Accessibility from the Publisher\'s Perspective


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Technical presentation on eBook accessibility from Tools of Change Frankfurt 2012.

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  • “ I ’ m going to be speaking mostly about the technical side, with a sprinkling of design issues as well.
  • Apple are ok,
  • Apple are ok,
  • Accessibility from the Publisher\'s Perspective

    1. 1. AccessibilityFrom the publisher’s perspective Chris Rogers Penguin Books UK
    2. 2. • Fulfil our corporate social responsibility• Fulfil any legal obligations• Take advantage of any untapped markets (definitely a big bonus)
    3. 3. • Everyones• Starts with the people who understand the technology• Our responsibility to educate colleagues in Editorial, Design (even Sales)
    4. 4. • Ensure that our eBooks are created in the most accessible way possible• This is both a design issue and a technical issue• I’ll be talking mostly about the technical issues
    5. 5. • What do we mean by that?• Assistive technologies generally rely on hierarchy of elements to determine document structurei.e.• <h1-5> then <p> then inline elements such as <em>, <strong> etc.
    6. 6. • Don’t use a <p> if you really mean <h5>• Don’t use <i> if you really mean <em>, don’t use <b> if you really mean <strong>• <i> and <b> are presentational elements and have no semantic meaning
    7. 7. • CSS styling means nothing to screen readers• Meaning should be conveyed via mark-up, not style• An excellent example is feature boxes:
    8. 8. • Bad example:• Feature box has no indication that it is separate from the main reading flow
    9. 9. • A better way:• Heading indicates that it is in addition to main content.• Heading is an <h5>, not a <p>
    10. 10. • Another example – charts and graphs• Very difficult subject – no good way to make charts totally accessible without also providing the data in tabular form• But we can make them a little better:
    11. 11. • Bad example:• Data-sets differentiated by colour can be difficult to read for the colour-blind
    12. 12. • To a colour-blind person it could look like this:
    13. 13. • A better way to do it:• Combines colour and pattern
    14. 14. • Links nicely with using the correct structural/semantic elements• Dont use lower level elements with style to convey heading styles• Dont use style on text to convey meaning
    15. 15. • For example:• “I am really MAD that this sentence isn’t accessible!” <p>I am really <span class=‘angryRed’>MAD</span> that this sentence isn’t accessible</p>
    16. 16. • A better way:• “I am really MAD that this sentence isn’t accessible!” <p>I am really <strong class=‘angryRed’>MAD</strong> that this sentence isn’t accessible</p>
    17. 17. Basic ruleIf you removed the CSS, and just used the basic styling of the ebook-reader, would it still be readable and make sense?
    18. 18. All images must have appropriate alt attributes!
    19. 19. • When a screen-reader encounters an image, it reads out the alt attribute <img src=‘../image/car.jpg’ alt=‘A picture of a red car”/>• Keep in mind the alt attribute is meant as a replacement for the image• Sometimes the meaning of the image is more important than the image itself…
    20. 20. • For example: <img... alt=‘A triangular sign with an exclamation mark in the centre’/>
    21. 21. • For example: <img... alt=‘WARNING!’/>
    22. 22. • The text in the letter is part of the story.• It is more important to the reader than the image itself<img... alt=‘Are you a grumptious honker or a talent tooter?Come and try out for this yearly’s pan-troll-mime!’/>
    23. 23. THE DREADED TABLES!•There is no good way to display large, complextables on today’s generation of e-readers
    24. 24. Fixed-layout ebooks•Too many different formats•Hard enough to create in the first place•Still, all the rules previously mentioned can beapplied
    25. 25. Poetry•Will require text-to-speech facilities to improve•Very difficult in ebooks, as proper visualformatting often requires hacks
    26. 26. • EPUB3!• epub:type• enhanced metadata support• Full HTML5 support will give access to new semantic/structural elements• Full SMIL (Read Aloud) support, youll even be able to indicate the correct inflections for words• All these things will give screen readers the ability to read books more and more realistically
    27. 27. • epub:describedat could give us a good way of providing long-form backup content for images
    28. 28. • There is a huge amount that can potentially be done to make ebooks more and more accessible• Time, technical expertise and money are always mitigating factors• Often ebooks will be created out of house, what do you do then?
    29. 29. • Always QA your ebooks with accessibility in mind• Brief your conversion suppliers carefully to ensure they are doing the right things• Making your ebooks accessible shouldn’t cost a lot, as long as it is built into your workflow• The advantages outweigh the disadvantages
    30. 30. • ‘Accessible EPUB3’, OReilly• RNIB, IDPF websites• Vendors specification documents (Amazon have some great guidelines on creating tables)
    31. 31. •• @fullcapstwit• #eprdctn hour, Wednesdays 4pm GMT