Accessible technologies

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Diagram (DIGITAL IMAGE AND GRAPHICAL RESOURCE FOR ACCESSIBLE MATERIALS) from Benetech. Education and literacy, accessibility is a core aspect of that. 300k members need textbooks. If you have a print disability - blindness, dyslexia, motor dysfunction, etc. Copyright workarounds for those contexts.

Automated Text to Speech (TTS), highly structured text. But textbooks are increasingly visual. Websites are increasingly visual. And that’s WAY harder to make accessible, Work with WC3, training people. Biggest gap is training and best practices. And then assessing if it’s working “How do I do it?” plus “have I don’t it?”

Different modalities

Text: describe your image. Take a non-linear image, big cognitive load to add all that. Context is ‘’so’’ important. ‘’’Minimize cognitive load’’’.

Is there a point where something can’t be accessible in a certain medium?

Are there certain things you just can’t access?

Goal is to have all the ‘’information’’ accessible. The classic example is PowerPoint. For most part, just make the equivalent (like a text document).

Markup for more than the text

  • Attach a 3D printer file, descriptive text.
  • A sine curve, make a signification.

Rank the expressions to accuracy, beauty, accessibility. Counts on who is clicking/downloading for which for metrics of usefulness.

How do I make mine accessible?


Tells you about how, and when, to describe an image.

ADA compliance? Super broad. Less about web properties.

Tools - plug-ins to check the accessibility of your site. The Wave Toolbar.

Set screen reader to see the audio file first. Aria - accessibility markup. HTML5 markup. Hide stuff for visual readers, surface for others.

Wordpress accessibility themes.

Digital synethisia project out of Media Lab. Trigger the things people have requested. What are ways to semantically mark up the web for things like recipes, people, time, places, etc. Worked on having markup for accessibility. If you’ve captioned your video, you indicate that, it surfaces higher if someone is looking for accessibility in that way. Khan Academy just added captioned some. Can now do that in a custom Google search, as example, tho not main search.

Are people moving to accessibility?

The fact that we’re even here in this group is a huge thing. It’s a long time coming. Just starting to see major content providers invest in this.

Evenbrite prompts for image descriptions. What are the incentives? Corporations don’t have a resource-based reason to do this. What about the majority? Well, we’re a bunch of different minorities. More accessible website increases the search function. Technically, in JavaScript or CSS, to make it work in different browsers and different screens. It doesn’t have to be harder, the design just has to accommodate it. The design for visual users takes some compromise to include others.

Browser plugins

VM Ware for accessibility technology. Screen readers all behave differently, different settings etc. So testing a site for all the variations is intensive. Guidelines help.

Switch accessibility - can someone with ONE big button, or a stick in mouth.. not a whole lot of expertise on there.

Browser plugin for experiencing in each of these?

Date pickers are NOT accessible, often.

Responsive Design

Responsive design - not just to screen size, but to comprehensive vectors.

  • GPII Global Public…somethings.
  • Kiosk preferences. Universal preferences linked to ID, loads up responsively loaded content.
  • NIST - National Institute for Standards and Technology. Cloud preferences available. Regardless of who we are, load one up.
But the technology to do this is almost the easiest part.
The alternative representations and content is difficult to come by.
Isn’t this education? Taking a concept in one format, and indicating your understanding by expressing it in another?

Instead of WYSIWYG editors, also have a WYHIWYG (what you hear is what you get) editors.

Accessibility. Talking about The Diagram Center’s work with describing images. Tons of resources for making things accessibility. Talked about accessibility in different mediums. Issues with society and accessibility. Crowd sourcing content usability and creation.