Point-and-Chat® Mail -- Quick Reference Guide

This guide is to be used as a quick reference. You will find a copy in the Point-and-Chat ("PnC") Help menu, along with the software's current version number (the About window) and licensing information. You will also find a copy of the most current version online at www.simtalk.com/PnC/UserGuide .

Point-and-Chat runs on a desktop or laptop computer that uses either the Microsoft Windows XP or the Microsoft Vista operating system. Point-and-Chat may come bundled with DesktopChat, but DesktopChat is actually a separate program from Saltillo Corporation. You do not need DesktopChat to run Point-and-Chat.

In some versions the two programs come on one disk, in other versions they come on separate disks. You also may be able to download some versions of one or both programs from the Internet. (If available for download, the download website will contain download and installation instructions.)

You can use your computer keyboard or DesktopChat to create written messages that you can send using Point-and-Chat Mail. However, if you are already using another stand-alone Alternative/Augmentative Communication Device, you may be able to use that device to create written messages for Point-and-Chat, and perhaps even operate Point-and-Chat. An Alternative/Augmentative Communication Device is often called an "AAC device" or abbreviated as "ACD".

We have created detailed instructions for using several AAC devices to control Point-and-Chat. We call these"integration kits". When completed and tested, Integration Kits will be posted online at www.simtalk.com/PnC/integration.

If you will be operating Point-and-Chat only from a stand-alone AAC device, then you will not need to install DesktopChat on your computer. Also, if you already have DesktopChat on your computer, in most cases you do not have to install it again (but you may want to update it).

Installing Point-and-Chat (first time only):

Installation instructions will differ depending on whether you install Point-and-Chat from a CD or download it from the Internet. You can find installation instructions for both types of installation on the Internet at www.simtalk.com/PnC/UserGuide. We suggest that you print out the appropriate Quick Installation Guide. Then follow the instructions.

The installation process will install one or more pieces of software including Point-and-Chat ("PnC"). Each piece of software may have its own installation wizard. Follow each wizard. After a wizard or program installation, the process may pause up to 30 seconds before the next wizard or program installation begins. The installation wizard may give you choices to check or uncheck during installation.

The installation will place an icon on the computer desktop (if not already there). This is a picture of an envelope with wings, with the title Point-and-Chat Mail ("PnC Mail").

After installation, you can start Point-and-Chat by double clicking on its desktop icon.

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Installing Point-and-Chat on several computers:

You may install Point-and-Chat on up to three computers. If you want to then install it on another computer, you will have to first uninstall it from one of the first three. See below for instructions on how to uninstall Point-and-Chat.

If your Point-and-Chat came from a pre-activated CD, you can install Point-and-Chat on a new computer just by following the installation instructions for installing from a CD.

If your Point-and-Chat came from a 30 Day Free Trial CD or you downloaded a 30 Day Free Trial from the Internet, you are allowed to use the software for free for 30 days. After that, you must purchase a license to use the software, or it will stop working. (You do not need a new disk.) You can purchase a license by clicking the menu heading Help > Purchase/Activate, and following the instructions on the web site. Alternatively, if you wait until the license expires, a popup box will appear when you try to log in, check mail, or send an e-mail. You can click the hyperlink on that box and follow the instructions on the web site. Alternatively, you can also visit the activation web site at www.simtalk.com/PnC/activation.

If your Point-and-Chat came from a 30 Day Free Trial CD, and you then purchased a license to continue using it, you can still use your license on up to three computers. However, you must do several things.

1. Go to the menu heading Help > About Point-and-Chat Mail
2. Click on the button labeled "Share License To Another Installation".
3. A window will pop up. Copy the "Share Code" - write it down.
4. Close this window; close the About Point-and-Chat Mail window, and exit Point-and-Chat.
5. Install Point-and-Chat on the new computer using the trial CD according to the installation instructions for installing from a CD.
6. On the new computer, start Point-and-Chat and go to the menu heading Help > About Point-and-Chat Mail
7. Click on the button labeled "Share License from Another Installation".
8. A window will pop up. Type in the "Share Code."
9. Click OK. Then click OK in the About Point-and-Chat Mail window. Now you are ready to go.

If your Point-and-Chat came from a 30 Day Free Trial download, and you then purchased a license to use Point-and-Chat, you can still use your license on up to three computers. First write down the "Share Code" from the first computer (see above). Then download Point-and-Chat to the new computer and install it according to the download installation instructions. Then type the "Share Code" into the new computer (see above). Now you are ready to go.

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Installing DesktopChat from a CD (first time only):

Insert the DesktopChat CD into the computer. For most computers the installation will begin automatically (this may take a few moments). You will be given on-screen prompts for the rest of the installation. If installation does not start automatically, you will need to navigate to your CD through Windows Explorer and then choose the file: autorun.exe.

The CD will install one or more pieces of software including DesktopChat. Each piece of software may have its own installation wizard. Follow each wizard. After a wizard or program installation, process may pause up to 30 seconds before the next wizard or program installation begins. The installation wizard may give you choices to check or uncheck during installation. Select the appropriate checkboxes.

The installation will place an icon on the computer desktop (if not already there):the Saltillo logo with the word "DesktopChat".

After installation, you can start DesktopChat by double clicking on its desktop icon. When you are using DesktopChat with Point-and-Chat, Point-and-Chat will start DesktopChat automatically when you log in or try to compose a message.

With some versions of DesktopChat, when you are installing DesktopChat, or later when you first use DesktopChat, the program may ask you to enter a Registration Code that can be found on the outside of the CD jewelcase that came with it. In some versions, Point-and-Chat will automatically install the registration number the first time that Point-and-Chat accesses the Internet.

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Uninstalling Point-and-Chat:

Click on the Windows Start menu in the lower-left corner of your screen. Then click on Control Panel. Depending on your computer, you will either see an Add/Remove Programs icon, or a Programs and Features icon, or a link called Uninstall a Program. Double-click whichever of these you see. Wait until the list is complete. Then, scroll down and find Point-and-Chat Mail. Click on this item, and then click either an Uninstall button or a Remove button, whichever you see. Follow the onscreen wizard for removing the program.

This action will not only remove the files associated with Point-and-Chat Mail, but it will also remove the license from this computer so you will be free to install and use Point-and-Chat Mail on a different computer.

This action will not remove DesktopChat. If you installed a special version of DesktopChat that comes with Point-and-Chat, DesktopChat will not work when Point-and-Chat is uninstalled, or when the free trial for Point-and-Chat runs out. If you have a different version of DesktopChat, then uninstalling Point-and-Chat may return DesktopChat to unregistered mode. You can, if you have one, enter a valid DesktopChat license key by clicking its Help...Registration menu item. You can also uninstall DesktopChat by following the same procedure as for Point-and-Chat, except look for the DesktopChat item in the control panel list.

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Using DesktopChat:

When you run DesktopChat, it makes your computer act like an AAC device. When you click on or activate one of the buttons in the DesktopChat window, the computer will speak the word out loud and place the text for the word in the text box at the top of the DesktopChat window. When you end a sentence with a punctuation mark (from a DesktopChat button), the computer will repeat the entire sentence. You can use certain buttons to erase the last word in the DesktopChat text box and other buttons to erase all text in the DesktopChat text box.

You can create your own screen layouts and vocabulary files using DesktopChat editing features, or you can use the vocabulary files included with DesktopChat. These vocabulary files include the PalmChat screen layouts and vocab files developed by Nancy Inman. You can load other screen layouts and vocab files too.

DesktopChat can be used to export screen layouts and vocab files to Saltillo's ChatPC, a handheld AAC device. For more information, start DesktopChat and look at the Help file at the menu heading Help > Help Index.

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DesktopChat functions within Point-and-Chat:

When you run Point-and-Chat, and first log in, the computer will look to see if DesktopChat is running on the computer. If not, the computer will launch DesktopChat. In this case, the computer is expecting all text to be entered through the DesktopChat interface.

This is the default setting, but it can be changed. Just go to the menu heading: Settings > Using Desktop Chat, and uncheck “Use DesktopChat”.

If you use a keyboard to write, and do not need DesktopChat to create text and sentences for e-mail, you can turn off the DesktopChat functions of Point-and-Chat. If you are using a stand-alone AAC device to create written messages and transmit them to Point-and-Chat, you should also turn off the DesktopChat functions of Point-and-Chat.

Keeping Point-and-Chat in focus:

If you use DesktopChat to control Point-and-Chat using command buttons within the DesktopChat interface, you may wish to enable the setting "Keep PnC in focus when using DesktopChat" found in the menu heading: Settings > Using DesktopChat. This will ensure that Point-and-Chat is always ready to receive your keyboard text even though you've clicked on DesktopChat. If this option is unchecked, clicking on DesktopChat will, by default, take keyboard focus away from Point-and-Chat.

Changing the way text is received from DesktopChat:

See the section in this document called "Writing and sending an e-mail" for more.

 

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Starting Point-and-Chat Mail:

Double click on the Point-and-Chat Mail icon. It is on the computer desktop with the other program icons. The icon will have the caption "PnC Mail". It looks like an envelope with wings. Point-and-Chat can also be started from (and controlled by) some stand-alone AAC devices, including the DynaVox Series 4 (DV4).

The first time Point-and-Chat starts, your computer's firewall will present you with a choice. Select the option that will always grant Point-and-Chat access to the Internet. For more information, see the next section.

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Allowing Point-and-Chat to access the Internet:

Your computer's firewall helps protect the computer from harm. One way it does this is by only allowing known programs to access the Internet. When your computer's firewall presents you with a choice to let a program access the Internet, you should only allow it if you trust what the program does. Point-and-Chat needs to access the Internet, and will cause this choice to be presented to you. When you are presented with this choice labeled "Point-and-Chat Mail" or "PnCMail.exe", select the option that will always let Point-and-Chat have access to the Internet. The appearance of the choice will vary by your brand of firewall, but here are some common ones:

Windows Firewall: You will receive a Windows Security Alert with the question, "Do you want to keep blocking this program?" Click on the Unblock button.

ZoneAlarm: You will receive a ZoneAlarm Security Alert. Check the "Remember this setting" box and then click the Allow button.

Norton: You will receive a Norton 360 Alert saying, "A Program is attempting to access the Internet Should Norton 360 allow this access?" Click the Allow button.

IF YOU MADE THE WRONG CHOICE, Point-and-Chat will not be able to function correctly. If the choice was only temporary, you may be able to resolve this by closing and restarting Point-and-Chat, which will trigger your firewall to present you with the choice again.

However, if you made the wrong choice permanent, you won't be presented with the choice again, and you must adjust your firewall's settings manually. The procedure to do this varies by brand of firewall, but here are some common ones:

Windows Firewall: Click on Start, then click on Control Panel. Find the Windows Firewall icon and click on it. (To find it, you may have to first click on the category called Network and Internet.) Click on the Exceptions tab. Scroll down and find the entry called Point-and-Chat Mail or simply PnCMail. Make sure the box next to it is checked. If there are multiple entries for this program, make sure they are all checked. Finally, click the OK button.

ZoneAlarm: Double-click the ZoneAlarm (ZA) icon in the system tray. On the left side of the window that pops up, click Program Control, and then click on the Programs tab at the top. Scroll down the list of programs until you find Point-and-Chat Mail. Click on the symbol that appears for Point-and-Chat Mail under the Access Internet column. Select Allow from the dropdown menu that is presented. If Point-and-Chat Mail appeared more than once in the program list, select Allow in the same manner for each line where it appears. Finally, close the window by clicking the X in the upper-right corner.

Norton: Double-click the Norton icon in the system tray. Under the PC Security heading, click Manage Firewall. Then click on the Program Rules tab. Scroll down in the list of programs and find Point-and-Chat Mail. Click on the dropdown list to the right of it and select Allow. Finally, click the Close button.

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Creating or importing an identity:

When PnC Mail starts, a small window will pop up that requires you to select an identity. An identity is similar to a Windows user; it is a collection of an individual person's preferences, e-mails, and contact lists. Identities allow multiple people to share the same PnC Mail program and still keep all of their personal items separate.

The first time this screen is displayed, there will be no identities shown.

Creating a new identity

Click on menu heading: Edit > Manage identities. Then click on the "Create New" button.

On the "Identity Setup" screen, check the box "Available to all Windows users" if you don't want to restrict other users of this computer from using this identity. Uncheck the box if you want only the current Windows user to have access to this identity. You can change this setting later.

In the "My Real Name" text box, enter your real name, for example, "Jane Smith". This is the name that will appear to people to whom you send e-mails, and it will also appear on the login screen when the program starts. You can change this setting later.

Next to the "My icon" picture, click on the "Browse" button and find an image you want to use to help identify this identity on the login screen. This image will *not* be sent over the Internet.

Under the list box, click the New button to add an e-mail account. On the screen that appears, fill in all of the fields. If you need help finding the correct values, contact your e-mail provider. Leave the port number fields blank unless your e-mail provider requires non-standard port numbers.

Here are links to help documents for some common e-mail providers:

Google Gmail: http://mail.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=13287
Yahoo Mail: http://help.yahoo.com/l/us/yahoo/mail/original/mailplus/pop/pop-14.html
MSN Hotmail: http://windowslive.com/Connect/Post/2025b272-2a9c-4f73-b72d-320c0a6e132c

You can have any number of e-mail accounts associated with your identity in this way. For example, some people may keep one e-mail address for private mail among friends, and one that is known to the public. Whichever account you want to send mail with, check the checkbox called "Mail will be sent using this account". You can later change a mail account's settings by clicking on it and then clicking the Edit button. You can delete it by clicking on it and then clicking the Remove button. Removing a mail account only means that mail will no longer be sent and received using that account, and e-mails already in your mailboxes will remain.

You can view or make changes to any of these identity settings later by going to the menu heading: Edit > My Identity Setup.

Importing an identity

Close all instances of Point-and-Chat.

On the computer where the identity is, locate the folder on your computer where identity data is stored. On a Windows XP computer, this will either be in "C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Point-and-Read\identities" or "C:\Program Files\Point-and-Read\Point-and-Chat Mail\identities". On a Windows Vista computer, this will be in "C:\Program Data\Point-and-Read\identities".

Find which identity you want to import. It will have its own subfolder, which are numbered 001, 002, 003, etc. Copy the numbered folder to the computer that you want to move the identity to, by placing it in the appropriate "identities" folder (see above paragraph for finding it). If there already exists an identity folder with the same number, you can rename one of them.

The next time you run Point-and-Chat Mail, the new identity will appear for you to select. All of the preferences, e-mails, and contact lists will be there.

 

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Logging on to Point-and-Chat Mail with your identity:

When Point-and-Chat Mail starts, a screen will appear that requires you to select from the available identities by clicking on its button. This window includes a "Remember Me" checkbox. We recommend that you check this box - especially if only one person is using Point-and-Chat on this computer. If this box is checked, the next time you start Point-and-Chat Mail, the program will automatically log you on as this identity (and the identities screen will *not* appear).

You can always go to File > Select Identity to uncheck the "Remember Me" checkbox or switch to a different identity.

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Before you can e-mail someone - adding a contact:

To write an e-mail to someone (often called a "contact"), you must first add the person (your "contact") to your contact list.

How to add a person to your contact list. Go to the menu heading: File > Add Contact. A small window will pop up. You type in the person's e-mail address. Then choose a category from the drop down menu: Buddies, Family, or Co-worker. This allows you to group similar types of contacts together on the contacts pages. The Co-worker tab will only appear if you have categorized at least one of your contacts as a Co-worker.

You can always edit this contact information by going to File > Edit my contact list… and then clicking on the name of a particular contact. The screen will then show you the contact information you can change or edit.

How to remove a person from your contact list. Go to the menu heading: File > Remove Contact. Then enter the person's e-mail address and click OK.

You can also go to the menu heading: File > Edit my contact list… then click on the contact name. The screen will show the person's contact information. You can then click the delete button.

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Adding a picture to a contact listing:

Go to the menu heading: File > Edit my contact list…, then click on the contact's name. The screen will show the contact information. You can click on the "Browse" button to find and use a picture that is on your computer. This will put a new picture in the "preferred" icon that will show on your contact list page. Click on the "Use Default" button to return to that contact's default buddy icon.

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Changing other aspects of a contact listing:

Go to the menu heading: File > Edit my contact list…, then click on the contact's name. The screen will show the contact information. When you are done making changes, click the OK button. If you want to cancel your changes, click the Cancel button.

Changing Visible Name: You cannot change anyone else's e-mail address, but you can change how the program will display it and pronounce it. For example, if their e-mail address does not contain their real name, you can type their real name in the field, and the real name will be shown instead.

Changing Pronunciation: You can use this editing function to change how the computer pronounces the person's name or e-mail address. This can be useful if the computer does not say the name or e-mail address correctly. You can even use this function to have the computer not speak the person's name or e-mail address, but instead pronounce the name you associate with that person, such as "Uncle Bob", instead of a name like "Robert Jones".

Changing grouping: You can use this editing function to move a contact from one grouping to another, such as from "buddies" to "family".

Deleting contacts: You can use the editing function to delete contacts. You can also remove contacts by going to the File menu: File > Remove contact ... Then, when the new screen opens, type in the e-mail address of the contact you want to remove.

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Beginning an e-mail - choosing someone to write to:

1. Click on the Contacts button. This will show your contacts by name and screen image.
2. Click on the tab for the group of contacts of interest - buddies, family or co-workers. Each group has one or more pages of contact information.
3. Click on the contact. This will open a draft e-mail window with a tab containing the picture of the contact.

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Writing and sending an e-mail:

1. Enter some words in the text editing boxes for Subject and Body. You can use either DesktopChat or the computer keyboard. In some cases you can use a stand-alone AAC device such as the DynaVox Series 4 DV4. For a list of stand-alone AAC devices that work with Point-and-Chat, see www.simtalk.com/PnC/integration. That website includes instructions for using them with Point-and-Chat. (If you are using a stand-alone AAC device to control Point-and-Chat you should turn off the DesktopChat functions of Point-and-Chat.)

a. Entering text with DesktopChat (the default setting). AAC users can use the DesktopChat interface to enter the words and sentences they want to send to their friends. First, click on a text editing box in Point-and-Chat; this will open DesktopChat. Wait until it is open, then use DesktopChat to choose words and sentences. These words and sentences will appear at the text box at the top of the DesktopChat window. Point-and-Chat will automatically copy the text from the DesktopChat text box at the top of the DesktopChat window to the text editing box of Point-and-Chat that is in focus.

b. Enter text using the computer keyboard. To do this, you must uncheck the "Use Desktop Chat" option in the "Settings" menu heading. (See DesktopChat functions within Point-and-Chat.)

2. Edit the text. You can erase any sentence in the Point-and-Read text editing box using the Erase button. This is the button with a picture of a pencil's eraser.

a. After you have entered new text, clicking on the Erase button will erase the last sentence (or partial sentence) in the text editing box. Clicking on the Erase button again, will erase the new last sentence. You can continue erasing one sentence at a time until all sentences are erased.

b. If you use Point-and-Chat to read part of the text in the text editing box (see below about hearing and reading a message), clicking on the Erase button will erase the sentence that was last read aloud by the computer.

c. You may also be able to edit the text before it leaves DesktopChat if DesktopChat has a Clear button or a Delete Word button. There are 4 special options for how words produced in DesktopChat are transferred and "locked in" to Point-and-Chat. These affect how much the Clear button will affect text transferred to Point-and-Chat. You can find these options in the Settings menu: Settings > DestkopChat text mode.

i. Lock in all new text when cleared. Using the Clear button will lock in new text into Point-and-Chat, but clear the DesktopChat text box.

ii. Lock in all new text when cleared -- if punctuated. Using the Clear button will only lock in to Point-and-Chat the portion of the new text that has an end-of-sentence punctuation mark. The remaining sentence fragment will not be locked into Point-and-Read. The DesktopChat text box will be cleared.

iii. Lock in all new text when cleared -- add missing punctuation. Using the Clear button will lock in all new text into Point-and-Read, but add an end-of-sentence punctuation mark to any last fragment of a sentence. The DesktopChat text box will be cleared.

iv. Lock in all new text as soon as it's punctuated. As soon as an end-of-sentence punctuation mark has been entered into the DesktopChat (and echoed on the Point-and-Chat text editing box), that sentence will be locked in. Of course, locked in sentences can still be erased by using the Erase button.

3. Send the e-mail. Click on the Send button - with a picture of an envelope with wings. The e-mail message will be sent to the contact whose address appears in the To field. The sent e-mail will then be saved in the Sent folder, which you can view by clicking on the Sent tab on the left side of Point-and-Chat.

If you have more than one e-mail account set up with your current identity, the mail will be sent using the one whose checkbox called "Mail will be sent using this account" is checked. To view or change this setting, go to menu heading: Edit > My Identity Setup. Click on any of the e-mail addresses listed in the box near the bottom, and then click the Edit button. If you make changes on this page you want to keep, click the OK button. If you want to lose changes you made on this page, click the Cancel button.

 

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Saving and retrieving a draft e-mail:

At any time during writing an e-mail, you can click on the Save button that has an image of an open filing cabinet drawer with a green arrow going into it. This will save the e-mail into the Drafts folder. You can also accomplish the same thing by going to menu heading: Message > Save. You may want to do this periodically so that in case the program or the computer is shut down, you can retrieve the started e-mail later. You may want to save it so that you can go to a different e-mail and come back to it later.

To retrieve, or go back to, an e-mail that you had already started, click on the Drafts tab on the left side of Point-and-Chat. It looks like an open filing cabinet drawer. This will display a list of all draft e-mails available to open. Click on the one you want to open.

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Deleting an e-mail:

At any time during writing or reading an e-mail, you can click on the Trash button that has an image of a trash can with a red arrow going into it. This will close the e-mail and move it to the Trash folder. You can also accomplish the same thing by going to menu heading: Message > Trash. You can view all deleted e-mails by clicking on the Trash tab on the left side of Point-and-Chat.

To empty an e-mail from the Trash folder, open the message by clicking on the Trash tab and clicking on the e-mail message. Then, click on the Empty button that looks like a trash can being dumped. After this step, the e-mail will be gone forever.

To empty all of the e-mail from the Trash folder at once, click on menu heading: File > Empty All Trash. The e-mails emptied in this way will be gone forever.

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Receiving e-mail:

E-mails that others have sent to your e-mail addresses can be seen in the Inbox. To see them, click on the Inbox tab on the left side of Point-and-Chat that looks like a mailbox with envelopes sticking out.

To download any new mail that may have been sent to you recently, click on the menu heading: File > Check Mail. The program will pause momentarily as it connects to your e-mail provider and downloads any new e-mails that may be waiting. A progress bar will appear temporarily at the top of the Point-and-Chat window to indicate download progress. If new e-mails were downloaded, they will appear at the top of the Inbox, and they will be displayed with a green background color until you read them.

You can set Point-and-Chat to check for mail in this way automatically at certain intervals. To do this, go to menu heading: Settings > Check mail. Then select one of 3 intervals, every minute, every 15 minutes, or every hour. Or you can select manual checking so it will only check mail when you click on menu heading: File > Check Mail.

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Opening (and reading) an e-mail:

On the Inbox screen, there will be a wide, rectangular button for each e-mail in that box. Each button will show an image associated with the contact who sent the e-mail, the subject of the e-mail, and the date it was sent.

If there are more e-mails than can fit on the screen, then a "Next Page" button will appear in the lower-right corner of Point-and-Chat. When you click on this button, you will then see the next "page" of e-mails. A "Previous Page" button will also appear so you can return to the page before.

When you click on the e-mail you want to read, it will be opened and displayed on the screen, with a tab on the left side containing the contact's image. Only one e-mail can be open at a time, so if another e-mail was already open, it will be saved and closed so that the new e-mail can be shown.

You can move the mouse over the text you want to hear, and it will be highlighted sentence by sentence. If you leave the mouse there for a moment, the text will be read outloud to you.

When you are done reading an e-mail, click on the big red "X" in the upper-right corner, and it will be closed.

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Using the top row of buttons to read e-mail:

The buttons can be used to have the computer read sentences out loud from any text box in Point-and-Read that has a blue border (i.e. that has the computer's focus).

1. Previous. The button shows a blue arrow pointing to the left. Clicking or activating this button will use computer synthesized speech to read the previous sentence aloud.
2. Next. The button shows a blue arrow pointing to the right. Clicking or activating this button will use computer synthesized speech to read the next sentence aloud.
3. Repeat. The button shows a blue arrow pointing in a counter-clockwise circle. Clicking or activating this button will use computer synthesized speech to read the currently highlighted sentence again, or re-read the sentence that the computer just read aloud.
4. Toggle. The button shows a white arrow that loops down and then to the right (like a backwards "J"). Clicking or activating this button will move the focus of the computer (for purposes of text-to-speech reading) among the various text boxes. More specifically, the focus will move from the current box to the box below it. (If the bottommost text box has the focus, activating the Toggle button will move the focus back to the top text box.) A blue border will show which box has the focus.
5. Close. The button shows a big red "X". If you are in an e-mail window, clicking or activating this button will close the current e-mail. If you are on the contacts window, clicking or activating this button will hide the contacts window and show the Inbox. However if you are in the Inbox window, then clicking or activating the big red "X" will close the Point-and-Chat Mail program.

You can also close the whole Mail program by going to the menu heading File > Exit.

ALSO: When viewing the Contacts table, the Toggle button will advance through the contact category tabs (buddies, family, etc.), and read the tab aloud. Within a particular contacts tab, using the Previous, Next, and Repeat button will navigate through the Contacts table and read the contact's name out loud.

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Reading the different message folders:

Point-and-Chat Mail keeps messages in 4 folders: Inbox, Sent, Drafts, and Trash.

  1. Inbox: E-mail messages sent to you.
  2. Sent: Copies of e-mail messages you have sent to others.
  3. Drafts: Messages that you have created but not yet sent or deleted.
  4. Trash: Messages that have been deleted.

Viewing the list of messages in each folder: Each folder has its own tab on the left side of the Point-and-Chat Mail window. Clicking or activating the tab will show the list of messages in that folder. Each message will appear as a very wide button that is not very high -- having a picture on the left and some words. The words may include the name of the sender or recipient, the subject of the message and the time and date that the message was sent or received.

A folder may be empty, or it may have one or more pages of messages. If there is more than one page of messages, a button will appear at the bottom right of the page with the words “Next Page” and a white arrow pointing to the right. Click or activate this button to show the next page. If you are not at the first page of messages in a folder, a button will appear at the bottom left of the page with the words “Previous Page” with a white arrow pointing to the left. Click or activate this button to show the previous page.

Reading the message list: You can read the list of messages several ways.

  1. If you put the computer cursor over a message (that is, the wide button with the basic message information) and leave it there for a moment, the computer will focus on the message button and read the name, subject and time of the message
  2. If you click or activate the Toggle button, the computer will focus on the next message button and read the name, subject and time aloud.
  3. If you use the Next, Previous, or Repeat buttons, the computer will reverse-highlight a part of the message that has the focus and read that part of the message: either the name, or the subject, or the time. The Repeat button will only repeat what has first been read using the Next or Previous button.

Viewing an individual message: Clicking or activating a message (that is, the wide button with the picture, name, subject, and/or date) will cause the entire message to appear. A tab with the picture will also show right above the Inbox tab. You can read any message you are viewing by using the cursor, or the top row of buttons.

  1. Inbox: When you view a message from the Inbox, you can reply to it, forward it, or move it to the Trash folder.
  2. Sent: When you view a message from the Sent folder, you can forward it or move it to the Trash folder.
  3. Drafts: When you view a message from the Drafts folder, you can edit it, send it, save it again (as edited) to the Drafts folder, or move it to the Trash folder.
  4. Trash: When you view a message from the Trash folder, you can restore it to the folder it came from, empty it (that means delete it permanently), or just keep it in the Trash folder by closing the window message window.

Some of these features are discussed in more detail elsewhere.

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Using the keyboard or DesktopChat to control Point-and-Chat:

The Point-and-Chat software can respond to keystroke combinations from your keyboard, or from keyboard emulators such as DesktopChat. By default, this behavior is enabled. To change it, click on menu heading: Settings > Accept keystroke commands. You will see four choices. You can select either from keyboards, from emulators (such as DesktopChat), both, or none.

You may be able to connect a stand-alone AAC device to your computer and use it to control Point-and-Chat or enter text into Point-and-Chat. Some stand-alone AAC devices connect using the USB port and act as if they were keyboard emulators. Other stand-alone AAC devices connect using a serial connection. To enable the automatic launch of software that can listen for an AAC device through a serial connection, click on the menu heading: Settings > AAC Serial cable connection. You may be prompted to download special software.

See the Integration Kit for more information about keyboard commands, connecting AAC devices, and how to program stand-alone AAC devices to control Point-and-Chat.

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Replying to an e-mail:

After someone has sent you an e-mail, you may wish to write back to that person. Instead of starting with an entirely new e-mail, "replying" means using the e-mail you received as a starting point, which you can then modify before sending it back to the other person. Replies can go back and forth between people in this way many times. It is useful for keeping track of an e-mail conversation.

To reply to an e-mail that you are reading, click on the Reply button, which looks like an envelope and a blue arrow pointing left to a person. (Alternatively, you can go to the menu heading: Message > Reply.) When you do this, the original e-mail will be closed, and a new draft e-mail be created and shown. It will already be addressed to the original sender. The subject will look similar to the original subject. The body text of the original will be in the text editing box underneath the words "Original Message". You can modify the subject and body as you wish. (See the section "Writing and sending an e-mail" for more on this.) When you are ready to send the reply, click the Send button, which looks like an envelope with wings.

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Forwarding an e-mail:

After someone has sent you an e-mail, you may wish to send the message on to another person. Instead of starting with an entirely new e-mail, and having to copy the contents of the original, "forwarding" means using the e-mail you received as a starting point, which you can then modify before sending it to another person.

To forward an e-mail that you are reading, click on the Forward button, which looks like an envelope and a blue arrow pointing right to a person. (Alternatively, you can go to the menu heading: Message > Forward.) When you do this, you will be shown the Contacts page and hear the words, "Who do you want to forward this message to?" Find and click on the contact you want to receive your e-mail. Or, you can click the big red "X" in the upper-right corner to cancel.

After you make your selection, the original e-mail will be closed, and a new draft e-mail be created and shown. It will already be addressed to the contact that you chose. The subject will look similar to the original subject. The body text of the original will be in the text editing box underneath the words "Original Message". You can modify the subject and body as you wish. (See the section "Writing and sending an e-mail" for more on this.) When you are ready to send the e-mail, click the Send button, which looks like an envelope with wings.

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Changing the way buttons are highlighted:

To change the way buttons are highlighted when you move the mouse over them, click on the menu heading: Settings > Button highlighting. You will see two choices. If you select "standard", buttons will change slightly in appearance when the mouse moves over them, as determined by your computer's system defaults. If you select "yellow", buttons will change to a bright yellow color when the mouse moves over them.

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Using the computer mouse to read e-mail:

The Point-and-Chat software knows what a sentence is. When you move the computer mouse over text in a text box, the computer will highlight any sentence that the mouse travels over. When the mouse stops over any part of a sentence for about a second, the computer will read that sentence aloud. We call this "Point-and-Read" technology, and it is patented.

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Positioning the Point-and-Chat window on the screen automatically:

In the default setting, the Point-and-Chat window will be positioned automatically when you log in. If you are using DesktopChat, then by default, the Point-and-Chat window will be located on the left side of the screen and use the maximum available height - and DesktopChat will be positioned on the right side of the screen. If you are not using DesktopChat, then by default Point-and-Chat Mail will be positioned on the right side of the screen. (This will allow Point-and-Chat IM to fit on the left side of the screen for easy access to both Point-and-Chat programs.)

You can turn off this default behavior by going to the menu heading: Settings > “Position with EZ-Fit when I log in” and uncheck that setting.

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Using the SWITCH button to switch between Point-and-Chat programs:

In some versions of Point-and-Chat you will see a button labeled "SWITCH", located below the "Toggle" button. This SWITCH button makes it easier to switch between different Point-and-Chat programs that are running on the same computer. If the button is visible but "greyed out", it means that there are no other Point-and-Chat programs running to which it can switch. If the button is clearly visible, it will have a picture of a small green arrow laying on top of two overlapping windows.

The entire SWITCH button will turn green when another Point-and-Chat program has an incoming message. This could be a new Instant Message in a Point-and-Chat IM program or a new e-mail in a different instance of the Point-and-Chat Mail program.

If you click on the SWITCH button, you will be taken to the other Point-and-Chat program that is running. If there are more than two Point-and-Chat programs running, a drop-down list will appear from which you can select which program you want to use.

Switching to a different Point-and-Chat program will not close the program you are currently using, but merely hide it. You can return to the first Point-and-Chat program by clicking the SWITCH button in the second Point-and-Chat program.

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Quitting, closing or exiting Point-and-Chat:

1. After you've saved any drafts you were working on, you can go to the Inbox page and click on the Close button with the big red "X".
2. You can click on the little "X" button in the upper right corner of the Point-and-Chat Window.
3. You can click on the menu heading File > Exit.
4. You can also switch to a different identity by going to the menu heading File > Select Identity. Then you can choose another identity.

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Dealing with SPAM:

Point-and-Chat Mail does not have a built in SPAM filter and has not been tested with commercial SPAM filters. However, your ISP may provide filtering before it delivers email.

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Activating Point-and-Chat on your computer:

Pre-activated CD. If you installed Point-and-Chat from a pre-activated CD, the Point-and-Chat software is activated automatically. (The CD will have the words "Pre-activated" displayed prominently.) You may install Point-and-Chat on up to 3 computers. In order to use it on another computer, you have to UN-install it from one of the first 3.

Activation from Free Trial. If you installed Point-and-Chat from a 30 Day Free Trial download or a 30 Day Free Trial CD, you are allowed to use the software for free for 30 days.(The CD will have the words "30 Day Free Trial" displayed prominently.) After that, you must purchase a license to use the software, or it will stop working. (You do not need a new disk.) You can purchase a license by clicking the menu heading Help > Purchase/Activate, and following the instructions on the web site. Alternatively, if you wait until the license expires, a popup box will appear when you try to log in. You can click the hyperlink on that box and follow the instructions on the web site. Alternatively, you can also visit the activation web site at www.simtalk.com/PnC/activation.

To share this purchased license with another computer, you must run Point-and-Chat on the first computer and go to the Help menu. Go to menu item labeled “About Point-and-Chat Mail”. A window will pop up. Click on the “Share License to Another Installation” button and write down the share code. Then install Point-and-Chat on the new computer and run it. Then go to Help menu item labeled “About Point-and-Chat Mail” and click on the “Share License From Another Installation”. Then enter the share code where directed and click “OK”. You may share the license among up to 3 computers. In order to share it with still another computer you must UN-install Point-and-Chat from one of the first 3.

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Copyright © 2008-2009, Point-and-Read, Inc.