Ever wonder what web accessibility really looks and feels like? Join Rob Geddes and Sean Yo, analysts with Computing and Communication Services, as they present a case study of their recent project is in the process of migrating the University of Guelph Chief Information Officer website. Rob and Sean share their common-sense approach to accessibility and the story of how they engaged web accessibility in moving the CIO website to Drupal platform, a popular open source content management system. Join us for this real world report from the trenches of web accessibility.
Session DescriptionEver wonder what web accessibility really looks and feels like? Join Rob Geddes and Sean Yo, analysts with Computing and Communication Services, as they present a case study of their recent project which migrated the University of Guelph Chief Information Officer website. Rob and Sean share their common-sense approach to accessibility and the story of how they engaged web accessibility in moving the CIO website to Drupal platform, a popular open source content management system. Join us for this real world report from the trenches of web accessibility.Overview4 parts to our presentation today
Who are we?What is the case study about?When this happen?What happened? How did we deal with accessibility?Where are we today?
We are not web accessibility experts. We wanted to share a story from the trenches and that’s why we’re here today.
We make mistakes and compromises like everyone else. We’re not here to tell you the one true way to do Accessibility on the Web We have bad day and write ugly code and take shortcuts…just like everyone else…and we pay for it later…just like everyone else.
Rob is a hard core coder, who would be happy spending all day in Java. Rob leads a team of developers who are trying to keep up with the huge demand for web development on campus Sean is a jack of all trades, and currently spends most of his time on the care and feeding of the web hosting service on campus. And in evidence of how real world we are…the CIO website hasn’t launched yet…but we still have lots to talk about and to show you. I actually think the fact we haven’t launched yet makes this about as Real World as it gets <grin>.
We both belong to the Web Solutions Cluster which is part of CCS here on campus. Web Solutions offer web development services to campus and manages the web hosting infrastructure We make web sites for on-campus departments on a cost-recovery basis We are almost 2 years old…but our first year saw a lot of shifting around our role and composition. CCS has committed to being an agile organization, and that is been very true in the case of our group which has hired, merged with another cluster, physically relocated to another building and recently been renamed.
This is Mike Ridley. He is the CIO and the Chief Librarian at the U of G That means he’s our Boss’s Boss’s Boss. We’re lucky that Mike is such a great guy…and that he has a very significant clue.
This is Mike’s Website. It is currently a static web site with a Open Source CFMX blog tool providing the blog functionality It’s functional, uses the official visual theme, has minor CSS & HTML validation issues and passes 508/WAI Priority 1 checkpoints Mike is a great CIO and stays up to date on what’s happening out there…and came to us asking to redesign the CIO website And he had a very clear idea of what he wanted
A Very, Very clear idea of what he wanted This is a great site – lots of good ideas and the clear idea to be more available, to invite conversation and interaction Do you see anything here that might be an accessibility concern? Video – subtitle or transcripts Podcasts – transcripts? Real Time Communication – flash? js? RIA: Rich Internet Application – how do we deal with accessibility?
Welcome to the real world – the site hasn’t launched yet. We have had some solid success with accessibility in our web projects I apologize – it was certainly ambitious to use the CIO’s site for this presentation and I knew it might be a bit risky. It was really interesting to face this deadline, of the conference, and the progress of the CIO website, but then consider how much we still have to talk about, and that is in large part because we’ve standardized our projects on Drupal. As I will talk more about later, we work with a CMS called Drupal This standardization on a single platform allows us to re-invest, to re-use all our accessibility work in our other projects. The project which launched was developed in parallel with the CIO project and the code and solutions we’ve delivered is being directly used in the CIO project.
Tutoting At Guelph Service that lets students sign up as a tutor and advertise there services, as well as let students search for a tutor
The core of this web site is a fairly complex form interaction
I was really pleased with this report. I’ve seen these kinds of reports before…they’re usually much longer <grin>. We have some easy wins here: Skip To Content & Explicit Alert Message Content We have some harder challenges: The Mysterious XX We have one very hard problem: The JAWS form mode submit issue
We have clear challenges with the level of interactivity This website is bringing new elements to our accessibility work Given the new accessibility requirements on the horizon, we need to make some decisions about what the final feature list is going to look like. Timed information and multimedia (audio/video) and highly scripted interfaces are the real 'high-cost' areas when discussing accessibility. Making the choice to go with text based communication whenever possible solves the majority of challenges. We need to think carefully about whether that cool Ajax, video presentations, rich user interfaces etc. are worth the added effort and ongoing maintenance costs required to keep the information 'robust' (available) as technologies evolve. Text based information is most easily transformed to other formats, and therefore the best approach most of the time -- even if uncool. This internal project is high profile and has the potential to provide leadership to the rest of campus due to Mike’s role as CIO
Don’t panic! Accessibility isn’t scary and it isn’t made to ruin your life Marvin the Paranoid Android is not the right role model for how to think about Accessibility So what is our approach to Web Accessibility?
The core of our approach is to think of accessibility as a common sense approach, one that puts people first and asks the question, “How can we make it easier for everyone to connect with our message?”rmazar: #guelphaccessconf Accessibility == stop being a jerk.
Don’t focus on compliance instead of users
User focused, which is really what accessibility is all about. Also notice how this approach is open…meeting compliance looks great on paper. But it doesn’t help if there a gap in our ability to get our content to someone who wants it. Websites are never finished, unless you have nothing else to say Accessibility is part of that on-going life-cycle of web design
Don’t abuse mark up…it’s not nice and you’re libel to hurt it’s feelingsCBC Headlines uses Definition lists.
Companies pay millions of dollars to advertise their website to attract people to visit them Try thinking about every visitor who comes to your site as a gift When they arrive, they should be in charge of their experience…and not subject to timed redirects, unannounced pop-ups or music they can’t turn off.
Lesson learned from the ScotiaBank IT Accessibility Roadmap: Accessibility has to be included at the front end of the process and all the way through from inception to user experience
D’Intino: essential to have a measurable assessment of accessibility so we can know when it’s working, when it’s not and a clear deviation process that needs to justify non-compliance. s
D’Intino: accessibility implementation has to be a repeatable process. This is a key strategy to contain the cost of accessibility
Read a book Join an online group or email list Talk to your colleagues – Web Developers, Content Developers, Management Get invested, Get engaged with this issue I twittered asking about Drupal and accessibility and got some useful information. Participate in a local DemoCamp or UnConference…Coding Dojo – whatever. Connect with people…because that’s what the web is about and that is what accessibility is about
Drupal Accessibility is a shared value held by the project team – include the sponsor and the development team Accessibility identified as project deliverable from the outset Our Drupal code is tested by users, including project sponsors, future clients and we’re working on collaborating with users with disabilities as well.
Automated testing and validation is not enough, and I think it’ll never be enough Web Development can be a very human experience It doesn’t have to be dimly lit cube with hunched over geeks banging code out in a windowless building
Automated testing is definitely helpful. Just remember that we are making website for people, not automated testing protocols. Even if they have super cool names like Bobby and Cynthia.
This is a great book In fact, Jeremy Sydik might be the third presenter today…a significant portion of my material comes from this excellent book If you buy one book this year about Web Accessibility, I recommend this one
Real World Web Accessibility
Aiming for Accessibility Conference 2009
Real World Web Accessibility
Senior Analyst & Cluster Lead of CCS Web Solutions
System Analyst & Web Hosting Service Lead
In this presentation we share the
case study of a real web design Our Strategies
project and tell the story of how
we engaged accessibility as part
of that project.
Section 508, §1194.24(c) says: All
training and informational video
and multimedia productions
which support the agency’s
mission , regardless of format, that
contain speech or other audio
information necessary for the
comprehension of the
content, shall be open or closed
Ok, we’re using video. Which of our users
does this affect? Well, for users who
can’t see the video, we should add audio
descriptions, and we’ll add captions for
people with hearing disabilities. Hmmm
– some of our users might not have the
video player we’re asking for. We should
also add a transcript of the video. Is
there anyone else we might be missing?
Session 2 Rm 103
An Introduction to Web Accessibility
Athol Gow, Library Ctr for Students with Disabilities, UofG
Session 3 Rm 105
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines Explained
Stuart Robertson, Communications and Public Affairs, UofG
Session 4 Rm 106
Accessibility for Rich Internet Applications:
Fluid, jQuery, Dojo, and Beyond
Colin Clark, Adaptive Technology Resource Centre, U of T