Refining Text Presentation with your Web Browser: Windows

March 16, 2008

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Topics: Accessibility.

It wasn’t long ago that I wrote an article on authoring an effective text-resizing widget. In that article, I made a point not to espouse the use of text-resizing tools, since it’s generally more effective to allow people to use their browser’s built-in text-resizing functionality. In fact, browser’s allow you a great deal more control than simply size. Modern browsers can give you extensive control over website text, including dictating background colors, text color, base text size, minimum text size, […]

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Developing an effective text-resizing widget

February 29, 2008


Topics: Accessibility.

The grand old question concerning techniques and choices in web accessibility which, while common, are not necessarily helpful is a popular subject which is always around in accessibility circles. It’s certainly not a new topic for me to write on, but one which (for whatever reason) I’m going to go ahead and write about again. In this case, I’m going to take a single commonly implemented method: the text-resizing tool, and discuss the advantages and disadvantages in some depth. This […]

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A useful CAPTCHA from reCAPTCHA

January 21, 2008


Topics: Accessibility.

Just wanted to add the comment, since I didn’t specify it explicitly, that I’m not trying to claim that the accessibility of this particularly CAPTCHA is all that fantastic — it’s pretty good, but there are serious problems. I’m just saying that it’s a neat idea. 😉 In case you don’t already know, “CAPTCHA” is an abbreviation for “Completely Automated Turing Test To Tell Computers and Humans Apart.” From an accessibility perspective, they tend to have significant problems — and […]

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Google Toolbar ties to the Windows Accessibility API

December 27, 2007

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Topics: Accessibility, News.

Quietly released on the Saturday before Christmas, (what, are they trying to hide this news?) Google announced that their latest Toolbar release supports the Windows Accessibility API. This is (obviously) a Windows-specific release, and even further, it’s just an Internet Explorer release. However, it’s definitely a step in the right direction! I was particularly glad to see the comment: Version 5 comes as a part of our ongoing efforts to enhance accessibility in our client-side and web applications, which is […]

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Supporting Standards that Support Accessibility

December 23, 2007


Topics: Accessibility, Semantics, Web standards.

The justification that a web site is accessible because it “follows standards” contains a serious fallacy. Specifically, the assumption that standards support accessibility. One root of current standard accessibility practice is conformance to the HTML or XHTML standards set by the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C). This is a fine practice, and certainly should be maintained. Using correct syntax and following a standardized method of communicating information is always a solid best practice. However, this should absolutely not be taken […]

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