Saturday, May 06, 2006

Three Advances on TTS and Accessibility Front

Three pieces of good news for TTS and accessibility this week.

First, Gary Edwards of the OpenDocument Foundation has informed the state of Massachusetts Information Technology Division

"that we have completed testing on an ODF Plugin for all versions of MS Office dating back to MS Office 97. The ODF Plugin installs on the file menu as a natural and transparent part of the open, save, and save as sequences. As far as end users and other application add-ons are concerned, ODF plugin renders ODF documents as if it were native to MS Office.
The testing has been extensive and thorough. As far as we can tell there isn't a problem, even with Accessibility add ons, which as you know is a major concern for Massachusetts."

If what Gary claims is true, this eliminates the objections to switching to ODF as a standard document format in the MA ITD raised by accessibility groups, since users with disabilities will be able to continue running the software they are already using.

More info at

Second, the version of KTTS was recently released by Debian packagers in Unstable. Package kdeaccessibility. This version has some important fixes in the ALSA plugin and better language support. The fixes have been available in svn for awhile now; nice to see them hitting the streets.

Third, Conrad Hoffman released an updated version of his KTTS plugin for Kopete. Nice. More info at Search for "ktts plugin".

Tip: When building from source on Debian, use

./configure --prefix=/usr

You'll need the kdemultimedia-dev package.