[texhax] TeX for the blind

Chris Rowley C.A.Rowley at open.ac.uk
Fri Dec 8 15:50:07 CET 2006


> > Do you know of any software that can produce TeX output that can be read by
> > a screen reader

  Did you really mean to ask: Is there any mathematical output that can
  be read by a screen reader?


> This sort of thing may get better for .pdfs once the Stixfonts  
> ( http://www.stixfonts.org/ ) are available, but even then will  
> probably need improvements in screen reader support ('cause I'm not  
> convinced that they'll read out a superscripted ``2'' as ``squared'').

No, fonts will make no difference.

Screen readers tend to do just that: they read a screen just like a
person, making guesses about which symbol strings are words and ... .

> As a test on that, try a .pdf of $a^2 + b^2 = c^2$ --- someone needs  
> to teach these screen reader folks that the Pythagorean theorem is  
> _not_ ``a2 plus b2 equals c2''.

Not much use without also telling her (human or software) thatnthere
is a Pythagoras theorem and etc etc etc ... ie they neeed a maths
course to read maths.  Current screen readers have had an introductory
course in US English, they are reasonably pathetic at amything more

> Really though, (La)TeX source is quite readable and concise and a  
> reasonably linear representation, so should be suitable for use by a  
> screen reader if it'll accept plain text files.

Mmmm, no comment!


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