Please read the following material carefully for a complete explanation of Sun Dial II. If you would like a copy of the instructions in another format, you can request Braille, large print, computer diskette, email or cassette, by contacting Sun Sounds at 480-774-8300.
Sun Dial II is a telephone based information access service provided by Sun Sounds of Arizona. Development of the service was made possible through collaboration with Rio Salado College, KJZZ FM Radio, Get Vocal Inc., the Plumb Group, and Serotek Inc.
Sun Dial II is divided into two types of services. One type consists of audio programs such as newspapers, magazines and other publications read by Sun Sounds volunteers plus other audio services provided on the World Wide Web. The other type of service consists of newspapers and other information sources from the internet and World Wide Web, and is presented to you by Crystal a speech synthesizer created by AT&T. All you need to access Sun Dial II is a telephone.
Sun Dial II is a dynamic growing service. This guide will acquaint you with various options within the service, but materials and options will change as we improve and augment the system and as the service grows.
When you signed up for Sun Dial II, you were provided with an access telephone number. This number is for your use only. It should not be shared with other people, and should be kept handy in a safe place.
If you at any time have problems using Sun Dial II , or you get confused by the commands, please contact us at 480-774-8300 for assistance. Sun Dial II was developed by Sun Sounds of Arizona with you in mind, so let us know how we can help you use the system better.
You may use any telephone to access Sun Dial II by calling the number given to you when you signed up. At sign up, you provided the phone number from which you usually call. That phone number is programmed into Sun Dial II so that it will recognize you when you call. It will greet you by name, and it will adapt to your personal preferences. If you choose to call using a different phone from the one on file, punch in your registered phone number when asked so that Sun Dial II will recognize you. If you permanently change the phone you plan to use to call Sun Dial II, give us a call so we can reset your number in the system.
If you are already familiar with Sun Dial, then you will have no trouble using Sun Dial II. The basic design will seem very similar to an experienced user. Sun Dial II is a major advancement in technology however, so there are a number of improvements and enhancements. There are also a few things which are done differently. We will list these changes below, and they will be fully described in later sections of this guide.
Voice Commands: If you wish, you can now control Sun Dial II by simply speaking commands.
Synthetic Speech: The speech output has been greatly improved through use of AT&T Natural Voices. We’ve chosen Crystal as the voice of Sun Dial II.
Main Menu: The main menu has been updated to be more logical and easy to use.
Time & Date: You can now find out the time and date from within Sun Dial II.
Your ID: Sun Dial II now knows who you are when you call so it can provide you with personalized functions.
Resume Feature: Sun Dial II is now able to remember where you left off in your call so that if you wish to resume at that spot you can do so.
Bookmarks: Sun Dial II now allows you to bookmark particular pages so that you can return to them quickly and easily.
Favorites: Sun Dial II keeps your bookmarked pages in a list called Favorites so you can find often used pages quickly and easily.
When you call Sun Dial II, you will hear a brief welcome message, and then Crystal will greet you by name and ask you to give a command. You can either say a command verbally, or press a key on the telephone keypad. If you aren’t sure what to do, say “help” or press the 0 key to have the commands listed for you. These choices are as follows:
Sun Dial II is entirely based on web pages. We will explain the ins and outs of web pages in Section 3. For now though, know that all your menus and choices will be displayed as if on a printed page. By moving around on this page and making selections, you get to whatever you want to hear. In this section we’ll discuss keypad navigation, in the next section we’ll discuss voice commands.
Remember, if you get lost, you can always return to the top left of the web page by pressing 1, or, you can return to the Sun Dial II Main Menu by pressing *. From that point you can go anywhere in the system.
Every command previously covered in Section 2.3 is also available to you on a voice menu. By saying a command clearly into your telephone, Sun Dial II will do what you want.
The Internet and the World Wide Web, which is a part of the Internet, contain millions of pages of information. These information pages are generically called “Web Pages.” Nowadays, almost every organization which must interact with the public has its own information web pages. A collection of web pages for a particular organization is called a Web Site. In the past a person had to have a computer and special telecommunications equipment to read these web pages. But now, you too can browse the wealth of news and information available on the World Wide Web by using your telephone.
Using your access phone number, call Sun Dial II, and you will have the opportunity to browse the
World Wide Web and visit the web pages of many different newspapers and service organizations. To do this,press the 2 key on the main menu, or say
“surf the web”.
The first page that you will come to when you go to a particular organization’s web site is called the “home page.” For example, Sun Sounds has a home page, and from that page you can browse, or go to many other web pages with information of interest to Sun Sounds listeners, volunteers and supporters.
After you reach a web page of interest, Sun Dial II will automatically begin reading it to you. If you have never heard a page from the web read to you before, it might take some getting used to. But don’t worry, we’ll examine how to work with the web in the sections below.
Every web page consists of items called elements, and links. Elements consist of text you may want to read. Links are used to connect the page you are on to other web pages.
If you are reading web based newspapers, or other pages from the World Wide Web, pressing 1 in the navigation menu, or saying “top” will take you to the top of the page and begin reading. As Crystal reads to you, you will hear the word “link” when you pass a link. A link is an item which can transport you instantly to another article or another web page. To follow a link, press number 6 (the go forward key) on your keypad or say “link”.
Elements are the paragraphs and articles of information you will read. Often you must wade through many links to get to the first text element. We have provided you with a shortcut though. Press 7 on the keypad or say the word “text” to jump to the first block of text.
When you call Sun Dial II, you will hear a short welcome message. You are now at the main menu. Select 2, or say “surf the web” to open up the World Wide Web which includes Web based newspapers. You will then be taken to a web page from which you can select national or local newspapers, resources for people with disabilities, and many other information web sites.
Sun Dial II will begin reading this web page of options to you automatically. When you hear Crystal say “link, National Newspapers,” press 6 on your phone pad, or say “link” and you will then hear the list of national newspapers available on Sun Dial.
Each of the newspaper titles you hear is a link to that newspaper’s web page. For instance, when you hear Sun Dial II say “link, The Wall Street Journal,” pressing 6 on your phone pad, or saying “link” will take you there. If you miss the link you want, you can press 1 to go back to the top of the web page to hear the list read again, or press 2, to move up the page an element at a time. Or, if you prefer, you can say the word “top” or the word “up” to perform the same functions using voice commands.
If instead you would prefer to hear a local newspaper, you have many choices. Nearly every local newspaper in Arizona maintains a web site. So, if you pick the “Local Newspapers,” selection, you will be presented with a very long list of both daily and weekly newspapers from all over Arizona. The list is too long to print here, but it includes the Arizona Daily Star, the Arizona Republic, the New Times, and newspapers from small communities such as Kingman, Yuma, Prescott, and many others. Each newspaper title will have the word “link” in front of it, so press 6 on your phone pad or say “link” to go to that particular newspaper.
Every newspaper sets up its web site a little differently, so there is no way to learn about your favorite paper except to visit it until you are familiar with it.
Most newspaper web pages have a long list of links near the top of the page which can take you quickly to other parts of the newspaper. Crystal will say the word “link” before reading each link. Selecting a link by pressing 6 or saying “link” will take you to a new page. Unfortunately, you will hear the same long list of links at the top of each new page. This can be frustrating and tedious, so we have built in a way to jump past the list and get to the text quickly by pressing 7 on the telephone keypad or by saying “text”.
If you made a mistake, and need to go back, press 2 to move up the page an element at a time, 1 to go back to the top of the page, or 4 to go back to the previous page. You can again perform the same tasks with your voice by saying “up, top,” or “go back.”
You will probably find that navigating newspapers takes a bit of practice, but once you master it, you will have a tremendous wealth of news and information available right at your finger tips any place, any time.
Popular major newspapers like the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times, or the Wall Street Journal may become very busy as millions of people attempt to reach and read their web pages. If you try to reach the New York Times for instance, at a peak time, say 9:00 A.M. EST, you may find you can’t get in, or the page may load very slowly. This is a web traffic problem, and Sun Dial II has no control over this problem.
You may also encounter the problem of broken links. If a web page within a newspaper has been removed, then the link to that page also must be removed. If the publisher forgets to do this, which does happen, then when you try to follow that link Sun Dial II will give you an error message. This is not a Sun Dial II problem, and we cannot fix it. Depending on how badly broken the link is, Sun Dial II will either just keep you on the page you started from, or it may totally restart taking you back to the Main Menu. If this problem happens repeatedly, please get in touch with us and let us know so we can research the problem.
When you want to go back and select a different newspaper, you can either back out by pressing 4 or saying “go back.” If you, instead, want to quickly start the whole thing over again, you can say “main menu” or press the * key to jump straight back to the Sun Dial II beginning menu.
If you get stuck, or confused, call us at 480-774-8300, and we’ll give you a hand.
There is a lot of information on the World Wide Web which is not in newspapers. It is amazing what one can learn by exploring. Sun Dial II has made this both possible and easy.
When you first call Sun Dial II, pressing 2 or saying “surf the web” at the main menu will get you to the World Wide Web. You will find that no matter where you start, with some patience, you can navigate to almost anywhere else on the web.
For instance, you can select an option called “resources for People Living With Disabilities,” and you will be presented with a list of links to organizations like the Braille and Talking Book Library, the American Council of the Blind, the Public Library, and the National Federation of the Blind. You can even visit other radio reading services by following the International Association of Audio Information Services link.
When you are browsing any of these web pages, the telephone keys and the voice commands work the same way as when you were reading newspapers.
As noted before, there are voice commands to do all of these functions without pressing keys.
Many people find that listening for long periods to a synthetic voice is tiring, or not very pleasant. If you are one of these people, then you will prefer listening to the human side of Sun Dial II. Volunteer readers from all over Arizona record newspapers, shopping information and grocery ads, and many other kinds of material in the Sun Sounds studios. Much of this programming, though not all of it, is read over the Sun Sounds radio reading service. The reading and other information, presented by the excellent volunteer readers at Sun Sounds, is indexed and stored in Sun Dial II for your use.
To hear audio programs, press 1 or say, “audio programs” when you call Sun Dial II.
When you call Sun Dial II, saying “audio programs,” or pressing 1 from the Main Menu will take you to a web page listing of all available Audio Programs including daily newspapers. All of these newspapers are recorded in Sun Sounds’ studios by volunteer readers. They are indexed and broken down so that you can choose what section of the newspaper you wish to hear, and move easily from article to article. The newspapers are updated daily.
Once you select a particular newspaper Crystal will immediately begin reading to you the sections of the newspaper which are available. The sections available may differ a bit from newspaper to newspaper. Crystal will say the word “link” before the title of each of these newspaper sections. This means that if you select one of these links by pressing the 6 key, or saying the word “link” you will be taken straight to that particular section of the newspaper by-passing all the articles in between.
Within each newspaper section is a list of “Articles.” Some of these are specifically titled such as “Ann Landers” but in the case of Front Page news articles, they are merely numbered. For instance, the Front Page section of the Arizona Republic would read as follows:
Section A, Front Page News
Link Article 1
Link Article 2
Link Article 3
Important Note: When an audio program is playing, you cannot give a voice command until you press a key to get the attention of Sun Dial II. This is to prevent you from accidentally interrupting an audio program by coughing or making other noises. Once an audio program is interrupted, if you resume, it will begin playing at the beginning of the program again.
As all of the articles recorded in this part of the Sun Dial II system are read by real live human beings, you will find listening for long periods much easier and more pleasant. Even so, you still control how you listen. If you want to go back to the beginning of the article press the 1 key. To stop the reading and leave the article press any key to get Crystals attention, and then say “go back” or press the 4 key.
When you call Sun Dial II, press 1 or say, “Audio Programs,” from the Main menu, and you will go to the area of Sun Dial containing all available audio programs both those produced by Sun Sounds and those produced by other organizations. This menu page contains several different types of Audio services and recordings. Some of these programs are live and some are pre-recorded. When listening to a live program, you are actually listening to the same broadcast that listeners are hearing on the radio.
Remember, you can move up and down the list of programs within this area by using the up and down
keys, 2 and 8, on your telephone keypad. Press 6 to select a particular program. Pressing 0 will get help, and pressing * will take you back to the Main
Menu. Or, if you prefer, you can say “up, Down, Link, Help, “Main Menu,” or
Sun Dial II is such a flexible system, you can even choose to listen to the actual live broadcast of the Sun Sounds radio service.
When you call, selecting option 1 from the Main menu or saying “Audio Programs” will take you to the Audio Programs page where you can connect to the live broadcast of either Sun Sounds in Phoenix or Tucson. No longer must you miss your favorite program when you are not near your Sun Sounds radio.
Pressing any key while the broadcast is playing will stop the broadcast. You will be asked for a command. Pressing the 4 key or saying “go back” will place you on the Sun Dial II Audio Programs page. You may continue to browse the web, or say “good bye” to end the call.
Sun Sounds of Arizona has become a comprehensive information access organization that serves many different constituents in all parts of the state. Whether you are a Sun Dial II user, a radio reading listener from Tucson, Flagstaff, Yuma, or the valley, volunteer, donor, or user of our web based services , there is material to help you within Sun Dial II. We have created a brand new information section called Listings and Updates which presents information to help you live your life, and also stay in touch with Sun Sounds more easily. To visit this section, from the main menu of Sun Dial II, press the 6 key or say “listings,” or “updates.”
From the Updates and Listings section of Sun Dial II you can find out the current weather in your part of the state. You can also visit the TV listings and here what’s on for the entire day every day, for up to a week ahead of time. Great for planning. Other life style features will be added in time. If you have a suggestion for information you’d like to hear which would be helpful for you, let us know.
As a part of the Updates and Listings page, you can select our comprehensive listing of services available to people with disabilities. The page can whisk you to companies that sell special adaptive aides, adapted computers, audio or Braille books, advocacy organizations like the NFB and ACB, Independent Living Centers as well as agencies which provide training and services for blind and vision impaired people, etc. If you know of resources we have missed, let us know and we’ll add them.
As a user of the Sun Sounds reading services, you may want to know what’s on the air right now, which programs are available on the web for download, or how to use Sun Dial II when you cannot find this guide. Just press 6 on the Main Menu or say “Listings.” The entire program guide is available for Sun Sounds radio, no matter where you live in Arizona, and you can listen to it in audio form, or have Crystal read the print version to you. Or, within this same section of Sun Dial II, you can find this users manual available in both audio and printed form.
We will also be posting listener news letters to help you keep in touch with activities and what’s happening around here. These too will be available in either audio, or written form. In short, everything you could want to more effectively take advantage of Sun Sounds of Arizona services will be here ready for you to use from any telephone anywhere.
Sun Sounds of Arizona could not exist if it wasn’t for the generosity of nearly 500 volunteers statewide. If you are a volunteer now, or you may want to check out becoming a volunteer, newsletters and information specifically for Sun Sounds volunteers will be available in the Updates and Listings section. It is volunteers who do all of the reading for Sun Sounds, but volunteers do many other jobs also. Volunteers help with public speaking, fund raising, office support, and many other activities. We invite you to become a volunteer yourself even though you are a customer.
Sun Sounds is dependent on the support of individual, corporate and foundation donors to survive and grow. If you currently support Sun Sounds financially, we thank you. If not, you can learn more about the charitable and financial sides of Sun Sounds in the Updates and Listings section.
A number of years ago Sun Sounds teamed up with the Arizona Clean Elections Commission, and the Arizona Secretary of State’s office to present, for the first time in Arizona, detailed state and local election information. This information presented ballot initiatives, candidates statements, and judicial performance reviews a few months before each statewide election.
As part of Sun Dial II this function is greatly expanded. To get to the Voter Information section of Sun Dial II, press the 9 key from the Main Menu, or say “voter info.” You will then be taken to a page listing political and voter information from the very local all the way to the national. Being fully informed as a citizen of our great nation has never been so easy. Stay informed, vote, exercise your right as a citizen by visiting the Voter Info section of Sun Dial II both near election time, and the rest of the year too.
Five new features have been added to Sun Dial II which will make your experience easier, more fun, and to your own tastes. The features include bookmarks, the resume function, favorites, special messages, and the time and date feature. Each is described below.
Interruptions are a normal part of everyday life. They can be a real irritant and inconvenience when you are listening to or reading something important though. Sun Dial II has made it easier than ever before to read long documents or due research even if you get interrupted. Whenever you use Sun Dial II, it tracks where you’ve gone on the World Wide Web, or what you’ve been listening to. If you have to stop in the middle of something, it used to take a long time to call back and find your place again. But no more. Now, stop whenever it is convenient, and know that you can call back when you get the chance, and pick up right where you left off. To do this, from the main menu say “resume” or press the 4 key. Sun Dial II will take you straight to where you were before you hung up. If you don’t want to resume, no problem, log in and make a selection as you normally would.
As you explore Sun Dial II and the World Wide Web, you will find particularly interesting pages to which you wish to return often. Maybe you are a member of ACB and want to quickly check meeting updates and such, or there is a particular catalog you
like to browse for special deals, or maybe you avidly follow a favorite team, and you want to keep tabs on who is injured, who has been traded, or the latest
scores. Having to navigate to these very specific pages every time you call can become tedious and a waste of time. Sun Dial II has solved this problem by
enabling you to bookmark a page for later retrieval. When you create a bookmark, then that page is marked and stored for you in a list called Favorites. So next time you call, you check your list of favorites, pick the one
you want, and go straight there; no navigating, no muss, no fuss.
To bookmark a page for later retrieval, say “bookmark” while you are browsing the page, or press the 3 key in the navigation menu. Sun Dial II will immediately mark the page, and return you to the Main Menu.
All pages you’ve previously bookmarked are stored in your personal list of pages called Favorites. To get to your favorites, call Sun Dial II, and from the Main Menu, press the 3 key, or say “favorites”.
You will then be given your personal numbered list of favorite bookmarked web pages or files. You can save up to nine bookmarks in your
favorites list. To select a favorite and go to that spot, just press, or say, the number, one through nine, of the
This section also gives you the ability to delete favorites that no longer interest you. To delete a favorite bookmark, press or say “9”. You will then be presented with your numbered list and asked which one you want deleted. Just press or say the number for the bookmark you want deleted, and it’s gone.
Though you are free to visit the Updates and Listings section of Sun Dial II any time to get the latest news. We know you are busy, and we want to help keep you informed while not wasting your time. For this reason, a message or announcements feature has been added to Sun Dial II. The best part is, you don’t have to do anything to hear them. Whenever you call Sun Dial II, and make a selection from the Main Menu, before you are taken to your selection, you will be given a short five second message or announcement which may be of use to you. It’s kind of like a really short public service announcement. You’re welcome!
Practically every device and appliance in the house nowadays, including your telephone, displays the time and date for your convenience. The only problem is, it isn’t convenient when you can’t see well enough to read the display. Sun Dial II makes it easy and fast to get the current time, and date, while you are using Sun Dial, or any other time for that matter. When you call Sun Dial II, press the 5 key on the main menu, or say “time” and Crystal will tell you the time, and the date. If you are browsing within Sun Dial II, to get the time say “main Menu” or press the * key, and then say “time” or press the 5 key. There, fast and easy right?
Sun Dial II will continue to improve and develop over time. If you have suggestions, feel free to let us know and we’ll take them under consideration. Some ideas which will not be a part of Sun Dial II initially, but we hope to add in coming years are the following:
Sun Dial II is a free subscription service of Sun Sounds of Arizona which is a public service of Rio Salado College, a Maricopa County Community College. Unauthorized use of Sun Dial II is prohibited.
We encourage you to be in touch with us.
Sun Sounds of Arizona
W. 14th St.
Tempe, Arizona 85281
Phone: 520-296-2400 (Tucson)
Phone: 928-779-1775 (Flagstaff)
Sun Dial II, and Sun Sounds of Arizona rely on the generosity of individuals, corporations and foundations to remain healthy and provide services at no cost to users. If you wish to financially support the work of Sun Sounds of Arizona, or Sun Dial II, your gift will be gratefully accepted at the above address. You may send checks made out to Sun Sounds Foundation, or you may put it on your credit card or debit card. For more information, or assistance, contact us at the address, phone, or email address above.
Sun Sounds of Arizona and Sun Dial II are trademarks of the Maricopa County Community College District
(revised: November 18, 2009)