ATC - Quickstart: Universal Access for Apple
Universal Access is Apple's accessibility features panel. This allows you to adjust the keyboard and mouse setttings further than their standard options under System Preferences.
Changing Universal Access Settings
From the Apple Menu, click on System Preferences and select "Universal Access". From the Universal Access control panel, the features that can be adjusted is combined into four different categories.
Under this category the user can adjust a number of options that concern with seeing, for users that have vision difficulties or are blind. These options are:
- VoiceOver: This is Apple's built in screen reading utility in OS X. The shortcut for VoiceOver is < Apple Key > + < F5 >.
- Zoom: This option makes the screen larger with a few sub-options for users that have low vision. The shortcut for Zoom is < Apple Key > + < option > + < 8 >. Once enabled you can use < Apple Key > + < option > + < = > (equals) to zoom in and < Apple Key > + < option > + < - > (minus) to zoom out.
- Display: This adjusts the how the screen looks. There are options to change from black on white (default) to white on black. To quickly swap between these two options press < Apple Key > + < option > + < control > + < 8 >. There is an option that allows the user to convert the screen to grayscale, this may be suitable to users that cannot handle a large assortment of colors. And finally users are able to adjust the contrast using a slider bar or press < Apple Key > + < option > + < control > + < , > (comma) to reduce contrast, and < Apple Key > + < option > + < control > + < . > (period) to increase contrast.
This section assistts with users that have low hearing or are deaf. A user can have the screen blink when a system sound occurs.
This section helps users that have issues using the keyboard, it allows various options to ake the keyboard easier to use. These options are:
- Sticky Keys: Sticky Keys allow users that have difficulties pressing multiple keys at once, such as < Apple Key > + < O > which opens a file. This setting can only be enabled through the Universal Access options, but there is an option that allows Sticky Keys to be turned on or off. This is useful if you need to use Sticky Keys some of the time. Once this option is selected you can press < Shift > five (5) times to turn it on and off. There are options that allow the user to choose how they wish to be notified, if they have Sticky Keys enabled.
- Slow Keys: This feature allows the rate in which a key is pressed and when the computer accept that key. This allows the length of time a key has to be held down before it appears on the screen. This can be used in conjuction with the standard key repeat setting, which adjusts the rate in which a character is repeated after key is held down.
This section allows users that have difficulty controlling the mouse.
- Mouse Keys: This allows the mouse to be controled by the numeric keypad instead of the physical mouse. Please note that with Mouse Keys enabled, you will not be able to use the keypad for the numeric functions that you are accustomed to. While Mouse Keys is on, you will use < 5 > to initiate a click and < control > + < 5 > to initiate a right click. There is an option that allow you to turn on and off Mouse Keys by pressing < option > five (5) times. Note: when using both Mouse Keys with this option as well as Sticky Keys, you will need to hit < option > one more time to turn the lock off from Sticky Keys. Also if the option that allows Mouse Keys to be turn on or off is enabled, there is no notification of what the status is.
- Adjusting the Mouse Pointer Movement : There is two settings that can be adjusted, iniial delay and maximum speed. Initial delay is the length of time a key has to be held down before it moves. Maximum speed adjusts the speed that the cursor moves across the screen.
- Cursor Size: You are able to adjust the size of the mouse cursor on the screen.
For additional help with Universal Access, contact ATC staff.