Thoughts on Twitter Clients

    HI all.

 

Most of the time, I post Christian-themed posts on this blog, but I changed the name of it a few months back so that I could post whatever I wanted and it would fit. This is why I have called it “Musings and Happenings of a Blind Christian Woman.” This is one such post that won’t be Christian in nature, but hopefully, will be of interest to others of my friends who are blind.

 

We are talking today about twitter clients that are able to be used by the blind who have screen readers. I have to say that of the 3 main twitter clients being used by blind people for Windows, the only one that is fully accessible with a braille display is Open Tween ( and I imagine the main Tween client would be the same).

 

With my having a hearing loss that is still slight but getting progressively worse as time goes on, as it is hereditary in nature, I am trying to accustom myself to using braille more and more. I want to become more dependent on braille and less dependent on speech. To that end, I tried the twitter clients this weekend and turned speech off completely.

 

I have a Focus 14 braille display, so this is a factor as well.

 

In TW Blue, I was only able to see the first 14 characters of a tweet. I could pan right until I was totally blue in the face, and it would sit there and mot move. It was like it was locked in place. This was in the GUI interface. No global interface seems to work at all with braille. So unless I am missing something with TW Blue, there is no way to view a full tweet in braille. I imagine you might be able to view each one if you view the full tweet. Admittedly, I did not try this, but who wants to do that? You’d never get through tweets that way! It would take an inordinant amount of time. No thank you!

 

I also will not use the GUI interface in Chicken Nugget. It is just way too sluggish. The global interface won’t even acknowledge braille at all as you go through tweets. Now, I could be missing something in either client, which I admit, but these are my findings when trying them just to see if it could be done. As I said, I won’t use the GUI interface of Chicken Nugget. It is just way too sluggish when going through tweets.

 

I am also a bit upset with Chicken Nugget for another reason. The bug where one cannot get one’s previous tweets when first launching the client has not been fixed or even acknowledged. Multiple people have it, but it supposedly, according to the developer, does not exist.

 

Admittedly, you can choose not to use filters, and then you can get your tweets when the client loads. Also, admittedly, I have not played with filters in Open Tween to see if you can do the same level of filtering as you can in Chicken Nugget; however, I guess it bugs me that I have paid good money for a client and can’t use all the features I paid for. If I don’t use filtering in Open Tween, either because it’s not available (which I haven’t researched yet fuly) or because I just have not gotten around to playing with it yet, I have not paid for the product; it was offered free of charge, so I have no room to complain. If someone is giving something away for free, it is their right to choose what features they are willing to give away, and you can accept those or go elsewhere; however, with a client that you have paid good money for, and a client which advertises a feature that is purported to be (and indeed is) very powerful, if you can’t use said feature or have to choose between using said feature or getting the last 100 or 200 tweets that have been posted from the time you launched the client, that, to me, is just an unacceptable choice. Also, to have a GUI interface that is much more sluggish than the GUI interface of any other twitter client being used by blind people is, to me, another drawback. So even if braille did work well in that interface, it wouldn’t be worth using.

 

I will close here with the statement that to me, it is quite ironic, interesting, funny, or whatever term you want to use, that the most accessible client for a blind person to use with a braille display, at least with my Focus display, is a client which is not specifically developed with accessibility in mind and is, in fact, a mainstream twitter client. I will make the one statement that is one which endears many to any technology. Even if there is something I am missing that I could do to get braille working in either blobal interface of Chicken Nugget or TW blue, or in the GUI interface of TW Blue, Open Tween just works out of the box with braille. That, to me, says a lot. When a piece of software just works without having to do anything extra to get that to happen, that is, to me, a big advantage, especially if someone isn’t as computer savvy and just wants to open up a program and have it work. I consider myself fairly computer savvy, but even I appreciate being able to do this.

 

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Grumbling about our Mission Field

I read something on twitter today that really made me think, and I have also seen it in various Scriptures I have read today. The question was: Am I grumbling about my mission field? I have to say the answer to that is, “Yes.” There are definite times that I think, oh man! Why do I have to deal with this person? Yet God has put them there for a reason. Of course, dealing with customers on a daily basis, you talk to people at different levels. Paul said in Romans 1 verse 14 that he had a burden for the civilized and the uncivilized, and this one was what really got me: for the educated and uneducated alike. Ouch! How many times do we, do I, put others down, think them less intelligent than I am? But they are children of God too, or potential children of God if they haven’t accepted Christ. And I need to love them, not put them down. God cares about them just as he cares about me. He came to forgive their sins, just as He came to forgive mine! Also, Paul spent so much time praying for his fellow brothers and sisters! Do I do this? He did it day and night. He had such compassion! Lord, develop in me such compassion for others and for my fellow brothers and sisters in You! Only by obeying God can we have full, joyful lives. And these things are major parts of obedience!

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Some thoughts

First of all, I ernt to wish my readers a very merry Christmas! I hope to be posting more frequently, but in case I don’t, there it is. May God richly bless you this season and show you the love of His son. May you truly grasp the reason we celebrate Christmas!
My life has felt so out of control lately. My marriage has not been in the best shape, but it’s getting better. I am so afraid, though, that I am going to do something to mess up the fragile peace we are having right now. But this is a lie from the enemy, because honestly, I am not the one making it better. It’s only through God. Then, I was quite angry this morning. I have a pastor or counselor I have been talking to, who has helped me tremendously. He is blind, like I am. His methods can be a bit unconventional, but I love him dearly! Recently, he has been diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. He may not have long. He told me there will be other shepherds. I don’t want another shepherd! I want him! No, I am not giving up on the fact that God could totally heal him, but part of me feels like I need to prepare for the eventuality that he won’t be with us. 
Recently, I signed up for a program that is part of the church I attend, Church Online, part of Life Church http://live.life.church

I thought this program might be one where I would be matched up with maybe another woman to have acc_tabibity. I heard from them yesterday, or should I say him. It is a pastorstpsychologist who does one-on-one counseling or has a group you can join. I wondered if God was actually giving me another counselor. I told him a bit about my situation and noticed that English may not be his first language. Plus, will he get the blindness? This is scary! I rebel! I don’t want this guy! I want Tony! Why did this have to happen? I rail against it! I hate change!
Then, I finish reading a book with my husband this morning. It is the latest Debbie Macomber Christmas book, “The 12 Days of Christmas.” It is about an experiment where they try killing people with kindness. What does one thing have to do with the other? That is the key! I need to reach beyond myself, to kill others with kindness! Because of this prospect, I feel joy today! I may fail, but for God’s sake, and for my own, I’m sure going to try!

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Dwelling on our Failures

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Complaints and Love for Enemies

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Thank You, Lord

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What I  Want

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