Techniques

Five tips to make the web work better in your language

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In late May, Dr Scott Hollier travelled to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to teach a web accessibility course to 22 students. As part of the assignment work, the students learnt how to use the basic functionality of screen readers and other Assistive Technology (AT). While the work went well, it quickly became apparent that there were a number of issues relating to the way in which Arabic was supported by the tools, and how those tools interacted with the web.

Translate button on a keyboard amidst keys labelled with multiple languages

There are several reasons why the web becomes more complicated for non-English speaking users, and it’s a combination of a number of factors:


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Chinese tech giant Baidu announces Blind Search device

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China’s leading search engine provider Baidu has announced the Blind Search device, a tool to assist blind and vision impaired people access “massive amounts of information online through touch” using a combination of tactile and voice-activated commands.

Blind Search facing upward with light emitting from the tactile display. Caption reads 'The device is called Blind Search'


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Web and PDF Accessibility: New Tools for Changing Times

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Tim Connell, Managing Director at adaptive technology company Quantum talks about web and document accessibility. Tim spoke to media Access Australia following his presentation at the 2015 Print Disabilities Conference held May 2-5 in Adelaide, South Australia.

Quantum: Reading, Learning, Vision logo


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New video player designed for the blind released

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The American Foundation for the Blind (AFB) has released a revolutionary video player which makes it easy for blind and vision impaired people to play online videos, and is making it available to website owners and developers for free.

Woman sitting on a bed, using a laptop


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Lessons from Skandia Bank’s accessibility journey

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Norwegian bank Skandiabanken’s Snorre Kim discusses why a major national bank decided to put digital accessibility at the front and centre of its recent website redesign and move to a new banking platform.

Skandiabanken logo

Snorre spoke to Media Access Australia following his presentation at Funka’s Accessibility Days conference, which was held April 14-15 in Stockholm, Sweden.


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Consumers encouraged to nominate accessible apps

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Users of mobile device apps have been encouraged to nominate their favourite accessible apps for the 2015 Apps For All Challenge.

App icons hovering above the screen of a tablet device. Image credit: ACCAN

The challenge, now in its second year, seeks to find Australia’s most accessible apps and encourage software developers to include digital accessibility when they create apps.


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Q&A with Robert Osztolykan, creator of the petition to make Steam accessible

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Media Access Australia spoke with Robert Osztolykan, blind gamer and creator of the petition to make Valve’s gaming platform Steam accessible to people who are blind or vision impaired. Robert shares his motivation to start the petition, his experiences playing mainstream titles, his thoughts on the current generation of gaming and why developers need to consider accessibility.

Steam controller. Image credit: Pierre Lecourt via Flickr

Steam is highly popular, featuring more than five million users. Part of this popularity is that it features more than 3,500 free and paid-for games that users of Windows, Mac and Linux computers can browse and download to play.


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Digital Transformation Office updates guidance on Digital Service Standard

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The Digital Transformation Office—a new body created to manage the improved design of online government services—has provided updated guidance for agencies.

Right hand holding an iPhone and left hand resting on laptop keyboard, cup of coffee on the right


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Hong Kong honours accessible websites and apps

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The Government of Hong Kong has once again recognised the efforts of web developers and designers in creating websites and mobile apps that are accessible to everyone.

Web Accessibility Campaign: Making Web Content Available for All banner. Image credit: ogcio.gov.hk


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edX settles inaccessible online courses case

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Massive open online course (MOOC) provider edX has settled a case brought by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) alleging that its online courses breach accessibility requirements under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

Judge's gavel resting on a sounding block


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