AlphaSmart 3000«:

The AlphaSmart is a lightweight and portable word processor that allows the student to complete and organize written work in up to 8 different 10-12 page files. Information can easily be sent to the computer for formatting and printing.

Getting Started:  Instructions for the AlphaSmart 3000

AlphaSmart 3000« Instructions


Installing the PC Y cable between your AlphaSmart and PC:

    1.  Turn off the computer.

    2.  Disconnect the keyboard from the computer keyboard port.

    3.  Connect the orange end of the PC Y cable into the keyboard port on the back of the computer.

    4.  Plug the keyboard cable back into the AlphaSmart cable end marked connect to PC keyboard

    5.  With the PC Y cable installed, turn on the computer and wait for computer start-up. Test your
      computer keyboard for operation.


**Important:  Always leave the PC Y cable attached to the computer. The computer does not have to be shut down to plug/unplug the AlphaSmart from the PC Y cable.  However, only remove/attach the PC Y cable from/to the computer when the computer is off!


Entering Text:

Turn on the AlphaSmart by depressing the dark gray on/off key located on the top left row of the keyboard. Simply begin typing as you would on any keyboard. Use the backspace key to erase. As soon as you type each character it is automatically saved. The arrow keys allow you to move your cursor through the text.


The tab key can be used on the AlphaSmart to create columns or paragraph indentations. All other text formatting including: margins, tab stops, font, size, and other styling attributes, can be done on the computer after the file has been sent from the AlphaSmart to a word processing program on your computer. 


To select text to edit, move the cursor under the first letter of the first word in the text you want to edit. When you hold down the shift key along with any of the arrow keys, you will notice a flashing block cursor appear over the letter. Use the arrow keys to select the text that you wish to cut, copy or delete.

Select all:  Press -R.

Delete:  ctrl-X to move the text to the clipboard or the backspace key to delete the text entirely.

Copy:  ctrl-C to copy the selected text to the clipboard without deleting it.

Paste:  ctrl-V to place the clipboard contents at the new cursor location.

Find:  find key 


Erasing Files/Data Recovery:

Press the clear file key while the AlphaSmart is not attached to a computer to erase the entire file in which you currently have open. If you accidentally clear a file, it can still be recovered as long as no text has been entered into that file. Open the file that you wish to recover and press option--R.


Spell Check:

    1.  Press the spell check key. The spell check will check each word in the file.

    2.  If a word is spelled incorrectly (or if the word is not in the spell check dictionary), you will be
         offered several options.


     Disabling Spell Check:  Press  -option-spell check. Then enter the master
password. (Contact the SFPS Assistive Technology Coordinator for the master

     Enabling Spell Check:  To enable the spell check feature, press  -option-spell 
again and enter the master password.


Sending Text to the Computer from the AlphaSmart Using the PC Y Cable:

    1.  Attach your AlphaSmart to the PC Y cable attached to the computer (if the PC Y cable is not
         attached to the computer, follow the directions for Installing the PC Y cable between your
           AlphaSmart and PC)
. Plug the gray end of the cable marked 3000 into the computer port on
         the right side of the AlphaSmart 3000. (If you are using an AlphaSmart 2000, connect the blue
         end of the cable marked 2000 into the computer port on the right side of the AlphaSmart 2000.)

    2.  The following message appears:  Attached to PC (or Mac), emulating keyboard. Press send key
         to transfer file.
(If message does not appear, check cable and make sure it is properly  
         attached to the computer.)

3.  Open a word processing application (Microsoft Word«, Write:OutLoud«ů).     
Place the cursor in the file where you wish to insert the text.

4.  Press the send key (upper right key on the AlphaSmart keyboard). If you want to
         cancel a file transfer, press the esc key.

5.  If missing characters or jumbled text appears, slow down the transfer speed.     

6.  Disconnect the AlphaSmart from the computer by unplugging it from the cable.

            Press option--S.


Sending Text to the Computer from the AlphaSmart Using the Infrared AlphaBeam IrDA Wireless Pod:

    1.  When your computer is off, plug the IrDa infrared pod into the appropriate port on the back of
         your computer.

    2.  On the computer, run AlphaBeam for PC located in Programs under AlphaSmart. (If the AlphaBeam
         software was loaded. If it has not been previously installed you will need to install this software.)
         You may want to create a shortcut so that AlphaBeam is on your desktop for quicker access. 

    3.  A message box should appear on the screen indicating that AlphaBeam is active. The following
         message should appear in the box:

Looking for AlphaSmart.

    4.  Open the word processing program into which you want to transfer the AlphaSmart file (ie.
         Microsoft Word, Write:OutLoudů).

    5.  Turn on the AlphaSmart and open the file you want to transfer to the computer.

    6.  Point the AlphaSmart at the IrDA infrared pod and press the send key on the AlphaSmart.  
The following message should appear:

                 Connecting to the computer (infrared mode).

                 Press esc to exit.

    7.  No text will show up in the program window until the file transfer is complete, and then the entire
         text will be pasted into the program.



Printing from the AlphaSmart Directly to a Printer: (requires a specially designed parallel printer cable. Contact the SFPS Assistive Technology Coordinator for this cable.)

    1.  Press option-print to access the printer setup menu. Use the arrow keys to select the
         appropriate printer from the list. The printer you select will be indicated by a plus sign (+) in front
         of the printer name. Press enter to leave the menu. (The AlphaSmart will remember your
         selected printer. You only have to complete this Step when you change printers.)

    2.  Connect the AlphaSmart 3000 parallel cable from the AlphaSmart printer port (on the left-hand
         side, marked ôprinterö) to the parallel port on the printer. 

    3.  Turn the printer on.

    4.  Press the print key on the AlphaSmart to print the current file. Font, print quality, line spacing,
         and margins are fixed and not changeable by the user. The line spacing is set for double spacing
         for easy editing.


Sending Text from the Computer to an AlphaSmart Using the PC Y Cable:

Get Utility for PC: This software utility application allows the student to send text from a computer to the AlphaSmart.

    1.  Open the Get Utility program under Start: Programs: AlphaSmart: Get Utility.
(If this program is not installed you will need to contact the SFPS Assistive
Technology Coordinator for the Get Utility software.)
    2.  Copy the text that you wish to send to the AlphaSmart into the computer
   clipboard. To do this, open the file you wish to send, highlight text, and select
Copy (ctrl-C) from the Edit menu.

3.  Paste text into the window in the Get Utility program. You should see the copied
   text displayed in the Clipboard Contents window.

4.  Turn on the AlphaSmart and select the file you wish to send the text into.

5.  Attach the AlphaSmart to the computer using the PC Y Cable.

6.  On the computer select Send Text To AlphaSmart to send the text from the
computer to the AlphaSmart. The Clipboard text is sent to the current file on the

7.  Disconnect the AlphaSmart.



The AlphaSmart runs on three AA batteries. Use alkaline batteries for the best results (200-500 hours of power).  Replace all three batteries with new ones when the following message appears on your screen:  Low Battery!! 

**Always turn off the AlphaSmart before changing the batteries.

**When storing the AlphaSmart for several months (over the summer), remove the batteries.


Lithium Battery:

AlphaSmart uses a secondary backup battery. This 3V lithium coin cell (CR2032) battery powers the memory, preventing data loss when the unit is turned off and the primary AA batteries are dead.


To determine if your lithium battery is dead:

    1.  Disconnect the AlphaSmart from the computer.

    2.  Enter some text into the AlphaSmart.

    3.  Turn the unit off.

    4.  Remove the AA batteries.

    5.  Wait two minutes.

    6.  Replace the AA batteries.

    7.  Turn the unit back on. If the text you entered is still there, then the lithium battery is still good.
         If the text has disappeared and the file is empty, then the lithium battery has been discharged
         and should be replaced.


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