Q&A on Skype 8.51 and my JAWS scripts
This is my attempt to address several questions and concerns expressed both on and off this list regarding Skype 8.51 and/or my scripts for it. This message covers Skype 8.51, the JAWS scripts for Skype 8, and SLMan, the Script Load Manager needed by users of the Skype 8 scripts with older JAWS versions. This message does not address NVDA or my Skype add-on; I hope to do that in a separate message. This message is in Q&A format.
Q: Why don't I see the Split View Mode option in Skype 8.51?
A: There are a few possible reasons:
1. The option is under a "More Options" button on the main screen. It is not found in the menus available from any menu bar.
2. The option's presence or absence appears to be governed by code managed centrally by Microsoft without requiring an update to the Skype application installed on your computer. This is my guess, based on my observations, and is thus subject to correction; however, I have heard multiple reports of the option appearing and possibly disappearing without a Skype update installation.
Q: I'm hearing that Microsoft will or did pull back the Split Screen Mode option. Is this true?
A: I have no solid confirmation one way or the other except for what has been posted on this list. However, as of this writing (August 30, 2019), the option remains active in my personal Skype 8 installation. While writing this message, I upgraded from 220.127.116.11 to 18.104.22.168; and the Split View Mode option is still present. I take this to mean that the option is either staying for now or has already been removed and put back by this time. Again though, I am guessing.
Q: Why does JAWS no longer say things like "Message sent," "so and so is typing," "Message has been edited," etc.?
A: This happens if you use Split View Mode. These messages are posted to the main Skype window. JAWS announces such messages, which are "live region" messages, when they are posted to the window in focus. However, when you use Split View Mode, the window in focus is a chat and not the main Skype window where the messages are sent. Scripting might be able to rectify this issue for JAWS users, but I'm betting Microsoft fixes it for everyone in some way. Guessing again though; this is not based on any Microsoft feedback.
Q: Do I need to use the Script Load Manager, SLMan?
A: Only if you are using a JAWS version that is older than the last August update to JAWS 2019. The symptom of needing SLMan when you don't have it is that JAWS' Insert+Q command will say that Chrome settings instead of Skype 8 settings are loaded when you type that command from inside a Skype window.
Q: Can I still change the Skype Command key for the scripts if I have to use SLMan?
A: The short answer is Yes. The longer answer is Yes but you might have to edit a file yourself rather than using the normal command for this purpose, which is the sequence [ JAWSKey+C. I still need to address this issue.
Q: How do I manually set a Skype Command key?
A: Edit skypeelectron.jcf in your JAWS user folder. In that file, add or edit the following section:
Of course, replace Shift+Enter with what you prefer.
At this writing, if you find a slman.jcf file in your JAWS user folder, it should be sufficient simply to add the contents of that file to the end of your skypeelectron.jcf, or replace the [MKCSOptions] section in it if it exists, with the contents of slman.jcf; then delete slman.jcf. This slman.jcf creation is the issue I need to address when I can.
Doug Lee dgl@... http://www.dlee.org
Level Access doug.lee@... http://www.LevelAccess.com
"When your best-laid plans have turned to dust, vacuum!"
- Whoopi Goldberg