New Vision Concepts
EZReader - Help

    

    This is the online Help page for EZReader.

EZReader consists of 30+ custom applications designed to enable vision-impaired users to more easily access computer capabilities. EZReader focuses on improving the ability of users to read screen content. Large font sizes, high contrast colors and minimal screen complexity are the key EZReader design elements.

You can purchase the EZReader software for installation on your own PC, or you can select one of the PC system solutions we offer.

EZReader Overview Help Topics:

These sections, found below on this page, provide general information about EZReader - information common to all of the 30+ applications that comprise EZReader.

EZReader Main Page Help

All of the EZReader applications are accessed through its main page.

EZReader Application Help Pages

These links take you to the help page for each of the EZReader applications, all of which are accessed through the EZReader main page:

 Welcome

Welcome to EZReader, custom software that enables persons with low vision to view and operate computers more easily. It offers users, such as those with macular degeneration, the ability to read books and other information at a level they thought was no longer possible.

It does so by allowing unlimited font sizes, utilizing pairs of high contrast colors and by minimizing the visual complexity of the screens.

In addition to allowing you to more easily read content, EZReader also provides text-to-speech capabilities. It can speak the content of books, newspapers and email.

Instead of trying to allow you to read existing applications, EZReader takes the unique approach of replacing existing applications with over 30 different new applications that are specifically designed for users with low vision issues such as macular degeneration.

Finally, EZReader supports the use of touch screen navigation and data entry, allowing you to operate your computer entirely by touch (or by keyboard and mouse if you choose).

EZReader itself is software that users can install on their own PC, or on a PC and monitor from New Vision Concepts.

Large screen sizes, such as 32", allow users to see more content per screen, but touch screens are typically available only up to about 24". Users should choose the purchase option that best suits their situation.

 EZReader Windows - Resizable

EZReader looks and behaves like all Windows 10 applications in that it can be resized and located anywhere on the desktop. This allows the user to have EZReader visible while allowing screen space for other Windows applications that the user may want to access.

However, EZReader users tend to use its main window maximized in order to see as much content as possible.

The resizable EZReader window also enables the use of the EZReader screen magnifier, where half the screen might be a user's application and the other half would be the EZReader window which displays a zoomed-in version of the other half of the screen. For example, the user might open Microsoft Excel on one side of the desktop and view it zoomed on the other side using the EZReader screen magnifier.

 Navigation

EZReader requires very minimal computer skills. Navigation (between functions or within a document) and actions are taken by selecting one of the icons found at the top of all screens.

To minimize complexity, every screen contains just 5 navigation/action icons. Just touch an icon, or click on it with a mouse, to perform the action. Right mouse click on an icon to see a description of what action will be taken.

If an EZReader application has enough features, then additional rows of navigation/action icons are provided and can be reached by pressing the rightmost, "Menu" icon found on all pages. The icon displays a dot for each available row of icons. The dot corresponding to the current row of icons will have a white center. This multi-row menu approach gives the user full access to an application's capabilities without increasing the visual complexity of the screens.

EZReader also supports "gestures", where scrolling of a document or list is achieved by dragging the screen up or down, exactly as is done on cell phones. Font size can likewise be changed by pulling thumb and forefinger together, or apart, for zooming in and out on a document. A touch screen monitor is required to use gestures.

When scrolling text content, by gestures, mouse or keyboard, the rate of scrolling can be controlled - set to single line or multi-line scrolling.

The navigation icon sizes may be selected by the user. Additionally, a text description of the icon may be displayed, where the text font size can be adjusted by the user.

Because moving between maximized and normal window sizing, EZReader provides a shortcut to toggle between those two states. It's most useful when a user want to quickly access the underlying Windows 10 desktop, or some application already open underneath EZReader, without leaving their place in EZReader.

 Special Navigation Aids

A special on-screen navigation graphic is available which displays a composite image of all 30 EZReader application icons. The user can click on any of the images to go directly to the application, without the need to click through the rows of menus to get to the application of choice.

 Shortcuts

EZReader provides the following shortcuts, using function keys, Control and Control-Shift key combinations.

Function key shortcuts:

Control-X shortcuts:

Control-Shift-X shortcuts:

Arrow Keys

Ctrl+Arrow will resize a window in the direction of the arrow.

Ctrl+Shift+Arrow key will move a window in the direction of the arrow.

 Text Display

EZReader emphasizes the display of text. That is, the content of source materials (books, emails, newspapers, etc.) are stripped of images and only the text is displayed.

This allows EZReader to carefully control the way in which information is presented to users, including colors and font sizes.

All text is displayed using a pair of colors, one for the text and one for the background. Four pre-selected color pairs are available, one of which can be modified by the user.

All text is displayed using the same font and font size, as specified by the user. In some cases, such as where a message is displayed, EZReader automatically selects a font size to enlarge the text to the largest possible size.

All text properties (colors and font attributes) can be quickly changed by pressing action icons or by using keyboard shortcuts.

The spacing between letters may be increased for easier viewing.

The user selects the font colors and font attributes (font family, font size, and font boldness) to be used.

Typically, whenever text content is displayed, EZReader provides a Search feature, allowing the user to scroll to the next line containing a search term. Display of the search feature is optional.

In some cases, such as email that contains non-text attachments, EZReader can display the attachments in a separate window. If such attachments are images, they can be zoomed to a convenient viewing size.

 Keyboards

All EZReader functions can be used by touch, keyboard or mouse.

In the case of using a keyboard, two custom keyboards are available to assist the user.

The first keyboard option has keys that are about twice the size of standard keys. While much easier to see and touch, the keys are necessarily placed farther apart. Users with previous touch typing skills will find it necessary to make some adjustments.

The second keyboard option is one that simply uses high contrast keyboard colors, either black and white or yellow and black. The keyboard is a standard size and configuration.

 OnScreen Keyboard

In a number of applications, such as the File Editor, Email or Calendar, a user needs to input text. Typically, the keyboard is used for that task, but for users who cannot type or who simply prefer to input text by touching the screen, an on-screen keyboard is available.

 Speech

EZReader can speak displayed text content. Play, stop, volume and speaking speed options are provided. Also, the user may select between male and female voices.

Other speech options are available. For example, when right mouse clicking on an icon (context help) to see a system message on what the icon does, EZReader may also be set to read the context help.

 Cursors

EZReader displays extremely large (about 1.5") easy to see cursors to enable the user to easily locate the position of the mouse. The cursor is significantly larger than is available through Windows.

The user may also select a color for the cursor. Black, white, blue and yellow are allowed. These next images are real-size images of the cursors used in EZReader.

Large sizing cursors, those displayed at the edge or corners of a window, are also provided by EZReader.

When a user is not working inside EZReader, a free utility is provided to enlarge the Windows cursor.

 System Messages

Typically, EZReader displays a large toolbar across the top of its window. But when EZReader wants to display a message to the user, the toolbar is temporarily hidden and the message display in the same location.

EZReader uses the largest possible font to display the message.

Messages are typically displayed for 2 seconds, but the user can adjust the display time for up to 4 seconds, giving more time to read the message.

 Printing

EZReader provides several printing options, including protection against accidentally printing a large number of pages.

EZReader can print most displayed text content. For example, if you create a file in the File Editor, you can print the content of the file.

The primary place where printing is disabled is in the Book Reader. Books can contain hundreds of pages and users are unlikely to want to print the entire book, so the EZReader Book Reader does not provide print options.

Even in cases where a valid print command is issued, EZReader can protect the user in two ways.

1. Apply wordwrapping if the user-selected font size causes printing to fall of the edge of the page.

2. Adjust the font size to the maximum value that will fit the longest line of text to the width of the printed page.

 Screen Printing

EZReader allows the user to print a copy of the current window. In some cases, such the Calendar application, EZReader will invert the image to assure a white background and dark letters. This significantly reduces the amount of toner used to print the image.

The shortcut Ctl-U will print the screen from within any application.

 Updates

Users who purchase EZReader get free, online software updates for life.

Users may also add to the various libraries that are installed with EZReader. Books, newspapers, documents, music files and images may all be imported from flash drives using EZReader's import capabilities or may added when received as attachments to emails.

 Help Options

EZReader excels in providing Help options for users. Tutorials, built-in-help screens, text-to-speech and remote tech support are all available.

As part of installation, users receive a free two-hour tutorial on using EZReader, covering basic instructions on all EZReader applications. Additional in-home instruction is also available.

There is a complete system of Help built into EZReader. For every screen, just press F1 to see Help. You can read the help information yourself or have EZReader read the Help content to you. The built-in help system is called AudioHelp.

In addition to AudioHelp for each screen EZReader provides special shortcut keys to open an introduction to EZReader, to display all available shortcuts and to display additional details on EZReader settings.

In some cases, a user may solicit the help of persons with full vision to answer questions about what is visible on the EZReader screen, or perhaps to help make an input on a screen. As a convenience to those folks, the font size of EZReader can be quickly toggled to a much smaller font size, then restored to the user's settings when the assistance is over.

Another built-in Help mechanism is that you can right click on any navigation/action icon to see a description of what the icon does. If you prefer, you can even have the icon function displayed permanently as text.

When EZReader detects a user click it issues an optional beep sound. This provides assurance to the user that their input was received.

Tech support is also available to you, either through email or phone calls. A quick call to tech support can often resolve questions in just minutes.

With your permission, tech support can even create a Team Viewer session to remotely view your computer screen to understand and resolve issues you might have.

In-home installation, tutorials and tech support are available within a 45 mile radius of New Vision Concepts office or representative. Outside that radius, support options are available only by phone, email and remote tech support.

Thank you for considering EZReader!