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Reading books from NNELS on a Brailliant BI 40X

Many NNELS titles can be accessed on a Humanware BI 40X braille display without needing to connect the display to the phone or computer while reading. This means that no matter where you are and regardless of whether you have access to a phone or computer nearby, your books will always be accessible on the device. This tutorial will walk you through the process, which involves downloading title(s), transferring them onto your device, and opening them on your display.

Downloading Titles

Before transferring books to the braille display, we need to download them. If you are unfamiliar with the process of finding and downloading books, please check out the following tutorials:

When you find titles available in multiple formats, you may be wondering which is the right one for the display.

The Bi 40X only reads text-based documents such as .brf, .docx, text-only DAISY 2/2.02, .pdf, .txt, and .rtf. You can find the full list of supported formats in section 5, “Using Victor Reader,” of the official Bi 40X manual. Many of these formats listed above can be found in the repository. We suggest downloading titles in .brf, .docx, and .rtf for the smoothest reading experience. If a title you wish to read is not in our repository and/or in your preferred format, you are welcome to submit a book request. Note that some titles in brf may be packaged as a zip file if the book has been split into multiple files so that you can download the entire book without clicking on multiple links.

Transferring Books onto Your Device

There are two methods of putting books on your display. You can transfer them from your computer directly via the USB cable by copying/moving files onto the device’s hard drive or by putting files onto a USB stick, plugging them into the device, and copying/moving them over via the built-in file manager called KeyFiles. In the next two sections, we will go over each of these methods step-by-step.

Method 1: Transferring books directly from your computer

For Windows Users:

  1. Turn on the unit if it is powered off or wake it from sleep mode.
  2. On your computer, navigate to the folder where you have saved the downloaded files.
  3. Copy or cut the file(s) you wish to put on the display. Note that if a title is zipped up, you do not need to unzip it before transferring it to the device.
  4. Connect the USB cable from the computer to the braille display. You will hear a sound from your unit and computer, indicating the connection is successful. If you do not hear a sound, you may have a broken cable or one that does not support data transfer. We recommend using the USB-C cable that comes with the unit, but any USB-C cable that supports charging and data transfer will work.
  5. On the computer, navigate to the “Bi 40x” drive that should now be available from Windows Explorer and select it. You may get to it from the desktop by selecting “Computer” and then clicking “Bi 40x”. Note that if the display goes to sleep, the drive disappears, so ensure that the device is awake before locating the drive. When you plug in your display, you may get a popup menu asking what you want to do with the device. You can select the “Open folder to view files” option from here to open the drive. Once you have selected the drive, you will see a folder called “Media folder.” Open it, then open the “Books” folder.
  6. Paste your file(s).

For MacOS Users:

Transferring books from a Mac requires a few extra steps. For the drive to appear in your desktop/Finder, you will need to install the Mac OS Transfer software.

Unzip the folder and follow the instructions in the “Using macFUSE to transfer files to MACos.doc” file. Then follow these steps to transfer titles:

  1. Turn on the unit if it is powered off or wake it from sleep mode.
  2. On your computer, navigate to the folder where you have saved the downloaded files.
  3. Copy or cut the file(s) you wish to put on the display. Note that if a title is zipped up, you do not need to unzip it before transferring it to the device.
  4. Connect the USB cable from the computer to the braille display. You will hear a sound from your unit indicating the connection is successful. If you do not hear a sound, you may have a broken cable or one that does not support data transfer. We recommend using the USB-C cable that comes with the unit, but any USB-C cable that supports charging and data transfer will work.
  5. On the computer, navigate to the “OSXFUSE” drive that should now be available from the desktop/Finder and select it. You will see a folder called “Media folder.” Open it, then open the “Books” folder. Note that if the display goes to sleep, the drive disappears, so ensure that the device is awake before locating the drive.
  6. Paste your file(s).

Method 2: Transferring books onto the device from a USB Stick

  1. On the computer, navigate to the folder where you have saved the downloaded files.
  2. Copy or cut the file(s) you wish to put on the display.
  3. Plug in a USB stick and open the drive. When you plug in a USB stick, Windows may ask you what you would like to do with this device. You can select the option to “Open folder to view files.” If the menu does not appear, navigate to “Computer” from your desktop and click on your USB drive. If you are on a Mac, you will access the USB drive from the desktop or on the sidebar in Finder.
  4. Paste your file(s) wherever you want on the USB stick as long as you can easily access them.
  5. Activate the eject feature in Mac or Windows, respectively, on the USB drive. Then, physically remove it from your computer. Ejecting devices can be done in Windows from the system tray by selecting the “Safely Remove Hardware and Eject Media” button. You may need to click the “Show Hidden icons” button on Windows 10 and 11 to see it. If you are on a Mac, locate the drive in Finder and press “command + ‘e’” on the drive.
  6. Plug the USB stick into the braille display.
  7. From your display, navigate to the file manager and select the USB drive.
    1. If you are working with a single file, navigate to it. Then press backspace + ‘y’ to copy or backspace + ‘x’ to cut the file. It will show “copied” or “cut,” depending on the command you choose to use.
    2. If you want to copy or cut multiple files simultaneously, navigate to each file you want to work with and press backspace + ‘l’ to mark it. Then press backspace + ‘y’ to copy or backspace + ‘x’ to cut the files. It will show “copied” or “cut,” depending on the command you choose to use.
  8. Navigate back to the list of drives and select “storage.” Alternatively, you can press space + ‘d’ anywhere within the file manager to get to the list of drives.
  9. Once you have selected “storage,” open the “Books” folder.
  10. Press backspace + v to paste the file(s) you have copied or cut from the USB drive. You will see “Pasted” appear on the display.

Opening Books

  1. From the main menu of the display, navigate to “Victor Reader” and select it.
  2. Select “book list”.
  3. Navigate to the book you want to read and select it. You can type the first letter of the title to jump to a title more quickly, which is especially useful if you have many books on your display. You may need to do this several times if multiple titles begin with the same letter. Note that zipped files will display each file in the zip as an item in the list. Therefore, there is no need to unzip it on the computer or braille display. For example, if the zip file contains vol1.brf and vol2.brf, they will be displayed as individual items in the book list.
  4. Once the book has loaded, you can begin reading or exploring the functionality of the Victor Reader application by going through its menus with "space + m."