Product Evaluation: CDesk COMPASS by AdaptiveVoice: A Low-Cost Screen Reading and Screen Magnification Solution for WindowsBy Rempel, John; Access World, Volume 13, Number 1
Publication Date: January 2012
Product review evaluates the CDesk COMPASS screen reading and magnification software for Windows. CDesk COMPASS can be downloaded as a 15-day trial or purchased directly from http://www.adaptivevoice.com/. The software includes 14 applications designed specifically to help blind and low vision users complete common computer tasks. Sending an e-mail, adding an e-mail recipient to the contacts list, creating an appointment, and accessing multiple Web-based news sources are examples given of tasks that are easily carried out in CDesk with a handful of keystrokes. However, the software is not designed to handle more complex tasks such as online banking, making purchases at online retail outlets, or interacting at length with social media sites such as Facebook. The reviewer also contends that, for people with limited experience using a screen reader, the reader used by CDesk within the Windows system may take time to get used to. The option of purchasing a higher quality text-to-speech reader, such as IVONA, is suggested. A basic understanding of the keyboard layout is also needed in order to use CDesk effectively. Advantages to the software mentioned include the high-contrast color scheme and an extra-large mouse pointer. However, some users may find that a color scheme other than CDesk’s white-on-black functions better for them and, although the size of the viewable text can be increased or decreased, the color scheme and size of the user interface cannot be changed.
Published by: AFB Press (Website:http://www.afb.org/Section.asp?SectionID=46)
American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) (Web Site: http://www.afb.org )
Link to text: http://afb.org/afbpress/pub.asp?DocID=aw130102