[BCAB] ElBraille First Impressions

Michael Cassidy mike.cassidy at ntlworld.com
Wed Jul 26 16:55:41 BST 2017


Hi,

Do we have dot-size comparisons for the Focus 14 and the Braille Edge? I think I’ll have to have a look at the Focus 14 before purchasing, so for the time being, I shall wait.

Regards,

Mike
> On 26 Jul 2017, at 16:42, Matthew Horspool <mhorspool at live.co.uk> wrote:
> 
> Hi Andrew,
> Yes I'd agree with that - not just soft, but "watery". The pins almost seem to be too thin to be taken seriously as braille dots.
> I think all braille displays wear out over time, but I would take a Braille Edge over any Focus that I've seen.
> Sean has a point about the Canute and the Orbit - you do indeed get what you pay for. However, I'd argue that they are a different class of product, so it's not really an apples to apples comparison.
> Matthew
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Bcab [mailto:bcab-bounces at lists.bcab.org.uk] On Behalf Of Andrew Hodgson
> Sent: 26 July 2017 11:06
> To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
> Subject: Re: [BCAB] ElBraille First Impressions
> 
> Hi,
> 
> I think the quality of the Braille dots is very subjective, but I also don't like the dots on the Focus displays.  I find them too soft and this is one reason I went with the Baum display a couple of years ago over the Focus.
> 
> Andrew.
> ________________________________________
> From: Bcab [bcab-bounces at lists.bcab.org.uk] on behalf of Michael Cassidy via Bcab [bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk]
> Sent: 26 July 2017 09:13
> To: BCAB Discussion List
> Cc: Michael Cassidy
> Subject: Re: [BCAB] ElBraille First Impressions
> 
> Hi Matthew,
> 
> Please can you tell me more about the poor quality of the Focus 14 Braille quality. At present I'm using a Braille Edge display and its dots are beginning to show signs of wear.
> 
> Cheers,
> 
> Mike
>> On 25 Jul 2017, at 19:12, Matthew Horspool <mhorspool at live.co.uk> wrote:
>> 
>> Hi Jim,
>> My braille music skills are shameful, so I must admit I hadn't thought about using the Apex in that context, but it is a fantastic example of where a braille first approach far outstrips a mainstream alternative.
>> I should stress here that I'm not deliberately trying to knock El Braille and products like it. I saw one at Sight Village and wanted one straight away purely because of how portable it is. Its most off-putting feature, for me, is the Focus braille display that it pears with. If it paired with something that had better quality braille - a Brailliant or a Vario Ultra or something - I'd be much more tempted.
>> But I would be very interested to see how an El Braille coped with braille music. Mary had a little lamb goes something like this:
>> Dot 5, ed sign, wh sign, th sign, wh sign, ed sign, ed sign, ed sign.
>> How would the back translator deal with the dot 5 ed sign? It isn't a known contraction! If the back translator gets it wrong, what will the forward translator give me in its place? How is that a reliable way of taking down music dictation? Where is the mainstream advantage here?
>> Matthew
>> 
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Bcab [mailto:bcab-bounces at lists.bcab.org.uk] On Behalf Of jim 
>> taylor
>> Sent: 25 July 2017 16:57
>> To: BCAB Discussion List <bcab at lists.bcab.org.uk>
>> Subject: Re: [BCAB] ElBraille First Impressions
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> Matthew, I, a fellow Apex user, fully endorse what you say.   You
>> could, of course, have put your t h sign or t h e sign in quotes,
>> or written:  "T H sign, E A sign, T, R, E".   As for italics,
>> again you could resort to block capitals or asterisks.
>> 
>> You did not mention the usefulness of the Apex's portability.
>> Last night, in our choir rehearsal, we started work on three new
>> carols for our Christmas carol service.   While the choirmaster
>> was thumping out the bass parts on the piano, I was able to take them down on the Apex (three cheers for Braille music!) and join in to the best of my ability, even though nobody had thought to
>> email me the words of the carols.   Still, what's a few la la la
>> la la's between friends?   At least, I got the notes right,
>> thanks to the Apex.
>> 
>> Apart from its ancient software, the only trouble with HumanWare is that not all the technicians have taken the trouble to learn the rudiments of Braille, but then my Apex has served me well for the past seven years and I wouldn't be without it, despite its imperfections and inadequacies.
>> 
>> Warm regards,
>> 
>> Jim.
>> 
>> 
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