/ZoomText exclusively at work and mostly at home - but that is starting to change. :)  I used Linux about 5-6 years ago and in a hopefully unrelated matter also had a cataract in my "good" eye.  Linux became harder after it was removed, assistive technology just didn't seem to be there a few years ago and my last memories of Linux were running emacspeak with Festival.  So this past weekend I downloaded Ubuntu 8.10 and started using Orca.  Thank you everyone for work, Linux is definitely more accessible than I remember it!

Since I've used ZoomText for so long I tried to magnifier.  It is quite smooth but the response is "jerky".  I am thinking it's my old Intel 82945G onboard graphics card that's to blame, also my Ubunto install is pretty "stock" with little tweaking so far.  What are your experiences?

I hope I'll eventually figure out the magnifier more, but that's ok I'm digging the screen reader!  The eSpeak voice is much better than Festival.  I've done little things like use the terminal, setup IM, etc. but my experience is with magnifiers not screen readers.  FireFox 3 is my first big hurdle.  I try to tab around the window but get stuck in the links.  How do I get the screen reader to read the text on even just a simple site like Google?  Should I maybe be using another web browser too?  Something like Lynx?  Is there any guides out there for someone who is totally new to screen readers?

From what I've read it looks like FireFox suport is evolving.  My distro has Orca 2.24.2 on it.  Would building 2.25.2 be a significent improvement?  The only thing I am wondering is if I do this will it totally confuse apt? :)

I apologize for all my questions but it is nice to be back on Linux again.  Let me get up to speed, brush up on my python and I'll see how I can get involved.

Thanks again,

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