Archive for May 2022

Severe end-stage wet Macular Degeneration + an Elgato Stream Deck + an Apple iMac. Single key stroke computer use with a 15 key device.


Any permanent vision loss is only properly understood by persons who have had this experience.  Various levels of macular degeneration usually leave an individual with some peripheral sight.  My mantra is maximise the use of my remaining sight.  The purpose of this posting is to encourage, enhance and try to simplify computer use for a person impacted by MD.

The de facto standard full size computer keyboard contains about 104 keys.  For a person with sight loss, it can become a daunting or impossible task to use such a keyboard effectively.

An alternative option for consideration is to use a shortcut keypad limited to 3 rows and 5 columns, comprising 15 keys only, and activated by a single key stroke.  This keypad can be configured to any users particular requirements.  Keys can be allocated to any position on the keypad, with individual keys highlighted with a selected prompting icon.  If required, additional pages can be added to the keypad to undertake a wider range of tasks.  Importantly, with only a small learning curve, this keypad can be operated  by a vision impaired user eventually, by unsighted touch-typing.

In my experience, the aforesaid parameters can be met by the 15 key Elgato Stream Deck.


Setting up the Keypad ~ an overview

The image below is a screenshot from my iMac showing part of the implementation details of the working page from the Stream Deck website.  This facilitates the creation of the single keystroke shortcut or macro, together with the associated pictorial key icons selected.

As shown in the two keypad images above, these pictorial icons are automatically transferred to the physical shortcut keypad.


Keypad shortcuts that I find most useful for my Page 1

This explanatory table below details the action associated with any of my created pictorial icons located on my Page 1 of the shortcut keypad.

Keyboard shortcuts or macros can be enabled from options within the Screen Deck website.


Website Navigation

The image below is a screenshot of part of my Desktop on my Apple iMac 27″ 5K PC.  Enlarged icons on a plain blue background permit me immediate access to my most frequently used websites or applications.  This is facilitated by the use of my mouse and the largest screen cursor available.  Additionally if required, I can zoom into and out of  the whole of the Desktop screen.  Importantly, a particular icon when opened, can access another window of new large icons referenced to a theme.



Without the assistance of the Priklets collective, this article could not have been achieved.  Special thanks to my son Sam for his critical input and to my wife Gillian of 50 years plus, for her perspicacity and patience.  This posting was created by Robert whilst recovering from an Ischemic stroke.

Waikiki Dreamer ~ Time Before ~ No Fear