Microsoft has recently previewed a software update to their popular Office package that includes adjustable contrast modes for people with visual stress or Irlen Syndrome.


“More Editor enhancements are coming in the next few months for Word on PCs—all inspired by the needs of people with dyslexia and beneficial for everybody. In particular, Editor will make it easier to choose between suggested spellings for a misspelled word. Synonyms or definitions will be shown alongside suggestions and it will be possible to have both read aloud,” said the director of Microsoft Office Engineering, who has been spearheading the redesign.

The OECD reports that around 50% of adults have some difficulty with reading – a staggering number. While much more work needs to be to fix the underlying difficulties, assistive technology can be an enormously useful stop gap in the meantime.

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