[chuck-users] Multiline Braille display

Rich Caloggero rjc at mit.edu
Thu Aug 25 00:29:22 EDT 2011

I think forcing indentation on someone (ala Python) is just wrong. This is 
unfortunate, since python seems like a very powerful language. You can get 
the screen reader to read out indentation (3 spaces, 5 spaces, etc), and I'm 
sure there are many blind folks out there who enjoy coding in Python, but I 
really wish indentation was not part of the language definition -- seems 
kind of like a step backward in language design (Fortran anyone)!

I'm a screen reader user, and find indentation totally unnecessary. The way 
I deal with c-style languages is to mark my end braces with a comment:

while (true) {
// ...
} // while

I also tend to stay away from deeply nested code if I can.

function f(x) {
if (! x) return false;
// more stuff
} // f

This last bit is obviously very contrived, but if you dispatch all tests for 
undesired conditions first and return, then you don't need deeply nested 
conditional blocks. Obviously, nested loops are quite another thing and if 
you need them, you need them.

As for the multiline display -- I've been wanting one of those for as long 
as I've been programming.
I have not tried it, but there is some sort of tactile mouse out there that 
will pop up braille as you move around, but this really doesn't help much. 
To get a real kinesthetic sense of layout, its very helpful to have two 
hands involved. Your brain is adapted for the use of both hands and can map 
this much more easily into sort sort of internal spacial image. I could not 
imagine trying to read a map with one finger. It would be very slow and 
tedious, and would defeat one of the purposes of having braille in the first 
place. Braille, like printed text or graphics, allows you to examine a 
static image. One of the inherent problems with speech, and this one-finger 
braille concept, is that the image is not static; it is essentially moving 
in time and requires you to build up a static image in your mind.  Think of 
how difficult it would be to lood at a page of code through a straw, where 
all you can see is one symbol at a time. This is what its like listening to 
code, or anything really. Reading proes is sort of different in that your 
brain is adapted to this from birth from listening to spoken language, but 
code and other highly symbolic communication like mathmatics is very 
difficult to read via speech, or one-finger braille.

Hopefully, I'll see a full-page braille display before everything goes 3D! 
Ah, one step forward, two steps back -- or maybe its two steps forward, and 
one step back! Depends when you ask...

-- Rich

-----Original Message----- 
From: Robert Poor
Sent: Wednesday, August 24, 2011 11:03 PM
To: ChucK Users Mailing List
Cc: ChucK Users Mailing List
Subject: [chuck-users] Multiline Braille display

I always thought the way to make a  multiline Braille display was with
a fingertip sized "mouse" that would actuate mechanical pins as you
roll over a virtual page. You'd want the pins to have a much higher
resolution than standard Braille so you could simulate smooth motion.

Does anyone make anything like that yet?

Sent from my iPhone

On Aug 24, 2011, at 5:01 PM, tempjayren at gmail.com wrote:

> my thoughts on indentation as regards screen readers, bad idea. unless
> you are using a multiline braille display, then it could work.
> unfortunately, i don't know of such a beast, though a single line
> braille display is expensive in itself, a multiline one would be  worse,
> and probably best used by someone that had no ears as well as eyes,  and
> that would make chuck coding rather silly to my way of thinking.
> On 8/24/2011 10:18 AM, Kassen wrote:
>> chuck doesn't seem to care about how .ck files look, or am i
>>> wrong there?
>> Not at all, no, whatever works for you is fine. Actually part of  the 
>> whole
>> point of ChucK is that it should be there for you, not for the  computer.
>> That said; I would take future usage of the file into account and  try to
>> make things clear for people who may read it in the future (maybe  you in
>> half a year <smile>). I could imagine that some forms of  indentation 
>> would
>> be especially good for working with screen-readers, I wonder  whether any
>> research has been done there.
>> Yours,
>> Kas.
>> _______________________________________________
>> chuck-users mailing list
>> chuck-users at lists.cs.princeton.edu
>> https://lists.cs.princeton.edu/mailman/listinfo/chuck-users
> _______________________________________________
> chuck-users mailing list
> chuck-users at lists.cs.princeton.edu
> https://lists.cs.princeton.edu/mailman/listinfo/chuck-users
chuck-users mailing list
chuck-users at lists.cs.princeton.edu

More information about the chuck-users mailing list