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Axess, an accessible Windows FAS editor

rudib

New Member
I've put together a very basic Axe III/FM3 Windows controller that lets you change the presets and scenes and toggle blocks. No other functionality at all, but it is quick and very easy to navigate using the keyboard alone.

Axess Fractal Audio Editor

axess.jpg

Why even bother with this? It was developed together with a blind colleague who just got a new FM3 but the official editor is not accessible - the screen reader software cannot access any of the text or controls within the editor. FracPad was a bit better, but he still found it confusing to use with the keyboard/screen reader combination, especially the preset browsing. Since the basic protocol is documented, it wasn't that difficult to get the basics up and running. Too bad that the block settings SYSEX messages are not documented for Axe III/FM3, I'd love to expose the basic amp settings!

FM3 is supported, but the presets take a long time to retrieve at startup, something like 20 seconds. I don't have an FM3 to test it out, and the COVID situation makes it impossible to have a hacking session in person.

Hope that this useful to at least someone else and I'd like to raise awareness for accessibility issues with FAS's software. The framework that's used for the GUIs has a long thread about accessibility, but there has been no progress at all in the last 5 years.

The project is open-source and written in Rust. Hope that someone else wants to take a look or build something with it that communicates with our beloved black boxes of glorious tone.
 
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