Tips for navigating the SOMA conference platform with JAWS
By Jack Mitchell
- Throughout this document, "top" and "bottom" refer to the order items are read on the screen by the screen reader, and not to where they physically are on the page.
- Buttons to go to different sections of the "conference" are at the "top" of the page. Buttons to do something in the session / booth / lounge table you're in are at the "bottom" of the screen
- All buttons appear to be correctly marked as such, so the B quick key is quite useful.
Main menu of "places" is a series of buttons at the top of the page. Press CTRL-HOME, and then tap B to navigate through the options.
This is where presentations / sessions will be.
Most controls can be accessed by navigating by button using the B quick key.
- DISCUSSION (chat) -- When you open the discuss / chat section, immediately press H to jump to the "discussions" heading and then arrow down through the conversation or press E to jump directly to the edit box and type a message.
- CLOSING DISCUSSION: If you open the discussion, the button to close it is marked "unlabeled zero button" and is located at the very bottom of the page.
You can get to it quickly by pressing CTRL-END and then SHIFT-B to locate the last button on the screen.
- LIST OF PRESENTERS: You can access a list of presenters by using the L quick key. Graphics for the person's image are not labeled but names read correctly.
Eeryone who has visited the platform for this event is listed in the lobby. You can leave them a message, and check here for messages to you. We are still learning how this works, will update this section later.
There is a heading for the main title of the page "Lounge" (you will also hear it read invite button, troubleshoot button and menu collapsed).
To go to a table, go to the Lounge heading and then down arrow through the list of tables.
For each table, you will hear the table number, a list of the people at the table (there can be as many as 4 people), and links to "watch" (see and listen to people talking at the table, without their being aware you are watching) or grab a seat (join them, if there is a seat empty -- you will be visible to them unless you turn off your camera).
If the people sitting at the table have pressed the "privacy" button, the table will be locked and there is no link to "watch" or "grab a seat."
If you are looking for a particular table, you can use JAWS find to search for that table number, and then down arrow through the people at the table to the "grab seat" link.
These are the trickiest right now, we have submitted suggestions to the platform designers and hopefully it will be improved before the conference.
When you go into a booth you go into the "lobby" (waiting room) of the booth. There may be handouts or brochures available there.
When you are invited to go into the booth itself, you will hear a tone (sounds like the alert tone on an airplane when they turn off the fasten seat belts sign, but just a single tone).
To accept the invitation, press CTRL-HOME to go to the top of the screen, and then tap H a few times (it will read headings that are not actually visible on the screen) to get to the "incoming invitation to join" and then down arrow to accept and press enter.
Once you are inside the booth, you will be visible, as will the vendor and other guests.