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Archives  News  SwitchXS 1.6: Game Savvy Assistive Technology Released  

Monday, October 18, 2004

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SwitchXS 1.6: Game Savvy Assistive Technology Released
12:19 PM | Michael Phillips | Comment on this story

In a very unique twist, developer AssistiveWare has released SwitchXS 1.6, assistive technology with gamers in mind. SwitchXS is software that allows disabled Mac users to access Mac OS X via software and a switch, rather than a traditional keyboard and mouse.

Here's a clip from the release:

Amsterdam - 18 October 2004 - AssistiveWare today announced the release of SwitchXS(R) 1.6. SwitchXS provides virtually complete access to Mac OS X and all standard Mac applications for people who can only use one or more switches. It offers full mouse and keyboard emulation by means of a so-called scanning mode. With each click on the switch the user selects an action, such as "move the cursor up" or "type B", from a "scanning" menu. SwitchXS is typically used by people who are, for example, quadriplegic due to an accident, or suffering from neuromotor diseases such as Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA) or Cerebral Palsy (CP) with very limited limb movement.

Version 1.6 represents a major update with the following main new features:

- Improved scanning rhythm accuracy and higher maximum scan speed

- Enhanced game compatibility and a new special Games scan panel

- Includes the first public beta of LayoutKitchen(TM), a scan panel editor. With LayoutKitchen the user can edit built-in scan panels and create his/her own scan panels for use with SwitchXS 1.6 and later. It currently allows users to make scan panels with buttons that speak, that type text, that open documents or applications, that generate keyboard shortcuts and much more. LayoutKitchen opens many new doors for switch users.

SwitchXS provides a number of predefined scanning panels that the user can choose to move the cursor, click, and type into all standard Mac applications. It also allows the user to configure scanning speed and cycling, mouse speed, and SmartTransparency(TM), which makes the scanning panel partially or fully transparent when no scan is taking place to enjoy optimum use of screen real-estate. SwitchXS works with any HID compliant USB gamepad, joystick and keyboard, and starting with Mac OS X 10.3 also with any HID compliant USB mouse or trackball. SwitchXS also works with USB switch interfaces emulating any of the above devices.

SwitchXS is currently available in English, French and Japanese but works fine with most other languages. The suggested retail price is US$ 249 or Euro 199 (excl. VAT). Version 1.6 is a free update for current users.

SwitchXS requires Mac OS X 10.2 (Jaguar) or higher. Mac OS X 10.3 (Panther) is recommended.SwitchXS 1.6 is particularly suited for games like Unreal Tournament 2004 and Myst IV. For more information on SwitchXS, including the free demo, saunter on down to the links below.

AssistiveWare, Inc.
SwitchXS 1.6
Digital Extremes
Epic Games
Unreal Tournament 2004
Myst IV Revelation
Buy Unreal Tournament 2004
Buy Myst IV Revelation

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Archives  News  SwitchXS 1.6: Game Savvy Assistive Technology Released