[NOBE-L] Questions for those using a Mac while teaching

Chase Crispin chase.crispin at gmail.com
Tue Oct 19 18:27:02 UTC 2021

Hi all,

I've always primarily been a Windows user. We use Macs in the classroom in
my district. For the most part, things are going well. There are a few
challenges I have encountered and am hoping that one of you may have

1.	We are required by the district to use Chrome for browsing, not
Safari. I am using a 2019 MacBook Air with OS 11.6 and am constantly getting
the "Chrome busy" error from VoiceOver. This happens especially when
presenting Google Slides. I typically have my Mantis Q40 connected over
Bluetooth as a braille display while also screen mirroring with Apple TV
hooked to my projector. At least half the time, I can't even tell which
slide I'm on because moving to the next slide just says "Chrome busy." But,
the slides do change. It will stay in this mode for several minutes at a
time. I can ask a student to click something with the mouse. Again, I see
"chrome busy" on the braille display, but the commands and mouse clicks are
working, and the on screen content is changing. Is there a way to minimize
the busy errors? This even pops up when I'm typing in a search term,
changing tabs, etc. Toggling VO on and back off stops the busy errors for a
minute or so, but it always gets stuck there again.
2.	I have turned off the braille panel in VoiceOver Utility under
visuals. When it's on, students say it is almost always in the way of what
I'm trying to project. Every couple days, the braille panel will reappear on
screen. Going into the settings shows that it has indeed turned itself back
on. How can I make sure the braille panel stays off after I turn it off?
3.	When in Zoom meetings, I typically use the Mac with braille only and
have speech muted. But, Zoom alerts, such as chat messages and people
joining the meeting, are still spoken, even with the screen reader muted.
They are spoken very loud and at a very slow speech rate. If I'm talking
while this happens, everyone in the meeting hears my Zoom alerts. How can I
silence these announcements so they are braille only? On Windows, I don't
get these announcements if I've muted my screen reader and I really need the
same on the Mac.


Thanks for any help you can give.



Chase Crispin

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