This week we’re featuring a software Kickstarter.  Talkie Type is software designed to help teach blind and low vision users how to use a computer keyboard.  Usually this needs 1 on 1 instruction from a fully sighted individual or very expensive tools. Dominic Canare the Kickstarter’s founder has volunteered at summer camps run for blind teenagers.  The teenagers come for the summer and after intense 1 on 1 instruction leave able to touch type and use a PC.  He wanted to come up with something that could reach more people and had to be significantly cheaper.

Talkie Type is to feature the following :

  • Built-in speech synthesis (no need for accessibility software)
  • Progress tracking
  • High-contrast display
  • Positive feedback system
  • Lessons for: – Every single alpha key! – Numerical keys too! – Modifiers and special keys – Symbols and special characters – The Num Pad – Navigation Keys – Function Keys
  • All lessons are 100% audible
  • Flexible lesson framework allows for different keyboard layout

The project is asking for $2,500 and at the time of writing has 41 days to go and is a significant proportion of the way to achieving it.  As of yet there is no specific pricing for the finished product, although they do say that if they manage to raise $5000 they will open source it, making it effectively free. Initially the software is to be PC based but they do have road plans that would possibly take it to Mac and Linux if funding supported it.  If the project is fully funded they plan to release the result December 2013.

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