Re: [orca-list] Languages, Profiles and Orca Setup


On Thu, Sep 09, 2010 at 08:29:28AM +0200, Mallory van Achterberg wrote:
If language is based on locale, it's only ok so long as the ability to 
change it is there easily... if some weird upgrade bug gives me a 
French locale how would I navigate the terminal to change it? I don't
speak French.  Also if I'm on someone else's machine. 

how is this different from the problem a sighted person has if this
happens?  Its not on topic, but I've heard of sighted people changing
the language in a terminal when they didn't know anything about the
current locale.  While its pretty hard with a gui I imagine, if you know
you need to set $LANG $LC_* then you can manage it since you know what
you need to type.


I like the automatically switch languages based on markup. We bother
to put lang attributes in our tags and hope they work.  Though again
with an override, as plenty of authors are lazy and put one language
inside another lang attribute <bleg>.  I often see this in English-
created CMSes where the client language is Dutch.  The "skip to content"
and "please enable Javascript" default text usually isn't corrected by
On Wed, Sep 08, 2010 at 04:51:04PM +0100, Paul Hunt wrote:
Hey all,

On the subject of the Orca roadmap.

I would like the language detection / switching feature to be high on
the priority list.  I've been talking to people on the Ubuntu
accessibility IRC channel and this subject has come up.

One person wanted to know why, having selected a different language to
English on the Ubuntu live CD boot screen, Orca still came up speaking
in English.  Another (sighted) user did a headless install and blogged
about the experience.  He commented that he assumed that if he had
selected a different language at the start of the boot process then he
would get an accessible install in that language... wrong...

I would like to suggest that we have an ability to detect the desired
language based on the gnome locale setting and use an appropriate voice
if available.

I know we have bugs 400717 - detect languages and bug 419742 - Ability
to manually switch languages, but I just wanted to flag the issue again.

I also think an option to automatically switch languages on the fly wen
reading text marked as being in a particular language in Firefox or Open
Office would be really neat for all our users / contributors who
correspond with us in English but have a different native language.

On to my other points...

If language detection is one day implemented (so Orca will by default
start up in a locale determined language), could we do away with the
Orca setup routine?

Personally I think it would make much more sense to start up using some
sensible defaults and then provide something like a quick start wizard
that could be run at any time (from the Orca main window) to let users
configure basic settings for speech, braille and magnification if they
wish to.

I imagine the setup routine confuses a lot of people, particularly
people who might be wishing to run Orca for test purposes, to have Orca
suddently firing questions at them left, right and centre.

We could at least make the setup routine optional.  "Welcome to Orca.
Since this is the first time you have run Orca would you like to run a
quick start wizard to configure some basic settings?  If not this wizard
can be run at any time from the Orca main window" etc.

Another idea that came up was maybe Orca could offer to run a tutorial
similar to the Mac's Voiceover tutorial when it's run for the first time.

If we could detect the language to use, and detect whether or not we're
on a notebook and if brltty is running we could have Orca start up with
reasonable settings for the user.

My final idea here is (and I think it's come up before) is to have
settings profiles.  These would be selectable from the Orca main window
and there would be a "Configure" button that would bring up the
Preferences GUI to enable the selected profile to be customised.

The default profiles that spring to mind are; Full Speech, Minimal
Speech (for the LD users) and Magnifier only.  The user could of course
create their own profiles that could be switched between either with
some customisable toggle keys or perhaps automatically if the language

Thoughts, comments etc?

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orca-list mailing list
orca-list gnome org
Visit for more information on Orca.
The manual is at
The FAQ is at
Netiquette Guidelines are at
Log bugs and feature requests at
Find out how to help at

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