macOS High Sierra

Layout pane of the Braille category

Use the Layout pane of the Braille category in VoiceOver Utility to customize settings for a braille display connected to your Mac.

To open VoiceOver Utility, press Command-F5 to turn VoiceOver on, then press VO-F8.

Note: VO represents the VoiceOver modifier.

Braille Display

VoiceOver indicates the braille display it detects.

Braille Translation

Click the pop-up menu, then choose a translation language to use for showing output.

Show contracted braille

Show output in contracted braille.

By default, VoiceOver shows output in uncontracted eight-dot braille. If you choose to use contracted braille, the “Show eight-dot braille” checkbox is automatically deselected.

Show eight-dot braille

Use eight-dot braille (uncontracted) if the primary braille display supports it. This option is selected by default.

If you deselect this option, VoiceOver uses six-dot braille (uncontracted, if “Show contracted braille” isn’t selected).

Use automatic braille translation

By default, VoiceOver automatically translates each character you type on your braille display into braille output, as you type it.

If you use six-dot braille, VoiceOver automatically translates each word you type on your braille display into braille output, after it determines you’ve completed a word or you press Space on your display.

If you deselect this option, you must manually indicate when you’re done typing. To do so, press one of the following on your braille display: the Space bar, dots 4 and 5 and the Space bar, or any non-Perkins braille key.

Use dots 7 and 8 to indicate VoiceOver cursor

Raise dots 7 and 8 to indicate the position of the VoiceOver cursor. This option is selected by default.

Status cells

Select checkboxes for the status cells you want to use.

Show general display status: Show information about announcements, and about the direction in which to pan the current line. For example, dots 1 and 2 indicate unread and read announcements respectively, and dots 7 and 8 indicate you can pan the display left or right respectively.

Show text style: Show common text styles, such as bold or italic font. For example, dots 1 and 2 indicate bold and italic text respectively, and dot 4 indicates the selected text is misspelled.

Show extended text style: Show less common text styles, such as strikethrough or superscript. For example, dots 1 and 2 indicate text is superscript and subscript respectively, and dot 5 indicates the selected text has a double underline.

Show status on the

Select a radio button to use cells to the left (the default) or right of the braille line as the status cells. Change this setting only if your braille display doesn’t provide dedicated status cells.

Show alert messages for duration

Drag the slider left toward Short or to the right toward Long.