Published by OneSwitch.org.uk Tuesday, 3 December 2013 9:27 pm.
Very happy to learn that YouView are about to come good on their commitment to accessibility. Big improvements are about to be squirted through the pipe-lines to their excellent Digital TV/Internet TV boxes. These include the ability to use a USB keyboard, high-contrast menus, text to speech on the YouView App and most excitingly, switch access.
Of interest too, is a proof of concept Raspberry Pi brained Xbox 360 controller interface. There's lots of accessible Xbox 360 controllers out there now such as the Quad-Controller and my C-SID, so this could be a very nice alternative way in too.
Info found via: Recombu, Techradar and originally via Ian Hamilton.
Published by OneSwitch.org.uk Monday, 2 December 2013 8:48 am.
If you can view it in your part of the world, I highly recommend viewing Charlie Brooker's How Video Games Changed the World documentary. Loved the content. Loved that it featured Llamasoft's Jeff Minter and Consolevania's Rab Florence. Loved enormously that the links were filmed along Southend-on-Sea's seafront, where I developed my love for video gaming as a child.
And topping this off, what fantastic news to learn that a Retro Gaming arcade has opened in near-by (to me) Southend-on-Sea, called Astro City. Can't wait to get down there.
Published by OneSwitch.org.uk Friday, 29 November 2013 3:08 pm.
I've added a One Handed Controller ULTRA option to the OneSwitch.org.uk Accessible Gaming Shop. It's £160 for a limited time plus postage, so not cheap, but it is very powerful for the one handed player. Here's what you can do with it...
• Use with a Playstation 2 (basic use only).
• Use with Playstation 3, Xbox 360 and Windows PC.
• Access 10 control configuration modes at the press of a button.
• Reconfigure these modes as you wish using a PC.
• Emulate some basic six-axis motion controls.
• Use as a Mouse on a Windows PC.
• Use the Xbox Joypad at the same time, perhaps using your feet.
• As good for left as right handed one-handed play.
• Add latching, auto-fire, control cycling and more (requires a PC link)
Nothing on the horizon yet for Xbox One nor PS4 (what a suprise!) so this may be the best solution yet for one handed gamers.
Published by OneSwitch.org.uk Monday, 25 November 2013 10:58 am.
Love the SpecialEffect video above of the difference Luke's tailor-made controller made for him. Luke had a design for a controller in mind that placed the inaccessible shoulder buttons flush with the face buttons and gave him the ability to use them as normal, or in latched mode. SpecialEffect got involved and that's when stuff started to come together.
The build took an original Playstation Dual-Shock controller (which has digital shoulder-buttons instead of the later analogue ones), and paired it with four flip-flop kits for latching, a power-supply and some extra buttons and LEDs. Then adapters were added to convert this PS2 controller to work on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360.
There was a fair bit of to-ing and fro-ing to get it all right, but we got there with huge thanks to Mark Heath of Excitim with the latching circuit work and Bespoke Arcades for building the housing so well.
Straight from Skoog HQ...
"Happily Apple have decided to join the skoog-musical revolution, making it available on its website, across Europe. We hope this will raise the profile of accessible music making, new musicians and alternative approaches to making music across the world.
The film features a new composition composed especially for Skoog by Nigel Osborne, called 'Let's Do This'. The music forms the backbone to the film and, drum track aside, all the parts are played on Skoog. Skoogmusic has already commissioned remixes of the piece from Lyn Levett (Charles Hazelwood's Paraorchestra) and Charlotte White (Drakemusic and Enableus). We will be sharing all the note files, skores and loops from the original recordings to inspire Skoogists around the world to create their own interpretations of the piece.
Our goal with Skoog has always been to make music-making as accessible as possible, and through the Apple Store this dream is starting to become a reality. We are now able to bring the Skoog to many more people across the world. The Skoog software is now available to download in English, French, German, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese. With the User Manual available in the Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Hungarian, Norwegian, Polish, Russian and Swedish as well!"
Skoog on the Apple store. Works on PCs too by the way! Fantastic to see the dreams I first saw in 2006 coming to fruition. Fantastic to see such an accessible musical instrument making its way into the mainstream. Long may it continue to improve.
Published by OneSwitch.org.uk Friday, 22 November 2013 5:07 pm.
Switch adapted cameras are quite rare. Beyond Excitim's excellent £270 10MP Canon camera I'm not sure there's anything else out there right now. I wondered if I could find something a little different for a customer and tracked down the £250 Drift Ghost HD action camera (which needs an SD card plus the £80 adaptation to the supplied remote, so works out about £60 more). Not cheap, but it's pretty fantastic if you can live with the fish-eye lens perspective. By the way, the Trabasack works brilliantly with this.
This camera is tough and can cope being out in the rain and shaken about. You can mount it in a variety of ways with the supplied velcro strap and alternative stick-on mounts. You can rotate the lens so that the image you record is the right way up (or wrong way up if you prefer). It takes photos up to 11MP, has a 3.5mm socket for an external stereo microphone, and a really simple interface. Here's how it basically works...
- With the camera on, hold the "Action" button on the remote to pair it with the camera via blue-tooth. You can't use switches for this.
- LED colours (on both the camera and the remote) denote which mode the camera is in. Green = video mode, Cyan/Blue = photo-burst mode, Yellow = traditional photo mode and Purple = continuous photos at set-intervals until you hit a switch. Use the second switch to cycle through these modes.
- Use the first switch for "Action". I.e. take photos or videos. The LEDs turn red when recording. A held press or two-seconds turns the camera off. N.B. This may be an issue for some users.
The latest update to the Apple Mac operating system (OS X) holds great news for switch users with built-in switch access. I still think a PC is the platform of choice for switch gamers, but it's brilliant to see Apple continue to lead the way with built-in access. Microsoft, Sony, Nintendo and others, please take note. You're lagging badly.
Much more info on this update on Steve Lee's excellent Opening Accessibility blog.
Labels: Apple Mac
Published by OneSwitch.org.uk Tuesday, 19 November 2013 10:09 am.
When I read "SensoMotoric Instruments (SMI) eye tracking technology empowers Sony's Magic Lab to develop new gaze interaction game concepts for the PlayStation 4" I was always going to be interested. See 1 minute in, in the video below.
I'm yet to get my hands on a PS4 or Xbox One, but so far there's little info out there on any accessibility efforts Microsoft or Sony have made. I hope the people behind this can see beyond the "cool" and think about what this could do if given a fraction of the power Alt-Controller has with the PC.
Via: PR Newswire
I had the recent pleasure of testing out a Huff and Puff Processor 100 (or HAPP100 for short) thanks to Graham Law of Celtic Magic. This clever device gives powerful control over a PC by using a range of sipping and puffing actions. It's very accurate for mouse control over a PC for activities that do not have time constraint pressures, once you get your head around the method used.
For those needing something like an Eye Tracker with very limited (or no) head-movement, but unable to afford such technology, this is a very welcome alternative. Prices start around the £380 mark in the Celtic Magic shop.
Added to the Accessible Gaming Shop Head Controls section.
Labels: Accessible Gaming Shop