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...How to Download Braille Files...

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If you have a braille embosser (braille printer), you can download some of the games for use with your students who are learning braille. The games use uncontracted braille, in standard US code. That is, the capital sign is a dot six in front of the word. The games are formatted for embossing on 8½ by 11 inch paper.


To download and emboss a game, follow the steps that match the equipment you're using.


For users of Internet Explorer:


1. If you use a mouse, press the right mouse button on the link for the game you wish to download. If you're using the keyboard, tab to the link for the game and press Shift F10. Both methods bring up the "context menu."


Note: JAWS users, you may find that you need to turn off JAWS' "Virtual PC Cursor" before this will work. If so, press Insert-Z before tabbing to the game.


2. On the context menu, select "Save Target As."


Internet Explorer might present you with a dialog box with several choices. Choose "Save this file to disk" if it does. Don't worry if it doesn't.


3. The browser will give you the "Save As" dialog box. The file name will be filled in. If this name is acceptable to you, just leave it there. In the "Save In" part of the window, look to see where the file will go when it is saved. If that is an acceptable place, leave it that way. If you would rather have the file someplace else, such as on a floppy disk so that you can take it to another computer to be embossed, select your preferred location.


Whether you select a new location for the file or leave it as it was, make a note of the location. The most common problem people have with downloading files is finding them once the process is done.


4. After noting the location, click the "Save" button or press ENTER. The download will take between a few seconds and a few minutes. Internet Explorer might let you know when it is done, but if it doesn't, just wait a couple of minutes and then look in the location you selected for the downloaded file. You'll see the file there with the extension .BRF or .BRF.TXT, depending on your Internet Explorer settings.


Now you can emboss it as you would any other file. If you'd like instructions, see below.


Netscape Users:


1. Press the right mouse button on the link for the game you wish to download to bring up the "context menu."


2. Select "Save Link As" from the menu.


Netscape will present you with the "Save As" dialog box. The file name will be filled in. If this name is acceptable to you, just leave it there. In the "Save In" part of the window, look to see where the file will go when it is saved. If that is an acceptable place, leave it that way. If you would rather have the file someplace else, such as on a floppy disk so that you can take it to another computer to be embossed, select your preferred location.


Whether you select a new location for the file or leave it as it was, make a note of the location. The most common problem people have with downloading files is finding them once the process is done.


3. After noting the location, click the "Save" button or press ENTER. The download will take between a few seconds and a few minutes. Wait for a short time and then look in the location you selected for the downloaded file. You'll see the file there with the extension .BRF or .BRF.TXT, depending on your Internet Explorer settings.


Now you can emboss it as you would any other file. If you'd like instructions, see below.


Embossing the Games


If you have a method you prefer for making your braille printer produce a worksheet or document, you can use that method. These instructions are intended to help people who have no routine for producing braille pages.


The file does not need to be translated, but you can use your favorite braille translator to send the file to your embosser if that is the method you usually use.


Embossing from Windows


If your braille embosser is already set up as a Windows printer, you can send the file to it as you might to any printer. Here's one way:


1. Make sure the braille embosser is turned on, connected to the computer, and ready to go.


2. Open the file in Notepad. If you don't have your own way of doing it, just locate the file in Windows Explorer, press the right mouse button on the file name or press Shift-F10, and select "Open with" from the context menu. Choose Notepad from there.


3. Once the game file is open in Notepad, bring down Notepad's File menu and select "Page Setup."


4. In the dialog box that Notepad gives you, select "Printer." You will have, among other things, a list of the printers available. Choose your braille embosser and press ENTER or click the OK button. Notepad will take you back to the "Page Setup" dialog box.


5. In the Page Setup dialog, set all your margins to 0 and clear header and footer information. You don't want Notepad to add a margin or a page number to the document that is already formatted and translated.


6. Select the OK button. Notepad will take you back to the "document."


7. Pull down the File menu again and this time pick "Print." The braille embosser should braille the file.


Embossing from DOS


1. Make sure the braille embosser is turned on, connected to the computer, and ready to go.


2. In DOS, go to the drive and directory where the file was placed. For example, if you put the file on a floppy disk, you should type


a:


and press ENTER.


3. Once you have gotten to the right place, type


copy FILENAME lpt1


where FILENAME is the name of the file you downloaded, including the extension (.brf, probably) and lpt1 is the port to which the embosser is connected. If your embosser is connected to lpt2, just substitute that port in the line above.


4. Once you have typed the line, press ENTER. Your embosser should braille the file.


The Games


The Harry Potter Game

The Science Game

The Solar System Game


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