Web Standards

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has announced a delay in the anticipated regulations regarding web accessibility.  The new target date for Title II (state and local governments) is April, 2016.  The date for private sector web regulations is now to be determined and not likely until 2018.

Even without regulations, however, the Americans with Disabilities Act already requires that web and mobile content, features and functions be accessible. The Department of Justice continues to file complaints and get involved in court actions confirming that digital access is required, and that WCAG 2.0 AA is the standard.  Private sector settlements and lawsuits continue to protect the rights of people with disabilities to fully participate in the digital age. The regulations are delayed.  Site and app owners should not delay in making their digital properties accessible.

Read more on the Law Office of Lainey Feingold’s website

Today HTML5 was published as a W3C recommendation by the HTML Working Group. This defined the 5th major revision of HTML. Tim Berners-Lee, W3C Director, explained that HTML5 and the Open Web Platform are driving growing user expectations. 

HTML5 enables the following and more:

  • Web video and audio tracks without plugins
  • Programmatic access to resolution-dependent bitmap canvas
  • Native support for SVG and MathML
  • Annotation important for Ruby
  • Features to enable accessibility of rich application

Web standards for the future from W3C on Vimeo.

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Aaron Leventhal from AI Squared joins us on the IAP for a great discussion about the assistive technology that is place right on the website - sitecues. Discover the innovation that went into this revolutionary approach.

Show Notes & Links

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I’ve spent more than twenty years developing applications and websites.  That’s a lot of time spent sitting in a cubicle, head down, coding, and racing toward deadlines to make the business stakeholders happy.  It took me twenty years to realize I should have kept my head up and taken time to understand my customers better. 

On May 15, 2014 awareness of digital accessibility, which includes web, software, mobile applications and devises, will reach new heights. Global Accessibility Awareness Day is a community-driven effort with the goal of dedicating one day to raising awareness for digital accessibility to a broad audience. The hope is that awareness increases amongst designers, developers and other people involved in information communication technology (ICT).

Businesses and individuals who are looking for guidelines to help achieve accessibility for website or digital products can refer to the Section 508 or WCAG 2.0 guidelines. It may also be helpful to seek guidance from an accessibility consultant.   

Accessible Rich Internet Applications (WAI-ARIA) 1.0 is now a World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) Recommendation. Publishing WAI-ARIA is an important step making web content and application more accessible to people with disabilities. WAI-ARIA defines how developers of browsers, media players, mobile devices and assistive technologies (AT), and content developers can achieve better cross-platform accessibility. WAI-ARIA is introduce in the WAI-ARIA Overview.

More information on WAI-ARIA

Some European Bank Struggle with Accessibility

According to research conducted by the University of Oviedo, Spain 74% of the time users with disabilities don’t have equal access to banks from the EU, as determined by a sample of 50 banks. The results further show that 26% of the banks presented acceptable levels of accessibility on their websites and over 36% of the banks analyzed had major accessibility issues.

Read more on the University of Oviedo’s research.

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