February 14, 2003
Accessibility training online
There is little in the way of organised training for web accessibility, so when you see an opportunity, you should seize it!
News reaches us of a major new training event: an online course from WebAIM. Training
will include real-time audio discussions, streaming video, simulations,
tutorials, text chats, and an interactive discussion group. Registration details for this online course are here.
Meanwhile, The Making Connections Unit have a new article entitled ‘Making Websites Accessible‘, which covers such things as
how to get online,
how to plan your website,
how to design your website,
how to maintain an accessible website
and where to get further help.
It’s a non-technical introduction for people who have yet to start putting together a site, and reads very well. Good work, Jim!
February 13, 2003
Comments system added to site - beta feature
Please note that the comments link at the foot of each post is a new feature and is sort of undergoing beta test. The comments are provided by enetation.co.uk, which is a free service and as such the comments server may not always work. Please don’t report bugs on this just yet!. Thanks
New pop-up tool added to accessify
Following the tutorial ‘The Perfect Pop-Up‘, comes the Pop-up Window Generator - a tool to quickly let you generate a link to a pop-up window that is both accessible and XHTML-compliant.
Are you a structural engineer?
I spotted this on WebAim’s discussion list and thought it perfectly captured what it is to be a designer of an accessible web site:
“… In other words, one designs a page first to maintain a specific informational document structure across different platforms, visual, and non-visual, and then somehow, one adds the gloss of presentation, (visual, aural, text) afterwards. This is not necessarily trival, because this structural view of information tends to be the opposite of the way most people natually think when designing a web page, and is a habit that may be difficult to learn. A designer of accessible Web pages needs to think like a structural engineer, rather than like an interior decorator and landscaper.”
Terence de Giere, http://www.degiere.com/
February 12, 2003
UK Government to get tough over Web accessibility
Found in New Media Age’s online magazine, newmediazero, is this story about the UK government’s latest plans to enforce web accessibility:
“The Government is preparing to launch the UK’s first legal crackdown on companies that fail to make their Web sites accessible to blind or partially-sighted Internet users.
The Disability Rights Commission (DRC) will begin a formal investigation into online service providers next month, which could produce the country’s first test case of disability law applied to the Web.
The government body’s legal team is currently formulating its strategy and is weighing up whether its investigation should focus on individual companies or particular industry sectors.
If the investigation concludes that certain Web sites breach the 1999 Disability Discrimination Act, the Commission’s statutory powers allow it to serve notices ordering them to cease operation.”
The story in full can be found here, although you may have to register on the site to view this content.
February 7, 2003
How accessible is Safari?
There’s a new article added to this site today - a piece that looks at Apple’s new browser offering, Safari - just how how good is its support for web accessibility? This is one that I’d appreciate feedback on!
February 4, 2003
Accessible Mapping Tools
Do you often create online maps and then have difficulties converting into an accessible format? According to a report in Yahoo Finance, Corda technologies may be able to help. The company is claiming Section 508 compliance in the maps produced using OptiMap 5, as this quote shows:
One of the most notable aspects of OptiMap is that for Federal Government agencies and those doing business with federal customers, OptiMap charts are fully Section 508 compliant, providing the ability to have the full descriptive text of the map available to the visually impaired through an audible screen reader. OptiMap is the first and currently the only product to make online maps fully accessible for the visually impaired.