Orca Screen Reader Discussion Notes

Screen readers on the Raspberry Pi 3



Q: Screen readers on the Raspberry Pi 3


Do you know what Screen readers work on the RPi 3? (A screen reader reads out text on the screen and is what I need to enable to be able to use devices because I am blind)

Did you read the article on raspberrypi.org here:
There are some links to a discussion group etc where you might find the info you need.

tlfong01 2339
@LegendusMaximus, Welcome and nice to meet you.
Ah, let me see. I have not heard of screen reader before. So I wikied, and googled key words “screen reader” and “Raspberry Pi”.
I found the following article interesting:
“Getting the orca screen reader working with a raspberry pi – Pranav 2019feb23”,
I followed the instructions and installed Orca in my Rpi4B, only taking me less than 15 minutes.
Then I ran the Orca program in my Rpi4B Buster GUI Desktop LXTerminal, without expecting anything, because I have not seen any one playing with it.
Then I happily had the following surprising experience: Orca speaks clearly, with a robot voice, the first line in the terminal word by word, using eSpeak, I think.
I guess you should have tried Orca before, so I would not go into the details. I am happy to give you more details of the Orca installation, if you would like to try it in Rpi.

goldilocks 133k
Presuming you are using Raspbian (the issue has more to do with the operating system than the brand of hardware), almost everything that’s available in Debian is available in Raspbian. Searching Debian "screen reader" turns up some stuff, including the fact that GNOME (a desktop environment) includes a stock screen reader. GNOME may be a bit memory heavy for a Pi 3, so check out other stuff (such as Orca) first.
I have not heard of Orca how do you install it?

tlfong01 2339
@LegendusMaximus, Ah, let me see. I think Orca must be a rather new tool, or only for linuix, so you have not heard of it. Perhaps you can let me know if you have any experience in other screen readers, eg. in Winodws.
Actually I have zero experience in any screen readers, Windows or otherwise. I think I must google again to check out if Orca is a good suggestion or not. Just now I googled the user guide:
Perhaps we both can skim through it and see if it is worth trying.
@LegendusMaximus, Now I am reading the Orca docs, starting with the intro:
I am happy to find that it is free, open source, and well documented. I will let you know my other first impressions as I read on.
If you like, you can just casually read my comments. I think I need to read the docs in more detail, and also google further, to make very sure Orca is worth our time getting our fee wet, then I would write up my experience of installing it on my Rpi4B buster.
Then you can try installing Orca using your Rpi3B buster. .
@LegendusMaximus,, Now I know Orca is a GNOME thing. I heard the name GNOME from time to time, but never knew what exactly it is, perhaps just another crazy hacker writing funny software.
Anyway, I am reading about the GNOME thing to find out more:
It says the following: “We [GNOME] promote software freedom: GNOME brings companies, volunteers, professionals and non-profits together from around the world.
We make GNOME 3: a complete free software solution for everyone.”. So GNOME sounds good. I will move on. See you later, …
@LegendusMaximus, Now I have skimmed the following:
(A) Screen Reader and Screen Reader List Wikipedis,
(B) Linux SpeakUp Project and User Guide:
(1) Screen Readers Wikipedia en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Screen_reader
(2) List of Screen Readers Wikipedia en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_screen_readers
(3) Linux SpeakUp Project linux-speakup.org
(4) Linux SpeakUp Screen Reader User Guide (Last modified 2010)
to continue, …
@LegendusMaximus, After skimming the above 4 references, I am more or less sure that Orca is worth getting our feet wet.
But before starting up Orca, I think I still need to look at other commercial screen readers, because I always think think that “there isn’t such a thing called free lunch”, ie, commercial are almost always better than freeware. An example is Windows vs Lunix.
But it does not mean that Windows wins in all respects. Anyway, I will now look at NVDS and JAWS:
NVDA (NonVisual Desktop Access) Screen Reader – CNIB 2015
JAWS (Job Access with Speech): Introduction – West Virginia University 2013
JAWS (Job Access with Speech) Screen Reader Demo – Cheese Cake Factory 2017 youtube.com/watch?v=Q1gHxM1nP00
LegendusMaximus 0:03
I use JAWS on Windows

tlfong01 2339
Now this is the record of the Orca installation I did last evening:
Basically I only installed 4 packages, rebooted, and typed “orca” and to start working.
I am using Rpi4B buster. I guess there is 90% chance that your Rpi3B buster should work without any modifications. Please le me know if you finf any problems in installation. Good luck and cheers!
Does JAWS or NVDA work on rpi?

tlfong01 2339
@LegendusMaximus, Ah, you can find the answer to your question in this article:
“Screenr Reader Comparisons – G Thompson, Perkins School for The Blind eLearning, 2019sep30
I found two more YouTube videos you might be interested, one on comparison of JAWS with Orca and NVDA, the other video a basic 25 minutes Orca Tutorial:
(1) Raspberry Pi Accessibility (Comparing JAWS, NVDA, and Orca) – 2017apr27
They are produced in 2015 and 2017, therefore no that up to date with Rpi3 and Rpi4.
Anyway, nive watching and cheers!
(2) Basic Orca Tutorial (linux, 25 min YouTube) – The Accessible Penguins 2015may02  youtube.com/watch?v=ieo20UtUobw.
@LegendusMaximus, Now I am learning how to select the preferences, such as the “super” key. I am surprised to find that orca in Rpi4B buster works in GUI Desktop, so I can use mouse to do the preference selection.
I am saving the following screen capture for future reference: Orca setup notes:
I think you need to use Windows JAWS to do the Orca preference in buster GUI Desktop. I will now take a long break and see if you are interested to install orca in Rpi and have any problems that I can help. Happy orca screen reading and cheers:
Is there any way to install NVDA or JAWS on Raspberry Pi?

tlfong01 2339
It would be nice if yes, but I googled but found nothing! 😦
@LegendusMaximus, After selecting <Insert> key as my Orca modifier super key, I started Orca and entered learning mode.
I made a video of my first test. You might like to hear the voice of orca in this YouTube video:
Cheers. 🙂
LegendusMaximus 0:03
Where is the most up-to-date commands list for Orca?
The last message was posted 9 hours ago.

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