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Accessibility

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Accessibility is a general term used to describe the degree to which a product (e.g., device, service, environment) is accessible by as many people as possible, and the ventures to produce accessible products and services. Accessibility is often used to focus on people with disabilities and their right of access to entities, often through use of assistive technology.

 

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#23778

Traveling Route 508: A One-Way Street to Universal Accessibility   (PDF)

'Accessible' is a higher standard than 'Section 508-compliant.' Identifying the design principles for accessible web page design, and which of those principles are required under Section 508, is a useful approach to the issue for any organization that must comply with the Section 508 standards. The legislation has no standards for determining whether your web site complies with Section 508. Possible processes include: evaluating the site using a text-to-speech application; evaluating the site using validation software; and usability testing.

Bine, Katharyn and Gloria A. Reece. STC Proceedings (2003). Design>Web Design>Accessibility>Section 508

577.
#36734

Twitter Focus

Considering the standard Twitter website is so basic, it's surprising it is so inaccessible. This Focus Twitter Greasemonkey script puts the favourite, reply and delete links into the keyboard tab order to make it easier for keyboard-only users to use Twitter.

Lemon, Gez. Juicy Studio (2009). Articles>Social Networking>Accessibility>Blogging

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#23012

Types of Cognitive Disabilities

There are things that designers can do to increase the accessibility of Web content to people with less severe cognitive disabilities.

WebAIM (2001). Design>Web Design>Accessibility

579.
#29562

Typography and the Aging Eye: Typeface Legibility for Older Viewers with Vision Problems

The population is rapidly aging and becoming a larger share of the marketplace. The demands of the aging eye require typefaces that function well under low-vision conditions. Can signage display useful information that is accessible to all ages?

Nini, Paul. AIGA (2006). Design>Typography>Accessibility>Elderly

580.
#19206

Über wob11.de

Mit diesen Seiten möchten wir Sie über das Thema 'barrierefreie Informationstechnik' mit Schwerpunkt barrierefreies Internet informieren und erste Hilfestellungen anbieten.

FTB. (German) Design>Web Design>Accessibility

581.
#22752

UK Accessibility Investigation of 1,000 Web Sites - Results Released

An investigation of 1000 UK Web sites carried out on behalf of the Disability Rights Commission (DRC) reveals unacceptably poor (in fact woeful) accessibility. At least 81% of sites failed to meet the minimum accessibility standard, and this figure is likely to be much higher.

Dodd, Jon. Usability Professionals Association (2004). Articles>Web Design>Accessibility>Usability

582.
#32635

Understanding Disabilities when Designing a Website

This article will explain some simple techniques which, if incorporated into the design of a website, will enhance its accessibility and usability for people who have a vision, hearing, physical, cognitive, or learning disability.

Tomlinson, Leona. Digital Web Magazine (2008). Articles>Web Design>Accessibility>Usability

583.
#31073

Understanding Disability Issues When Designing Web Sites

When you design or modify Web sites to allow access to people with disabilities, you make the Web accessible. New Web sites and applications, however, are introducing new problems and barriers. There are complex graphics and multimedia applications that assistive technology simply has not solved. One solution to these new problems is to put accessibility in the hands of the Web developer and content author. Creating a Web site that is accessible by people with disabilities is relatively easy as long as the Web developer and author follow some basic guidelines.

IBM (2007). Design>Web Design>Accessibility

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#26370

Understanding SAMI 1.0

This article describes how the new Microsoft Synchronized Accessible Media Interchange (SAMI) technology expands the ability to provide closed captioning to a wide range of multimedia products.

Microsoft (2003). Articles>Accessibility>Software>Microsoft Windows

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#37530

Understanding Web Accessibility

The Web is providing unprecedented access to information and interaction for people with disabilities. It provides opportunities to participate in society in ways otherwise not available. With accessible websites, people with disabilities can do ordinary things: children can learn, teenagers can flirt, adults can make a living, seniors can read about their grandchildren, and so on. With the Web, people with disabilities can do more things themselves, without having to rely on others. People who are blind can read the newspaper (through screen readers that read aloud text from the computer), and so can people with cognitive disabilities who have trouble processing written information. People who are deaf can get up-to-the-minute news that was previously available only to those who could hear radio or TV, and so can people who are blind and deaf (through dynamic Braille displays). People with quadriplegia who cannot move their arms or legs can shop online to get groceries, gadgets, and gifts delivered. People who cannot speak can participate in online discussions, such as through blog comments. However, this possibility is not reality throughout the Web. The problem is that most websites have accessibility barriers that make it difficult or impossible for many people with disabilities to use them. And most web software tools are not sufficiently accessible to people with disabilities, making it difficult or impossible for them to contribute to the Web. This is a very big deal. Many millions of people have disabilities that affect their use of the Web. Web accessibility is about removing those barriers so that people with disabilities can use and contribute to the Web. This chapter helps you get started improving your website to remove accessibility barriers and avoid adding new barriers.

Henry, Shawn Lawton. Friends of ED (2006). Articles>Accessibility>Web Design

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#31837

Universal Design – The Time is Now

The time for universal design is now because, as the Designing for the 21st Century III Conference website states “This is an extraordinary moment. We are more diverse now in ability and age than ever before. It is time for design to catch up. There is an urgent need to exchange ideas about the design of places, things, information, policies and programs that demonstrate the power of design to shape a 21st century world that works for all of us.”

Tauke, Beth. uiGarden (2008). Articles>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

587.
#22976

Universal Design and Disability Access to the Web

As the importance of the Internet increases, so does the need to make its content available to larger, more diverse audiences. These audiences use a variety of technologies to access the Web, ranging from traditional browsers on desktop computers to portable, hand-held devices, cell phones and hands-free devices. The need to accommodate these technologies through more universal Web design strategies grows with every new technology which is introduced. Web developers who ignore the emerging trend toward multiple-environment Internet access will be left to lament their inability to reach important segments of the population.

Bohman, Paul. WebAIM (2000). Design>Web Design>Accessibility

589.
#31789

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) Guidelines

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) is an approach that addresses and redresses the primary barrier to making expert learners of all students: inflexible, one-size-fits-all curricula that raise unintentional barriers to learning. Learners with disabilities are most vulnerable to such barriers, but many students without disabilities also find that curricula are poorly designed to meet their learning needs.

CAST (2008). Books>Education>Accessibility

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#18609

Universal Design Information Resources

The following are lists of Web sites that Trace Center staff have found particularly useful. The resources listed in turn contain links to many other excellent sites.

University of Wisconsin. Resources>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

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#18600

Universal Design Interface Standards

Essential to the ability of people to come up to universally designed products and know how to operate them is the existence of interface standards. Work is currently under way in a number of areas to ensure that people: 1. Know what to do to operate products they encounter; 2. Are able to connect any assistive technologies they may have with them to the products they encounter.

University of Wisconsin. Design>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

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#18601

Universal Design Research Project

The Universal Design Research Project is a three year study funded by the U.S. Dept. of Education National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation Research. This project was designed to gain an understanding of why and how companies adopt universal design, and what factors are the most important in making this decision. In addition, factors which discourage or impede the adoption and successful practice of universal design are also being identified. A second objective is to determine what those outside of companies can do to support universal design within the companies.

University of Wisconsin. Organizations>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

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#18435

Universal Usability

Universalusability.org provides the definition and foundation for the topic of universal usability in addition to introducing researchers and practitioners to five perspectives on universal usability. Universal usability involves understanding how users attempt to accomplish tasks using a variety of technologies in different organizational and social contexts. And researchers and practitioners have a wide range of approaches and methods available to apply to this range of user-system interactions.

Universal Usability. Organizations>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

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#14235

Universal Usability Guide

The goal of universal access to information and communications services is compelling. Enthusiastic networking innovators, business leaders, and government policy makers see opportunities and benefits from widespread usage. But even if they succeed and the economies of scale bring low costs, computing researchers will still have much work to do. They will have to deal with the difficult question: How can information and communications services be made usable for every citizen? Designing for experienced frequent users is difficult enough, but designing for a broad audience of unskilled users is a far greater challenge. Scaling up from a listserv for 100 software engineers to 100,000 schoolteachers to 100,000,000 registered voters will take inspiration and perspiration.

Shneiderman, Ben. Universal Usability (2000). Books>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

596.
#18448

Universal Usability Guidelines for Users with Slow Connections

Since the beginning of 'age of the Internet', the load time of Web pages has been the major concern among the designers and the users. Analysis of traffic patterns of the web sites has shown how the users get frustrated about slowness of the connection. WWW, which stands for 'World Wide Web', has been pronounced as 'World Wide Wait' by many users. Web designers often want to use graphics, animation, and even sound and video to represent or enhance web site content. However, these can generate longer waiting times unless the users have a high speed connection and research shows that web users don't like to wait. Tenth Georgia Tech GVU WWW Survey (1998) showed that slow ads, speed of the Internet and graphics are among the problems that the users complained most.

Ayan, Necip Fazil. Universal Usability (2001). Design>Usability>Accessibility>Bandwidth

597.
#18437

Universal Usability in Practice

The goal of universal usability is to enable the widest range of users to benefit from web services. This website contains recommendations and information resources for web developers who wish to accommodate users with slow modems, small screens, text-only, and wireless devices. It deals with content design issues such as translation to other languages, plus access for novice, low educated and low motivated users, children and elders. The website also covers design guidance for blind, deaf, cognitively impaired, and physically disabled users. Each article has practical guidelines, web site examples, links to organizations, and a bibliography.

Ceaparu, Irina and Dina Demner. Universal Usability. Resources>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

598.
#18436

Universal Usability: Introduction and Definition

The goal of universal access to information and communications services is compelling. Enthusiastic networking innovators, business leaders, and government policy makers see opportunities and benefits from widespread usage. But even if they succeed and the economies of scale bring low costs, computing researchers will still have much work to do. They will have to deal with the difficult question: How can information and communications services be made usable for every citizen? Designing for experienced frequent users is difficult enough, but designing for a broad audience of unskilled users is a far greater challenge. Scaling up from a listserv for 100 software engineers to 100,000 schoolteachers to 100,000,000 registered voters will take inspiration and perspiration.

Shneiderman, Ben. Universal Usability. Articles>Usability>Accessibility>Universal Usability

599.
#22972

University Web Accessibility Policies: A Bridge Not Quite Far Enough

Most university Web accessibility policies fall short of achieving their purpose. The Web sites of these universities often fail to meet minimum Web accessibility standards. Part of the problem lies with the policies themselves. Many of them fail to delineate a specific technical standard, fail to indicate whether compliance with the policy is required, fail to indicate a timeline or deadline for compliance, fail to define a system for evaluating or monitoring compliance, and fail to enumerate any consequences for failure to comply.

Bohman, Paul. WebAIM (2003). Design>Web Design>Accessibility>Policies and Procedures

600.
#32506

Unobtrusive and Keyboard Accessible Connected Select Boxes

Any web developer who has created a reasonably complex form is probably aware of the concept of multiple select elements that are connected – choosing something from one select box either makes a new select box appear or changes the options of one that is already visible.

Johansson, Roger. 456 Berea Street (2007). Articles>Web Design>Accessibility>CSS

 
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