541- Universal Access – Macbook Pro

The computer I use for this class is a Macbook Pro. As part of the operating system Apple computers come equipped with many universal access options within the the system preferences folder. options for modifications to the way the navigation and operation of the computer can be selected based on four tabs: Seeing, Hearing, Keyboard, and Mouse & Trackpad.


Users with a visual impairment can turn on a voice over option which will enable the computer to speak out all selected commands. The voice and speed of the voice over is all customizable. Users with a visual impairment can choose to use the zoom tool, which enables them to zoom in and out of all on screen areas, or they may choose to make adjustments to the colour and contrast of the display, depending on the characteristics of the visual impairment.

Users with a hearing impairment can select an option that flashes the screen when an alert sound occurs, they can change the audio from stereo to mono, and of course can adjust the volume of all audio outputs.

For users with certain physical disabilities such as motor control, the keyboard on this computer can be adjusted to modify input by putting a delay between when a key is pressed and when it is accepted. The user can also choose to disable the mouse and trackpad completely, controlling these tools via the keyboard only.


Directly from the Apple website:


Apple includes assistive technology in its products as standard features — at no additional cost. For example, iPhone, iPad, iPod and Mac OS X include screen magnification and VoiceOver, a screen-access technology, for the blind and visually impaired. To assist those with cognitive and learning disabilities, every Mac includes an alternative, simplified user interface that rewards exploration and learning. And, for those who find it difficult to use a mouse, every Mac computer includes Mouse Keys, Slow Keys and Sticky Keys, which adapt the computer to the user’s needs and capabilities.