A brief history of accessibility on Twitter in ten tweets to mark Twitter's 10th birthday

In the 10 years since the first tweet was sent, people with disabilities have loved Twitter, sometimes loathed it and then often loved it again. Here's the story so far in 10 tweets.

Twitter is ten today1/10 Twitter put social media in mainstream + gave people with #disabilities easy way for voice to be heard

Social media is a powerful platform for those whose voice isn't often heard loud and clear. The advent of Twitter, with its bite-sized info and immediacy, made it incredibly easy for everyone to get their views out  without having to set up a website or acquire skills that often proved challenging for all but the really tech-savvy.

2/10 Twitter started as plain text only - great for accessibility (also known as #a11y).  These days it's harder!

Text is the ultimate inclusive medium. It can have its colours or style altered to ease legibility, be readily enlarged without becoming pixelated for those with a vision impairment, or read out by screen-reading software for those who are blind or have severe dyslexia. Twitter, in its original plain-text form was fantastically inclusive.

3/10 Twitter.com interface proved awkward for accessibility, leading to alternatives like easychirp.com being hatched

EasyChirp offered an accessible way to access tweetsTwitter.com was originally very challenging from an accessibility point of view - ironic really considering it had at its heart the simplest of content. Other sites like Easychirp.com filled the gap with an easy-to-use interface for reading and drafting tweets.

4/10 Twitter still ideal platform for breaking news + hot tips on #assistivetech + #disability matters #a11y #axs

Hashtags like #a11y and #axs sprung up and suddenly Twitter became the place to follow breaking disability and assistive tech news across the globe – and it’s been the place ever since.

5/10 Trolls arrived early on Twitter - meaning people with disabilities experience more abuse than ever

No social media platform is without its trolls. Trolls are people who may or may not think twice about saying horrible things to people’s faces, but who have no qualms about saying them virtually. People with disabilities aren't spared - but we still love Twitter nonetheless.

6/10 Twitter's openness to 3rd parties to develop apps made for a plethora of choice at one point – and choice is good for #a11y

At first Twitter opened its ‘firehose’ to all and sundry. The firehose is the full stream of tweets and associated data that 3rd-party developers could take advantage of in developing fully-functional Twitter clients (websites and apps) and many of them (particularly on iOS) were very accessible. This was especially handy considering that Twitter.com and the official Twitter apps on both Android and iOS weren’t very accessible at all.

Don't tweet pictures of text! slide from presentation about accessible social media7/10 Now that Twitter users love sharing pics of food, cats and holidays, blind followers feel left out in the cold

It had to happen. The days of predominantly text-only tweets soon came to an end with the advent of mobile data plans with decent data allowances and soon every other tweet was an unlabelled image. For me as a blind person Twitter soon became just like the rest of the internet – partly fair and partly fowl (see what I did there?).

AbilityNet would love to see more Optical Character Recognistion (OCR) and object recognition on social media platforms, so we know what's in photos - even more so now that we have quoted tweets, see Tweet 9/10 below.

8/10 But Twitter's 'openness' flew away. Many devs had their wings clipped + far fewer 3rd-party apps. A peck in the eye for #a11y

Twitter turned off the firehose as they sought to establish a better business model for themselves. Developers began to fall away as their access to tweets became more limited and for a while the flight path for Twitter took a distinct nose-dive.

9/10 Quoted tweets + pics of text on Twitter pushed blind, visually impaired and dyslexic users out of the nest

Now that tweeters can retweet others’ tweets by including them as an image of text, it poses a problem. Many users with disabilities such as a vision impairment or dyslexia need to alter text to suit their needs. They're missing the juicy worms of the original tweet and are left with the breadcrumbs…

10/10 twitter.com is now hot on #a11y but tweets are either golden eggs or a poop in the eye! #twitter10 bit.ly/1Rb6NT9

Twitter.com is now mostly accessible, particularly for screenreaders. But the future is still uncertain for accessible social media. Facebook has upped its game and is even taking strides in auto-labelling your uploaded pics and recognising faces. Youtube isn’t doing an ostrich-impression when it comes to accessibility either - apart from the ever-irksome auto-playing of videos, which is totally confusing for screenreaders.

For Twitter to keep its beak ahead of the flock it’ll need to keep a sharp eye on #a11y and stop ruffling the feathers of some of its most avid fans.

Nominations open for AbilityNet Tech4Good Awards 2016

Celebrating people who use tech to make the world a better placeNominations are open for the AbilityNet Tech4Good Awards 2016 – our annual showcase for the amazing people who use digital technology to make the world a better place. Entry is free and open to any business, charity, individual or public body with a base in the UK. Winners will be announced at a glittering ceremony hosted by BT in July.

This is the 6th year of the Awards, which are organised by AbilityNet and supported by BT and a host of businesses and charities. The Awards include the AbilityNet Accessibility Award for people who use tech to help disabled people, a Digital Health Award and an award for young people.

Last year’s winners included Raspberry Pi, who won the Judges’ Award for their micro computer and education programme. Open Bionics won the Accessibility Award for using 3D scanning and printing work to reduce the cost of prosthetics for disabled people, and what3words won the BT Ingenious Award for an innovative global address technology.

The Awards were launched at BT Tower on 15 March and featured a brilliant demonstration by Rachel Moat who won IT Volunteer of the Year 2015 for her amazing work with The Seashell Trust, a school for children with complex needs and severe learning difficulties. She is a musician who created customised musical technology that encourages students to interact with their surroundings. Her sound-based games are highly tactile and include musical bowls of spaghetti.

Rachael Moat, IT Volunteer of the Year 2015

Entry is free and open now

More details about all past winners and how to enter can be found at www.tech4goodawards.com.

Entries are open until 6th May and anyone can nominate themselves or someone else in any one of seven categories. Judges include business people, charities, academics and journalists and others with specialist knowledge of how tech is used for social good. This year's categories are:

  • AbilityNet Accessibility Award
  • BT MyDonate Fundraising Award
  • Community Impact Award
  • Digital Health Award
  • Digital Skills Award
  • IT Volunteer of the Year Award
  • Young Pioneer Award

Enter now at www.tech4goodawards.com

Is Microsoft changing the game for accessible browsers?

A raft of new internet accessibility work by Microsoft will make the web user-experience for people with disabilities far smoother and more sophisticated. AbilityNet has a long-standing relationship with Microsoft, including user-testing its products for more than a decade. It's clear the company is striving to become market-leaders in web accessibility and there is much to be excited about, not least in their innovative approach to using APIs. 

Microsoft Edge: accessibility will leap forward

One of the most significant developments is their work on Microsoft Edge, the new Windows 10 web browser. In particular they're developing an API (Application Programme Interface) for assistive technology to plug into, which could be a real game changer.

Microsoft Edge page screenshot

In her blog earlier this month, Jenny Lay-Flurrie, chief accessibility officer for Microsoft explained: “We’re working hard on our new browser, Microsoft Edge.

"By the end of 2016, the browser will have improved browsing and reading experiences, not just for those using our built-in assistive technologies, such as Narrator and Magnifier, but also for people who use other commercial assistive technology”.

Having looked at their thinking I'd say that APIs are a smart way to go.

Is this goodbye to slow screenreading for blind people?

At the moment, screenreaders (often used by those with a visual impairment) have to look at the source code of a web page and then recreate the content in a more readable way. Without such translation a blind user wouldn't know what was a button or a link, and the speech would read across multiple columns, making text meaningless.

This approach involves a lot of continual development work on the part of third-party screenreader manufacturers to keep up with each new browser version and new web technology. And, it can be a little hit and miss in terms of results for the user.

The big shift is that Microsoft's new API will do the translation more quickly and smoothly so that screens can be read more easily and efficiently.

Moreover, separating the process from the ‘front end’ of the browser will mean that changes in the User Interface (UI ) won’t necessarily affect what is delivered through the API.

Every second counts...

For me, as a blind person, the internet can be a bit of a nightmare. That's why I'm looking forward to these improvements, especially in speed gains.

It currently takes up to a minute after clicking a link for the browser to download every byte of source code, images and CSS. Only then can my screenreader build the virtual version and finally begin to read a page.

With this new approach I'll get web pages read to me more quickly and reliably, rather than the haphazard way third-party interpretation I sometimes get at the moment.

Many screenreader manufacturers have large teams of developers and do an excellent, if often frustratingly slow job. Others have fewer resources and the result is less consistent. But with the resource that Microsoft’s Accessibility Team has at their disposal, I have a lot of confidence in what can be achieved.

Prof Stephen Hawking and switch access scanning

The API won’t just benefit screenreader users, though. It will work for any assistive technology, including voice recognition, switch access - which is used by Prof Stephen Hawking - magnification software, and of course the good old keyboard.

Stephen Hawking

Tabbing through a typical web page on a keyboard it's easy to lose focus or struggle to access a drop-down menu. Having an API with the commitment and smarts of Microsoft behind it should give everyone better access to even the most complex of websites or web apps.

Dynamically changing content, fly out menus and embedded widgets should all now be seen in a new light and I for one, as a blind user, am truly excited.

Disabled user testing is vital

Alongside this shift in Microsoft's thinking it's hugely important to AbilityNet and our extensive community of users with a disability or impairment across the world, that technology companies publicly commit to the accessibility of their products. To achieve best practice, they must also employ a wide range of users to test their products and services, and they must listen to them as early in the design process as possible.

Microsoft is significantly stepping up the testing it is doing with users who have disabilities – and AbilityNet is extremely proud to be a part of that process. Watch our blog for future developments. We'll be sure to keep you posted.

Learn more about our approach to accessibility testing.

(Pictured: Stephen Hawking)

AbilityNet supports University Mental Health Day

Students can get help from DSA for mental health issuesYesterday was University Mental Health day and our social media feeds are full of  posts about events  going on around the country at different universities. AbilityNet is proud to support this day because we realise that mental health and physical health and equally important. Mental health is a vital part of achieving your full potential in higher education.

For many people, university is thetime of your life when you can move somewhere new and have lots of new friends and experiences. What could be better, right? But for a number of people, being a student isn't a happy experience.

Research carried out by the NUS in 2013 found that 92% of students had experienced some kind of mental health issue, which often includes feeling down, stressed and demotivated.

Of course, there are all sorts of pressures on students which can affect mental health. Coursework can be a huge pressure.  I remember my third year being a blur of dissertation planning, tutorials and endless re-writing and editing.

Help for disabled students under pressure

I know a lot of my fellow students found it really difficult and AbilityNet is particularly aware of the impact this pressure can have ondisabled students. Imagine trying to write and plan a dissertation when you have dyslexia. Or the stress that you'd get from trying to use a keyboard if you have juvenile arthritis  The physical symptoms of a disability may cause pain, but the mental health issues can be just as debilitating.

Woman looking out of windowMany students don't realise that Disabled Students Allowance (DSA) can help with mental health needs. This is a grant (which you don¹t have to repay) that can pay for specialist technology and support to help you address specific conditions  affecting your studies.

Having the right support in place can help manage stress and DSA funding can provide practical support which can help overcome the challenges. This could include technology which can make it easier to work effectively -ie digital recorders to capture lecture notes. This makes them much easier to access afterwards and can help deal with the pressure of keeping track of key information whilst under stress.

Where to find help

Get your entries ready for the Tech4Good Awards

Now in our 6th year, the Tech4Good Awards, sponsored by BT, have highlighted over 130 individuals and organisations across the country, who have all shown innovative and exciting ways of using technology to make the world a better place.

Since 2011 we’ve received over 1,000 entries, from companies large and small. Past winners include Code Club, Raspberry Pi and Stephen Hawking, and we’ve seen 3D-printed bionic limbs, apps that support LGBT teenagers, and an extraordinary use for spaghetti hoops. We are sure that 2016 will bring even more exciting examples of tech for good.

Awards organiser Mark Walker of AbilityNet says:

"AbilityNet's Tech4Good Awards shine a light on the amazing work of people and organisations who are using digital technology to make the world a better place. We want to recognise their hard work and ingenuity, celebrate their success and share their stories to help and inspire others.

Over the past six years we've seen some amazing examples of the good that technology can do - from low cost 3D-printed limbs to talking cashpoints and an app that diagnoses cataracts. Every year our judging panel of tech, charity and business specialists face an incredibly difficult job picking the winners from a host of incredible entries. We're looking forward to seeing another bumper crop of entries again this year."

Entry opens Tuesday 15th March, and is open to any individual and organisation in the UK. We want to hear about what you’re doing, and who you are supporting - or you could nominate someone else. Read last year’s blog to find out what organiser Mark Walker’s top tips for an Award-winning entrycan be found on the Tech4Good Awards website.

RSI Awareness Day: Top tips for avoiding RSI in the workplace

Monday 29 February is International Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) Awareness Day. The charity RSI Action estimates that Repetitive Strain Injury accounts for 3.2 million days lost, or an average of nearly 17 days absence from work for each person with the condition. AbilityNet's experts provide one-to-one assessments to people every day, many of them dealing with RSI. Here they offer their top tips for avoiding RSI in the workplace when using a computer.

How to sit comfortably when using a screen

Ten top tips for avoiding RSI at the computer

  • Rest your feet flat on the floor, or on a footrest
  • If your desk is curved, sit central to the curve
  • Place your screen at eye level and directly in front of you
  • Have your keyboard directly in front of you, with a space at the front of the desk to rest your wrists when you are not typing
  • Position your mouse as close to you as possible so you can use it with your wrist straight, avoiding awkward bending
  • If possible, use a compact keyboard, so the mouse can be brought in closer still
  • Touch type, to spread the load
  • Use predictive text, short cuts and auto-correct features, to reduce keystrokes
  • Slow your mouse down, to reduce muscle tension
  • Try dictation software 

Avoiding RSI when using laptops, tablets and smartphones

The growing number of people working on laptops and tablets from home, on trains, in cafés and cars clearly carries additional risk associated with poor posture.

The main problem with laptops is that the keyboard is attached to the screen, with the poor posture this creates potentially causing neck, back and arm problems. To reduce such risks when working with a laptop for sustained periods it's good practice to:

  • Use a separate keyboard, screen and mouse
  • Place your laptop on a raiser (to bring the screen closer towards eye-level)
  • If using neither an external keyboard or mouse (not recommended for long periods of work), make sure that the laptop is on a stable base and not your lap
  • Take regular short breaks to relieve upper body tension
  • Sit up straight with your back supported.

In addition, you can use use the My Computer My Way resource to learn more about the ways that you can adjust your computer, laptop, tablet and smartphone for more comfortable working.

Supporting employees with RSI

Employers have a legal responsibility to provide Reasonable Adjustments that help avloid RSI and other conditions, but many people aren't clear how what adjustments are required.

Our experts have created a 50 minute webinar full of information, advice and tips for those with RSI and their employers/ those who are supporting them. See this page on dealing with RSI in the workplace. You can also find a wide range of practical tips in our RSI factsheet which can be downloaded for free.

We also recommend that every employee uses Clear Talents On Demand - a free tool developed with ABilityNet that provides a detailed report about adjustmenst that will help employees be more productive when dealing with RSI.

smiling computer

Where to find more help

Need help adapting your equipment at home, work or college?

Call AbilityNet's free Helpline on: 0800 269 545.

Our friendly, knowledgeable staff will discuss any kind of computer problem and do their best to come up with a solution.

Get help at work

Every employer must provide Reasonable Adjustments to accommodate the needs of employees. This could mean support to use the tools we've suggested, or changes to your duties if RSI is affecting your work.

Use Clear Talents On Demand to let your manager know what would help you be more productive. It's free and confidential.

Get help at home

Our network of AbilityNet ITCanHelp volunteers can help people with disabilities deal with computer problems at home, either on the phone or in person.

Raynaud's: Top tips for working with cold fingers

Love your Gloves Awareness Month posterFebruary is statistically the coldest month of the year. It's also Raynaud's Awareness Month. Raynaud's Phenomenon affects up to 10 million people in the UK and sees the small blood vessels in the extremities constrict more readily, which can lead to fingers and toes feeling extremely cold and numb.

The phenomenon can be triggered by an alteration in temperature, emotional changes, stress, hormones or using vibrating tools, according to the Raynaud's and Scleroderma Association.

Cold hands and tingling fingers can make it impossible to use a standard computer keyboard, so as well as making sure a workspace is warm enough what other ways can technology help someone with Raynaud's?

Living with Raynaud's

Ellie, who has a version known as Secondary Raynaud's and Systemic Scleroderma (SSc) along with Ehlers Danlos Type III (unconnected), is learning to manage the condition.

“Since I can remember I’ve always had hands that felt a bit ‘dead’. I went to the doctors because I heard there were possible treatments for Raynaud’s," she says. 

“My employers have been a fantastic support and we have sat together and agreed adjustments to help me in my role - from little things, like ensuring I am seated away from draughts, to bigger things - like agreeing circumstances where I feel I need to work from home, where they provided me with equipment to do so."

Adjusting technology to help with Raynaud's

Mary Steiner, an AbilityNet assessor in the Midlands, feels the important thing is to keep the working environment warm, but there are some other adjustments that can be made to make life easier.

One thing to look at, she says, is using voice recognition software to dictate to the computer, and minimise the need to type or use the mouse. However not everyone will want to do this, or find it practical in their situation, and there are other options.

“I saw a client who worked all day in a call centre and she found that gripping the mouse made things worse because it further reduced the circulation to her fingers.

"She was having to stop working for 10 or 20 minutes each time her fingers went numb until the feeling returned, so we recommended a flatter, larger mouse which didn't require as much grip.

Tailored support for Raynauld's

“Another was a student whose fingers were sore and cracked because of Raynaud's, so I recommended a soft foam pen grip," says Mary.

The assessor says these adjustments won’t stop the symptoms happening, but it’s sometimes about using a "mixture of little things which each help to improve the situation", she explains.

Raynaud's: A quick guide to helpful tools

Voice recognition software can help people who are having difficulty using a keyboardAbilityNet assessors suggest the following could help those with the phenomenon work more easily - 

  • A heater
  • Heated mouse
  • Heated gloves
  • Fingerless gloves
  • Voice recognition software
  • Word prediction software
  • Light / soft touch keyboard
  • Ergonomic pens
  • Foam pen grips

Use My Computer My Way to learn more about the ways that you can adjust your computer, laptop, tablet and smartphone for more comfortable working.

Need help adapting your equipment at home, work or college?

Call AbilityNet's free Helpline on: 0800 269 545.

Our friendly, knowledgeable staff will discuss any kind of computer problem and do their best to come up with a solution.

Get help at work

Every employer must provide Reasonable Adjustments to accommodate the needs of employees. This could mean support to use the tools we've suggested, or changes to your duties when Raynaud's is affecting your work.

Use Clear Talents On Demand to let your manager know what would help you be more productive. It's free and confidential.

Get help at home

Our network of AbilityNet ITCanHelp volunteers can help people with disabilities deal with computer problems at home, either on the phone or in person.

* Ellie's quote has been edited from a longer case study on the Raynaud's and Schleroderma Association website here

Photo: Raynaud's Awareness Month poster by Raynaud's & Scleroderma Association

Top tips for supporting your employees with dyslexia

Dyslexia displayed as floating blocks - image copyright RiK57 Dreamstime.comDiscriminating against your employees with dyslexia has been against the law since the first disability discrimination legislation was introduced over 20 years ago. But it's in the news today as a result of Starbucks employee Meseret Kumulchew winning her disability discrimination case.

Starbucks did not make the workplace adjustments Ms Kumulchew needed in order for her to be able to do her job and now the coffee company may have to pay compensation. The ruling doesn’t set a new legal precedent, but it is an important reminder for all employers to check that you’re doing everything you can to support your employees with dyslexia.

The law says that you MUST make Reasonable Adjustments to ensure that you are not discriminating against people you employ. But what would be a reasonable way to accommodate someone with dyslexia in your workplace?  

Top tips for employees with dyslexia

According to the British Dyslexia Association around 1 in 10 people have dyslexia and require additional support with reading, writing and numbers. Fortunately there are a lot of simple, low-cost solutions that can be used to help your employees with dyslexia:

  • Changing the standard computer settings such as changing the colour background of Word documents to blue or yellow rather than white
  • Using text-to-speech software to have chunks of text read aloud
  • Add your top 50 or 100 most commonly misspelt words into Word’s autocorrect to instantly improve your writing
  • Installing a dyslexia-friendly font such as Dyslexie or Open-Dyslexic
  • Providing extra support with note-taking – a digital recording device
  • Ensuring important documents for meetings are distributed in advance and not just handed out in the meeting

More help from Abilitynet

Find out more about Reasonable Adjustments

Read our guide to Reasonable Adjustments for more information about how employers can meet their legal responsibilities.

Use our free tool to identify Reasonable Adjustments

AbilityNet has helped develop an online tool that can help managers identify the adjustments that will help their employees. Check it out now at www.cleartalentsondemand.com

Find out more about how technology can help people with dyslexia

Download our Dyslexia and Computing factsheet

Using technology for more inclusive recruitment

""Around 90% of jobs nowadays have some sort of technology involved. Your job might involve using a desktop computer or laptop, a telephone, cash register or some kind of handheld device such as a credit card machine. The possibilities, like the array of devices and software, are endless. Technology is a part of working life.

Reasonable adjustments in recruitment

When you find a job, most people expect the technology they need to be provided, with the relevant training, from day one. For disabled people the situation is often different. Employers are required to make reasonable adjustments, which cover specialist software or equipment. Often, it is only after a disabled employee starts working that a workplace assessment is carried out.

Before someone starts work, the recruitment process offers an opportunity to find out what adjustments disabled employees need in order to do the job. It seems quite logical and sensible to ask before someone starts work, so that the right kit can be put in place. What most employers struggle with is how and when to ask the right questions and many avoid asking them altogether for fear of getting it wrong.

A well-being management solution

As a charity that exists to change the lives of disabled people by helping them to use digital technology at work, at home or in education, we wanted to get better at asking that question and ensuring our workforce is diverse and inclusive. At the start of 2014 we started using an online wellbeing management solution, Clear Talents.

It’s a confidential, streamlined and easy to use process for our staff and all candidates applying for our vacancies to disclose any disabilities or needs they may have. Prior to the roll out of Clear Talents, our HR and Line Managers spent significant time encouraging employees to disclose their disability but had minimal success with an employee disclosure rate of less than 5%. Since then there has been a seismic shift in our entire approach to, and success in, diversity and wellbeing management.

This week, I was proud to have presented the key findings from our award-winning work with Clear Talents in front of the Minister for Disabled People, Justin Tomlinson MP at the Recruitment Industry Disability Initiative (RIDI) Awards Showcase event hosted by DWF.

The theme for the 2016 RIDI awards is aptly “collaboration, communication and confidence” – our partnership with Clear Talents has given us the confidence to be able to communicate better with disabled jobseekers and employees.

Everyone has potential

We get lots of calls about lots of different subjects here at AbilityNet.  However I took one last week that I thought might be worth highlighting.  A careers advisor in the south of England had a request from the local employment service regarding a client with severe dyslexia.

To receive government  benefits, you have to apply for a certain number of jobs in a week,  but this client has a real issue. Her literacy is so poor that she would need a lot of help and guidance in filling out forms and writing her CV.  I outlined some possible solutions to the careers advisor

As I was doing this I was suddenly struck with this feeling that the client was just a statistic.  I care about my clients but to some, she is probably just a number on a spreadsheet to tick off or to mark as being moved to another service.

Unless someone sits down with her and shows her how adaptive technology can help her put a CV together or have job adverts spoken out to her, she is going to be at a real disadvantage. If she doesn’t apply for jobs she won’t get benefit. If you don’t get benefits day to day life will become a real struggle for you.

I’m sure most people would agree with the need to apply for jobs  to still get benefit.   However if you  are dyslexic it puts you at a real disadvantage for applying for jobs because you find it difficult with both reading the description of the job role and then putting an application letter together. Without being able to use adaptive technology she might end up working as a cleaner or a waitress, where as she might be able to find an office based job if she could just use some AT to put a letter and CV together.

Dyslexia Action noted that research by KPMG finds that each illiterate pupil, by the age of 37, has cost the taxpayer an additional £44,797 - £ 53,098 when you add up extra costs relating to the education system, unemployment support and the criminal justice system.

However this client might have loads of POTENTIAL if only someone could sit down with her and show her that she can get stuff down on paper. She can organise her thoughts more effectively and like Boyzone star Shane Lynch she can actually use social media effectively.

However a lot of services are swamped with clients so trying to get ongoing 1-2-1 support is probably going to be really difficult, if not impossible.  Trying to support people with cognitive and physical disabilities does take time.

I have physical difficulties myself and had it not been for someone at my school providing me with a very old word processor device which allowed me to show that I had POTENTIAL I probably would have never gone to a comprehensive school, or college or university.   I certainly wouldn’t be working for a national charity such as AbilityNet.

Sometimes it takes a little bit of time and patience to see the potential of someone.

 

How can we help?

AbilityNet provides a range of free services to help disabled people and older people.

  • Call our free Helpline. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff will discuss any kind of computer problem and do their best to come up with a solution. We’re open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm on 0800 269 545.
  • Arrange a home visit. We have a network of AbilityNet ITCanHelp volunteers who can help if you have technical issues with your computer systems. They can come to your home, or help you over the phone.
  • We have a range of factsheets which talk in detail about technology that might help you, which can be downloaded for free. You may find our factsheets about voice recognition and keyboard alternatives useful.
  • My Computer My Way. A free interactive guide to all the accessibility features built into current desktops, laptops, tables and smartphones.
- See more at: https://www.abilitynet.org.uk/blog/surviving-stroke-and-learning-type-ag...

 

How can we help?

AbilityNet provides a range of free services to help disabled people and older people.

  • Call our free Helpline. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff will discuss any kind of computer problem and do their best to come up with a solution. We’re open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm on 0800 269 545.
  • Arrange a home visit. We have a network of AbilityNet ITCanHelp volunteers who can help if you have technical issues with your computer systems. They can come to your home, or help you over the phone.
  • We have a range of factsheets which talk in detail about technology that might help you, which can be downloaded for free. You may find our factsheets about voice recognition and keyboard alternatives useful.
  • My Computer My Way. A free interactive guide to all the accessibility features built into current desktops, laptops, tables and smartphones.
- See more at: https://www.abilitynet.org.uk/blog/surviving-stroke-and-learning-type-ag...

bilityNet provides a range of free services to help disabled people and older people.

  • We have a range of factsheets which talk in detail about technology that might help you, which can be downloaded for free. You may find our factsheets about visual impairment useful.
  • Call our free Helpline. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff will discuss any kind of computer problem and do their best to come up with a solution. We’re open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm on 0800 269 545.
  • Arrange a home visit. We have a network of AbilityNet IT Can Help volunteers who can help if you have technical issues with your computer systems. They can come to your home, or help you over the phone.
  • My Computer My Way. A free interactive guide to all the accessibility features built into current desktops, laptops, tables and smartphones.
- See more at: https://www.abilitynet.org.uk/blog/visual-impairment-and-computing-commo...

How can we help?

AbilityNet provides a range of free services to help disabled people and older people.

  • Call our free Helpline. Our friendly, knowledgeable staff will discuss any kind of computer problem and do their best to come up with a solution. We’re open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm on 0800 269 545.
  • Arrange a home visit. We have a network of AbilityNet ITCanHelp volunteers who can help if you have technical issues with your computer systems. They can come to your home, or help you over the phone.
  • We have a range of factsheets which talk in detail about technology that might help you, which can be downloaded for free. You may find our factsheets about voice recognition and keyboard alternatives useful.
  • My Computer My Way. A free interactive guide to all the accessibility features built into current desktops, laptops, tables and smartphones.
- See more at: https://www.abilitynet.org.uk/blog/surviving-stroke-and-learning-type-ag...