Posts in Category "General"

April 7, 2009

PDF Interactive Forms webinar

Tomorrow is the final webinar in the series offered by The Paciello Group. The final session is on Interactive PDF forms, using Adobe Acrobat and Adobe LiveCycle Designer. The free webinar is at noon EDT on Wednesday April 8, 2009.
Information about how to join the webinar is available at http://www.paciellogroup.com/blog.
The session will be captioned live and offered as an archived session for asynchronous viewing.
Open question – what topics would you like to see covered in future webinars?

9:30 PM Permalink
March 25, 2009

MAX 2009 Announcement and Call for Sessions

The Adobe MAX conference will be held October 4-7, 2009 at the Los Angeles Convention Center in California and we’ve just announced a call for session proposals. You can read the official MAX blog post on this topic or go directly to the MAX 2009 Call for Sessions page. If you have an interesting topic that addresses accessibility and that developers who use Adobe products should know about please submit your session proposal before April 15.

12:00 PM Permalink
February 12, 2009

Scripts for Window-Eyes and Adobe Audition

GW Micro has released scripts for Window-Eyes users to better interact with Adobe Audition. GW Micro worked with the Adobe Audition team to help address concerns that Window-Eyes users expressed about accessing the audio-editing tools and overall interface that Audition provides. Please let us know what you think or pass on the news to Window-Eyes users you know.

9:50 AM Permalink
December 12, 2008

WCAG 2.0 is here at last!

We’re delighted to join others in applauding the release of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.0 as a W3C Recommendation.
WCAG is important because it treats accessibility independently and offers greater clarity and testability for the standards. The notion that only formats that originated at the W3C can be accessible is noticeably absent in version 2, which reflects not only the hard work on accessibility done by Adobe with PDF and Flash, but also acknowledges that the web changes quickly and it is important to have objective criteria that allow authors and technology providers to evaluate their offerings to enable users with disabilities to access content developed using new techniques or technologies.
Adobe has already provided information that clarifies how the concept of “Accessibility Supported” that is used in WCAG 2 applies to the PDF format, and also provided a sample implementation of a Flash-based video application that was determined to meet Level AA of WCAG 2. This information is available as part of the WCAG 2 implementation report.
WCAG 2 will benefit authors and end users, and already there is encouraging news related to its adoption into existing and developing accessibility policies, such as the pan-European accessibility policy being developed under UE Mandate 376 and country-based standards being refreshed in the United State, Japan, and elsewhere.

Coming soon

Adobe will offer a series of best practices for using Adobe tools, to enable authors creating content and applications that use Flash, PDF, HTML, or other formats to comply with WCAG 2. These will be available on the Adobe web site in December 2008 and have been developed in conjunction with leading accessibility experts inside and outside of Adobe. We’ll announce the availability through this blog and various email lists.
Please take the time to familiarize yourself with this important standard.

12:17 PM Permalink
October 16, 2008

Our Favorite CS4 Accessibility Features

Creative Suite 4 is shipping now, and here’s a short post on a few favorite accessibility features that you’ll want to check out:
#1: Flash video playback controls are accessible by default. If you want to offer controls that keyboard or screen reader users (and others) can interact with, you get this without trying when you export using the FLVPlayback skins in Flash CS4 Professional. More detail on accessible video.
#2: DAISY export in InDesign. We’ll be publishing more details about this soon.
#3: Integrated support for Color Universal Design (CUD) filters in Illustrator and Photoshop to help authors create accessible images.
#4: InContextEditing in Dreamweaver. Find out how to use InContextEditing to maintain an accessible site.
#5: New documentation for PDF accessibility in Acrobat. This is long overdue, but this is just a start – we will soon publish a series of video tutorials for accessible PDF also.
We hope you make good use of these features! Let us know about your experiences.

6:29 PM Permalink
August 8, 2008

Vote for SXSW panels

The SXSW interactive panel picker is open and I wanted to tell people about the panels that are proposed that Adobe is involved with. Whether panels for SXSW run or not is determined in part by an interactive panel picker – please take a look and vote for accessibility sessions!
http://panelpicker.sxsw.com/ (you will need to register, which is painless and has no captcha).

Accessibility Talks and Panels

  • Accessible Flash and Flex Applications – this panel is not fully populated, but Niqui Merrit has agreed to join it, and it’ll be a great discussion.
  • WCAG 2.0: Practical Implications for Web Accessibility Now – this panel is submitted by the W3C but also includes discussion of non-W3C technologies.
  • Inclusive Universe 1.0 – Integrating Universal Design into Social Apps – this is Wendy Chisholm’s talk with Matt May. Should be fascinating!
  • ARIA Duet in the Key of A(jax) – this is a panel put on by Knowbility and will also be of interest for accessibility

Other Adobe talks

These are of interest – they aren’t all about accessibility directly, but are interesting people and interesting topics

  • Psst! The Money is in the Metadata! – with Mark Randall from Adobe. When I read this I think “more closed captioning”…
  • Diversification: the Path to Web Design Riches – with Scott Fegette, Dreamweaver Product Manager.
  • Uncovering Dynamic Content and Rich Internet Applications Through Runtime Search – with Justin Everett-Church, Flash Player Product Manager.
  • How SoDA is Changing Interactive Design and Development – with Jen Taylor from Adobe.

Please vote and we’ll see you in Austin!

8:15 AM Permalink
April 2, 2008

Honoring John Slatin

Last week John Slatin passed away. This week there is a new project to honor his memory and help his family.
The John Slatin Fund Accessibility Project matches accessibility experts with companies that would like a brief review of their site for accessibility. In return, the site owner is asked to contribute a minimum of $500 to The John Slatin Fund. The John Slatin Fund was established to help John’s beloved Anna offset the medical expenses incurred during John’s long illness. The goal of this project is to raise $25,000 for John’s family.
Learn about the project and sign up at http://www.knowbility.org/business/john-slatin.

3:45 PM Permalink
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

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
December 11, 2007

WCAG 2.0 Last Call

The W3C has moved the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.0 to Last Call. This is the last call for public comment, so if you choose you can submit any comments on the draft by February 1, 2008. The draft is available at http://www.w3.org/TR/2007/WD-WCAG20-20071211/.
I think that it is worth considering two things as you read this document.
1. This document is more complex than WCAG 1.0 because the web is more complex. WCAG 2.0 needs to address accessibility challenges for the web that is being developed today, with dynamic content and Flash and PDF and Flex and AIR and Java and Silverlight (and on and on). Please read with the whole of the web in mind.
2. This draft has received significant attention related to harmonization with the U.S. Section 508 standards in development, the ISO accessibility guidelines, and the Japanese Industrial Standards. Take a look at the latest draft of the Section 508 standards at http://teitac.org/wiki/EWG:Draft_Nov_27 and compare. Wouldn’t it be nice to have one set of standards to attend to? I think so.
I don’t feel that this draft is perfect, but think that it is an excellent document that we can use to improve accessibility moving forward. if you pick any two people interested in accessibility they will not fully agree on all the points in WCAG 2.0 but I think that you’ll find that the issues in dispute tend to be edge cases.
I’ve been on the WCAG group for the past several months and there has been a lot of hard work put in during this time processing hundreds of comments. Please comment on this draft and let’s get this one finished!

11:18 PM Permalink