JAWS for Windows 4.01 Features and Enhancements
Windows XP Home
and Professional Support:
continues our tradition of providing unparalleled support for all Microsoft
operating systems with the introduction of support for Windows XP! If
you currently have JAWS 4.0 Standard (supporting Windows 9x/Me), the JAWS
4.01 update gives you support for Windows XP Home as well. If you have
JAWS 4.0 Professional (supporting Windows NT/2000), both XP Home and XP
Professional versions of this exciting new operating system are supported
in JAWS 4.01.
Support for Windows
XP Help Balloons:
JAWS now supports
Windows XP style Tool tips and help balloons.
Colors Higher than
256 in Windows NT, 2000, and XP:
JAWS for Windows now
provides support for display color depths above 256 colors in all versions
of Windows. 16 bit, 24 bit, and 32 bit color depths are supported.
In JAWS 4.01, Windows
visual effects that are less than optimal for screen readers are automatically
disabled when JAWS starts, and are enabled again when JAWS is closed.
These effects are visual features, such as animated menus and selection
fade within Windows XP.
The Windows System
Parameters dialog is in the JAWS application window, under Options, Basics.
Use this dialog to specify which items JAWS disables. We recommend you
allow JAWS to disable these features, or manually disable them in the
Windows Control Panel.
There is a Windows System Parameters option that is not checked by default,
Ignore Colors on Web Pages. Check this item to automatically check the
Internet Explorer setting under Tools, Internet Options, Accessibility.
This Internet Explorer setting causes Internet Explorer to ignore background
colors and images on web pages, resulting in the pages loading faster,
and providing greater accessibility for people with low vision. If you
check the item in the JAWS application window, under Basics, Windows System
Parameters, JAWS will automatically enable this Internet Explorer feature
when started, and disable it again when closed. This improves performance
on web pages that use repeating images for backgrounds.
Announce and Move
through HTML Headings:
JAWS now supports
navigation of web pages by headings in Internet Explorer 5.x and 6, and
in Microsoft HTML help systems. JAWS recognizes headings at levels 1 through
6. IN HTML, headings are used to indicate the start of sections and subsections
of a page. When used hierarchically by the author of the page, the level
of the heading provides information about how a specific section relates
to the page as a whole. When viewing all headings on a page, if the headings
are used properly, the hierarchy of the heading levels indicates how the
page is structured. This makes it easier to find information and understand
the relationships within the information.
After installing JAWS
4.01, view the effective use of headings in the following locations:
the JAWS help system
·The JAWS 4.01 What's New Announcement
To move to the next heading, or press CTRL+INSERT+SHIFT+ENTER to move
to the previous heading. Press INSERT+F6 to list all headings on the page,
select a heading in the list, and press ENTER to move to it on the page.
In the User Agent
Accessibility Guidelines (www.w3.org),
the World Wide Web Consortium recommends "user agents" provide
navigation based on structural elements in a document. Freedom Scientific
continues to strive toward the goals of these guidelines by providing
features that aid in quick and easy navigation on the World Wide Web.
Support for HTML Long Description Attribute:
JAWS now supports
the "Longdesc" attribute in HTML within Internet Explorer 5.x
and 6. The "Longdesc" attribute allows a long description of
graphics to be provided on a separate page. The "Longdesc" attribute
contains the address of the descriptive page. After reading any Alt text
for the graphic, JAWS announces there is a long description and the address
of the page. Just press ENTER to open the page containing the long description
in a new window.
Access keys in HTML:
JAWS now announces
access keys assigned to HTML elements using the HTML "Accesskey"
attribute. Access keys let you move directly to an item such as a link
or form control. Access keys are used within the JAWS help system to provide
quick access to the Back and Next links within most topics, which make
it easy to move through the help system. Visit www.afb.org
to see effective use of access keys on a web site.
Mouse Over Effects:
HTML allows the author
of a page to set an "Onmouseover" event for most HTML elements
mouse is moved over the HTML element. Often this is used to momentarily
display text or graphics or links. JAWS now recognizes the "Onmouseover"
event, and if it is set to display text or links as part of the page,
JAWS provides access to that information. In some cases, links may not
be announced as links, but you can still press ENTER to follow them.
Click Almost Anything:
Press ENTER on almost
any item on a web page to simulate a left mouse click on that item. HTML
allows the author of a page to set an "Onclick" event for most
Script when clicked with the left mouse button. Now with JAWS, you can
access items that are set up in this manner. Just move to the item and
and form fields still function the same as in previous versions of JAWS.
attribute is used within Internet Explorer 5.5 and newer to make almost
any text dynamically editable. JAWS now supports this attribute. If the
attribute is set to true for an element of text, just press ENTER to enter
Forms mode, edit the text, and press NUM PAD PLUS to activate the Virtual
When you press TAB
in Internet Explorer, not only are you moved through links and form controls,
now JAWS also moves you through items that use the HTML "Tabindex"
attribute. However, at this time, the TAB order specified by the "Tabindex"
attribute is not always preserved.
New Braille Positioning
This new setting determines
how the content of the Braille display is updated when the active cursor
is moved outside the area currently displayed. The Minimal setting repositions
the display the minimum number of cells in order to ensure that the active
cursor is visible. The Fixed setting always repositions the display so
the active cursor is in the same cell as before the positioning occurred.
Report Battery Level
JAWS 4.01 provides
you quick access to information about your portable computer's battery
life. On laptop computers, just press CAPS LOCK+SHIFT+B to hear the current
We wish to extend
special thanks to our good friend and long time JAWS User Stephen Dawes
from Calgary, Canada for this great feature! Stephen's contribution is
a testimony to why this product just keeps getting better.
Quickly View Contents
of System Tray:
If you need to verify
the contents of the Windows System Tray, just press CTRL+SHIFT+F11. The
information displays in the Virtual Viewer where you can easily review
it, or select it and copy it to the clipboard.
This is another feature
brought to you through the courtesy of Stephen Dawes of Calgary Canada,
and we wish to again thank him for his kind contributions.
Arrow Keys for Say
All Fast Forward and Rewind:
During a Say All,
you can now use LEFT ARROW to rewind and RIGHT ARROW to fast forward through
your document. The SHIFT keys are still available for fast forward and
rewind as well, if you prefer to use them.
Disable Shift Keys
for Say All Fast Forward and Rewind:
If you require the
Windows Sticky Key feature, which is enabled by pressing a SHIFT key quickly
five times, you can turn off use of the SHIFT keys for rewind and fast
forward. Disable use of the SHIFT keys for Say All's rewind and fast forward
in Configuration Manager, Keyboard Options, in the Default configuration
Braille is Faster:
Braille is now much
more responsive than in JAWS 4.0. When navigating from a Braille display,
or moving the PC and JAWS cursors, notice quick, sharp responses to your
commands, and speech remains very fast and responsive as well!
Improved Text Attribute
Marking in Braille:
The Braille Toggle
Marking command is used with most supported Braille displays to cycle
through the text attributes that are marked in Braille (such as bold,
italic, highlight, underline). This command now displays a list of all
text attributes. Just move through the list, and use SPACEBAR to specify
the attributes you want marked on your display. This makes it much easier
to specify that multiple text attributes are to be marked in Braille.
We have improved our
Braille support so the entire text of items in list boxes and tree views
are displayed in Braille, even if the text is not fully visible on the
Screen Text or MSAA
for List Views:
Now you can choose
to hear either the on screen text or information provided by MSAA (Microsoft
Active Accessibility) within list views, such as on the Windows Desktop.
The on screen text is provided by default. When JAWS relies on MSAA to
speak list views, the entire text of the selected item is spoken even
if it is not visibly displayed. After speaking this text, JAWS speaks
the size, type and date information automatically. You may find this option
beneficial when using Braille on the desktop, as icons with two or more
lines of text are completely displayed on the Braille line. To enable
this option, check the "Rely on MSAA for List Views" check box
within the Advanced Options dialog in Configuration Manager. This check
box is only available in the default configuration file.
Next Non Linked Text
in Web Pages:
The command to move
to the next instance of text that is not a link, INSERT+ENTER, has been
improved and is now far more reliable.
Improved HTML Table
When using ALT+CTRL
plus the arrow keys to move through a table in a web page, JAWS attempts
to identify and announce the content of table cells used for row and column
headings. JAWS is now far better at finding these table headings. If HTML
is not used to specify the cells to be used, JAWS will use either table
cells using the TH element, or the leftmost/topmost complete column/row
in the table.
Organize Favorites Dialog:
We have added functionality
for the Organize Favorites dialog in Internet Explorer 5.x and 6, making
it far more accessible.
Virtual Cursor Location
When Returning to a Page:
When you return to
a page in Internet Explorer, using the back or forward commands, or when
using ALT+TAB to switch between open applications, the Virtual PC cursor
far more frequently returns to its last location on the page.
Select by Page in
When using the virtual
cursor, such as in Internet Explorer 5.x and 6 or in the JAWS help system,
now use SHIFT+PAGE DOWN or SHIFT+PAGE UP to select a page at a time. And
you can specify how many lines are treated as a "page" in Configuration
Manager, HTML Options.
New HTML Text Link
JAWS allows you to
determine if, when you encounter a text link on a web page, you wish to
hear the text displayed on the screen, any Alt or Title attribute information
for the link, or the longest piece of information. Previously, by default,
JAWS spoke any Alt or Title attribute information, and only spoke the
text displayed on screen if no Alt or Title attribute information was
present. Now, by default, JAWS speaks the on screen text.
HTML Page information
Displays in Virtual Viewer:
When you press INSERT+F1
while at the top of a web page or JAWS help topic, JAWS provides you information
about the current page or topic. And now this information is displayed
in the Virtual Viewer for easy review with speech or Braille. In addition
to detailing what is found on the page, JAWS provides navigation information
to make it easier to find what you want on the World Wide Web.
Improved Word Outline
We have enhanced our
support for Word's Outline View. The Word commands to move sections within
the document, ALT+SHIFT+UP ARROW and ALT+SHIFT+DOWN ARROW, are now supported.
To use these commands, press ALT+V, O to enter Outline view. Press ALT+SHIFT
plus 1 through 7 to view headings to the corresponding level. Locate the
heading for the section you wish to move and press ALT+SHIFT+UP ARROW
or ALT+SHIFT+DOWN ARROW to move the section up or down within the document.
All text and subsections contained in that section are also moved.
Word Font Information
now Displays in Virtual Viewer:
In Microsoft Word,
when you press INSERT+F for font and formatting information, this information
can now be displayed in the Virtual Viewer. This feature is off by default
for quick review of font and formatting information. To turn on this feature,
open the Adjust JAWS Verbosity dialog (INSERT+V), move to Font in Virtual
Viewer, and press SPACEBAR to toggle the setting.
This makes it easy
to verify you are using the formatting features you intend, and possible
to review this information when necessary.
for Protected Word Forms:
When working in protected
Word forms, JAWS no longer announces the distance from the left margin
each time you TAB to a new form field. JAWS also now reads F1 Help text
set up for form controls when you press F1 to display the help message.
F1 Help text is a great way for authors of protected Word forms to provide
comprehensive information for specific form fields.
of Tables in Word with Say All:
When you use Say All,
INSERT+DOWN ARROW, to read a document in Word, and the document contains
tables, JAWS now reads these tables very well. JAWS announces the beginning
and end of each table. JAWS reads each table row by row, announcing each
row number before reading it.
of Protected Word Documents:
JAWS 4.01 provides
improved support for protected Word documents, based on the level of protection
applied. Previously, when a document was protected, it was not possible
to read by word, sentence or paragraph.
In JAWS 4.01, if the
document protection is allow revision only, all of the JAWS features are
If the document protection is "allow comments only" or "form
fields only" you can now read by word, sentence, or paragraph. Language
detection is not available and does not appear in the JAWS Verbosity dialog.
The JAWS verbosity items: Title Reading, Set Title Row, Set Title Column,
and Clear Title Definition are not available and do not appear in the
JAWS Verbosity dialog. The Tables option, which allows the detection of
tables, is still available and functional. The contents of the current
table cell, along with column and row coordinates are spoken when navigating
When form field protection
is applied, the only navigable portion of the document is that portion
which can be edited or is unprotected: the fields to be completed.
List Spelling Errors
We have changed the
command to list spelling errors to ALT+SHIFT+L.
In a WordPerfect document,
JAWS now detects the following:
of table names when tables directly follow each other
· Announcement of table styles
· Type of multi column
· Number of columns
of cells in inches
of columns and rows in a table
Frame Viewer Improvements:
We have improved frames
support in several areas to make them easier to use, configure, and troubleshoot.
Easily change Validation
Now it's even easier
to change the text of the information your frames compare with information
from your applications. If this information is not found in your application,
your frame is not active, so it's important to be able to change it when
needed. From the Validation Rules page of your frame's properties, just
move to the rule you want to change in the list, and press F2 to edit
the value assigned to it.
Add Multiple Actions
JAWS 4.01 makes it
easier to add multiple actions to frame events without having to recreate
the same event over and over. Events are things that happen in your applications.
Actions are assigned to them so they take place whenever the event occurs.
Frames are often most effective when one event causes several things to
In JAWS 4.01, just
create an event as normal. After you have set it up and added your first
action, TAB past the Finish button and press SPACEBAR on the Add Another
Action button. Add as many actions as you need.
Frames List Defaults
In JAWS 4.01, the
Frames list shows all application frames by default. The Frames list is
a convenient way to work with your frames, and it is the only way to access
frames that are not currently active in your application. Previously,
only active frames were listed by default. Now, all frames are listed
so it is easier to troubleshoot frames that are not functioning as you
Restrict the JAWS
Cursor to a Frame:
It is often helpful
to restrict the JAWS or Invisible cursor to the current application, or
even the current window within an application. Now, restrict the JAWS
cursor to a frame you have created. This makes it easier for you to limit
what the JAWS cursor reads to only the information you need. Just press
INSERT+R to cycle through the options for restricting the JAWS or Invisible
and Screen Savers:
In JAWS 4.01, we have
changed Braille support so that when navigating with the virtual cursor
using a Braille display, the screen saver does not come on, provided you
press a Braille key within the time-out period.
Braille Viewer Improvements:
A new option in the
Braille Viewer system tray menu allows you to unlock the Braille Viewer
from the desktop. This means that the desktop does not change shape to
accommodate the Braille Viewer. When the setting is changed, the Braille
Viewer is positioned at the top of the screen.
When unlocked, the
Braille Viewer can be moved up and down the desktop, and when the mouse
is released, it moves back to the correct position. When unlocked, the
Braille Viewer is "always on top," even if it is not the active
JAWS Version Information
now Displays in Virtual Viewer:
In JAWS 4.01, when
you move to the JAWS application window and press CTRL+INSERT+V for version
information, this information is listed in the Virtual Viewer where you
can review it, or even copy it into a document. In addition to listing
the current version of JAWS, other useful information is also displayed,
such as your serial number and the speech synthesizers and Braille displays
that are currently installed.
Eloquence Now Pauses
The Eloquence for
JAWS software speech synthesizer now pauses briefly for colons to provide
a more natural sounding reading experience.
are now Alphabetized:
We have rearranged
the Configuration Manager, Verbosity Options settings in alphabetic order
to make it easier to find the settings you wish to change.
for Windows Calculator:
We have improved JAWS
functionality in the Calculator in all versions of Windows.
Lotus Notes Support:
We have improved JAWS
support for Lotus Notes.
Improved PDF Support:
We have improved JAWS
functionality within Adobe Acrobat Reader, providing improved support
for reading PDF files.
We have updated JAWS
support for TaxAct to include TaxAct 2001.
PCAnywhere and JAWS
JAWS Can now be installed
on systems running Windows NT 4.0, 2000, and XP without first removing
Say Line in Word
with Text Selected:
In JAWS 4.0, if you
used the Say Line command, INSERT+UP ARROW, on a line where text was selected
in Microsoft Word, after reading the line, JAWS would also read the selected
text. In JAWS 4.01, only the current line is read when you use the Say
Line command in Word.
Quattro Pro 10 Menus:
JAWS 4.0 did not properly
read the menus in Quattro Pro 10. JAWS 4.01 now works well in these menus.
Duplicate Frame Names:
In JAWS 4.0, Frame
Viewer permitted multiple frames to have the same name. JAWS 4.01 prevents
this from occurring.
Word Documents with
% Symbol and Say All:
Word documents containing
the % symbol could cause Say All, INSERT+DOWN ARROW, to fail in JAWS 4.0.
This has been corrected in JAWS 4.01.
Word Borders and
JAWS now reports the
value in the Width control in the Borders and Shading dialog as you use
the arrow keys to adjust the setting.
Word Font Dialog:
Several controls in
the Word Font dialog that previously did not announce new values as they
were changed now properly speak this information.
Better Word Font
Previously if text
with multiple point sizes was selected and the Say Font command, INSERT+F,
was used, the point size was reported as 9999999. JAWS now reports "mixed
point size" when this occurs.
Internet 6 Reported
The command, Script
File Name, INSERT+Q, when used in Internet Explorer 6, now reports the
Frame Viewer and
Old Frame Files:
The validation rules
in frame files from older versions of JAWS are now properly converted
to the new Frame Viewer format.
Eudora Title Not
The title of the Eudora
application is now announced before JAWS starts to read email messages.
Windows Date and
In the Date and Time
applet in Control Panel, the hours minutes and seconds are now announced
as they are being changed.
Braille No Active
We have changed the
message received on a Braille display when there is no active window.
Braille displays will now state, "Press routing button to go to Desktop."
Minimize All Applications
and Sticky Keys:
We have removed the
INSERT+F6 command for minimizing all applications. This keystroke would
occasionally cause sticky ALT and Windows Keys in some operating systems.
We recommend using WINDOWS KEY+M to minimize all applications. If you
do not have a WINDOWS KEY on your keyboard, press CTRL+ESC, ALT+M to minimize
Eudora Set to Say
All by Lines with Pauses:
We have set the Say
All by setting to lines with pauses for Eudora so that when a Say All
is stopped, the cursor is located closer to where the Say All was stopped.
Tree Views Reporting
We have corrected
a problem where in some tree view controls items were announced as "blank."
Frames and JAWS Screen
Frames now correctly
honor JAWS screen echo settings.
from Frames not Cleared:
When frame information
is displayed in Braille, and ALT+TAB is pressed, the Braille display now
Information and Tree Views:
Manager Verbosity Options setting for position information is now honored
within tree view controls.
Select not Honored:
Manager Verbosity Options Select setting is now honored. This setting
determines if JAWS announces when text is selected.
Start Menu and Tutor
The tutor message
and access key are now spoken after opening the Start Menu when Programs
is the top item within the Start Menu.
Pause/Break Key Disabled:
In JAWS 4.0, the Pause/Break
key could not be assigned to commands, was misreported as "num lock,"
and was disabled in some applications while JAWS was running. All these
issues have been fixed in JAWS 4.01.
16 Bit Applications
in Windows NT 4:
JAWS settings for
16 bit applications within Windows NT 4 now load correctly.
with the SIS 630/730 Display Chipset:
JAWS now functions
correctly on portable computers that use the SIS 630/730 display chipset.
The automatic message
reading features provided by JAWS now work in MSN Messenger 4.5.
Image Map Links with
Virtual Cursor Off:
Image map links are
now recognized when the Virtual PC Cursor is off.
in Internet Explorer Menus:
In Internet Explorer
5.x and 6, menus no longer respond sluggishly when large web pages are
Word XP and Announce
The JAWS Announce
Comment command, ALT+SHIFT+APOSTROPHE, now works in Word XP.
WordPerfect 10 Registry
The WordPerfect 10
Registry key imported by JAWS with CTRL + INSERT+ SHIFT + I now works
on all systems to make WordPerfect 10 accessible.
Clock Displayed Twice:
The clock on the Windows
taskbar is no longer displayed twice in Braille while using structured
Braille in Lists:
Items in lists views
are now correctly reporting their state when not selected.
Dialogs in Office
Moving through some
dialogs in Office applications no longer results in information being
spoken that is not relevant to the dialog. This issue only occurred when
Automatically Start JAWS was used.
Windows XP Control
Panel and Category View:
In Windows XP Control
Panel, when using Category View, buttons and links now read properly.
Deleting Items in
JAWS no longer says
"Y" when you press the DELETE key in Windows Explorer.
6 in Windows XP:
The Focus to First
Field and Focus to Last Field commands, CTRL+INSERT+HOME and CTRL+INSERT+END,
now work in Internet Explorer 6 within Windows XP.
Virtual Viewer and
When you press INSERT+F1
for help on a control, Braille displays now properly display the information
within the Virtual Viewer help message.
Word XP and Prompt
If you use Prompt
Creator to customize control prompts within Word XP, JAWS no longer speaks
the prompt twice.
Performance in Internet
Internet Explorer should no longer be sluggish.
Delay when Closing
You will no longer
notice a delay when closing Word within Windows XP on computers with very
with Virtual Cursor:
While using structured
mode on a Braille display, information will now update as you navigate
with the Virtual PC cursor activated.
Features and Enhancements in JAWS 4.0