On January 20, 2012, the Mentors Corner presentation at the regular Friday NPC meeting covered text viewers, which are very useful not only for people with disabilities such as low vision and blindness, but for mobile users as well. We should all download one of the text viewers and try it out. The presentation continued during the following Mentor Meeting with more details from Gentle Heron:

[10:11] Ozma Malibu: I'd like to know more details about fixing up our office to optimize Radegast viewing.
[10:12] Gentle Heron: Make sure all USEFUL objects have a useful name. You do NOT need to name every prim!
[10:12] Gentle Heron: It's like audio describing an image, or creating alt text for an image.
[10:12] Gentle Heron: Describe what is FUNCTIONAL.
[10:13] Gentle Heron: You'll want to name things people will interact with, such as chairs.
[10:13] Brena Benoir: that piece alone is vital
[10:13] Zinnia Zauber: What about special characters?
[10:13] Gentle Heron: Special characters are fine.
[10:13] Gentle Heron: But if they are all named "CHAIR" that's not as useful as "chair1" "chair2" etc
[10:13] Hour Destiny: Basically, if people are going to notice it, give it an useful name.
[10:13] Gentle Heron: Screen readers can read those
[10:14] Gentle Heron: In Sojourner Auditorium, each seat cushion is named individually
[10:14] Ozma Malibu: Wonderful info.
[10:14] Gentle Heron: So sighted ushers can tell a blind audience member "Seat B5 is open" and then they can click on it and sit, not on somebody!
[10:14] Hour Destiny: "cushion row A seat 5" :D
[10:14] Gentle Heron: We also have seat cushions that "announce" if someone is already sitting there"
[10:15] Gentle Heron: correct Hour that's how we named them.
[10:15] SamúðSamúð ponders principles of design... based on thoughtfulness, diversity, and inclusion...
[10:15] Gentle Heron: Exacty Samud!
[10:15] Gentle Heron: It's called Universal Design in RL
[10:15] Gentle Heron: and there are good ways to adapt those principles to virtual worlds.
[10:15] Zinnia Zauber: I think a wayfinding lesson might be a good session.
[10:16] Zinnia Zauber: to use those design principles
[10:16] Gentle Heron: Actually Zinnia, a gal from UK just published on navigation issues in virtual worlds.
[10:16] Zinnia Zauber: let's get her!
[10:16] Hour Destiny: Maybe a virtual talking GPS.
[10:16] Gentle Heron: remind me after to look up her contact info

[10:18] Zinnia Zauber: Gentle, what are other ways we can make our spaces accessible?
[10:18] Gentle Heron: space to move around in... not too crowded
[10:18] Gentle Heron: add notecards to posters, with the same name as the poster
[10:19] Gentle Heron: so someone who "sees" the object named "poster about NPC" can then click it and get the text that is on the poster
[10:19] Zinnia Zauber: What is the best way to deliver a notecard that way?
[10:19] Gentle Heron: a giver script... but use one please that works for both Mac and PC
[10:19] Zinnia Zauber: ah, that is a need to know!
[10:19] DJ Earnshaw: what is the diff in LSL
[10:20] Gentle Heron: I do not know DJ, only that some giver scripts won't give to me (a Mac user)
[10:20] Gentle Heron: no screen reader program can read text on textures

About gesture triggered ASCII generated text chat:

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[10:29] Gentle Heron: Here's something to consider for those who use gestures. A screen reader would look at this pretty drawing, and then announce EACH element separately "period space space space space heart space space space smiley slash space slash bar space..." you get the picture.... if you *draw* with symbols, a screen reader can't tell what you drew, so it reads each symbol sequentially.
[10:30] Zinnia Zauber: oh!
[10:30] Zinnia Zauber: wow, yes
[10:30] Ozma Malibu: whoa - and no place to explain!
[10:30] Gentle Heron: and no way to turn it off easily, and back on when you're ready to read text again.
[10:31] Gentle Heron: "applause applause" is an OK gesture for a screen reader because it's recognizable words
[10:32] Zinnia Zauber: How do we kindly ask people to not use them?
[10:32] Rhiannon Chatnoir: yeah, screen readers really have you take note of how you build and interact
[10:32] Hour Destiny: Imagine getting one of those big and long ASCII art pieces.
[10:34] Rhiannon Chatnoir: screen readers, name every space, character, etc since it isn't actual words