Monday, October 7, 2013

A new tool in my Accessibility Toolbox - The WAVE Toolbar for Firefox

In Part 2 of INDATA's Web Accessibility series, Wade Wingler, Director of Assistive Technology at the INDATA Project, introduces The WAVE Toolbar for Firefox.  The WAVE (web accessibility evaluation tool) Firefox toolbar provides an automated way to run WAVE reports directly within Firefox.

It provides you with information about your web page in four different ways:
  • Errors, Features, and Alerts
  • Structure/Order View
  • Text-only View
  • Outline View
Text-only View is especially useful if you want to see what a screen reader would read out loud about your page.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

W3C WAI Mobile Accessibility Task Force - Seeking Participation

The W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) has established a Mobile Accessibility Task Force to develop more specific guidance on mobile accessibility related to WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) and UAAG (User Agent Accessibility Guidelines).

The Mobile Accessibility Task Force expects to:
  • develop mobile techniques for WCAG using HTML5, ARIA, CSS and JavaScript
  • develop design guidance or mobile web accessibility best practices
  • review existing resources, including those outside of W3C
The Task Force seeks to bring together individuals and organizations to contribute to this W3C/WAI work.
More at:

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Make the Internet Accessible for All

Many years ago, when I was working for state government, I wrote an article for (now Federal Computer Week), titled "Make the Internet Accessible for All." I discovered today that the article is still online after all those years (14 to be exact). After reading through it, I realized that most of what I wrote back then still applies today (except for my contact information), so I thought I would share the article with my readers and get your feedback.

I also found a couple of other articles on the Federal Computer Week web site that reference the work we were doing back then to make our state government web sites accessible: Enabling the disabled and Connecticut Legislature Launches 'CSPAN' on the Web.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Verizon adds support for TalkBack in a firmware update available today for the HTC DROID DNA

TalkBack is an Accessibility Service that helps blind and vision-impaired users interact with their devices more easily. This application adds spoken, audible, and vibration feedback to your device. It is a system application that was pre-installed on most devices and is updated when the accessibility service is improved. TalkBack is available for download at the Google Play Store.

Today Verizon is making an update available to add support for TalkBack to the HTC DROID DNA. After the update, you should be at Version 2.07.605.1 710RD. During the install, it will optimize all the apps on your phone to be more compatible with TalkBack.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Why is web site accessibility important?

In Part 1 of a 3 part series, Wade Winger, Director of Assistive Technology at the INDATA Project, explains why accessibility is important when building a website and conducts a short demo on how people using Voice Over on a Mac computer access a web page.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

United States Access Board a casualty of the Federal Government Shut-Down

From an email I received this morning:

Because of the absence of a Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 appropriation, the Access Board is compelled to "shut-down" its operations. All Access Board employees have been placed in a furlough status. During the shut-down we will not be providing the following services:
  • Complaint processing under the Architectural Barriers Act
  • Guidelines and standards development
  • Webinars
  • Training
  • Technical assistance
  • Website maintenance and updates
  • Publications fulfillment
We will return to work once a continuing resolution or an FY 2014 appropriation has been signed into law.