Originally prepared for a seminar for IT Support Staff in March 2003 but with some subsequent additions and alterations.

1. Accessibility Legislation

2. On-line Guides to Web Accessibility

3. Tools for Accessibility Checking

  • Opera - an essential web browser for anyone checking accessibility issues.
  • Lynx - the classic text web browser.
  • Betsie - developed by the BBC for use with their own pages. Auntie Beeb seems to have dropped this facility but it can still be found on SourceForge: http://betsie.sourceforge.net/
  • Vischeck - download the Photoshop plugin (works with Paint Shop Pro and others). A screen grab can be quickly transformed to a colour-blind view.
  • A-Prompt - a downloadable, and free, checker for your master copy on disk.
  • Sizer - a free utility by Brian Apps that allows you to quickly resize your browser window to 1024x768, 800x600 or even 640x480!

4. Teaching Accessibility

  • Netskills - offer several training modules on accessibility issues.

5. Accessibility Case Studies

Well, perhaps these might be a bit too sensitive to put online! So here are just the theme parts of each one:

  • ALT texts
  • No Frames?
    • Use them only if you must.
    • And if you must, leave a way out (or in!) those who can't handle them.
  • JavaScript Navigation
    • Remember that JavaScript implementation isn't entirely browser independent!
    • Ensure that there is a way in for non-JS browsers.
    • Doesn't everyone have JavaScript nowadays?
      • pwWebSpeak doesn't
      • Ht://Dig and Google don't
  • 5% of the population are colour-blind
    • Colour cues can be useful but, like JavaScript, they must not be depended on.
  • Just listen to your web page
    • It may not be a realistic simulation of a blind person listening to your web page, but it can certainly be enlightening.