Reading and writing to the Mac

macOS and Mac Apps

Before you begin, I need to apologize for the shortcomings in my English. I am brazilian and use a Mac since 2011, when the Lion came, with voices in Portuguese. I love the Mac, the control I have on it, the stability, the predictability, accessibility, and how responsive the VoiceOver in all situations.

All already know that the audio programs tend to be very accessible on the Mac, so what I'd like to address here is of another type of programs, programs to read and write, of which the Mac is very well served. There is in fact no for Windows the amount and the quality of programs for writing that there is on the Mac. There is absolutely nothing like the Ulysses, for example, in terms of accessibility and quality. But there are not only Ulysses for those who want to write on the Mac, we have the Mac Journal, Day One, By Word, Pages and many others.

I study law and the Ulysses is the perfect app for me, I just love it. But, on the other hand, there is a huge gap in the reading programs. There is no program that comes close to, for example, the QRead for Windows, in terms of accessibility. What we have is the Ibooks from Apple, with accessibility, but very little practical use with VoiceOver, the Read4me, which opens epub, Itext Express, with several small limitations, the Adob Digital Edition, which does not allow to read the text right, and the Speech Center, with problems of stability and navigation by index. That is, we do not have, since I use a Mac, no complete solution and reliable to view the epub with the VoiceOver.

Fortunately on the Iphone things are different, but the tract here of Mac, just. And I'm quite sad, because this reality forces me to switch all the time between Windows and the Mac. Windows 10 has made significant advances in accessibility, but it is little efficient to use a system to read and another to write and do other things, so that I engaged in the search for a good program to view on your Mac or a good writing program, with support for Markdown for Windows.

To write on the Windows, I found WriteMonkey, an excellent program, and with accessibility relatively acceptable in the last stable version, which unfortunately is not developed any more. The development version, still in beta, is not accessible. My tests were done using the latest version of NVDA in Windows 10.

Already on Mac, it seems that the options that we have at the moment are those already mentioned, which leads me to a question: will be something tremendously difficult to create a small reader epub for Mac that is accessible to VoiceOver? With a simple interface, could be minimalist, with only the text area, and option to browse through the contents, and use bookmarks. A program so I would keep happy on the Mac for the entire life. Taking the Ulysses to produce my texts, and that reader to consult the legislation and the doctrine, it could even be more productive in my profession of lawyer.

The way that things are presented today, I wonder if it wouldn't be worth the effort to do a type of crowd funding to develop a reader epub accessible for Mac. We have several developers much good in the community that believe that they could create a program with these characteristics. What do you think about this? I would like to know the opinion of people that need a program to read on Mac.

As for me, I am afraid that I will not be able to wait 8 more years to be able to read an epub on my Mac. In spite of my, I will have to go back to Windows, which makes me sad, because I love the Mac.



Submitted by Erion on Friday, July 13, 2018

Check out Book Reader, it is very minimalistic but accessible, and it works well with VoiceOver. It is available on the AppStore, and you can download a trial version from its website.

Regarding Ulysses, there is an application called Bear, which does subscription right. Currently, it lacks some features that Ulysses has, and they are working on improving accessibility. I highly recommend it, being a Ulysses user for a few years myself.

Hope this helps!

Submitted by Halison Junior Lunardi on Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Thank you very much for the suggestions. I really liked the Bear, who will accompany me now for quick notes, things that would take time deciding which group of the Ulysses could write down. I found a small flaw in accessibility with VoiceOver, on the part of the insertion of tags. Apart from that the program is great.

The Book Reader is also great. I don't see the shortcut keys to change pages or chapters, and also I have not been able to change yet. But I'm well pleased with the two acquisitions.