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activePDF PDFAloud™

PDFAloud is an add-in toolbar for Adobe Acrobat® and Adobe Reader® that renders PDF documents, scanned text and web information accessible for speech feedback. Available for both Mac and PC platforms, PDFAloud creates a world of opportunities for users who have traditionally struggled with reading PDF files. Using PDFAloud can help:

 Ensure businesses comply with accessibility legislation by guaranteeing users access to the information they need.

 Improve reading and comprehension capabilities for users with learning disabilities.

 Guarantee access to PDF documents for students and employees with reading or mild visual disabilities.

 Create speech-enabled e-books and documents.

PDFAloud - Making ePaper Accessible

PDFAloud is an add-in toolbar for Adobe® Acrobat® that renders PDF documents, scanned text and web information accessible for speech feedback. Available for both Mac and PC platforms, PDFAloud creates a world of opportunities for many Acrobat and Adobe Reader® users who have traditionally struggled with reading PDF files.

Public and private organizations are under increasing pressure to provide equal and consistent information access to all users. PDFAloud assists organizations in meeting many legal requirements and technology standards, including Section 508 accessibility and IDEA 97. While PDF is often regarded as inaccessible to many forms of assistive technology, the simple PDFAloud plug-in for Adobe Acrobat and Acrobat Reader means dramatic new accessibility for visually-impaired users.

The PDFAloud toolbar:

 installs discreetly within the Adobe Acrobat/Reader toolbar.

 uses high-quality voices to read back selected text.

 can customize voice pitch, speed, volume and pronunciation.

 provides dual-color text highlighting.

 enables greater accessibility to website information, forms and curriculum testing in PDF environments.

The PDFAloud toolbar (see Fig. 1) is added to the Acrobat toolbar options. This simple toolbar has various buttons to activate speech within the PDF as required.

Fig. 1 PDFAloud toolbar

 

Users can elect to have one word spoken at a time or to hear an entire section of selected text. (See Fig. 2)

Fig. 2 PDFAloud toolbar selection options

 

The click-and-speak tool allows the user to point and click the text that is to be spoken. The text is immediately read back with dual-color highlighting. This has been successfully proven to improve reading and comprehension abilities.

 Speak the selection.

 Read the previous selection.

 Pause speech.

 Read the next selection.

 Stop speech.

 

PDFAloud-enabled documents contain a PDFAloud menu (see Fig 3), providing access to settings controls. All key features have keyboard shortcuts.

 

Fig. 3 PDFAloud menu

 

The voice pitch, speed and volume can be varied, and users can choose from a variety of male and female voices. (See Fig. 4)

Fig 4 Speech options

 

Occasionally a word may be mispronounced - this can easily be fixed by opening the Pronunciation Options menu and typing the word into the box as illustrated below. To ensure correct pronunciation, simply type the word phonetically into the second text box and save the changes. Afterwards, every time the word is highlighted it will be spoken correctly. (See Fig. 5)

Fig. 5 Pronunciation Options


activePDF PDFAloud Features
Feature
Included ?
Converts PDF text to speech
Dual-color highlighting synchronized w/ speech
Forward, rewind, pause & stop speech buttons
Adjustable reading speed, pitch and volume
Read by word, sentence, paragraph or entire document
"Click and Speak" tool reads text instantly
"Speak Selection" tool reads highlighted text
Can be customized to automatically speak next page/block of text
Includes a variety of male and female voices
Pronunciation tool to customize the way words are pronounced
Integrates with Adobe Acrobat® 5.0 and Adobe Reader® 5.0 or later
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