Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features


 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


 

Hi,

IMPORTANT: the add-on is distributed as a skeleton (no features, no concrete code, etc.). This is intentional – rather than me taking charge of adding features, this is meant to foster collaboration with other authors and users so folks can bring in their expertise.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Joseph Lee via groups.io
Sent: Sunday, January 9, 2022 7:37 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


Cyrille
 

Hello Joseph

 

Let me share my thoughts and questions regarding this project:

 

  1. What do you plan regarding Outlook? Integrations of Outlook Extended feature? Or appModule in Office Desk allowing to use code of Outlook Extended and future code of Office Desk simultaneously?

In any case, Outlook Extended’s code is open source and thus, can be re-used if needed per GPL license. As a co-author and the maintainer of this add-on, I agree with this matter of fact.

  1. You have taken into consideration Outlook Extended which is part of the NVDA add-on community website. However, there may be other office add-on in the wild take into account. At least wordAccessEnhancement that can be found on nvda-addons.org
  2. You encourage not to use Office 2013 (or earlier) to test.

If the goal is to have feature that should eventually integrate NVDA core, I would say that all Office versions supported by NVDA should be tested. I do not think that there is a clear indication from NVAccess of which version of Office is still supported and which is not. But it seems that OFfice 2007 is still considered supported. And do not forget that a product not supported by Microsoft could still be supported by NVDA/NVAccess during a few years (e.g. Windows 7).

  1. Due to the number of supported versions of Office, the constant evolution of Office 365 and the difficulty for one developer to have access to each of the supported version, I think that it is a good idea to have an add-on to pre-test the features widely before integrating them in NVDA’s core.

 

Regarding the choice of Outlook Extended’s features:

Most of Outlook Extended’s code is code that I do not consider robust enough to belong to the core; that’s why I have not pushed for their integration in to NVDA’s core. Here are the details:

  • Alt+digit shortcuts to read header fields of messages, meetings, etc.: the fields are identified thanks to control IDs, these control IDs may have changed from one version to another. Thus I prefer keeping this feature in the add-on to be able to fix potential future issue without being forced to follow NVDA.
  • Commands to report a part of the screen, move the focus to it or copy it (information bar, attachments, message body). NVDA usually does not include such custom scripts and prefers focus (tab) or object navigation. If you want to advocate for inclusion in NVDA’s core, feel free to do so however.
  • Vocalize mark as read/unread shortcuts. Such a feedback would have its place in NVDA. However, the way it is developed is not robust for now: object model based and confusion between selection and focused item in the message list.
  • Table navigation in the address book: vertical navigation is not implemented.

 

At last, should Outlook Extended’s code be part of Office Desk, I may contribute to this new add-on, provided that you ensure that you find a maintainer after you to manage this bigger add-on.

 

Cheers,

 

Cyrille

 

 

De : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> De la part de Joseph Lee
Envoyé : lundi 10 janvier 2022 04:37
À : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Objet : [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


 

Hi,

I knew there was a Word add-on and have been looking for it for several hours.

As for integrating Outlook Extended, I will leave it up to you. In case you decide that Office Desk will carry Outlook Extended, could you serve as Outlook expert in the add-on? The same offer applies to folks who have developed app modules for other Microsoft Office applications, including Word add-on.

As for supporting older Office releases, I generally follow Microsoft documentation. Note that from Office 2016 onwards, major version is set to 16.0 (for this reason, when someone raises an issue about Microsoft 365, I look at the build number after 16.0).

As for submitting parts of the add-on project as NVDA pull requests, I would leave it up to app experts (users and devs) to decide.

As for my role with the add-on project: I hope to provide vision for the project, set up the development and collaboration infrastructure, contribute things here and there, then pass on the project leadership to others. My contribution will consist of mostly linting and type annotations, fixing the annoying format command announcements in Word (caused by UIA notification event), and incorporating add-on template and other changes. I do have a really old version of Microsoft Access app module I have worked on briefly in 2014, but testing shows that a completely new app module is needed.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Cyrille via groups.io
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 2:26 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hello Joseph

 

Let me share my thoughts and questions regarding this project:

 

  1. What do you plan regarding Outlook? Integrations of Outlook Extended feature? Or appModule in Office Desk allowing to use code of Outlook Extended and future code of Office Desk simultaneously?

In any case, Outlook Extended’s code is open source and thus, can be re-used if needed per GPL license. As a co-author and the maintainer of this add-on, I agree with this matter of fact.

  1. You have taken into consideration Outlook Extended which is part of the NVDA add-on community website. However, there may be other office add-on in the wild take into account. At least wordAccessEnhancement that can be found on nvda-addons.org
  2. You encourage not to use Office 2013 (or earlier) to test.

If the goal is to have feature that should eventually integrate NVDA core, I would say that all Office versions supported by NVDA should be tested. I do not think that there is a clear indication from NVAccess of which version of Office is still supported and which is not. But it seems that OFfice 2007 is still considered supported. And do not forget that a product not supported by Microsoft could still be supported by NVDA/NVAccess during a few years (e.g. Windows 7).

  1. Due to the number of supported versions of Office, the constant evolution of Office 365 and the difficulty for one developer to have access to each of the supported version, I think that it is a good idea to have an add-on to pre-test the features widely before integrating them in NVDA’s core.

 

Regarding the choice of Outlook Extended’s features:

Most of Outlook Extended’s code is code that I do not consider robust enough to belong to the core; that’s why I have not pushed for their integration in to NVDA’s core. Here are the details:

  • Alt+digit shortcuts to read header fields of messages, meetings, etc.: the fields are identified thanks to control IDs, these control IDs may have changed from one version to another. Thus I prefer keeping this feature in the add-on to be able to fix potential future issue without being forced to follow NVDA.
  • Commands to report a part of the screen, move the focus to it or copy it (information bar, attachments, message body). NVDA usually does not include such custom scripts and prefers focus (tab) or object navigation. If you want to advocate for inclusion in NVDA’s core, feel free to do so however.
  • Vocalize mark as read/unread shortcuts. Such a feedback would have its place in NVDA. However, the way it is developed is not robust for now: object model based and confusion between selection and focused item in the message list.
  • Table navigation in the address book: vertical navigation is not implemented.

 

At last, should Outlook Extended’s code be part of Office Desk, I may contribute to this new add-on, provided that you ensure that you find a maintainer after you to manage this bigger add-on.

 

Cheers,

 

Cyrille

 

 

De : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> De la part de Joseph Lee
Envoyé : lundi 10 janvier 2022 04:37
À : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Objet : [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


Dennis L
 

One thing that needs improved is if you turn off automatic reading NVDA still reads the first part of a message.  Other screen readers such as Jaws allow this behavior to be customized so should NVDA.  In other words if I turn off automatic  read it shouldn’t start reading the message.

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Joseph Lee
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 7:13 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi,

I knew there was a Word add-on and have been looking for it for several hours.

As for integrating Outlook Extended, I will leave it up to you. In case you decide that Office Desk will carry Outlook Extended, could you serve as Outlook expert in the add-on? The same offer applies to folks who have developed app modules for other Microsoft Office applications, including Word add-on.

As for supporting older Office releases, I generally follow Microsoft documentation. Note that from Office 2016 onwards, major version is set to 16.0 (for this reason, when someone raises an issue about Microsoft 365, I look at the build number after 16.0).

As for submitting parts of the add-on project as NVDA pull requests, I would leave it up to app experts (users and devs) to decide.

As for my role with the add-on project: I hope to provide vision for the project, set up the development and collaboration infrastructure, contribute things here and there, then pass on the project leadership to others. My contribution will consist of mostly linting and type annotations, fixing the annoying format command announcements in Word (caused by UIA notification event), and incorporating add-on template and other changes. I do have a really old version of Microsoft Access app module I have worked on briefly in 2014, but testing shows that a completely new app module is needed.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Cyrille via groups.io
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 2:26 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hello Joseph

 

Let me share my thoughts and questions regarding this project:

 

  1. What do you plan regarding Outlook? Integrations of Outlook Extended feature? Or appModule in Office Desk allowing to use code of Outlook Extended and future code of Office Desk simultaneously?

In any case, Outlook Extended’s code is open source and thus, can be re-used if needed per GPL license. As a co-author and the maintainer of this add-on, I agree with this matter of fact.

  1. You have taken into consideration Outlook Extended which is part of the NVDA add-on community website. However, there may be other office add-on in the wild take into account. At least wordAccessEnhancement that can be found on nvda-addons.org
  2. You encourage not to use Office 2013 (or earlier) to test.

If the goal is to have feature that should eventually integrate NVDA core, I would say that all Office versions supported by NVDA should be tested. I do not think that there is a clear indication from NVAccess of which version of Office is still supported and which is not. But it seems that OFfice 2007 is still considered supported. And do not forget that a product not supported by Microsoft could still be supported by NVDA/NVAccess during a few years (e.g. Windows 7).

  1. Due to the number of supported versions of Office, the constant evolution of Office 365 and the difficulty for one developer to have access to each of the supported version, I think that it is a good idea to have an add-on to pre-test the features widely before integrating them in NVDA’s core.

 

Regarding the choice of Outlook Extended’s features:

Most of Outlook Extended’s code is code that I do not consider robust enough to belong to the core; that’s why I have not pushed for their integration in to NVDA’s core. Here are the details:

  • Alt+digit shortcuts to read header fields of messages, meetings, etc.: the fields are identified thanks to control IDs, these control IDs may have changed from one version to another. Thus I prefer keeping this feature in the add-on to be able to fix potential future issue without being forced to follow NVDA.
  • Commands to report a part of the screen, move the focus to it or copy it (information bar, attachments, message body). NVDA usually does not include such custom scripts and prefers focus (tab) or object navigation. If you want to advocate for inclusion in NVDA’s core, feel free to do so however.
  • Vocalize mark as read/unread shortcuts. Such a feedback would have its place in NVDA. However, the way it is developed is not robust for now: object model based and confusion between selection and focused item in the message list.
  • Table navigation in the address book: vertical navigation is not implemented.

 

At last, should Outlook Extended’s code be part of Office Desk, I may contribute to this new add-on, provided that you ensure that you find a maintainer after you to manage this bigger add-on.

 

Cheers,

 

Cyrille

 

 

De : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> De la part de Joseph Lee
Envoyé : lundi 10 janvier 2022 04:37
À : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Objet : [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


 

Hi,

Part of this has to do with reading caret position when the message content receives focus. As this is specific to Outlook, I think it would be best to ask Cyrille about this.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dennis L
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 4:46 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

One thing that needs improved is if you turn off automatic reading NVDA still reads the first part of a message.  Other screen readers such as Jaws allow this behavior to be customized so should NVDA.  In other words if I turn off automatic  read it shouldn’t start reading the message.

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Joseph Lee
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 7:13 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi,

I knew there was a Word add-on and have been looking for it for several hours.

As for integrating Outlook Extended, I will leave it up to you. In case you decide that Office Desk will carry Outlook Extended, could you serve as Outlook expert in the add-on? The same offer applies to folks who have developed app modules for other Microsoft Office applications, including Word add-on.

As for supporting older Office releases, I generally follow Microsoft documentation. Note that from Office 2016 onwards, major version is set to 16.0 (for this reason, when someone raises an issue about Microsoft 365, I look at the build number after 16.0).

As for submitting parts of the add-on project as NVDA pull requests, I would leave it up to app experts (users and devs) to decide.

As for my role with the add-on project: I hope to provide vision for the project, set up the development and collaboration infrastructure, contribute things here and there, then pass on the project leadership to others. My contribution will consist of mostly linting and type annotations, fixing the annoying format command announcements in Word (caused by UIA notification event), and incorporating add-on template and other changes. I do have a really old version of Microsoft Access app module I have worked on briefly in 2014, but testing shows that a completely new app module is needed.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Cyrille via groups.io
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 2:26 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hello Joseph

 

Let me share my thoughts and questions regarding this project:

 

  1. What do you plan regarding Outlook? Integrations of Outlook Extended feature? Or appModule in Office Desk allowing to use code of Outlook Extended and future code of Office Desk simultaneously?

In any case, Outlook Extended’s code is open source and thus, can be re-used if needed per GPL license. As a co-author and the maintainer of this add-on, I agree with this matter of fact.

  1. You have taken into consideration Outlook Extended which is part of the NVDA add-on community website. However, there may be other office add-on in the wild take into account. At least wordAccessEnhancement that can be found on nvda-addons.org
  2. You encourage not to use Office 2013 (or earlier) to test.

If the goal is to have feature that should eventually integrate NVDA core, I would say that all Office versions supported by NVDA should be tested. I do not think that there is a clear indication from NVAccess of which version of Office is still supported and which is not. But it seems that OFfice 2007 is still considered supported. And do not forget that a product not supported by Microsoft could still be supported by NVDA/NVAccess during a few years (e.g. Windows 7).

  1. Due to the number of supported versions of Office, the constant evolution of Office 365 and the difficulty for one developer to have access to each of the supported version, I think that it is a good idea to have an add-on to pre-test the features widely before integrating them in NVDA’s core.

 

Regarding the choice of Outlook Extended’s features:

Most of Outlook Extended’s code is code that I do not consider robust enough to belong to the core; that’s why I have not pushed for their integration in to NVDA’s core. Here are the details:

  • Alt+digit shortcuts to read header fields of messages, meetings, etc.: the fields are identified thanks to control IDs, these control IDs may have changed from one version to another. Thus I prefer keeping this feature in the add-on to be able to fix potential future issue without being forced to follow NVDA.
  • Commands to report a part of the screen, move the focus to it or copy it (information bar, attachments, message body). NVDA usually does not include such custom scripts and prefers focus (tab) or object navigation. If you want to advocate for inclusion in NVDA’s core, feel free to do so however.
  • Vocalize mark as read/unread shortcuts. Such a feedback would have its place in NVDA. However, the way it is developed is not robust for now: object model based and confusion between selection and focused item in the message list.
  • Table navigation in the address book: vertical navigation is not implemented.

 

At last, should Outlook Extended’s code be part of Office Desk, I may contribute to this new add-on, provided that you ensure that you find a maintainer after you to manage this bigger add-on.

 

Cheers,

 

Cyrille

 

 

De : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> De la part de Joseph Lee
Envoyé : lundi 10 janvier 2022 04:37
À : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Objet : [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


Dennis L
 

I believe I did he didn’t want to include it if memory serves me correctly.  This is one nice thing about Jaws it gives users control.  NVDA needs to do this.  In Theory it shouldn’t be hard to add.

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Joseph Lee
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 8:02 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi,

Part of this has to do with reading caret position when the message content receives focus. As this is specific to Outlook, I think it would be best to ask Cyrille about this.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dennis L
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 4:46 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

One thing that needs improved is if you turn off automatic reading NVDA still reads the first part of a message.  Other screen readers such as Jaws allow this behavior to be customized so should NVDA.  In other words if I turn off automatic  read it shouldn’t start reading the message.

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Joseph Lee
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 7:13 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi,

I knew there was a Word add-on and have been looking for it for several hours.

As for integrating Outlook Extended, I will leave it up to you. In case you decide that Office Desk will carry Outlook Extended, could you serve as Outlook expert in the add-on? The same offer applies to folks who have developed app modules for other Microsoft Office applications, including Word add-on.

As for supporting older Office releases, I generally follow Microsoft documentation. Note that from Office 2016 onwards, major version is set to 16.0 (for this reason, when someone raises an issue about Microsoft 365, I look at the build number after 16.0).

As for submitting parts of the add-on project as NVDA pull requests, I would leave it up to app experts (users and devs) to decide.

As for my role with the add-on project: I hope to provide vision for the project, set up the development and collaboration infrastructure, contribute things here and there, then pass on the project leadership to others. My contribution will consist of mostly linting and type annotations, fixing the annoying format command announcements in Word (caused by UIA notification event), and incorporating add-on template and other changes. I do have a really old version of Microsoft Access app module I have worked on briefly in 2014, but testing shows that a completely new app module is needed.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Cyrille via groups.io
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 2:26 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hello Joseph

 

Let me share my thoughts and questions regarding this project:

 

  1. What do you plan regarding Outlook? Integrations of Outlook Extended feature? Or appModule in Office Desk allowing to use code of Outlook Extended and future code of Office Desk simultaneously?

In any case, Outlook Extended’s code is open source and thus, can be re-used if needed per GPL license. As a co-author and the maintainer of this add-on, I agree with this matter of fact.

  1. You have taken into consideration Outlook Extended which is part of the NVDA add-on community website. However, there may be other office add-on in the wild take into account. At least wordAccessEnhancement that can be found on nvda-addons.org
  2. You encourage not to use Office 2013 (or earlier) to test.

If the goal is to have feature that should eventually integrate NVDA core, I would say that all Office versions supported by NVDA should be tested. I do not think that there is a clear indication from NVAccess of which version of Office is still supported and which is not. But it seems that OFfice 2007 is still considered supported. And do not forget that a product not supported by Microsoft could still be supported by NVDA/NVAccess during a few years (e.g. Windows 7).

  1. Due to the number of supported versions of Office, the constant evolution of Office 365 and the difficulty for one developer to have access to each of the supported version, I think that it is a good idea to have an add-on to pre-test the features widely before integrating them in NVDA’s core.

 

Regarding the choice of Outlook Extended’s features:

Most of Outlook Extended’s code is code that I do not consider robust enough to belong to the core; that’s why I have not pushed for their integration in to NVDA’s core. Here are the details:

  • Alt+digit shortcuts to read header fields of messages, meetings, etc.: the fields are identified thanks to control IDs, these control IDs may have changed from one version to another. Thus I prefer keeping this feature in the add-on to be able to fix potential future issue without being forced to follow NVDA.
  • Commands to report a part of the screen, move the focus to it or copy it (information bar, attachments, message body). NVDA usually does not include such custom scripts and prefers focus (tab) or object navigation. If you want to advocate for inclusion in NVDA’s core, feel free to do so however.
  • Vocalize mark as read/unread shortcuts. Such a feedback would have its place in NVDA. However, the way it is developed is not robust for now: object model based and confusion between selection and focused item in the message list.
  • Table navigation in the address book: vertical navigation is not implemented.

 

At last, should Outlook Extended’s code be part of Office Desk, I may contribute to this new add-on, provided that you ensure that you find a maintainer after you to manage this bigger add-on.

 

Cheers,

 

Cyrille

 

 

De : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> De la part de Joseph Lee
Envoyé : lundi 10 janvier 2022 04:37
À : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Objet : [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


 

Hi Cyrille,

Any explanations for Dennis?

Note that Office Desk includes app modules only. Perhaps in the future it might be possible to add a configuration interface (I’m looking at Paul’s Word Access add-on, and initial testing indicates that it can coexist safely with Outlook Extended and other app modules inside Office Desk).

If Cyrille and/or Paul is okay with including their add-ons as submodules, the following will happen:

  1. Interface messages will be edited for spelling and grammar (base language: English). This can be done via pull requests.
  2. Linting will occur via Flake8. This can be done with pull requests and is designed to align code layout with that of NVDA Core.
  3. I am really tempted to remove update functionality from Word Access add-on to unify things under Add-on Updater, and in extension, other store clients and eventually NVDA.
  4. For Word Access add-on, it is possible to display add-on config dialog as long as the associated app module is running. See StationPlaylist add-on for how this is done.

 

Regarding linting and type annotations (Mypy), let’s take care of that across all add-ons as much as possible (the latest commit of Office Desk includes Flake8 config file so folks can lint things if they wish).

Cheers,

Joseph

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dennis L
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 5:12 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

I believe I did he didn’t want to include it if memory serves me correctly.  This is one nice thing about Jaws it gives users control.  NVDA needs to do this.  In Theory it shouldn’t be hard to add.

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Joseph Lee
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 8:02 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi,

Part of this has to do with reading caret position when the message content receives focus. As this is specific to Outlook, I think it would be best to ask Cyrille about this.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Dennis L
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 4:46 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

One thing that needs improved is if you turn off automatic reading NVDA still reads the first part of a message.  Other screen readers such as Jaws allow this behavior to be customized so should NVDA.  In other words if I turn off automatic  read it shouldn’t start reading the message.

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Joseph Lee
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 7:13 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi,

I knew there was a Word add-on and have been looking for it for several hours.

As for integrating Outlook Extended, I will leave it up to you. In case you decide that Office Desk will carry Outlook Extended, could you serve as Outlook expert in the add-on? The same offer applies to folks who have developed app modules for other Microsoft Office applications, including Word add-on.

As for supporting older Office releases, I generally follow Microsoft documentation. Note that from Office 2016 onwards, major version is set to 16.0 (for this reason, when someone raises an issue about Microsoft 365, I look at the build number after 16.0).

As for submitting parts of the add-on project as NVDA pull requests, I would leave it up to app experts (users and devs) to decide.

As for my role with the add-on project: I hope to provide vision for the project, set up the development and collaboration infrastructure, contribute things here and there, then pass on the project leadership to others. My contribution will consist of mostly linting and type annotations, fixing the annoying format command announcements in Word (caused by UIA notification event), and incorporating add-on template and other changes. I do have a really old version of Microsoft Access app module I have worked on briefly in 2014, but testing shows that a completely new app module is needed.

Hope this helps.

Cheers,

Joseph

 

From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Cyrille via groups.io
Sent: Monday, January 10, 2022 2:26 PM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hello Joseph

 

Let me share my thoughts and questions regarding this project:

 

  1. What do you plan regarding Outlook? Integrations of Outlook Extended feature? Or appModule in Office Desk allowing to use code of Outlook Extended and future code of Office Desk simultaneously?

In any case, Outlook Extended’s code is open source and thus, can be re-used if needed per GPL license. As a co-author and the maintainer of this add-on, I agree with this matter of fact.

  1. You have taken into consideration Outlook Extended which is part of the NVDA add-on community website. However, there may be other office add-on in the wild take into account. At least wordAccessEnhancement that can be found on nvda-addons.org
  2. You encourage not to use Office 2013 (or earlier) to test.

If the goal is to have feature that should eventually integrate NVDA core, I would say that all Office versions supported by NVDA should be tested. I do not think that there is a clear indication from NVAccess of which version of Office is still supported and which is not. But it seems that OFfice 2007 is still considered supported. And do not forget that a product not supported by Microsoft could still be supported by NVDA/NVAccess during a few years (e.g. Windows 7).

  1. Due to the number of supported versions of Office, the constant evolution of Office 365 and the difficulty for one developer to have access to each of the supported version, I think that it is a good idea to have an add-on to pre-test the features widely before integrating them in NVDA’s core.

 

Regarding the choice of Outlook Extended’s features:

Most of Outlook Extended’s code is code that I do not consider robust enough to belong to the core; that’s why I have not pushed for their integration in to NVDA’s core. Here are the details:

  • Alt+digit shortcuts to read header fields of messages, meetings, etc.: the fields are identified thanks to control IDs, these control IDs may have changed from one version to another. Thus I prefer keeping this feature in the add-on to be able to fix potential future issue without being forced to follow NVDA.
  • Commands to report a part of the screen, move the focus to it or copy it (information bar, attachments, message body). NVDA usually does not include such custom scripts and prefers focus (tab) or object navigation. If you want to advocate for inclusion in NVDA’s core, feel free to do so however.
  • Vocalize mark as read/unread shortcuts. Such a feedback would have its place in NVDA. However, the way it is developed is not robust for now: object model based and confusion between selection and focused item in the message list.
  • Table navigation in the address book: vertical navigation is not implemented.

 

At last, should Outlook Extended’s code be part of Office Desk, I may contribute to this new add-on, provided that you ensure that you find a maintainer after you to manage this bigger add-on.

 

Cheers,

 

Cyrille

 

 

De : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> De la part de Joseph Lee
Envoyé : lundi 10 janvier 2022 04:37
À : nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Objet : [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

 

Hi all,

A copy of this message will be sent to NVDA development list:

While NVDA comes with good support for Microsoft Office (these days called Microsoft 365), it lacks support for advanced features. As a result, there has been calls to improve support for Office applications, especially now that hybrid mode is becoming a norm in schools, businesses, and other settings. Because of complexity of Office applications, it will take a group of people to keep Office support up to date.

In response to calls for improved Office support, I hereby announce Office Desk, an add-on designed to improve support for Microsoft Office applications (Access, Excel, OneNote, Outlook, PowerPoint, Publisher, Word). Unlike previous add-ons, this add-on is designed to serve as a collaborative add-on, meaning different people will be in charge of specific parts of the add-on, with releases coordinated by a release manager. Because folks get to use Office with NVDA at one point, it is envisioned that a person or two will serve as an expert in one or more Office applications (app modules), ideally people who use these apps on a daily basis.

Another purpose of Office Desk is to coordinate communication with NV Access in terms of submitting parts of the add-on to NVDA Core in the future. This is so that users can use advanced features of Office apps with NvDA out of the box – that is, not relying on the add-on all the time. As such, coding style for the add-on will strictly follow NVDA’s own coding style to align with the screen reader itself. Put it differently, it is envisioned that Office Desk will serve as a way to test potential pull requests to NVDA and gain user testing data.

Add-on repo:

https://github.com/josephsl/officeDesk

 

Few notes:

  • When you clone the repository, you will notice that Outlook app module is missing. This is in consideration for Outlook Extended add-on.
  • For best testing and development experience, please use Office 2016 or later (Office 2013 is supported until 2023, but for ease of development and testing, please use 2016 or later; or better yet, use Microsoft 365).

 

P.S. Some of you may ask, “wait, doesn’t Office Desk resemble another add-on?” In a way, yes – whereas Office Desk is a thematic and collaborative add-on for Office support, Windows App Essentials is meant to improve support for Windows 10 and later apps and controls. I have been thinking about an add-on similar to Windows App Essentials but designed for Office support, and since my time as active NVDA contributor has come to a close, I felt Office Desk would be the next best thing I can offer – offering a way for people to collaborate and improve support for features students and business employees need in 2022. I am willing to serve as release manager and coordinate Office Desk add-on development for a while before passing the baton to the next group of developers (likely until summer 2022); I myself will bring some things from my other add-ons (notably, Windows App Essentials) and perhaps update a rumored Microsoft Access (msaccess) app module I have worked on briefly many years ago.

One more thing: although it is a bit advanced, I hope Office Desk can be a useful mentoring tool for add-on authors and users – I’ve been thinking about ways to mentor authors and pass on what I know, and I feel Office Desk is a perfect opportunity to do so. Besides, since I envision parts of the add-on will become part of NVDA in the future, I believe this is an opportunity to learn what it takes to write code at the screen reader level.

Cheers,

Joseph


Timothy Wynn
 

As Cyrille reasoned in July 2021, the behavior of reading the first line in every browse mode document is an issue with NVDA, not an issue for the Outlook add-on to fix:

Maybe I could do the change in the Outlook Extended add-on; I have not looked if it is possible and easy from a technical point of view. But I do not want to for the following reasons.

  1. As explained before, what you are asking is more a fix on an NVDA's core feature rather than a new feature. Thus it does not make sense to fix NVDA's wrong behaviour; better ask to have it fixed directly in NVDA. Let's fix things where the issue lays.
  2. Since this issue affects the whole browse mode, it would not make sense to fix it only for Outlook. You would end up with the first line read in the browsers or in Windows 10 Mail and not in Outlook.

Timothy


hamidreza abroshan
 

Hey all,
I have some questions regarding this addon and it's development.
1. Is it possible to add a feature like  virtual ribbon menu in jaws?
2. I'm mostly a Java developer and familiar with python.I was always looking forward to an opportunity to contribute to Nvda. As Joseph says, it is a good opportunity to learn coding at screen reader level.
Can you divide the development into small tasks?  Do you think that deep knowledge of Nvda development and it's structure is required for participating in this add-on?
Because Java is fully object oriented, I don't have any problem with OOP and have been working as a developer for more than 2 years, but  know nothing about Nvda development. Can you give me a road map to start?
Thanks. Regards.



On Tue, Jan 11, 2022 at 6:11 AM Timothy via groups.io <tmthywynn8=aol.com@groups.io> wrote:

As Cyrille reasoned in July 2021, the behavior of reading the first line in every browse mode document is an issue with NVDA, not an issue for the Outlook add-on to fix:

Maybe I could do the change in the Outlook Extended add-on; I have not looked if it is possible and easy from a technical point of view. But I do not want to for the following reasons.

  1. As explained before, what you are asking is more a fix on an NVDA's core feature rather than a new feature. Thus it does not make sense to fix NVDA's wrong behaviour; better ask to have it fixed directly in NVDA. Let's fix things where the issue lays.
  2. Since this issue affects the whole browse mode, it would not make sense to fix it only for Outlook. You would end up with the first line read in the browsers or in Windows 10 Mail and not in Outlook.

Timothy



--
hamidreza


Alberto Buffolino
 

hamidreza abroshan, il 11/01/2022 13.11, ha scritto:
1. Is it possible to add a feature like  virtual ribbon menu in jaws?
Alberto:
Hi hamidreza,
I cannot answer for Office Desk, and I don't know how has been developed virtual Ribbon in JAWS (I don't use it from a decade), but... well... if you wait a day or so there may be news on NVDA side, at least for Office 2019 and above 😉
I'm just making latest adjustments to source code, to-do list, messages, devs/translators comments, etc...
Alberto


 

Hi,
At the moment there is no plan to add virtual ribbon menu functionality as the add-on is designed as a collection of app modules (virtual ribbon menu falls under global plugin portion).
As for other questions:
1. Java and Python: having considered learning Java years ago (back when I was a high school student), I understand that there are differences between Python and Java, something that is quite beyond the scope of this list. As for transferring Java knowledge to Python for purposes of add-on development, I think Office Desk might not be the add-on of choice for that as you need to have some knowledge of Office internals such as COM objects.
2. Needed knowledge for contributing to Office Desk: at a minimum, you must be an active user of Microsoft Office applications, and in some cases, willing to learn to use advanced features.
Also, to address a potential question about including other add-ons: not at this time unless authors of other add-ons say yes to incorporating their add-ons as part of Office Desk.
Cheers,
Joseph

-----Original Message-----
From: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io <nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io> On Behalf Of Alberto Buffolino
Sent: Tuesday, January 11, 2022 4:25 AM
To: nvda-addons@nvda-addons.groups.io
Subject: Re: [nvda-addons] Announcing Office Desk: a collaborative effort to improve support for Microsoft Office applications and features

hamidreza abroshan, il 11/01/2022 13.11, ha scritto:
1. Is it possible to add a feature like virtual ribbon menu in jaws?
Alberto:
Hi hamidreza,
I cannot answer for Office Desk, and I don't know how has been developed virtual Ribbon in JAWS (I don't use it from a decade), but... well... if you wait a day or so there may be news on NVDA side, at least for Office
2019 and above 😉
I'm just making latest adjustments to source code, to-do list, messages, devs/translators comments, etc...
Alberto