With the next version of JAWS just weeks away, the 2nd public beta for JAWS 2018 has been released.
Public beta 2 fixes a variety of bugs as reported by users and continues to enhance support for Microsoft Edge, their OCR feature, and other applications. Bug fixes for Skype, Windows mail and Windows 10 among others are included.
As we previously posted, JAWS 2018 will include support for the Microsoft Edge Browser, enhancements to the Convenient OCR feature, and a large amount of additional improvements.
It's a free download for all current JAWS users. You can get all of the details and a download link from the JAWS Public Beta page or see what's new in beta 2 below.
Enhancements in JAWS 2018 Public Beta 2
The following is a list of improvements made between the first Public Beta and Public Beta 2. Note that while many customer-reported enhancements are included in this release, the following is a list of more notable changes.
• If you are running a previous version of JAWS while installing 2018, JAWS now speaks the progress bar which displays the percentage of the install that is complete. The self-voicing feature of the installer also now announces more progress information.
• Improved various installer messages including the messages confirming a successful install or uninstall.
• When using the default voice contexts for the various cursors and you press NUM PAD+MINUS to turn on the JAWS Cursor, resolved a customer reported issue where "JAWS Cursor" was not being announced using the correct voice, which uses a lower pitch.
• Added new Research It lookup sources to the French version of JAWS for two libraries for the blind in France.
• When using JAWS Settings Center in Windows 10, resolved an issue where JAWS was not announcing the current location in the tree view after expanding a group, or the path to the currently selected item when pressing INSERT+UP ARROW. In addition, when navigating the filter tree view of results after performing a search, JAWS now announces the item followed by its location.
• The What's New in JAWS DAISY book has been updated for JAWS 2018. To get the new book, select Training from the JAWS Help menu to open the JAWS Basic Training Table of Contents in FSReader, and then press ENTER on the What's New in JAWS link.
• In response to a customer request, JAWS now includes version 3.3 of the Liblouis braille translator.
• Updated the control names in Settings Center for the Virtual Cursor verbosity options to say, "Web Verbosity Levels" and "Configure Web Verbosity Levels", to make them easier to find when doing a search.
• If the JAWS Laptop keyboard layout is active, resolved an issue where pressing INSERT+SHIFT+1 through 0 was not working in Excel to define a monitor cell. In addition, INSERT+SHIFT+T now works in Winamp to display track information. In Laptop layout, both The CAPS LOCK and INSERT keys can be used as the JAWS Key.
• Addressed issues with editing text files on remote systems using SSH.
• A customer using the Spanish version of JAWS reported several issues with various help and application messages. These have been resolved.
• In response to customer feedback, improved the quality of the OCR results when using INSERT+SPACEBAR, O, F to recognize an image file or INSERT+SPACEBAR, O, D to recognize a PDF document in Adobe Reader.
• In response to customer feedback, the camera light frequency correction is now saved when changed through the Advanced dialog box located in the Camera and Scanner Recognition dialog box.
• JAWS now plays a progress sound when recognizing large PDF documents.
• You can now press CTRL+APOSTROPHE or CTRL+SEMICOLON in Google Docs to move to the next or previous misspelled word in a document.
• When navigating a Google Docs table in Chrome using JAWS table reading commands (ALT+CTRL+ARROW keys, addressed an issue where JAWS was double speaking cell contents.
• Resolved a customer reported issue with the 8400 series of Outlook 365 updates where JAWS was not automatically reading the suggested addresses when typing in the address fields of a new message. To check your Outlook 365 version, use the JAWS command CTRL+INSERT+V while focused in Outlook.
• When navigating time slots in the Outlook Calendar using Vocalizer Expressive for speech, addressed a reported issue where JAWS was saying "comma" before the time.
• When opening the Spell Checker for the first time after starting Word 365, resolved an issue where JAWS was not automatically reading the misspelled word and suggestion.
• Resolved an issue where both JAWS and Skype would stop working if the Call Quality Feedback dialog box was displayed after ending a call.
• JAWS 2018 contains changes necessary to support Firefox version 57, scheduled for release in the fourth quarter of 2017.
• Improved overall JAWS performance with Edge. In particular, multiple reports where Edge would unexpectedly stop working on various web pages or become less responsive after opening multiple pages were addressed.
• When INSERT+A is pressed to read the web page address in Firefox or Chrome, addressed a customer reported issue where this information was not being displayed in braille if flash message verbosity was set to Advanced.
• Addressed an issue with JAWS double speaking live region updates in Google Chrome.
• Resolved an issue where Internet Explorer would sometimes close unexpectedly when right clicking on various toolbar items using the mouse.
• Resolved a reported issue with JAWS not reading as expected when encountering form controls inside an ARIA grid.
• You can now use the U and SHIFT+U Navigation Quick Keys in Edge to move by links. Note that in Internet Explorer, Firefox, or Chrome, these commands only move to the next or previous unvisited link. However, since Edge currently does not indicate when a link has been visited, U and SHIFT+U will move to all links in this browser.
• If the mouse is used to select text on a web page, resolved an issue where pressing CTRL+C was not working as expected to copy the selected text.
• Addressed intermittent issues where domain specific settings were not always loading as expected.
• Resolved an issue with Chrome where braille was not working as expected when typing and navigating in certain edit fields.
• When opening an email message, resolved a customer reported issue where JAWS was reading the contents of the previous message, even if it had been closed or deleted.
• When using JAWS table reading commands to navigate a table inserted into a new message, resolved an issue with JAWS not reading as expected.
• Addressed an issue where JAWS was not indicating the selected item when navigating between time picker controls.Source: JAWS Public Beta
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J.J. Meddaugh is an experienced technology writer and computer enthusiast. He is a graduate of Western Michigan University with a major in telecommunications management and a minor in business. When not writing for Blind Bargains, he enjoys travel, playing the keyboard, and meeting new people.