accessibility features

I am contacting you to request information about the accessibility features for the visually impaired of your notation software.

The information you may provide in regards to my research, will be used to provide academical information in my PHD dissertation on blind musicians’ access to music notation, both to compose and review scores which are especially in the modern style that have been composed from 1945 to the present.

It is initially important for me to receive reasons from you if any, some or all of the features of your product are unavailable for the visually impaired users and the details for that.

Thank you very much for your prospective contribution and collaboration in advance.

Welcome to the forum, @arsua. I’m sorry to say that Dorico is not currently particularly accessible to users with visual impairment. In addition to some accessibility deficiencies in the main application itself, sighted assistance is also required to get the software downloaded and installed; although our web site is (I believe) quite accessible, the Steinberg Download Assistant application and indeed the installation software for Dorico itself have some problems with screen readers, etc.

Although inputting and editing music in Dorico itself is almost entirely keyboard accessible, one fundamental deficiency is that there is no good way for the user to orientate him or herself in the music, because although there is auditory feedback in terms of the timbre and pitch of the selected note, there is no further context provided (in terms of bar, beat, instrument, etc.).

This is definitely something that we intend to address in future. The reason that it has not already been implemented is ultimately that we have chosen not to prioritise this sufficiently highly to date. We know that other music notation applications – in particular, Sibelius and MuseScore – offer rich experiences for visually impaired users, and we aim to offer similar levels of support in future, though I cannot provide a specific timeframe for when this support will arrive.