Archive for October, 2009

Adobe MAX and accessibility in AIR 2.0

I’ve been quite busy these last two weeks: first with the impressive and massive Adobe MAX, and then a week of personal traveling around the country.

I co-presented on Accessibility in AIR and Flex with Michael A. Jordan at MAX, and briefly showed off a simple Twitter client written in Adobe AIR. AIR 2.0 will include accessibility support on par with the Flash Player, meaning you can create your own Accessibility Implementations in AS3 and/or leverage 28 of the existing Flex components which have accessibility support built-in. Even if you’re not targeting visually disabled users, a lot of the design practices used in creating an accessible application will enhance your program’s usability and polish. I recommend checking out our MAX presentation on Adobe TV:

Michael and I have provided some resources to help you with accessibility in Flash, Flex, and AIR. Michael’s provided the slides for the presentation here:, as well as some very helpful source code for creating your own accessibility implementations.

Yesterday I open-sourced my AIR 2.0 demo app and put it on Google Code. You can access it here: You’ll have to wait for the public beta of AIR if you’re not on the prerelease list ( to try Quoth The Twitter with a screen reader, but you can still use the application to learn about using CSS to provide a high contrast mode, using data binding to allow the user to change the application-level font size in real time, and to experiment with creating an application that can be used solely with the keyboard. It can also be an excellent starting point for creating a full-featured, accessible Twitter client written in Adobe AIR.