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Re: Debian Accessibility

I read comments like "Press s and enter", "press a and enter then s
and enter", "press down arrow 5 times and enter", and all I'm hearing
is that Blind people need to know something about the install media
sighted people can be comfortably ignorant of.

This strikes me as backwards and as the kind of thing where if I just
hand a Debian installation disc to a blind person, they are going to
think I either handed them a dud disc or that Debian's installer isn't

I don't know how difficult it would be to implement, but I would think
the desired behavior would be for a message along the lines of:

"Welcome to Debian, now speaking on [soundCard]. Press caps lock+s to
toggle speech on/off."

is Spoken when the install disc's boot menu is displayed, and repeated
on subsequent detected sound cards if a set amount of time passes
without user input, and with the message also printed to the screen
and on any braille displays detected in the boot process.

It makes starting up the installer with braille and/or speech
self-documenting, removes a potentially show stopping hurdle for any
blind person unfamiliar with the peculiarities of Debian's
installation media, and while it arguably inconveniences the vast
majority of people doing installations ofDebian, it would be a small
inconvenience to disable speech when not needed while the current
system presents a bigger inconvenience to enable speech when it is

And as weird as it feels to type something favorable towards Apple and
Microsoft when comparing their offerings to Linux, I understand recent
installers for both OSX and Windows start talking automatically if
there is a delay when they expect initial input from the user.

Also, assuming the talking installer has remained mostly unchanged
since the last time I messed around with vanilla Debian, I'm not a fan
of the "either memorize your choices before hand or listen to
potentially very long lists of options and type in the corresponding
number" approach, especially compared to the (n)curses(-like) arrow up
and down menus of the text-based, non-talking installer I remember
from my days as a sighted Debian user, though I assume there are some
users out there that like the type the number of your option approach.

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