dev builds
themes manual
device status forums
mailing lists
IRC bugs
dev guide

Rockbox mail archive

Subject: Re: Alternative UI for blind users?

Re: Alternative UI for blind users?

From: ScottLearned <>
Date: Sun, 14 May 2006 10:31:36 -0700

Hi Aman,
I find the scroll wheel works great once you get used to it. I am currently
using Rockbox on a Video and Nano with little problem. I admit the wheel is
sensitive, but this will be easier to deal with once the audible click is
For me, being able to change the volume with the brush of a finger instead
of feeling around for a button comes in very handy when your player is in
your pocket or clipped to your pants.

Having a case that is open around the perimeter of the scroll wheel really
I think if a user would put a braille dot on the select key this would help
quite a bit too.

I use a case from a company called Sena. They are made of the highest
quality leather and the detail of workmanship is fantastic, plus the
customer support is great. The flip cover cases have a magnetic closure
which I consider a nice touch as well.

This response is just one of many oppinions, smile.

BTW, Rockbox works excellent on the Nano! I can't believe such a small
device has speech!

Thanks again to the Rockbox Crew!

----- Original Message -----
From: "Aman Singer" <>
To: "'Rockbox'" <>
Sent: Sunday, May 14, 2006 2:35 AM
Subject: RE: Alternative UI for blind users?

Hi, Mark.
I, like you, am not anxious about whether the wheel should be
eliminated or slowed down. However, I do like elimination, since that would
let people more easily use the Ipod in a case, would allow people to be
absolutely sure that they had hit something, and so on. As I said, though,
so long as the problem of the over-sensitive wheel is solved, it's all good.
as for the difficulty in maintaining another user interface if the
wheel is eliminated, I'd think it wouldn't be great. Remember that, almost
by necessity, this interface would need to be limited in functionality. The
removal of four buttons from the equation would almost require it. After
all, the buttons under the wheel would now be navigational and, in certain
cases, have other functions when held down. I think the interface would be a
set it and forget it kind of thing, other functions would be on the "normal"
interface. People wouldn't use one or the other exclusively.

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On
Behalf Of Mark
Sent: Wednesday, May 10, 2006 5:22 AM
To: Rockbox
Subject: Re: Alternative UI for blind users?

I think that one of the reasons that the scroll wheel can be tricky to use
for a blind user is that it is quite sensitive. In other words, you only
need to move your finger from, say, 3 o'clock to 3.30 o'clock on a clock
face to get one "move". It's quite easy to move two "moves",and easy to do
no moves.
My preferred solution would be to lengthen the rotation required for one
move. Thinking about how a finger moves on the wheel, I'd say that one
"move" should be somewhere between 45 degrees and 135 degrees.So if I move
my finger from 1 o'clock to 4 o'clock, that'd be one move

Although the idea of having a blind alternative user interface is a good
idea, the problem that I see is that it creates another whole segment of
code development which needs to be supported.
changing the "speed" of the wheel has the advantage of being one single
change that once implemented would enable us to use the same current
interface. This isn't based on some "we should have access to the same
interface as the sighted" line, just that by keeping it as simple as
possible means that we keep Rockbox as a single one-size-fits-most package.
Creating a second interface means that there will be two interfaces to
support, which means that there's at least twice as much work involved. I'm

only suggesting this approach because IMHO I don't think there's really that

much wrong with the current interface that a single change could fix. If
there's enough enthusiasm behind the alternative interface then great.This
is just my tuppence worth.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Aman Singer" <>
To: "'Glenn at home'" <>; "'Rockbox'"
Sent: Wednesday, May 10, 2006 1:16 AM
Subject: RE: Alternative UI for blind users?

> Hi, Glenn.
> The wheel on my video Ipod doesn't click at all. I do believe that
> there are some Ipods which have a wheel that does, but I don't know how
> that
> works as I've never used one of those. It might be an idea to make the
> wheel
> more sluggish, as it were, though but wouldn't just disabling the wheel be
> easier for the developers? Anyone care to comment?
> Aman
> -----Original Message-----
> From: []
> On
> Behalf Of Glenn at home
> Sent: Monday, May 08, 2006 11:02 PM
> To: Rockbox
> Subject: Re: Alternative UI for blind users?
> Or maybe another possibility, might be to have a setting in the menus,
> such
> that the user could set the wheel so that it has to be turned 2 or 3
> clicks
> for each change to occur, so the wheel would move the cursor more slowly.
> I have never tried an iPod, but it seems like something like this would be

> a
> desirable feature.
> Glenn
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Aman Singer" <>
> To: "'Rockbox'" <>
> Sent: Sunday, May 07, 2006 7:50 PM
> Subject: Alternative UI for blind users?
> Hi, all.
> I don't know how difficult this would be to implement. I don't
> imagine it would be that hard, as it wouldn't require new drivers/codecs,
> but it might be difficult all the same. What I've been having some trouble
> with is using the Ipod's wheel as a blind person. I sometimes find myself
> overshooting my target and being forced to retreat. I know others have
> suggested a click every time the selection is moved, and this sounds like
> a
> good idea. However, I was thinking we could, if possible, have a mode
> invoked by pressing a few buttons simultaneously. In this mode, the wheel
> would be disabled, and the buttons on the wheel would act as they did on
> the
> Archos recorders. The down button would move down through directories and
> menus. The up button would do the opposite. The right button would act as
> a
> select/play button and the left button would act as a back button. The
> round
> button in the middle of the wheel could be left as it is. The menu could
> be
> accessed by holding one button for a time or by the use of two buttons
> together, as could other generally used functions. To avoid people asking
> "why doesn't my wheel work?", a message could come up every time the wheel
> was used "you are in wheel-disabled mode. To return to normal mode press
> [whatever the buttons you need to press may be]".
> This would have several distinct advantages for blind users, users
> who's motor coordination isn't the best, users with MS or some other
> disease
> that hampers feeling in the fingers, users who are using the Ipod through
> a
> thin case or, generally, users who want forceful feedback to selection
> requests. The wheel would be eliminated from the equation, which would
> make
> all such uses easier, at least for new users. In the same way, brushing
> the
> wheel, which I've done once or twice, won't be a problem and won't change
> the selection. Do any of the developers think this would be doable and
> desirable?
> Aman

__________ NOD32 1.1536 (20060513) Information __________

This message was checked by NOD32 antivirus system.
Received on 2006-05-14

Page template was last modified "Tue Sep 7 00:00:02 2021" The Rockbox Crew -- Privacy Policy