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Content Creator

Documents

Introduction

While the primary focus of the SOAP site is to help you make Web sites and dynamic applications accessible, it is crucial to make documents posted online accessible, too. Often, these documents contain important instructions, policies, guidelines, or forms that are intended to be downloaded and reviewed/completed offline.

As with web sites, it is much easier to create accessible documents, from the start, than it it is to fix them once they have been posted (and perhaps even re-posted elsewhere).

Adobe

Overview

Creating accessible PDF documents starts by following accessibility practices during the authoring process. Whether you are using word-processing applications like MS Word or Open Office, or desktop publishing and design tools, such as Adobe InDesign, integrating accessibility into the authoring process will improve PDF document accessibility and deliver content to a wider audience.

Microsoft Office

Overview

Microsoft provides extensive documentation in support of accessibility to many of its products and services. Not only does it offer guidance on making Office products accessible, as will be discussed further below, but it also offers direction for those who are developing Windows-based applications. Developers will want to explore the Accessibility Developer Hub.

Safari and WebKit

For those who are working on accessibility using Safari and WebKit, there are some tools available, though as yet, there seem to be fewer than for other browsers.

Apple provides guidance for developers with respect to working with Safari and assuring accessibility. The Safari Developer Library is the best place to start.

Checklists

The use of checklists, when conducting accessibility testing, is sometimes seen as controversial. Some view such checklists as stifling creativity. Others suggest that checklists minimize the needs of people with disabilities, who want to access the web, in favor of ticking off checkboxes. And sometimes, checklists created to supplement (or speed) testing against WCAG 2.0, or Section 508, are flawed or inaccurate.

Contrast

People with moderately low vision need to be able to read and navigate your site, so it is important that there is enough contrast between text and its background.

Note that it is important to choose good color combinations, so be sure to consider both color and contrast together.

SEO

Search Engine Optimization and Accessibility

For many years, those who work on accessibility have been saying that Google (and other search engines) are "blind." As a result, Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and accessibility work together to enable users to find information and access it successfully.

JavaScript Bookmarklets

Introduction

Many people have created and freely share accessibility bookmarklets that help to identify and check for specific issues. This page cites a number of collections, in an effort to be comprehensive, although it is likely that some bookmarklets and/or similar functionality are duplicated. You are encouraged to explore options, and choose the bookmarklets that provide a user interface and functionality that suit your workflow.

Internet Explorer and Windows

A number of tools can be used in the Windows environment when conducting accessibility testing. Some integrate with Internet Explorer, while others are stand-alone tools.


ACTF - aDesigner

ADesigner is available from the Eclipse Foundation; it is "an Eclipse RCP application." It is free and opensource. "Web developers can use aDesigner to test the accessibility and usability of Web pages for low-vision and blind people."

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