Mobile operating systems

The Marvin shell

The Marvin shell is a simple, custom-built home screen for eyes-free use.* Marvin provides a single-touch user interface that not only provides access all Android applications on your device but also easy access to some Eyes-Free ‘mini apps’ such as an application that announces the time and date, or your current location.

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Stroke Dialer as QWERTY alternative

The Stroke Dialer is also used as an alternative to the QWERTY keyboard layout in certain Eyes-Free applications such as the Marvin shell. Instead of thinking of the Stoke Dialer as a keypad, think of it as a compass with eight compass points: North, South, East and West, and North-East, North-West, South-East and South-West.

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The Stroke Dialer

One of the difficulties that people who are blind or vision impaired are faced with when using a touchscreen interface is that there must be some form of feedback to replace the visual cues that are necessary to use a touchscreen. Devices such as the Apple iPhone have resolved this by using text-to-speech technology to announce objects on the interface.

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Project Eyes-Free

In the words of T.V. Raman, a research scientist at Google and one of the lead developers for Project Eyes-Free:

Project Eyes-Free is “a collection of applications that turn your Android phone into… a completely eyes-free, single-touch, one-handed communication device.”

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