We present to you a menu of tidbits collected in recent days that are too short for blog posts and sometimes too long for a tweet (when we want to add clarifying comments). Headings provide a light grouping to help you skim the offerings. Bon appétit!
Technology, Tools, and Devices
SSB BART Group[renamed Level Access in 2017] recently announced the release of a free online accessibility testing tool, AMP Express. This is an excellent way to break down resistance to accessibility testing. Do not forget that the last step in any accessibility testing is using that grey matter between your ears!
- Five key trends in assistive technology. (Psst. They are convergence, UDL (Customizability and Universal Design for Learning), research- or evidence-based design, portability, and interoperability.) You will need to sign up with the eSchool News Digital Subscription to see the content.
- A Web Browser for People with Intellectual Disabilities.
- How much of your page content is "above the fold"? Another (Google) application to shock you out of your complacency.
- Mobile Apps for People with Sight Loss – a short list about mobile phones from the National Council for the Blind in Ireland. This list is included here, not as an advertisement, but to provide an example of what accessibility features are of interest or importance in a mobile phone.
- Tactile access to the iPhone – how the blind use an iPhone.
- (YouTube video) DROID and Android Accessibility Surprise. This is a video review by someone who has tested the phone; you must watch it or listen to it to discover what the surprise is!
- The future of brain-controlled devices: Cool technology from the future for people with disabilities. Includes a splash or two of ethical concern.
- "The Importance of Accessibility in eLearning: Strategies for Inclusive Training" New
The year in captions for 2009.
Usability and Design
- What are the essential points of usability? Watch this recording of Steve Krug and "The Least You Can Do About (TM) Usability" from the Business of Software conference in Boston, September 3-4, 2008 (includes pet peeve – audience asks questions with no microphone and speaker doesn't repeat questions. Grrr!)
- The election design gallery at AIGA is an impressive collection of the hard work put into repairing voting ballots.
- A Guide to Ensuring Your E-Learning Materials Are Accessible and Inclusive (.pdf). JISC Regional Support Centre, Scotland North & East, Edinburgh’s Telford College. [Scotland]
- Disability Information Scotland is a national project that provides reliable, accurate, and accessible information for people living with disability in Scotland. They offer several free online certificate courses designed to improve your general knowledge and understanding of accessible Information. They also provide excellent Training Resources & Publications [Scotland] New
- What do you think will happen in 2010? In the January 2010 article "Predictions for 2010" by the staff of eLearn magazine, Roger Schank predicted that e-learning on mobile phones (m-learning) would go away. (At the start of each year, eLearn Magazine's contributors predict what changes are afoot for the coming 12 months.) His prediction was attacked by many in a lively debate about Roger Schank's Prediction for 2010 in eLearn Magazine's blog (no longer available). Read his followup post about this in "Learning Hasn’t Changed (guest post by Roger Schank)", December 13, 2012.
- Internet Accessibility Education
- U.S. Justice Department Demands Accessible Educational Technology
Interviews with Accessibility Movers and Shakers
- From India comes a great article published in the STC Intercom, "
Accessibility in India: An Interview with Shilpi Kapoor", by By Makarand Pandit, Intercom, August 2013.
- In other news from India, the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment launched "the first website of a Ministry of the Government of India that fulfills accessibility norms for Persons with Disabilities."
- From China comes an interview with Frances West, Director, IBM Human Ability & Accessibility Center (HA&AC). The article's title is "Advancing Technological and Societal Inclusion in China". (no longer available as of May 11, 2014)
- Visionaware had an interview with Pratik Patel "Pratik Patel's Passion for Knowledge". Mr. Patel is the Director of Information Technology Access for the City University of New York and member of the Governor's Advisory Council to the New York State Department of Education. His passion for knowledge is what makes him an interesting person to follow on Twitter and elsewhere. You know you'll learn something from him!
- Disaboom recently interviewed Dr. Alan Brightman, Senior Policy Director for Special Communities at Yahoo!, Inc., and the Founder of Apple Computer's Worldwide Disability Solutions Group, in a two-part article. The first interview with Dr. Brightman discusses his roles as "Assistive Technology Pioneer, Advocate for People with Disabilities". The second interview with Dr. Brightman discusses how his workplace, Yahoo!, "gets" disability, accessibility, and assistive technology. This goes in the category of "must-read". (unfortunately, the disaboom website is no longer on line as of May 11, 2014.)
The Irish Times article "Wheelchair access to concerts" highlights the issues facing concertgoers with wheelchairs, as well as the (lack of) understanding at concert venues. (PDF of the article: "Irish wheelchair users fight lines to get concert tickets".
"Nil by mouth" is a post by movie critic, Roger Ebert, about not being able to eat or drink after his throat surgeries, posted 6 Jan 2010. Read it. [Note: this has nothing to do with the bleak Gary Oldman 1998 movie “Nil by Mouth”.]
- Tired of long documents discussing HTML5? Why not play "HTML5 it is a-changin'"-an HTML5 song on a ukelele? Or a ukelele and a banjo?
- Braille t-shirts, clothing, shoes, and jewelry.
- An accessible, server-based version of Monopoly! by ZanoSoft and RS Games.
- Braille and Low Vision Monopoly by Reizen Inc. has extra large sized cards with braille and large print. The 20-in. square game board has a special overlay molded on to it so you will be able to identify all the spaces and the location of the properties. The perimeter of each game space is labeled in braille and in large print, which allows everyone – including the blind and those with low vision – to enjoy this game. Comes complete with brailled dice, brailled cards, brailled money and brailled game board.
- Dog lovers, get out your tissues for a video of Ricochet the SURFice dog, or visit Ricochet's website.
This post was glued together with links or inspiration from many people. They are listed with their Twitter names.
Thanks to all of you!