Maximum Accessibility

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One of the greatest challenges facing the Linux community is accessibility. Unfortunately, the involvement of those most affected by this - people with disabilities - is meager at best. This presentation will discuss the benefits that the disability community can provide, and why accessibility is essential to the survival of Linux in the future. During this presentation, I will touch upon the following: the state of accessibility in Linux; the 'confinement cycle', and how Linux can be used to break it; ways to improve accessibility (and why this is important); and how the disability community can bring benefits to the Linux community.

Audience: beginners to experts, especially those with disabilities and/or anyone interested in accessibility. Rudimentary knowledge of assistive technology is recommended but not required.

Published in: Technology, Design
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Maximum Accessibility

  1. 1. Maximizing Accessibility: Engaging People With Disabilities in the Linux Community Spencer Hunley
  2. 2. State of Accessibility in Linux: Past ● CLIs ● Primitive GUIs ● Improvements with GNOME 2 and KDE enviroments
  3. 3. Linux State of Accessibility: Present ● Lots of apps, lots of abandoned/ deprecated projects ● Unity and GNOME 3 okay, but far from ideal or optimal ● Accessibility largely an afterthought
  4. 4. Linux State of Accessibility: Future ● The Sonar Project ● Vinux ● Adriane Knoppix ● Voice Control ● Speech-to-Text
  5. 5. The Confinement Cycle Person with a disability Needs job to earn money for purchase Needs a job to become independent and earn money Needs Assistive Technology device to do job Needs money to buy Assistive Technology device
  6. 6. How Linux Can Break This Cycle ● Cost – Less expensive options for hardware and software ● Greater ability to customize and configure the system to person-centered specifics ● Grows with the person
  7. 7. Rollin' With The Changes: How To Improve Accessibility ● Simple changes build to substantial improvements ● Build upon what is already in the Linux ecosystem ● Accessibility benefits your entire user base
  8. 8. People With Disabilities: A Largely Untapped Linux Userbase ● Thorough bug finding and beta testing ● Real-world usability trials ● Growing pool of loyal users with fresh ideas and perspectives
  9. 9. Further Information Americans with Disabilities Act: http://www.ada.gov/ Assistive Technology Industry Association: http://www.atia.org/ Rehabilitation Engineering and Assistive Technology Society of North America: http://resna.org/ GNOME Universal Access: https://help.gnome.org/users/gnome-help/stable/a11y.html Fedora Accessibility Guide: http://docs.fedoraproject.org/en-US/Fedora/16/html/Accessibility_Guide/index.html Vinux Project: http://vinuxproject.org/ Sonar Project: http://sonar-project.org/ Adriane Knoppix: http://www.knopper.net/knoppix-adriane/index-en.html Spencer Hunley spencer.hunley@gmail.com

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