Web accessibility has been quite an issue for some time. Enter TechDis Toolbar. TechDis Toolbar provides a number of important web accessibility tools when browsing the Internet. It adds much needed features to almost every website out there, making it easier to access and interpret content.
Although the name mentions “toolbar”, there are a number of ways in which you can install TechDis Toolbar, which is actually part of the reason why TechDis is very useful. If you own a site, you can add the toolbar to your site so that every user can access and make use of TechDis Toolbar’s features. On the other hand if you want to install TechDis toolbar on your computer, you have even more options to choose from. You can install it via an installer, as a user script or as a bookmarklet. Let’s take a brief look at them all.
The installer is available here. This would give you the full blown version of the toolbar and is available for Windows only. If you are on another platform or just want to try things out, you can use the lite version of the toolbar. The lite version is available as a userscript or a bookmarklet. For userscript installation it is best that you visit this page and then follow the instructions for the particular browser that you use.
Those interested in the toolbar can simply drag this link onto your bookmarks bar and click it whenever you need TechDis Toolbar on a site.
Let’s now have a closer look at the features TechDis Toolbar has to offer.
First and foremost you can increase or decrease text size on just about any webpage. Such a simple feature that one expects on every site, but it’s seldom included. Note that this is different from the standard zoom-in, zoom out feature on most browsers, which tends to magnify everything on the page making images look blurry and pages go out of shape. Here though, you are only playing with the size of text on the web page. You can also change the font of the webpage if you so please.
Not only can TechDis Toolbar make the text more legible, it can also read it out to you. Select a part of the text and then click on the Text to Speech button. You can tell TechDis Toolbar to read out only the selected portion or the entire webpage. Simply awesome, imagine having that for every page on the web.
The page dictionary is another feature done well in the toolbar. Dictionaries are nothing new on the web, however TechDis Toolbar implements the feature very well. Like a number of browser dictionary extensions all you do is select a word and then hit the dictionary button on the toolbar. TechDis Toolbar will then go and fetch the dictionary entry for that particular word and display it as a popup dialog.
In addition, TechDis Toolbar can also pull out references from a webpage and also allow you to change the style of the toolbar and the webpage. There a number of pre-configured styles that you can use to quickly switch back and forth. I for one use the white or yellow on black style frequently when reading in the dark!
TechDis Toolbar is a wonderful addition to your browsing experience. The lite version, available as a bookmarklet, is an ideal addition to any web browser. You can quickly turn the toolbar on and off and use all of its feature anytime you need them on any site you want them on.
Do you know of any other web accessibility apps that makes it easier for people to access the web like this? If so, let us know in the comments.
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