A plea for accessibility features

When it comes to consuming media the iPad 2 stands head and shoulders above all the other tablets at the diner counter.

Yeah I’m legally blind. Yeah I ride around on a Segway, wanna make something of it? Besides when you roll down the sidewalk on a Segway people get out of the way because you’re on a Segway and of course you’re going to run them down. If only they knew how fuzzily I can see them they’d move faster. 🙂

So I know a thing or two about accessibility.

What I know about tablets is that Apple has it figured out and no one else has even tried.

On the iPad (and iPhones and iPod Touch) you can enable accessibility mode. This turns on a set of three finger gestures. (no, not a Vulcan nerve pinch)

If you tap on the screen with three fingers the screen zooms to make it easier to read. If you drag the screen around with three fingers you can see other parts of the screen.

When zoomed you can interact with the screen using the other “normal” gestures such as using a single finger to press on an screen button.

This zooming works anywhere and everywhere. Period. Well, except the boot screen, so if your iPad stops booting you’re hosed but other than that once the UI is up it’s available, even on the lock screen. So important tip: don’t hose your iPad so it won’t boot.

The Dirty Pad is the Dirty Pad: it laughs at me when I can’t read something. As with Dirty Harry, the Dirty Pad is named Dirty for many reasons…

HP my plea to you is that while us legally blind folks are a minority eventually _everyone’s_ eye sight gets worse. The Apple screen zoom is useful for older users not just us blind youngsters.

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