2021-04-06 02:27:30

Dude, if you could just for a minute, literally 60 seconds turn off your screen reader and use your computer, you would be amazed at how fast it fucking flies. Even with mid range specs. I say this as someone who used to use one without a screen reader, because I could with magnifier back in the day. Screen readers really do slow things down.

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2021-04-06 02:51:05

Part of that really is the speech synthesizer. I know not everyone can do this, but try using a hardware synthesizer if you still have one lying around. If not that then at least use Espeak. True, the screen reader still uses resources, but voices have a pretty profound impact. It's barely noticeable on a properly tweaked machine with 16GB of ram and a quad core or great, and 32gb will obviously knock it out of hte park. I need to get Crucial's ram modules for this baby at some point.

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2021-04-06 03:17:46

@26, yup, hence why people are disgusted by screen readers, not cuz of the voice, cuz it lags your PC, at least to their standards

Who has any time for the letter h?

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2021-04-06 03:25:02

It doesn't lag mine, but it'll definitely lag a low=performing machine that's for sure. This is where you'll want to get a high-spec machine from a second hand salvage shop if there is one in your area, as those are older brand-name machines but are reloaded with new internals, thus are significantly less than retail value.

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2021-04-06 03:36:22

Both sides have valid points; to a extent. Common sence does can go a long way to not getting viruses, yes, however it is best to have a antivirus installed. While macs are less likely to get viruses than other systems, I do have bit defender installed. I believe it updates its databace every hour I believe, and constantly scans for threats... but in my opinion, better safe than sorry. As others have pointed out, not clicking on say, shady email links, etc, can go a long way, but still.

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2021-04-06 04:02:01

Have some sort of script injection block helps as well. Noscript or Brave Shields.

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2021-04-06 04:34:21

@Jack But that's my point. You say it doesn't lag yours, but unless you have enough vision to use your computer without it for a while, you really don't know that. I mean, it doesn't lag mine that I've noticed all that much, but I can't test it as I once did because my vision is mostly gone.

I have 2X 8GB @3000MHz Corsair Vengeance LPX in mine. And it's a decent machine. Ryzen 5 3600X, NVIDIA GTX1650, 512NVME. I added a 1TB Samsung Evo 860 to it, and I have another mechanical drive where I keep sounds and the like.

There's also the fact that a sighted person who is competent with computers will always outperform a blind person. No matter how much of a power user they are. If you take someone who's a software engineer, and they know keyboard shortcuts for common tasks, forget about it. Someone like that would wipe the floor with the best of us.

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2021-04-06 05:27:57

So guys do you know if buying a DAC would improve PC responsiveness though? I have the Philips Fedilio (spelling) II HR and all reviews say it shines with a DAC. I some moderate/mild hearing loss in some frequencies, but on my new PC  I notice definately sounds are different than they were on my older PC. I would think offloading audio to a hardware DAC for a screen reader, and a powerful chip too would make a difference.
This is what I was looking at.
https://www.amazon.com/iFi-Zen-DAC-Conv … B07YZK5MDS
And Cheese wheel you touch on a good point with achieving tasks in more time. This in particular can cause us issues in stuff like jobs where you have certain objectives and your sighted peers constanytly being ahead of you. This is mainly because of reading styles available to the sighted. We access information in a set order mostly. A sighted person has skimming, scanning, and detailed reading, all for different purposes. This applys in academic reading, but is applicable in any other context too. Only in detailed reading does a sighted person read every word like we do. We are in perma detailed reading mode, which admittadly can have advantages, but also has major drawbacks too.
As for PC specs, voices is why a high end PC is manditory for a blind person, but a luxury for a sighted person. Also why we have to replace phones more often. My  IPhone 6 started slowing in 2017. Is it just my perception or do blind people's phones show age faster because of voiceover lag and usage of extra resources.

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2021-04-06 05:39:08

@33, no, it wouldn't. Your sound card contains both a DAC and an ADC. Hardware can only do so much.

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2021-04-06 05:49:25 (edited by Ghost 2021-04-06 05:50:05)

Ethin, isn't the chip on the motherboard a really cheap and haphazard thing though? Sighted don't care about sound, so the motherboard manufacturerers use the cheapest solution available for the motherboard. At least most people but musicians care nothing of sound. Doesn't a chip with more processing power accept really fast audio better from a screen reader?

A learning experience is one of those things that say, "You know that thing you just did? Don't do that."

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2021-04-06 06:03:26

The DAC is not the bottleneck here. yes, they make DACs for high end audio, but that's not going to provide any faster screen reader access. It just cleans up the sound.

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2021-04-06 06:08:53

Hmm. I'm assuming by dac, you mean USB sound card?

I doubt that would make a huge difference in your sound, unless you're dealing with noise/interference issues. But changing the overall sound, I don't think sound cards or dacs do that, at least not to a large degree. The only times you might get weird changes like that are if sound drivers use their own processing (and some do, take Waves Max Audio for instance).

As for responsiveness, that's going to depend entirely on how sound cards implement MME, Asio etc. My Yamaha Mo XF keyboard, which was asio compatible, worked pretty well as an asio device. But running a screen reader through it gave me slight, but noticeable lag. I'm guessing the MME support on that device isn't so good.

From what i've heard, offloading sound-related tasks to an external device is only going to help for intensive sound-related processing like in a daw? But don't quote me on that. I just remember noticing that if i used an Asio device on my old machine, I could push it harder before the audio broke.

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2021-04-06 06:09:21

would that result any  improvement to screen reader audio, like eloquence pops and clicks?

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2021-04-06 06:15:22

NO, those are just issues with the synth itself.

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2021-04-06 06:37:09

So is buying a dac pointless with headphones?  I mean if I listen to music will it sound richer or eloquence?  A friend  who used one said it had a noticeable change.

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2021-04-06 07:32:17

@Ghost: Then you're at the point where you might as well just get a good usb/wireless headphones. People who say that usb is behind 3.5mm are generally wrong. Ok, a balanced 1/4 inch connector? Sure, good for studio monitors. But an unbalanced 3.5mm, on cheap circuitry no less? Nope, not gonna cut it. USB headphones are their own soundcard anyway. HyperX CludFlight, Turtle Beach Elite Atlas Aero, etc are good examples.
By the way, Waves Max Audio Pro+a laptop with decent speakers+a fast computer actually equals a winning combination, as it sounds pretty damn good on this xps15 7590. This is why it pays to either have a real good computer for software amplification, or get used to your computer sounding tinny. Whether you believe it or not Waves in particular do know what they're doing when it comes to software audio enhancements, even if the thing is inaccessible as all hell. The more offloading to software amplification, the less money will be spent on speakers - I mean, just look at phone speakers for one thing.

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2021-04-06 10:38:45 (edited by stasp 2021-04-06 10:40:12)

Going back to the anti virus topic, that's partially the reason i don't use windows as much any more.
Its not that i hate the OS it self. I hate the direction microsoft is heading, i hate the fact that you can get a virus at any conner of the internet, and i hate the fact that there is no voiceover for windows, all though NVDA is good enough.
Regarding my current computer, i've got a mac pro 3,1 early2008, with 16 GB 667 MHz DDR2 FB-DIMM ram, and 2 x 2,8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon's, with a sata SSD and MacOS High Sierra installed, and this thing works great.
Even on catalina its still quite fast, but when using the siri voices voiceover gets noticably slower than on Fred or Alex, but i guess it's true for most macs, at least intel ones, as the siri voices require more processing power than a light voice like Fred.

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2021-04-06 15:29:12

The entire thing behind waves max is its essentially the end-user getting pwned. Without it, yeah, your speakers are going to sound like shit. But that's the entire point, they get the cheapest crappiest speakers they can, ram 'em in there, and use waves max to compensate for the shitty components they used. If you had good speakers, you wouldn't need waves max.

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2021-04-06 18:13:33

I loved my mac when I had it.  The issues I had with it were learning issues more than anything else.  That being said, Apple is forgiving in the sense that Apple realizes its consumer base is made up of people who are, perhaps, just a little more creative than I.
MS has and will forever always target the average consumer, making windows easier to pick up as an OS for just about everything.  Whether you're gaming, producing, calculating, developing, planning, organizing, documenting or whatever else, windows is right there with a plethra of options that don't scream proprietary is the only successful way forward, or hack it yourself.
As far as virus protection goes, I still love to fall back on malwarebytes and Windows Security.  Most people feel like paying for Malwarebytes is crazy, but honestly, for what you get I'd say 80 some dollars a year really isn't all that bad in comparison to having to shell out thousands of dollars because you lost data that was important to you owing to a site you didn't suspect was going to hit you with a bug.
At any rate, you really don't need Malwarebytes subscriptions if you are willing to remember that hey, your PC really does need a scan now and again and you don't frequent a ton of unfamiliar sites on a regular basis/sites with high loads of traffic and that have been known to be exploited and whatnot.  For me though?  It's the peace of mind, plus the realtime monitoring and the optional VPN service they claim to provide which I've not tried because I've had no need to.

When life gives you oranges, demand lemons since everyone else is obviously getting them.

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2021-04-06 23:37:21

The issue with USB  headsets are they are cheap audio solutions, not something I'd use for music and such. Look at all the highest grade audiophile headphones. You won't find any with USB as primary input. Audio enhancements are horrible, and mess with screen readers in many different ways. And they are trickery because they make speakers sounds better than they actually are. Older computers had really good speakers that sounded good even without software.  In fact when I read about how impossible it was to get rid of waves max, I specificly researched a laptop that completely let you turn off all enhancements and donn't regret that in the slightest. Realtec, the newer cards come with an equalizer that is fully accessible as an UWP app.

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2021-04-07 00:08:17

@Ghost: Dude. Not true. USB/wireless headphones are not all cheap solutions. THe receiver and the headphones are in tandem, and the better/higher quality the headphones, the better they will sound. STudio monitoring headphones are also not 3.5mm, thy're 1/4inch connectors so you'd need a usb audio interface anyway.

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