Re: help with the new 8.3 version of skype.

Brian Hartgen <brianhartgen@...>

Hi Shaun

Absolutely right, and I have done that. I've reached out to the Disability answer desk both by phone and in writing, and also to the Skype team directly.

-----Original Message-----
From: <> On Behalf Of Shaun Oliver
Sent: 05 October 2018 09:38
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of skype.

Might it not also be prudent to reach out to Microsoft and address those self same concerns with them? otherwise, they aren't likely to be aware that that functionality has a need, because as helpful as they are, they are still a conglomerate that needs to pay attention to their profit margin. That being said, the fact that they are prepared to listen and hopefully give reasons as to why or why not, is surely no bad thing?

On 5/10/2018 17:41, Brian Hartgen wrote:
Hi to all

I've hesitated a lot in writing on what has proved to be quite a thorny issue, but it is worth making one or two points.

I absolutely agree that Microsoft have made tremendous strides in terms of accessibility enhancements during recent years, both in terms of the Windows operating system and Office in particular. I also agree that, where possible, blind people who are capable of doing so should get to learn a new interface, such as Skype8, and work with what there is in terms of using that accessibility implementation to good effect.

But having visited people training them for 21 years, I am very aware that change does not always come easy. So to people who suggest that not having global keystrokes to answer or disconnect a call etc does not matter a jot, to some people it definitely does. Along with visual impairment, other health-related issues are often present manifesting in great anxiety or fear of the unknown, not to mention people who have lost their sight later in life who often find even simple tasks a challenge.

So yes, while Microsoft have undertaken a good deal of work, I feel it is up to us as access technology companies, including VFO and similar organisations, to reach out to their customers and ask them what they want.

We did exactly this. We decided that Skype8 was something we needed to devote some time and resources to, so I have written some JAWS scripts for one of our products which attempt to at least make the transition from one Skype version to another easier. This includes global hotkeys, reading of text chat messages in the way a person has previously been familiar with, and so on. We're also offering a training course in the use of Skype8.
Note this message is by no means a commercial. I am just stating what we are doing and that theoretically enhancements are possible.

Whether I have been successful in assisting people to transition successfully, only time will tell. But the point of my message is that the person originally posting to this list about the need for implementing enhanced functionality other than the default does have a very valid case. I would personally like to see VFO, (or whatever the new name of the company is now - I can ever remember it), and NVDA developers, build such functionality into their respective products by default. Skype8 is obviously something people need to migrate to if they wish to continue using this method of communication. To show my support, I will be at least writing to VFO today to that effect.

Brian Hartgen

-----Original Message-----
From: <> On Behalf Of
Octavian Rasnita
Sent: 05 October 2018 08:44
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of skype.

The accessibility is the final result seen by the user, not the features offered by the operating system's manufacturer, because if the screen reader manufacturer can't keep up with the changes, the final result might be worse for the final user and nobody will appear as guilty.
As examples, MS DOS prompt and TextPad editor are less accessible under Windows 7 than under Windows XP, even now after many years, when Windows 7 is almost dead.
This decreased the productivity of the blind users that used them, with no other benefit, so it can't be considered something good.

Windows 7 became better than XP for audio editting and became more secure, so it this is something good, but it also became worse for some other things. We should accept that what is good is good, but also that what is bad is bad, and we can't simply say that what is bad it doesn't matter because this or that thing doesn't affect us.

Now speaking about Skype 8 for Windows, I am still trying to see what are its advantages, what is it better than Skype 7 for, what it can do what Skype 7 for Windows couldn't do, but I haven't seen any useful thing that can compensate its disadvantages.
I am sure that it is very good for some people, but this doesn't mean that it is the same for everybody, or that only those who find it useful should express their opinions.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Shaun Oliver" <blindman75@...>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, October 05, 2018 9:28 AM
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of skype.

I'm sorry but I must interject at this juncture.

While this isn't a forum for discussing the merits of XP VS. win7 VS.
Win8 VS. win10, etc, I should like to point out that in terms of
overall accessibility, things have only improved, with each above
mentioned itteration of windows.

Just because things aren't in the places you initially found them
under say XP or 7, doesn't mean they aren't there or made inaccessible.

Overall accessibility is still the purview of the app developers
themselves, and they are under no obligation whatsoever, to
accomodate what is essentially a minority group.

Make no mistake my fellow forum members, we, are, a, minority, group.
And while as a collective community we have managed to successfully
campaign for better accessibility overall, we are not about to
receive total accessibility, as there is always going to be
developers that will simply throw the concept in to the too hard
basket, simply because it neither affects their bottom line, nor fits
in with their vision, or worse yet, don't even know it's even there
at the click of a button. although, due to various bits of
legislature and programming standards set by what I will for the sake
of the argument call The-Big-Three, Google, Apple and Microsoft, This is becoming less and less of an issue.

The likes of James Tae, Michael Curren, Joseph Lee and dare I say
Jonathan Mosen and others like them, are good for the promotion of
accessibility needs and the advocating of making life as a whole
easier for us as a community. in spite of my own personal oppinions
regarding some of teh individuals I've mentioned, I cannot deny they
have done a great deal for improving our overall computing experience as a whole.

We cannot micromanage to the point that each individual has something
taylored to shit him or herself, if we did that, we'd never get
anything done, and developers would be overwhelmed with requests and
demands to customise the software just so one person is happier and
able to utilise the software better.

So, with all due respect, kindly remember that the list archives are
public, and with that in mind, please do your utmost to offer up
constructive feedback instead of asking for something that has been
stated time and time again is not easily, if at all doable. Learn the
ropes so that you can then pay it forward to someone else that might
be struggling, and thus we can continue providing good advice and
constructive and helpful hints for those that aren't yet up to our level.

On 5/10/2018 15:29, Octavian Rasnita wrote:
Sarah, you are right, but this is true just for the large public,
not for those who have very specific needs.
You surely don't need to use the command line under Windows, because
if you would need it, you would know that it is worse under Windows
7 when compared with the one under Windows XP.

And other programs are also less accessible under Windows 7 than
under Windows XP.

If you don't care about the other people needs, it doesn't mean that
those needs don't exist.

If some computer users are bored and like to keep discovering new
things, other users might not have time to spend for nothing for doing that.


----- Original Message ----- From: "Sarah k Alawami"
To: <>
Sent: Friday, October 05, 2018 4:04 AM
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of skype.

I have to gree. I recently used narrator to troubleshoot some stuff
a few months ago and it was very very doable. Go microsoft and go
skype on all platforms. It really is a piece of cake to use and a
fun and joyful experience.

Take care

On 4 Oct 2018, at 12:36, John Holcomb II wrote:

I think MS should actually be commended on their accessibility
with Skype and their other products.
No company does everything perfect, but if I wanted to right now,
I could walk up to any Windows 10 based computer and use it, and
probably get Skype to work somehow accessibly too! I say somehow
as I have not used narrator and Skype together, but they're all
about making first party software work well, and third party stuff too.

Now how amazing is that?

-----Original Message-----
From: <> On Behalf Of
Shaun Oliver
Sent: Thursday, October 04, 2018 12:41 PM
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of skype.

and by that reasoning, given the archives are public, and
searchable by the internet as a whole, it is therefore, not beyond
the realm of possibility that the afforementioned remarks would, I
can say with almost 100% certainty, find their way back to the
vendor that is being railed against, thus causing very real
problems in the long run for those of us that are stern yet polite
when we approach same to discuss overall improvements to
accessibility for various applications we'd like to make good use
of in the future. it is those kinds of comments and remarks and
complaints about how not enough is being done and what is already
there is nowhere near enough that causes devs on the whole to say,
and please excuse my use of the more colorful, even if by initial
only, "F you, we don't want to be bothered with it because it's
too hard." when in reality, gaining accessibility is as much about attitude as developers willingness to accomodate.

so I am with Sarah 100% on this.

On 5/10/2018 02:03, Sarah k Alawami wrote:
Lol. I'm the admin. I have to be nice. Hehahahahaha. I am also
working on my professional tone, which needs a lot of work.

And yes I do agree. One more comment like that from anyone and
they will with out warning be placed on a 1 month moderation. We
want to make the list constructive and these archives by my
choice are public, so let's try and be civil here. If you don't
like it, as my teacher used to say, there's the door. I do not
want to moderate the topic but one more bad apple and it will
either be moderated or locked. You all have ben forewarned.

On 4 Oct 2018, at 9:08, Shaun Oliver wrote:

Thank you Sarah. I would not have even been as nice about it. as
it was, I’d already stated that it won’t happen due to the
deprecated API and unavailability of the SDK.

and really, Joseph, Comments such as to hell with microsoft are
the kinds of comments we could all quite frankly do without,
simply because MS, in recent times, has actually begun to
carefully consider accessibility and implement same, despite the
bleeting from the NFB wanting to keep accessibility firmly
within the control of the blindness community. and really people
as a whole, accessibility is not limited to blind people alone.
we do not, nor wil we ever hold the monopoly on accessibility
needs, so I suggest we dispense with the badmouthing,
disparraging remarks, the complaining that this isn’t
predictable or how unfair it is that we’re losing hotkeys that
quite frankly nobody gives a rodent’s rectum about, and just learn the new interface, build a bridge and get over it.

Sent from Shaun's iPad

On 5 Oct 2018, at 01:31, Sarah k Alawami <marrie12@...> wrote:

I doubt they will, so until and if they do, learn skype 8 and
learn the key strokes, and learn your web keys. If you don't
like it not much you can do but uninstall skype and use zoom or nothing at all.
Harsh, but true in this case.

Take care

On 4 Oct 2018, at 3:14, Joseph Machise wrote:

Clare thanks hope they get GW back again under another name
from Joseph.
----- Original Message ----- From: "Clare Page"
To: <>
Sent: Thursday, October 04, 2018 4:57 AM
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of skype.

It's all very well to say that a keystroke such as alt+page
up should be added to the JAWS scripts of Skype 8, but that
won't help users of other screen-readers. I'm not sure that
such a keystroke is necessary anyway.
Doug's way of answering Skype calls seems rather complicated
to me , although that may make seeing who the caller is a bit
easier. I am lucky that the Skype calls I receive are from
people I know, and in most cases I have warning that I am
going to receive a call, so I go into the Skype window in
Skype 8, which I tend to leave open while Skype is running
anyway, and press Tab till I find the Answer button. There's
a Decline button too, which comes before the Answer button
while tabbing through the window, so if you don't want to
take the incoming call, you can use that instead.
If you don't want to keep the Skype window open like I do,
you can minimise it with alt+f4 like you did in older
versions of Skype, and pressing Enter on the Skype icon on
your desktop will open the Skype window again. Since I rarely
minimize the Skype window while my Skype 8 is running, I
don't know if an incoming call will make that window appear,
that's why I mentioned how to open it while Skype is still running.
I hope this helps!
Bye for now!
From Clare

-----Original Message-----
From: []
On Behalf Of Octavian Rasnita
Sent: mercredi 3 octobre 2018 18:01
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of

Hi Doug,

Can't be made a script that executes these hotkeys, a script
stored in default.jss?
If it would be possible, we could assign a hotkey for it, say
Alt+PgUp, and
one of the problems could be solved.

I hope that it is not a problem that the window uses a web
widget, because that can't be solved.


----- Original Message ----- From: "Doug Lee" <dgl@...>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2018 4:36 PM
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of

The plan for taking an incoming call in Skype 8 is this:

1. Make a shortcut key that immediately puts focus on the
Skype 8 window.
Do this by assigning a shortcut key, such as
Ctrl+Shift+Alt+K, to the Skype 8 Desktop shortcut.

2. When a call comes in, type your shortcut, tab for caller
ID, then tab to the Answer button and press Space.

This is more keystrokes than Alt+PgUp was, but it is also
less prone to the, "Oh goodness, I did not mean to pick up that call!"
situation. This
situation would be my description of most calls I get,
because of spam calls that are made to my phone number,
which I route through Skype specifically so I can handle
such things intelligently.

On Wed, Oct 03, 2018 at 08:36:20AM -0400, Joseph Machise wrote:
well dug until we get a new version of GW connect, and say
the hell with Microsoft do you have a hot key for answering
a call
----- Original Message ----- From: "Doug Lee" <dgl@...>
To: <>
Sent: Wednesday, October 03, 2018 8:32 AM
Subject: Re: [skypeenglish] help with the new 8.3 version of

My experience says Ctrl+Shift+P never answered a call in
Skype 8, but that if you happened to be displaying the same
contact that called you and you typed Ctrl+Shift+P, Skype
tried to initiate a call to that person and simply
connected to the incoming call as a result. This could
easily give the illusion that Ctrl+Shift+P answers calls if
you are testing the feature and thus are likely to be
showing that exact contact when a call arrives.

On Wed, Oct 03, 2018 at 02:03:13PM +0200, Michele Barbi wrote:
I'll try ctrl+shift+p the next time I sign in on Skype and
a call arrives, I only used it for starting a call. Anyway
I can confirm ctrl+e for ending a call, I tested it

Doug Lee dgl@... Level Access
doug.lee@... "I
forgot, because I wanted to forget, except I don't remember
forgetting." --Sarah Alawami

Doug Lee dgl@... Level Access
doug.lee@... "Nearly
all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man's
character, give him power." -Abraham Lincoln

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