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RE: Blind software engineers, specifically UML

Hi, Daniel,

I am not familiar with tikzpicture.  However, yes, I've found that they do
look as I imagine them for the most part.  I've been able to trace them with
my finger a couple of times since my laser printer makes it so you can feel
what was printed somewhat.  I can just barely make out the ovals and squares
and such.  I have also asked my students and they described them as I
envisioned them for the most part and this is without them having prior
knowledge of what I intended to create. 

I'd give it about an 85% reliability for the first iteration.  With feedback
I can get to about 95% of what I intended to show.  Good enough for my
purposes.  And, I might add, I'm very much in the novice camp when it comes
to Graphviz.  I'm sure added proficiency would lead to increased accuracy of


-----Original Message-----
From: Daniel Dalton [mailto:d.dalton@iinet.net.au] 
Sent: Tuesday, July 16, 2013 2:29 AM
To: Alex Midence
Cc: 'emacspeak'
Subject: Re: Blind software engineers, specifically UML

Thanks, I'll definitely check it out! 

Do you find it's pretty reliable for you in the sense that you code up
something and it looks how you imagine it? 
Is it better than say tikzpicture in LaTeX?


On Mon, Jul 15, 2013 at 10:30:11AM -0500, Alex Midence wrote:
> I don't know if anyone's covered this yet but, learn Graphviz.  It's 
> like LateX but with diagrams instead of page layouts.  I use it in my 
> training classes to illustrate things with flow charts and hierarchy 
> charts.  I know that there are packages in Linux that autogenerate UML 
> diagrams of your source code using Graphviz.  There's no reason why 
> someone can't learn it and create these by hand.  The syntax isn't too 
> hard.  I don't think there's an emacspeak-enabled mode for it like 
> Auctex and LateX but you can still use many of its features with the files
since the syntax is kind of like c/c++.
> Regards,
> Alex M
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Daniel Dalton [mailto:d.dalton@iinet.net.au]
> Sent: Sunday, July 14, 2013 9:57 PM
> To: emacspeak
> Subject: Blind software engineers, specifically UML
> Hi everyone,
> Firstly apologies if this is slightly OT - feel free to respond off 
> list if you think that's better, but I know there are a lot of very 
> knowledgeable people on here so thought it was a good starting point.
> At University I'm studying computer science. I'm looking to take a 
> software engineering subject called "Introduction to software
> The problem: UML diagrams are heavily used throughout this subject 
> especially for assessment purposes. Specifically, UML class diagrams 
> and UML state active and sequence diagrams. We'll need to both read 
> and create these diagrams. I also believe we may need to work in small 
> groups with fellow students (who obviously aren't vision impaired). 
> Apparently the UML is the language of the subject and it's not really 
> avoidable. So does anyone have any ideas about how to handle this sort 
> of thing? I'd be interested to hear what other blind software engineers
may do to get around these problems.
> Finally, just a bit of a general sort of question. I'm currently 
> studying bachelor of computer science, but have considered changing 
> into bachelor of software engineering. I've been told software 
> engineering is much more visual - with more of this UML stuff coming 
> up. Has anyone else taken a modern software engineering degree opposed 
> to computer science - and how did you find it?
> Thanks for any advice! 
> Best regards,
> Daniel
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