Martin Murdoch's home pages - Welcome!

Since just before Christmas I've been working on an idea to add sounds to my
N gauge model railway, with DCC sound coming from the engines the rest of the
layout seemed rather dead.  The result of all this work is now taking shape in 
the form of the Sound Scape project which is a collection of web pages which 
pipe sound clips to Blue tooth speakers in the scenery on the layout.

There are churches, cottages, pubs & much, much more! To find out more & have a 
play take a look at:-
Sound scape control centre
Firefox 58.0.2 has been released including the usual round of updates & fixes.
Most importantly for a number of readers of these pages is that this release 
will improve the way the browser inter-reacts with NVDA 2017.4 screen reading 
software.

The browser is certainly much faster for many pages but NVDA users will need
to wait a second or so on complex layout pages to let things settle, a good
example of this is Ebay where unless you allow a second or 2 for things to 
fully display text will jump around a bit! this is being addressed further in
the next release of NVDA & Firefox 59.0.
Over the last few weeks I've been busy adding bits to these pages, for music
fans I'd like to draw your attention to a new page under the useful links area,
Eamonn's real music page contains loads of listening recommendations with links
to YouTube clips to give you a taster of many of the artists, we are still 
working on adding more artists & improving search & display but do take a look &
let us know what you think:-
Eamonn's real music page
Following a visit from David & Alexander Henshaw from Miniature railway 
magazine earlier this year I'm very pleased to say that the Blatchington branch,
my garden railway, is featured in issue 39 of the publication which is released 
today.  For more details click on the link below:-
Miniature Railway issue 39 is out now as a 99p digital download!
The following video clip shows us testing my new loco & features a passenger
who will be our star prize for the April 2018 open weekend!
AP model engineering class 37 "Loch Trent" test run
We held 3 public running weekends on the Blatchington branch railway this year,
hundreds of people over the 6 days enjoyed a ride round & helped us  raise a 
total of 1,872 - many thanks for your generosity.

Thanks to all who came along & an even bigger thanks to my friends for giving
up their time to help.  All being well we will be doing it all again next year
so we look forward to seeing you then.
Latest video of my garden railway
For those of you currently on DLA you might find the following link of interest,
it's a very strange & scarey process for many, people being told that you cant
be blind as you are looking at them etc. & that is from the expert assessing 
you for the benefit!  Don't panic though, many are successful with their claim.
PIP assistance
Went to my good friend Mike gold's 50th a few days ago & Jan managed to catch
this picture of St. Paul's church Chigwell - hope you like it.

Great to be able to say something nice about a shop for once, I'd like to thank
the staff at Morrisons Seaford for their friendly help when I visit the store 
with my guide dog Kraken.  Even at the busiest times they manage to assist.
Thanks to John Squire I was lucky enough to get a trip to the Lynton & 
Barnstaple railway in his 1931 Rolls Royce to attend the lines gala weekend at 
the end of September.  Pictured above is the car with Sid, one of the locos 
that was in steam for the weekend - a boys dream too, I had the chance to drive 
the loco for a couple of minutes!  Many thanks to Tony Nicholson for the copy
of the picture - my camera decided to play up at the vital moment!
Just to show the world my mum was not the only person with green fingers in
this family, mind you it does help that it is the sort of plant you can
forget for up to a month without the bloody thing dying on you!
There are several reasons for why I started to build these pages, firstly it
gives me some practical purpose to play with HTML & Javascript, secondly it 
will eventually, hopefully, provide examples of both attractive and accessible 
web page design which can be used as an outline reference for others involved 
in web page creation - who knows, the contents might even be useful!

This site is constantly being tested with a variety of screen readers & access
devices including:-

* NVDA version 2017.4 with Espeak, Vocalizer & BRLTTY 5.5,
* Various Alva Braille terminals, mainly Alva satelite 584 pro,
* Mozilla firefox 58.0.2 (64 bit), Internet explorer 11.0, Google chrome &
  Microsoft Edge on Windows 10 Creators edition 64 bit.
* Firefox on Samsung galaxy S5 running Android 6.0.1 (Talkback version 5.1) &
   BRLTTY 5.5

I'm no longer testing with:-
* Jaws screen reader due to lack of Braille support of 64 bit systems & price.
* Windows XP, 7 or 8.1

The upshot of all this testing is that these pages should be fully accessible 
by the blind & many of those using speech recognition systems.

I will be adding more detailed notes on design considerations with examples
of small HTML changes that will make all the difference to disabled
users being able to access your web pages easily.

The contents of these pages are always changing so please do visit frequently
to find updates.

If you have noticed any bugs on these pages or have found a broken link please
do let me know via the feedback form which can be found along with my contact 
details.

I'm always looking for bits to add so let me have links I should include
especially if they use fancy HTML that is still accessible.

Just a small bit of legal stuff here, although most of the material contained 
in these pages is largely in the public domain please do contact me before 
using any text, photos or videos to double check that they are free to use.

Please do drop in again soon!


Site last amended - 20 February 2018 at 09:30