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Hartgen Consultancy Products using JAWS 17

Any day now, Freedom Scientific are expected to release the public beta of JAWS for Windows version 17. A podcast has been released containing details of many of the improvements.

As one of the few companies in the world developing products which hook into JAWS, we wanted to write a few lines about their relationship with the new jaws 17 version.

When you test a beta product, you do so with two goals in mind:

  1. You are curious. You want to find out how the new features work and how the overall functionality is going to impact upon your daily use of the computer.
  2. You report bugs to the developing company.

This second point is the most important. We should not be making Freedom Scientific's job more difficult by introducing our own functions to what is already a juggling act between ensuring new features work through to interaction with different operating systems, (one of which is quite new), together with popular applications. It's a very serious point. The company are providing a beta product, and if you submit a bug, they must be in a position to try and reproduce it. They cannot do that if we're adding functionality.

With that said, here is the status of our products in relation to JAWS 17:

  • StationPlaylist Studio. The scripts for version 5.01 and 5.1 are both ready for JAWS 17. While they do lock into the default JAWS scripts, they are not particularly intrusive. So baring in mind my earlier point, they will install into the public beta and could be used if you really wanted to.
  • Leasey. This will be ready for JAWS 17 when it is officially launched. We have prevented Leasey from installing into JAWS 17. While we are very confident that Leasey works fine, we would like our own beta testers to do a lot more work with this. What we can say is that Leasey will work exactly the same, whether you are using JAWS versions 14 through to 17.
  • J-Dictate. This has the same status as Leasey. We will ensure that J-Dictate will function with JAWS 17 on the day of its official launch. It will also function with Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 14.
  • J-Say. This will take some more work, particularly in view of the JAWS 17 feature of Smart Navigation on web pages, revealed in the Freedom Scientific FSCast. Compatibility with Dragon NaturallySpeaking version 14 also requires some work. But again, we're confident that we can follow our usual schedule and be on target for an early 2016 release. This will be J-Say version 14. If you are not on our SMA program, it may be wise to get onto it. Please contact us for details.

In summary, we suggest you use the new upcoming JAWS beta in the way it will be provided to you, so as to give Freedom Scientific the very best chance of resolving any difficulties before an official release, which is expected to be late October. Happy testing!

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