Wait, what? Braille displays are a thing?! That sounds awesome! (And horrifyingly expensive)
Yes. They are a thing, and they usually cost a few thousand at least. There’s a new one out that costs $500.
Yeah did a quick bit of Googling. $500 is well worth the price to be a total badass coding in Braille.
Well, for your friend and all AKA you, when I did this in a former life, I found the cursor routing buttons faster.
You should listen to my friend Amy. She is brilliant.
Not so fast. So far, we have Amy in favor of routing buttons, and myself in the keyboard-is-quicker camp. And my statement about the keyboard being quicker is based on experience coding with a braille display, not just something I came up with off the top of my head.
Amy, to clue you into the background on this, Bill is the friend I asked for, and he contends that using routing buttons is objectively quicker than using the keyboard when coding with a display in the mix. I contend that the keyboard is quicker, based on my experience coding with a braille display in the mix. This started because he also contends that the new Orbit display isn’t really a display because it doesn’t have routing buttons.
I think that there’s not one right way. This really is about what you prefer. I was using an 80 cell display. I found it faster to click the button to put me in the place I needed to be in. But to be fair, even when I wasn’t working in that environment and I was in a call center, I found using the cursor routing buttons on my braille display often times quicker than the keystrokes that had been specially scripted for me to use. That said, the “faster” thing is not a ton faster, I don’t think anyway. It’s seconds so it’s pretty trivial IMO.
Let me translate that last post for Amanda. I was right. Again.
Also, my post has 11 likes. That is 13 to 1 if you’re keeping score. And I am.
I use whatever my hands were on last. I’ve never had a preference.
I will say that I missed my display when it got full of water and I no longer had it anymore.
My original post has ten reactions. So it’s 10 to 13, and we are definitely keeping score. For anyone else who comments on or views this thread, we’re bantering back and forth, neither of us means any harm.
In an ideal world, Bill would have written his post on this subject on his own domain, that domain would support webmention, and we’d be federating comments across both my site and his, instead of maintaining two separate, closed-off comment threads/sets of reactions. Bill, when are you going to learn to do what you’re told? Own your content! Do what I tell you because I’m smart, awesome, and one day I’ll be Supreme Ruler of the universe.
But maybe he wants to willingly share his content? Why should he feed the trolls or your ego? 🙂 Or, anyone else’s for that matter other than his own? if it’s not going to impact them financially, why not let people share their content how they like? Some of the stuff people own and choose to share via social media only, could really just stay there. Why do the masses need to be punished with everything? I’ve seen live facebook videos and stuff on anchor that while it is owned by the person who made it, nobody really is going to benefit from at all. Meanwhile, the bloggers I follow who are aware they own their content just use social media as a means of sharing to the masses what they originally posted on their self-made page. Those IMO are the smart ones, because they also know how to repost the popular stuff. They’re IMO doing it right. They also know how to utilize affiliate links so they can get some kickback. PS: No offense to anyone, but those aren’t in the community so to speak. The ones I follow have managed to make blogging their job and support themselves that way.
Well…not a coder, but I sort of use both, at different times. I’m not convinced, however, tthat routing keys on a 20-cell display are going to be tht much more helpful really. Still, I had some comments about this that I said I’d crosspost:
Maybe I’ll crosspost this comment:
Having, OK technically soon to be having, two competing low cost braille displays, it’s interesting to compare, or at least observe, the ways in which both companies/groups approached cost cutting. Innovision, who makes BrailleMe, is an Indian (as in from India) startup who is coming out with a display called BrailleMe. It has similar features to the Orbit Reader: standalone notetaking functions, USB and bluetooth connectivity, SD card storage, 20 cells. However, whereas the Orbit Reader has a slower left to right display refresh, BrailleMe refreshes all at once and pretty close to instantly. Where Orbit reader has no cursor routing keys, BrailleMe does have them, situated below the display. Where Orbit Reader has 8-dot cells, BrailleMe uses 6-dot cells. BTW, the noise level generated by both units is probably comparable in volume, although since Orbit Reader refreshes all at once, you hear a single click of multiple cells, rather than the rain stick or such sound that the Orbit makes. As I recall, I like BrailleMe’s keyboard a bit better, but the proof will be in the use when I get my Orbit later this week. Final thing: BrailleMe only supports NVDA and Android and maybe Fire tablets at the moment; iOS and Mac support are coming. As for braille quality, BrailleMe’s is pretty good, somewhere in between Orbit and traditional displays in firmness, meaning you can push the pins down and they pop right back up again, but the feel isn’t “spongy” as it is with the traditional piezeoelectric activated cells we’re used to.
I can see justification for and merit in both sets of compromises. For example, I think more people think they need eight-dot braille than actually need eight-dot braille. They’ve figured out how to represent the cursor by blinking unused dots in the cell, to overcome one objection. So that’s about 40 pins, and 40 corresponding holes, they don’t have to manufacture for. Orbit Reader, on the other hand, has no cursor routing keys, which saves 20 mechanical switches, or capacitive sensors, or whatever they decide to use. They’ve also not tried to make the refresh instantaneous, which probably means they used fewer actuators or something, but tried to compromise to make it still fast enough for good to decent braille readers. By using a four-way arrow cross, they’ve neatly reduced the number of needed switches from 20 to 5…not too shabby. Sure, maybe it’s a bit more manipulation, but we’re only talking about 20 cells here.
Yeah, what she said
Also while you do still own your content, if this is such a thing for you, why do you post everything on facebook as viewable and able to be shared by all? I’d think that you’d want to lock it down more. And now I’ll stop getting off topic, but I had to ask. 🙂
Owning your content isn’t about locking it down. It’s about either owning the original content, (which you can’t do if you post it on a closed social platform), or owning the original and having the best of both worlds by then syndicating that content to social networks. By owning the original and syndicating, as opposed to just posting the original to social, if the platforms shut down, as has happened numerous times in the past, or if the closed platforms kill your content for any reason, you still have the original. Platforms like Google, Facebook, Et Al, wouldn’t have so much control over the web if we didn’t seed it to them. Open, inclusive web for everyone. Also, my content that gets posted to Facebook and Twitter originates from my website, and then is syndicated to Facebook, Twitter and the like. Bridgy is the thing that helps with syndication and then pulling the reactions and comments back in from closed social networks.
I am not a coder, so you can tell me to go somewhere, but I find the routing buttons very advantageous when I’m using my braille display. I much prefer using those to edit stuff, rather than using the keyboard.
Fair enough. Thank you for the explanation. I have never paid much mind to where the content originated from in your case. 🙂
I do think that the smart people yes as you say, are the ones who have a web site of their own and post there and syndicate those posts to social media. But I also kind of figure that at least in our community, there’s enough handholding going on and there’s been tons of postings by the masses, classes offered by the accredited and not, where one can learn the skills to establish their own piece of the web. If they haven’t done this, it is an active choice of theirs and it is quite clear that they care not about their content and therefore telling them ad nauseum is pointless. And, I’m always secretly thankful given some of the stuff I see people put up as live videos on facebook only that it doesn’t pop up somewhere else. Really! Live videos on facebook are becoming a free for all where people go to talk about potato chips, the latest music they bought, book they’re reading, books they bought, what their cat threw up, (for real,) or absolutely nothing. Kinda like the old days of the Q-audio or audioboo. the problem with this is that the people doing it are, boring. Lovely people, but boring. Like that lecture you attended in college that you had to try to stay awake during kind of boring. So honestly… If some of that stuff never saw the light of day again because facebook went down, IMO this wouldn’t be a horrible thing. 🙂 And it seems that the more arrogant of a person they are, the less interesting their content tends to be whether it’s shared from anchor or a facebook live video. 🙂
I will say, that even though boring, I’ve been able to turn it into a few speaking engagements. So it’s been fun. Most of my people are cited teachers who don’t really get it but want to. They turned it into an in-service day. And it works really well
I’ve found that, while not everyone jumps on board, whenever I comment about this stuff, people ask questions and, in some cases, with just a little help, they’re wanting to own their content. Facebook going down period would be one of the best things to ever happen to the web. We have open standards for everything you can do on Facebook or Twitter or Instagram that are being implemented by things like WordPress and other web software, so that users don’t have to go through all the technical aspects of implementing. And yes, I personally agree that most content sucks. I also know, however, that whenever Facebook decides to place some arbitrary terms on content creation, as AudioBoom did, there will be an outcry against it, and that outcry will make no difference, because closed platforms don’t owe you a thing, and free, hosted video content creation is not a sustainable model. Same with audio content or images. Also, when people notice that content from Facebook pages is demoted in favor of content from newsfeeds. That’s already started happening, and engagement dropped 52% between the beginning of last year and this. The only way that engagement goes up is if you spend lots of money in Facebook’s ad program. And the thing is, we can bitch about this, but it’s Facebook’s house, and therefore Facebook’s rules. People are going to have to get smarter about using their own websites and their own domains as marketing channels.
Amanda: I am always educated by your posts, wherever they originate. Thank you for elucidating on Bridgy. I have always wanted to know what that is, but I didn’t want to ask a question to which everyone else in the known universe has the answer.
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