Free Assistive Software

If you read my profile, you will note that I am a developer of free assistive software.  A great deal of the applications I develop are designed to help aspects of dyslexia.  Listed below are some of the applications which you could download for free, and which may be helpful in dealing with some of the aspects of dyslexia.  The website is  look on the Assistive page


T-Bar is a coloured bar which you can either drag around the screen or lock to your mouse. It can have ruled lines or not, depending on your preference. The colour can be chosen from pre-defined options, then tweaked by altering the red, green or blue sliders to get the perfect colour, the transparency level can be adjusted, again to suit the individual. All the settings are saved between sessions, so there is no need to readjust the next time you use


Allows quick and easy changing of the background and font colours, without having to go through the Screen Properties dialogs.


A unique piece of software, provides an on-screen, slotted ruler. Useful with dyslexia, when the user skips lines or drops from one line to the next. This version allows the user to select the bar width, 25%, 50%, 75% or 100% of screen width and set the slot height to the required font size.<BR>This version adds the option to lock the bar onto the mouse pointer for movement, as well as improved keyboard movement options.


Spr-Ot, or spreadsheet slot uses the lessons learned in creating and improving Vu-Bar to prvide a tool for use primarily with spreadsheet applications. The bar can be flipped between vertical and horizontal use, moved, hidden and restored by either the menu or keyboard shortcuts. The bar can also be adjusted for height and width and locked onto the mouse for quick and easy movement. To use the mouse, simply click and hold to drag or right click for the menu.


ssOverlay (the ss stands for Scotopic Sensitivity), places a coloured overlay onto the screen. The colour and transparency levels can be adjusted to suit the user.

Fx Toolbar

This toolbar is designed as an add in for Micrsoft Word 2007 – please note, this does not work with any other version of Office. the toolbar gives you options to highlight and collect parts of the text into a new document, speak highlighted text, identify confusables, change the case of the selected text and identify if your sentences are overly long.


A straight forward text to speech application. All text input is carried out through the clipboard. Settings allow Orato to read either on demand or automatically when new text is added to the clipboard. Other options will display the text if required, with highlighting of the word or sentence being spoken. Orato can either be installed to the hard disk or copied onto a pen drive for portable use.

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