The Centre For Accessibility Australian Access Awards 2019 video is now available online. As it is a copy of the evening’s live stream broadcast the video and audio is a little choppy in places, but it will give you an opportunity to catch up with all the action if you missed it.
Many thanks again to the sponsors, judges, special guests and the CFA team for making the Awards possible.
The principles of accessibility: Perceivable, Operable, Understandable, and Robust (POUR)
How you can check web pages for some basic accessibility issues and improve accessibility
Where to find the right resources for developers and designers to implement accessibility
Approaches for planning managing accessibility in your project and in your organisation
Where to find W3C resources for developers and designers to implement accessibility
Enrolments for the course are open now and will be available on 28 January 2020. The course itself is free but the completion certificate has an additional charge. While the course is offered worldwide, there are some access restrictions in select countries.
It’s great to see W3C WAI build a course from its own excellent curricula resources and to see some familiar names, including a PCWA Alumnus and one of my former staff from my Media Access Australia days involved in the project.
Microsoft has been steadily working on the development of its new web browser to replace the version of Edge that is currently in Windows 10. While the new version is also called Edge, its underpinnings are closely related to the code used in Google Chrome and the great news is its screen reader and high contrast support are working well.
The new Edge browser has the potential to bridge the gap of current web browsers which generally either provide good screen reader support, or high contrast support, but not necessarily both. Hands-on tests of the Edge Beta indicate that it does indeed provide the benefit of lightning-fast rendering of web pages currently in Chrome, but providing compatibility with popular screen readers including NVDA, support for the built-in Narrator screen reader in Windows 10. along with high contrast themes in the operating system being applied by default to web pages once the feature is enabled.
the Edge browser currently being in Beta, adding the high contrast theme takes
a little bit of tweaking. To try out the new Edge browser, follow these steps:
A list of experimental settings will appear. In the search box on the web page, type in ‘force colour’ and press Enter.
The Force Colour Profile will appear. Change the drop-down box to say ‘Default’.
Follow the prompts to restart the browser. Edge will now match the High Contrast setting enabled in Windows 10.
there’s no date for an official release of the new Edge browser, the Beta works
very well with both High Contrast theme and screen readers making it a potentially
good choice for blind and low vision assistive technology users.
this time of writing the Edge browser is in Beta. As such, the instructions and
quality of product may change.
has recently started the international rollout of its Show and Tell feature,
designed to use the camera in an Echo Show
smart display to help people who are blind identify everyday objects.
feature works by using the built-in camera of the Echo Show to visually
identify products. The information is then read out to the user. The feature
was originally released in September to first and second-generation Echo Show
devices in the USA, but anecdotal feedback suggests products in other countries
can also be identified.
To use Show
and Tell, say to the Echo Show model that supports the feature “Alexa, what am I holding?” or “Alexa, what’s
in my hand?,” which will kick off verbal and audio cues that guide you to place
the item you’d like to identify in front of the Echo Show’s camera.
to see large companies such as Amazon continuing to find new and innovative
ways to use their popular smart devices to add functionality that assists
people with disability.