[Athen] MAC accessibility for music

Robert Beach rbeach at KCKCC.EDU
Mon Nov 7 09:58:09 PST 2011

Thanks for these ideas. I will include them in my grab bag. I know Pro Tools is one of the several programs the student will be using.

Unfortunately, the program coordinator and the instructors are very reluctant to use a different software package due to several issues. I had mentioned Sonar, but they do not know it and don't want to use it. They also feel that the quality of Sonar is not put to their standards.

I'll definitely mention the other ideas though.

Robert Lee Beach
Assistive Technology Specialist
Kansas City Kansas Community College
7250 State Avenue
Kansas City, KS 66112
rbeach at kckcc.edu

-----Original Message-----
From: athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu [mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman1.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Doug Hayman
Sent: Monday, November 07, 2011 11:45 AM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network
Subject: Re: [Athen] MAC accessibility for music

It'd be good for him to learn some of the most common keyboard shortcuts.
If it is Pro Tools, there are a number of shortcuts for playing a track or stopping it, zooming in on a waveform for finding the zero-point for quiet edit points, and other tasks one does over an over. It would be a useful skill for one with low vision but will also minimize RSI issues when spending a whole day zooming in on waveforms, making edits, saving session content. There is a book I've seen in stores like Barnes & Noble that is filled with these keyboard shortcuts.

Pro Tools also provides a lare PDF manual with each version so the same may be found without buying a book.

Many will use two or more screens with audio software. One my show the virtual mixer view while the other shows the settings of a plug-in being applied to a track.

Most audio recording software will have the ability to use a hardware-based controller with faders and pan-pots which may be easier to use than using a mouse to control a visual representation of a mixer on a screen. An example is the Mackie MCU Pro:


If the persons vision is expected to deteriorate to the point of blindness then it would be better to go the route of JAWS + Sonar + Caketalking:


Doug Hayman <dhayman at u.washington.edu>
Technology Specialist
DO-IT Program (Disabilities, Opportunities, Internetworking, Technology) UW Technology Services Box 354842 Seattle, WA 98195
(206) 221-4165

On Mon, 7 Nov 2011, Robert Beach wrote:

> Hi all,


> I have a visually impaired student going into audio engineering. He has some limited perifial vision and can do okay with enlarged graphics. He doesn't know print well enough to read it effectively.


> Our biggest concern is the Mac computers he will need to use for the audio recording software. We will be meeting with one of the instructors from the program tomorrow to see how well the built-in magnifier works for him. We'll also try Voice Over to see if it will read enough of the text to be effective.


> Do any of you have any other ideas that we could try to make the Macs and the audio software accessible? I'm all ears!


> Thanks.



> Robert Lee Beach

> Assistive Technology Specialist

> Kansas City Kansas Community College

> 7250 State Avenue

> Kansas City, KS 66112

> 913-288-7671

> rbeach at kckcc.edu



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