Archive for March, 2008

March 25, 2008

A Friend Passes

Last night John Slatin passed away, after a long bout with Leukemia. John was a tireless advocate for accessibility, and a terrific person. His approach to accessibility was fair and well-reasoned, and he was always interested in learning about different perspectives on a topic. I’ll miss sitting down at CSUN with John for dinner or drinks to debate accessibility topics. John will be missed but the impact of his work on WCAG 2.0 and accessibility in general will endure.

11:45 AM Permalink
March 20, 2008

Reference Card for Accessible PDF Creation from Word

There is a lot of PDF that is generated though Adobe’s PDFMaker plug-in for Microsoft Word. You can quite easily create PDF documents that meet the majority of accessibility needs with very little effort, if you know how. For the CSUN conference, we created a one-page document that helps guide users who may not know much about accessibility so that they can more easily address accessibility in their documents.
This document doesn’t cover every possible issue, but identifies the small number of items that need some attention to avoid the most common issues that authors can prevent. In general, if an author:

  • provides equivalents for images in Word
  • uses Word’s styles to define structural headings
  • identifies table headings for simple tables
  • uses Word’s column feture instead of text boxes, and
  • enables the generation of tagged PDF
  • The results are excellent for most documents created in Word. Yes, you can deviate from this path and need to perform repair work to make a PDF document accessible, but to start I want to ensure that authors know what the path to minimize challenges looks like.
    This is a first stab at this document, please let us know what you like, if it is useful to you, or any other comments you may have.
    Download Reference Card

9:44 AM Permalink

CSUN 2008 Talks

Last week, members of the Adobe accessibility team attended the California State University’s “Technology and Persons with Disabilities Conference” – aka CSUN. This is a big event in accessibility each year and if you are interested in accessibility you should consider attending in 2009.
Adobe participated in four talks at CSUN:

  1. IAccessible2 Development: An Accessibility API that Works for Assistive Technologies and Applications. This was a panel discussion involving IT and assistive technology companies.
  2. Accessible PDF Authoring Techniques. This was a talk by Greg Pisocky and Pete DeVasto from Adobe and Brad Hodges from the American Foundation for the Blind. The presentation slides are available.
  3. Rich Internet Applications with Flash and Dreamweaver. This was a talk by Matt May and Andrew Kirkpatrick discussing Flash and AJAX accessibility, related to Adobe’s SPRY framework, Flash and Flex. The presentation slides are available.
  4. Accessible Internet Video. This was a talk by Andrew Kirkpatrick on how you can deliver the most accessible experience in video online using Flash. The presentation slides
    are available. I’m going to post the main demonstration example shortly.

Please take a look and let us know if you have any comments.

9:16 AM Permalink