This week, accessibility articles have gone back to the basics. In one article, TemplateToaster describes five ways to make your WordPress site accessible. In another, SiteImprove talks about how to incorporate accessibility compliance into the dev process. ...continue reading Accessibility this week: August 1, 2016

This morning I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Marcy Markusa of CBC Radio One broadcasting from Winnipeg, Manitoba. The interview is included in .mp3 format, and the transcript is below.

MARCY:
It is 6:13, it is school day number 2, and today is Global Accessibility Awareness Day. And if you’re like most people in this technological world, you’re starting your day on a mobile device, I’ve already been on three myself, but not everyone has equal access to what’s on the web. It is because even the most user-friendly websites are rarely accessible websites.

Alison Walden is with SapientNitro, a digital marketing agency, and she’s here now to spread the word about the benefits of an accessible website. Good morning. ...continue reading My Live Interview on CBC Radio One for Global Accessibility Awareness Day

Merriam-Webster defines "usable" as "capable of being used." Oxford dictionary defines "usability" as "the degree to which something is able or fit to be used." These definitions do not specify who should be able to use that thing, but the implication is that the thing should be able to be used by everyone. Why then, is usability a different field than accessibility? Accessibility should be at the very root of usability. ...continue reading Usability should include accessibility

In honour of International Women's Day, I want to offer this shout out to women developers everywhere in the form of female developer avatars, courtesy of the very talented Rafael Castillo from SapientNitro. I noticed recently that I couldn't find any female depictions of web developers in Google image search results. Hopefully these illustrations will be indexed and improve the diversity of those results: ...continue reading Happy International Women’s Day, March 8, 2016

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Congratulations if your web experience is accessible to all audiences. Don't stop now, here are five ways to make sure it stays that way:

  1. Make sure that future updates to the experience assessed for accessibility compliance in every phase (wireframe, design, development, and production).
    • It happens too often that we create an accessible experience and then let it slowly become inaccessible as errors are introduced in future phases.

    ...continue reading 5 ways to maintain accessible experiences online

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Too often we share only the accessibility fails without talking about accessibility wins. I am planning to start incorporating some positive reinforcement stories in addition to the negative punishment stories that are so prevalent in the industry. Negative punishment is not working quickly enough! ...continue reading Inspire accessible experiences with positive reinforcement

October, 2016: Update! I used to encourage experience designers to capture annotations for accessible keyboard functionality separately in "linear wireframes." The reason for that was that it was new to them, and it felt like a very separate exercise. More recently I have recommended that keyboard events be captured in the same wireframes that capture all other interactions as a more holistic experience. I have edited the article below to refer to linear interactions as opposed to linear wireframes.

...continue reading Defining accessible experiences with linear wireframes

I'm a developer who works for a digital agency, a company whose job (among other things) is to build web experiences for other companies.

Adherence to the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) for new websites is now mandated by law. Client requests to efficiently and cost-effectively implement and test for accessibility guideline compliance in my line of work are increasingly common. For experiences designed and developed at digital agencies we can do this in three ways: ...continue reading 3 Key Ingredients for the Efficient Implementation of Accessible Websites

Accessible web experiences start (but do not end) with the digital agencies who create them

Blue fenceI am calling companies whose line of work it is to design and develop websites for other companies "Digital Agencies."

Attending sessions at last year’s Accessing Higher Ground (AHG) conference in Denver last November, I was struck by how many of the sessions were geared toward convincing the audience of the merits of incorporating accessibility features into their web experiences. Talk about preaching to the choir! Nobody in that audience needed to be convinced. ...continue reading Accessible web experiences start (but do not end) with the digital agencies who create them