June 16, 2008
If you happen to find yourself in the lovely surrounds of Boulder, Colorado in November, you may want to make a note of this event taking place (details quoted from press release with some minor editing):
The 11th Annual Accessing Higher Ground: Accessible Media, Web and Technology Conference for Education, for Businesses, for Web and Media Designers (In Collaboration with AHEAD, EASI, ATHEN and CSUN ATACP)
November 11 - 14, 2008, University of Colorado-Boulder
Accessing Higher Ground focuses on the implementation and benefits of Assistive Technology in the university and college setting for sensory, physical and learning disabilities. Other topics include legal and policy issues, including ADA and 508 compliance, and making campus media and information resources - including Web pages and library resources - accessible. Dozens of workshops, lectures, hands-on experience in beautiful Boulder, Colorado.
March 18, 2008
If you’ve just come back from another annual SXSW Interactive and the thought of returning so soon fills you with a sense of dread (and not just a little amount of concern for your poor, battered liver), look away now. For anyone still reading, here’s the deal: Knowbility are running another AccessU session in that fair city, which they describe as follows:
Knowbility’s annual web and software accessibility institute. Three tracks, two days of classes for administrators, content providers, and technologists in how and why to make IT accessible to everyone. From the basics to the bleeding edge, Access-U will provide the resources you need.
It’s aimed at ‘anyone with interest in and responsibility for accessible IT within business, academia, government agencies and/or the nonprofit sector’. So that’s a fairly wide-rangling group of people. If this sounds of interest to you - and the courses are certainly run by people who know their stuff - then check out the full course description here or register here.
If you are in London in April and have an interest in advancing the web using the latest technologies but also care a dime about keeping the end result accessible, you must come along to the 1-day event that AbilityNet are hosting. Accessibility 2.0: A Million Flowers Bloom includes a number of the leading accessibility experts converging for 1 day of practical discussions and demonstrations:
They will be looking at practical solutions to the Web 2.0 accessibility problems, showing cutting edge techniques. We want to make it a very practical day, so that you will come away knowing what you need to do, and where you need to focus to make sure you give access to all users.
Ther is an early bird registration fee which runs out in 2 days (sorry, I only just found out about this event!), with the very reasonable price of £150 for the day. The booking form is here.
August 21, 2007
Being serious, though, there are no shortage of conferences bandying the AJAX word around, but the speakers at this gig really are top-notch and I know that many of them, aside from Derek, are also very knowledgeable about the worlds of accessibility and standards in general, so this bodes very well.
Early bird registration is on now (ends 31st August).
August 13, 2007
Round two of the Public Sector Forums organised Real World Accessibility was a blast, just like round one. For the most part, it was a straight re-run of the presentations we gave at the first event, although Patrick and I decided to change our slides completely for this event (mine was entitled Accessibility Cock-ups in the Wild).
Increasingly, I’m using pre-recorded screencasts in my slides – it takes a bit longer to record examples in advance but once I have them, there’s a nice little library of resources to make use of in future presentations. On the day itself, I don’t have to worry about things like flaky internet connections, me fumbling over a control or JAWS timing out on me at a critical moment. The downside to this approach is that the file sizes become very large. I use Keynote on the Mac and with the embedded movie and audio files, the presentation came in at 85mb. This makes it impractical to supply in download format, or at least not without a little care and attention.
But doesn’t the subject line say that the slides are available?
Enter Skitch, a handy little screen capture tool on the Mac that’s currently in Beta testing but is, without a doubt, one of the slickest little pieces of software that I’ve used in years. It makes the process of capturing screenshots and annotating (and then sharing the results) an absolute doddle. So, to get around the issue of the multimedia, I’ve used Skitch to capture the key frames and described the action on screen simply – it is enough for people who attended to get a reminder. (For those who did not attend, well, you’ll have to catch another presentation from me in the future.) Keynote may be Mac only, but it does export to a number of common presentation formats, so here’s the list right here:
July 2, 2007
Following a very successful event in Birmingham a little while back (despite Bruce’s vivid imagination), the people behind Public Sector Forums have recalled the same team to put on another show in London . That team includes Bruce Lawson, Ann McMeekin, Patrick Lauke, Grant Broome, Dan Champion and myself. We’ll be speaking at the Barbican on the 8th of August and would love to see you there.
Don’t be mistaken by the ‘Public Sector’ part of Public Sector Forums – this time around the organisers are opening the event up to anyone – you don’t need to be working in some dingy council office to apply for this one, anyone’s welcome!
I will be doing a general show and tell, finishing up the day’s events with plenty of real world examples of people getting things wrong-diddly-wrong, including many web sites you know and possibly love.
Interested? Find out more on the PSF site and you can book your place here (and please mention Accessify in the booking form when asked how you heard about it - thanks!).
May 11, 2007
March 22, 2007
I’m taking part in a 1-day workshop for the public sector here in the UK entitled How web accessibility works in the real world, along with fellow accessibility twonks Bruce Lawson, Patrick Lauke, Ann McMeekin and organiser Dan Champion. I was thinking about how to craft this post, but how can I possible do better than Bruce? The answer is that I can’t, so I’ll just refer you to this piece of marketing genius:
“It’s the kind of shindig I like; evangelising practical accessibility techniques. Also there will be the Web Standards tubgirl to my accessibility goatse, Patrick Lauke , my partner in DTI -bashing fun , Dan Champion , Pixeldiva of the Royal National Institute for the Blind, and the rakishly handsome and debonair Ian Lloyd of Nationwide.
Come along. It’ll be like having sex with all of us at once, in that it’ll be great fun, good for you, you’ll be the envy of your friends and it will last all day.”
Thanks Bruce. Having linked to those photos, I think I can safely say that we won’t get many sign-ups for the day now. Way to scare ‘em off with picture of ole rubber face lloydi!
March 20, 2007
Sorry. That was a bad Texas Hold’em pun, but if you can grab a seat on this training session, you’ll certainly be playing your cards right, cowboy.
Derek Featherstone is heading back to Texas, so soon after leaving from SXSW, to do a 1-day training course on 7 May at the Alamo Drafthouse (hey, is that a bar, Derek? Sounds suspiciously like it!).
Anyone who knows Derek will vouch that he knows his stuff.
“Want a truly usable, accessible web app? Learn from a world-class teacher how to harness Ajax, break out of your usual development routines, and build intelligently, using the technologies you really need.
We won’t just be covering the basics or theoretical situations. We’ll be examining original research conducted by Derek’s company and real-life test cases. You’ll see assistive technologies and prototypes of new techniques in action. During this intensive workshop we’ll even put a selection of existing web apps through their paces — zeroing in on how well they meet the needs of people with a variety of disabilities.”
View the training course details here.
March 12, 2007
Just a quick note to say that we’ll be getting the slides up from yesterday’s presentation as soon as possible. The location is here (for those who may have missed the note on the final slide). In the meantime, some of the demos are available on YouTube (but obviously minus the commentary).
If you were there and have any feedback, we’d love to hear what you thought of it. 25 minutes was definitely not enough time to cover anything (and we had to cut a lot).
Update: the transcript for this session is now available.