TextEase has been around since the 1990s and was originally released by Softease. According to the Readme in TextEase, the last RISC OS release was 2003 (5.91). The software is now owned by RM ltd, who continued to offer versions for other platforms for a while. They have now discontinued it. It was always aimed at Education, and is very easy to use. I will consider how applicable it is outside the classroom in my reviews.
The version Elesar are offering is 5.95 which makes it work on modern systems and fixes lots of bugs. It also works with eSpeak again so it can say what you type. When you buy the software you will be sent an installer that downloads the actual software so you will need Internet access. The downloaded software is locked to the machine you download the software on and will run in demo mode if you copy to another machine. The download includes an electronic copy of the manual. The manual is still a work in progress and Elesar welcomes your feedback on it.
The software is available in 3 separate versions (Home, Educational and Professional). The difference is the price and the software supplied. All versions come with TextEase DTP and TextEase Paint. The Education version also includes TextEast Turtle and TextEase Branch. The Professional package has all of these programs as well as TextEase Table and TextEase Show.
The key part of the TextEase suite is the DTP program. My first impression of TextEase DTP is that it is very easy to use. There is a toolbar at the top with lots of options and you can just drag clipart onto the page or just click anywhere and start typing. You can select and rotate anything but you also have proper DTP functions such as alignment of text and paragraphs.
We will be looking into more detail on all the programs which form part of TextEase in future articles.
In the meantime, you can find out more and buy a copy of the software from Elesar