Hello everybody

Most of the day today, and all the coming weekend, I have my client’s 
BrailleSense Polaris here to play with. She’s gone on holiday so she said it 
would be good for me to be able to play more with the device so that I could 
show her when she returns next week.

Anyway, I wanted to set the records strait, based on my first impressions when 
I played with it a couple of weeks ago.

Firstly, and probably the most important aspect which, I freely admit, I 
overlooked when I briefly evaluated the machine last time. There is, in fact, 
contrary to my primary beliefs, a touch strip, rather than a touch screen, on 
this device. It’s located just above the cursor routing buttons which is why I 
never spotted it before. Be that as it may, this touch strip supports flick, 
swipe and tap gestures, just the same as a traditional touch screen does, but 
in a narrower area. And yes, I freely admit, as I stated earlier, that I got 
this one quite wrong. Had I noticed the presence of the touch strip earlier, my 
initial evaluations would have been very very different indeed.

As I say, the Touch Strip allows you to use all of the usual gestures, so that 
you can navigate menus, lists, dialogues, dropdown boxes and other interactive 
elements just as you would if you were using a touch screen. Indeed, this 
approach can, in some cases, actually bring advantages over the touch screen. 
For a start, you always have your physical keyboard there, so that in the event 
that you encounter an event whereby you need to type data into a field, you 
don’t have to worry about virtual keyboards, as your physical keyboard is 
always right there for you to use. And also, on the machine I have here, you 
have 4 function keys, just as you do on the BrailleSense U2. But on top of 
that, you also have a Control key, and an Alt key located just to the left of 
the space bar. They can be used as modifier keys in some situations.

This, needless to say, totally changes my perspective of the device. Given the 
fact that it directly also supports embossing functions with major embossers, I 
am going to do my utmost to have a Polaris in my business environment. It 
could, I am sure, save hours of work.

So, anyway, my profound apologies for inadvertently providing the group 
inaccurate information. I assure you this error was totally innocent, I have no 
axe to grind.


My compliments and kindest regards
Gordon Smith:
Accessibility & Information Technology Support Specialist..

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