New and Improved JAWS
by Humberto Rodriguez
JAWS is changing not only the version designation but also the installation procedure.
Beginning with the new version, JAWS 2018, these two characteristics will closely resemble Windows, which is itself imitating Apple in such a way that future updates will not require a complete software installation but will rather use a modular system and update only affected areas, thereby making new updates much faster and easier.
The installation software for JAWS 2018 will also be much simpler than the ones hitherto used and will not require the installation of Runningtime JAWS, nor will it require JAWS to be closed before installation.
In addition to JAWS being more responsible to Windows 10 Creator and future Windows updates, there are several major changes in JAWS 2018 that are significant, principally the following:
- JAWS will now support Microsoft Edge, albeit incidental pre-stations such as Flexible Web will follow in future updates.
- Optical Character Recognition (OCR) will now permit JAWS users to navigate File Explorer. While the focus is on a graphic file that contains text (i.e. a .jpg screen shot of a window or a .pdf image file, one can use the Contextual Menu to perform JAWS OCR on the graphics file or, alternatively, press Insert-Spacebar, then “O” following by “F”. One can then save the text if desired.
- Virtual cursor verbosity will perform much better on web pages. Three levels of the verbosity can be adjusted globally, as well as for individual URLs.
- If installed, JAWS will offer the three new English-US Microsoft Mobile voices, as well as whatever else Microsoft offers in other languages. This is in addition to Eloquence and the Nuance Vocalizer Expressive voices.