Warming up with the a11y stuff

We still are far from have the Guadalinfo a11y project ready, but we start to warming up :-)

Our friends from Yaco has already some good improvements on Evince (still waiting for the final patch) and they looks nice :-)

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ORCA reading the text of a PDF document at Evince


Meanwhile we are working on a “import from the scanner” feature for OCRFeeder, which is quite functional and is also waiting to be finished the patch. But also we are working on Orca. We have a few Orca’s bugs we are looking at, but we don’t have time for all of them, so we need to select the ones our client believe are more important.

Anyway, we are working now on a possibility of having keybinding profiles at Orca. There is something working but still need some fixes and some love… probably the lovely Orca’s community will help us with it. I’m very surprised about how active and friendly is the people there :-)

Well, I think I have no more news by now, stay tuned because (if everything goes well…) there will be some interesting a11y improvements soon ;-)

UPDATED: The people from Yaco has posted about their progres here:

http://hoygan.yaco.es/first-results-in-the-evince-a11y-improvements

Accessibility in the Gnome 3.0 Hackfest Marketing

NOTE: This post is not mine, the post have been originally writen by my friend and colleague Félix Ontañón (aka fontanon) which is far more complete than the one I could write, so he let me translate and publish his original one here.

My apologies for any mistake on the translation process. If there are any, they are for sure mine, not his. Well, actually my friend Rober (aka “the guy who fix my bad English” ) was fixing some mistakes already :-)

The post:

As part of the Guadalinfo Accessible project Juanje Ojeda , Lorenzo Gil (from Yaco) and myself, were invited by Stormy Peters and Paul Cutler to the Gnome 3.0 Marketing Hackfest Zaragoza , an event organized by the Gnome Foundation, ASOLIF, the CESLA and the Governments of Aragon and Zaragoza, where was the place where the plans for the Gnome 3.0 launch: communication, promotional videos, etc. were going to be cooked.

Our objective was clear: to open ways of collaboration with the Gnome Foundation and present our intentions to develop projects, in terms of accessibility for the Gnome desktop. The Consorcio Fernando de los Rios is currently bidding in Andalusia: Improvements, bugfixes and to imitate the JAWS’s behaviors on Orca; image acquisition, improved recognition and export formats on OCRFeeder and reading the text with Orca from PDFs on Evince .

In the event was also present Dani Baeyens from Warp, who will also work in Gnome accessibility projects under the contract of Fernando de los Rios Consortium, improving Caribou (Gok replacement) and functional integrity of predictive text, Presage .

When we arrived at the event, the table of participants were discussing concrete actions on the initiative of Ambassadors Gnome, but we soon could start to present the developments that we, Yaco and Emergya, were involved. In a round shift Lorenzo, Juanje and I told the massive use of Gnome is promoted from the local government in various ICT initiatives: Guadalinex , Education , Guadalinfo and the the Network of Libraries , which justifies a special effort to promote and address the problems of assistive technologies and public services are fully accessible to all citizens.

Speaking about Guadalinfo, we presented the project as a true laboratory of accessibility, because apart from software improvements, a big purchase of assistance devices for visual, cognitive and motor disabilities is being done. Stormy Peters at this time we said if we had any picture, I remembered that Pedro Marín, from the Guadalinfo center of “Peligros” (Granada) had shared on Facebook a few and these were projected in the room:

Attendees were surprised by the examples of use of assistive technology devices with the Gnome accesibility assistances and asked us to hang material on the Gnome 3.0 website: photos or videos of real people using Gnome and devices in the Guadalinfo centers. We had a first task.

At lunch time, we dived into the issue with Vincent Untz and Licio Fonseca who advised us on ways of collaborating with the community to gain acceptance of our developments.

In the afternoon Paul and Stormy sat down with us to see what we could do –the companies- for Gnome and viceversa. We insisted on that the local government has a real interest in supporting accessibility projects, for its projects and that these developments, are given back to the community. If we get visibility and acknowledgement for these initiatives in the community, we are sure more projects will come. We trust in Gnome as a Government-friendly community and that’s how they want to be received aswell. Paul asked us to work directly with the developers of the applications through the traditional communication ways that are usually used in the community: mailing list, irc, etc..

And that way we started, Lorenzo made public its intentions to improve Evince and Alejandro Leiva, from Emergya, ours . The reception is being good, and the community is reporting feedback. This starts up!

UPDATED (10/05/18): Fixed the Lorenzo’s name at the first paragraph and the urls, that were all wrong.

Progressing in accessibility

I’d like to have written earlier and more about this topic because I’m very exited about it, but I had an injured in my left hand. Actually one bicycle crash over me and my hand is a bit broken… (that is why people at Zaragoza’s meeting could saw me with a funny hand…)

But two weeks ago some friends and me were at the GNOME Marketing Hackfest at Zaragoza to talk with some people from the GNOME Foundation about accessibility and GNOME. The reason is something I’ve already told in others posts, that a few Spanish companies are going to collaborate between us and with GNOME a11y projects to bring as improvements as we can to our loved desktop.

My friend and colleague Félix Ontañón (aka fontanon), who is leading the part of the project that is being doing by my company has written a very good summary (the original in Spanish) of the meeting.

This project really excite me because GNOME was the first FLOSS project I met about 9 years ago… I was more with the GNOME Hispano team and project which were using GNOME such a custom distros, but GNOME has been always for me a reference as community big project. Mostly because the human factor. It’s like a big family :-)

For this reason and because a11y is a very important issue which need so much effort, but usually it doesn’t have enough resources, I’m very excited to be able to contribute directly to the project I love the most :-)

From my company we try to contribute to FLOSS community but the most of the times we don’t have the rights to publish the code we do, so it is like a dream to have a client who specifically ask us to work directly with upstream and to work as the community does. We hope to have this kind of opportunity more often. We really do!

If you have any advise about, just tell me, please. We are very open to collaborations and to any opportunity of write free code and knowledge.

Stay tunned because we will tell you all the progress we make and more good stuff ;-)

http://blogs.gnome.org/juanje/2010/05/03/great-gnome-hackers-meeting/

Great GNOME Hackers meeting

As I told the last time, this weekend was the GNOME Hispano meeting at Seville and was one of the best I remember.

I didn’t expect to have so many people here. The meeting was mostly improvised and with just few weeks of preparation, but we had hackers from many different places of Spain. I think the session with more people had over 30 attenders.

The people didn’t fit on the room so they were looking through the windows. It was cool :-)

People didn't fit inside the room
People didn't fit inside the room

We even had Rodrigo Moya teaching us about CouchDB and DesktopCouch from another region of Spain using an open tool for video/audio meetings. Rodrigo was great :-)

There was more good sessions, but for me was especially interesting the explanation about how the new XInput2 and GTK+ works with multi-touch interfaces made by Carlos Garnacho. Another session especially instructive for me was the one about GObject Instrospection and Gjs by Lorenzo Gil (lgs).

I knew about GObject Instrospection, but I didn’t know it was so easy to add to the current libraries and all the adventages we all have with that. Really good stuff….

But we also have a meeting about how some companies from here (Emergya, Yaco, Onirica and Warp by now) are going to approach some projects about to improve the a11y on GNOME. The projects were asked by the Consortium Fernando de los Rios for the Knowledge and Information Society and we all want to be coordinated with upstream maintainers and GNOME goals, so it could be really useful.

This sesion was interesting and we are now in the same page to talk this week with the GNOME Foundation people at the Zaragoza Marketing Hackfest. I think these projects and the collaboration is being proposed is going to be really good for everybody: GNOME, our client and first of all, the users.

Let’s see ;-)