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Archive for the "Accessibility Best Practices" Topic

Celebrate Global Accessibility Awareness Day

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Today, people from around the world are celebrating Global Accessibility Awareness Day (GAAD), a community-driven effort to raise awareness and discussion about digital accessibility. GAAD was created in 2011 to get people talking, thinking, and learning about the importance of digital accessibility for users with disabilities. GAAD was inspired by a blog post by co-founder Joe Devon, who noticed that web developers were not doing enough to make websites and mobile apps accessible. There are public events to celebrate GAAD in 18 countries on six continents, including 16 in the United States and six in Canada. Even if there is not a… Read More

Making Travel Websites Accessible to People with Disabilities

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Travelers with disabilities come across many barriers when planning, booking, and taking a trip, whether for business or pleasure. Some of these may only be minor inconveniences, but others can make travel extremely difficult or even impossible without help. When thinking about disability, organizations think first about those who are blind, deaf, or in a wheelchair. However, it is important to consider the full range of disabilities, including “invisible” ones like colorblindness, arthritis, autism, or dyslexia. These conditions can affect how travelers interact with your websites, mobile apps, kiosks, or other information and communications technology. While the Americans with Disabilities… Read More

Accessibility and PDF Table of Contents

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If there is a Bible for PDF accessibility, it is the 14th chapter of ISO 32000_2008, the ur-text of the PDF standard. For any Scripture, of course, there is commentary, and the latest is ISO 14298-1-2016. Nowhere in the core documents defining PDF accessibility is there any complete, definitive description of how to create a table of contents. That is why, when we review PDF tables of contents, there are so many variations in how they are tagged. ISO 32000 describes the tags used to make a table of contents: (From ISO 302000 14.8.2 table 333) TOC (Table of contents)… Read More

Tagging Complex Tables

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Complex Tables are to be avoided at all cost, as I stated in yesterday’s post, The Trouble with Tables: A Brief Introduction. The reason is that they will create 3 to 6 hours of work apiece for authors, developers, or remediators.  I’ve spent a considerable amount of time searching my cache of problematic PDFs, looking for complex tables to use as an example, such as the following: This sure looks like a complex table, and it is – but only due to the author’s desire to attach two separate tables together.  A Section 508 remediator might send this back to the… Read More

The Trouble with Tables: A Brief Introduction

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This is the first in a three-part series of blog posts that is dedicated to the many people in Government agencies who deal with PDF files on a daily basis, and encounter Section 508 requirements for these files. The Federal Government generates tens of thousands of PDF documents annually, and all of these must be made accessible. This task often falls to Section 508 departments, individual remediators, or even content authors. The goal of this blog series is to highlight special issues (and headaches) that you all will encounter. The topics I will be addressing will be based on some of… Read More

Use Case Testing: What is it, where does it fit, and is it right for your situation?

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As a member of the Accessibility Services team at SSB BART Group (SSB), I work with many types of industry and government clients, some of which include use case testing in their engagement. This blog post will explain what use case testing is, what it can tell you, and when it is most effective to use. What is use case testing? At the end of the day, use case testing is real-world testing. That is, it seeks to simulate – as closely as possible – a  “real” user’s experience with various facets of a client’s product, whether it be their… Read More

Assistive Technology for Users with Mobility Disabilities: Android Switch Access

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Welcome to the final post in this short series on assistive technology for users with mobility disabilities. Today, we focus on Android Switch Access. For the previous posts, please follow these links for “Computer and Mobile Phone Access for People with Mobility Disabilities” and “Assistive Technology for Users with Mobility Disabilities: iOS Switch Control.” Android’s Switch Access (Android 5 and higher) can be used with a variety of Bluetooth switches and Bluetooth keyboards. This accessibility feature allows people with significant motor disabilities to operate the device without using the touchscreen. The Android Switch Access’s purpose is to provide input and access to interactive… Read More

Assistive Technology for Users with Mobility Disabilities: iOS Switch Control

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The iOS Switch Control accessibility feature is built-in to iOS and can be used with a variety of Bluetooth switches, Bluetooth keyboards, and the iOS device’s screen. This accessibility feature allows people with significant motor disabilities to operate their iOS device. The iOS Switch Control has two modes that the user can use: item scanning and point scanning. Item scanning scans through all the elements on the page. Sometimes elements are grouped together (for example: a drop-down menu), and by selecting the group of elements, the scan mode will drill down and start scanning the individual elements in that group…. Read More

Computer and Mobile Phone Access for People with Mobility Disabilities

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Users with mobility disabilities access computers and mobile phones in an array of ways. These users include people who use wheelchairs, people with limited manual dexterity, and those with limited reach and strength. It is important to note that the baby boomer generation is starting to show age-related disabilities, including but not limited to arthritis, which can make it quite difficult and painful for them to use technology. Today, I’ll offer an introduction to the ways these users access technology, and in future articles I will go into more depth on some of these technologies. To begin, we’ll focus on… Read More

Accessibility Considerations for Localization

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Localization is the process of translating a product into different languages or adapting a product for a specific country or region.   When localization is performed on web content, information such as alternatives used by people with disabilities may inadvertently be overlooked.  When pages are localized, language teams often update strings of content and view the visual changes on the web page.  Some accessibility information is not visible on a web page but still must be localized, e.g. alternative text for images and text positioned off-screen for screen readers. Localization teams need procedures and tools to help them find this accessibility… Read More

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