Hi, I'm @ryusei__46.
This article introduces recommended add-ons for low vision users of NVDA, an open software screen reader for Windows.
Since NVDA was originally developed for the blind, I found many of its features to be a bit cumbersome for low vision users.
Since I have low vision, I will introduce the NVDA add-ons that I usually use for reference. As an added bonus, I will also tell you about a high-quality voice engine that is available for free.
This article will be added to as soon as I find a good one. If any of our readers know of any good ones, please let us know in the comments section.
This add-on usually works as follows when you press the "NVDA key (no conversion)" + "S": "voice feedback with beep" => "stop reading voice" => "start reading voice". I had to press the shortcut twice to stop the voice, and I felt annoyed.
With this add-on installed, the "beep feedback" will be removed, and you will be able to stop and start reading speech with a single press of a shortcut key.
This add-on is activated by simply installing it.
Add-on "Focus Highlight
This add-on provides a visually-visible border around the navigator object focused by the mouse pointer; a similar functionality is also available as a standard NVDA feature by enabling "Vision", but the color of the border cannot be changed, so you cannot change it to a color that is easier for you to see. However, the color of the border cannot be changed, so it is not possible to change it to a color that is easier for you to see.
The above is a test on my blog post. When the mouse pointer touches the text, it will be surrounded by a light green border. The color of this border can be freely changed in the add-on settings.
This is very useful for me, because I can see how far the pointer is in focus, and even if there are many text links or HTML tags inserted in a paragraph, it will surround the area of focus that is currently in focus, making it clear where to focus with the mouse next. This makes it clear where to focus the mouse next.
To make settings, go to the "NVDA Settings" screen and select "Focus Highlight" in the "Categories" section on the left. You can set the color, thickness, and shape of the border in each of the following states: "Focus Mode" and "Browsing Ode" used in the browser, and "Navigator Object" used on Windows.
For the color, you need to enter a hexadecimal color code, so please select your favorite color from the following sites and copy and paste the code.
Enabling and Disabling the Focus Highlight Add-on
To enable or disable the Focus Highlight add-on, use the "NVDA key (no conversion)" + "Alt key" + "P".
NVDA SpeechDic Creator
This is not provided as an add-on to NVDA, but it is a tool that allows you to easily create, edit, and share NVDA reading dictionaries.
The tool is developed in VB Script and is very lightweight; due to the nature of VB Script, the user interface is a simple message box-style window that can be operated step by step, making it easy for anyone to use.
Although NVDA has the functionality to create and edit dictionaries from the start, it does not support importing and exporting of dictionary data. This is inconvenient for some environment migration or when you want to share dictionary data with other users.
This tool can be used in such cases. Please refer to the readme file included with the tool for detailed instructions.
Extra: Paid voice engine "KC-Talker
This is a voice engine add-on that incorporates "Voice Text" made by HOYA, a provider of high-quality paid speech synthesis engines. The quality is unmistakably top class. The quality was undeniably top class and we had no complaints at all.
However, the price of the add-on is just under 20,000 yen, so if you can afford it, please consider purchasing it.