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CSUN 2017 Roundup

2017 April 19

The DIAGRAM community had another extremely successful and jam-packed CSUN conference this year. We did a lot, saw a lot, learned a lot, connected a lot and enjoyed ourselves, you guessed it, a lot. For those of you unfamiliar with CSUN, it is one of the biggest Assistive Technology conferences held. Researchers, exhibitors, end users, practitioners, vendors, and educators all come together to share, among other things, what they are working on, what they’ve learned and best practices in the assistive technology field. Here are some highlights from our CSUN 2017 adventures.

Events

Code Sprint

A photograph of Mark, Sina, Anniika, and Jason working together. Ross is not visible in the picture. We kicked off CSUN 2017 one day early with our annual CSUN code sprint. This year we co-hosted the event with Macmillan Learning and focused on solutions for making interactive scenarios accessible. Twenty-seven on-site participants and four remote participants spent almost nine hours working on one (in some cases more than one) of the following topics: Accessible Drag and Drop, Accessible Interactive Simulations, Braille Math, MathML in EPUB, Map Data Visualization, and Personalized Learning. By the end of the day, the groups had managed to create seven working prototypes all ready to demo. Mark Hakkinen, Sina Bahram, Annika Muehlbradt, Jason White and Ross Reedstrom were all part of the group focusing on drag and drop interactions. They developed a mechanism that allows a user to sort and match content without needing to use a mouse to physically drag and drop it.

A photograph of Jesse, Ross, Paul, Kelly, Darren and Kathy working together along with Neil and Volker.Jesse Greenberg, Ross Reedstrom, Paul Anderson, Kelly Lancaster, Kathi Fletcher and Darren Guinness worked off of a PhET simulation of a sweater and balloon inducing positive and negative charges. They ultimately improved the interface so it only displayed pertinent and non-repetitive information to the user. Neil Soiffer, Charles LaPierre, George Kerscher and Rachel Comerford took on standards and the problem of trying to display MathML in EPUB without having the alt text double speak.A photograph of George, Rachel, Charles and Neil working together at their table. They were able to add a PNG image of math with alt text and add MathML to it using CSS so that it was hidden off-screen and prevented the double speaking of the altText. They have since met further, along with Avneesh, Sina and Jason to dive deeper into the issue of adding MathML into EPUB and have since come up with a possible solution to the inconsistencies found during the day on how to get MathML represented and spoken correctly in an EPUB document.  More about what they have worked out post CSUN will be shared in our upcoming Newsletter.

A photograph of Cliff, Doug, Derek and Deanna working together at their table. Doug Schepers, Cliff Tyllick, Derek Riemer and Deanna McCusker worked on an interactive keyboard accessible map that was also screen reader accessible and allows for info box display customization. Lisa Seaman and Marisa Demeglio demoed the ability to have personalization applied to a page in order to standardize the look and feel of a webpage to the users’ own needs and preferences.  Murray Sargent worked on creating a table for all Unicode characters used forA photograph of Murray and Volker at the Code Sprint. Murray is sitting at his laptop and Volker is standing behind him looking over his shoulder. Braille Math using Nemeth and UEB and Volker Surge used Unicode characters from Murray to produce braille output using MathJax.

Much like last year it was a full, intense and really fun day. According to sprint participant Sina Bahram, “DIAGRAM is a powerhouse at bringing the right people together, and that’s what makes events like this so successful” And it really was successful. So much so that we’re the exploring the idea of holding another future code sprint outside of CSUN.

The work that was done at the sprint was both impressive and inspirational and wouldn’t have happened without the support of our event partner Macmillan Learning, to A photograph of the sprint participants hacking away in their groups.whom we are extremely grateful. We would also like to extend a heartfelt thank you to all of our volunteer participants for helping make the day a resounding success: Annika Muehlbradt (Student, University of Colorado, Boulder), Daren Guinness (Student, University of Colorado, Boulder), Derek Riemer (Student, University of Colorado, Boulder), Doug Schepers (CTO, Open Access technologies), Ender Tekin (Associate Scientist, Waisman Center at the University of Wisconsin, Madison) George Kerscher (Chief Innovations Officer, DAISY Consortium), Jason White (Associate Research Scientist, Educational Testing Service), Jesse Greenberg (Software Developer, PhET, University of Colorado Boulder), Jonathan Hung (UX Engineer, Inclusive Design Research Center), Justin Obara (Inclusive Developer, Inclusive Design Research Center), Kathi Fletcher (Technical Director, OpenStax), Kelly Lancaster (Lead Interactive Designer, Macmillan), Rachel Comerford (Director of Content Standards, Macmillan), Lisa Seeman (Accessibility Research Engineer, IBM), EmA photograph of the sprint participants hacking away in their groups. taken from a closer vantage point. ily Moore (Director of Research and Accessibility, PhET, University of Colorado Boulder), Marisa Demeglio (Software Developer, DAISY Consortium), Mark Hakkinen (Research Scientist, Educational Testing Service), Murray Sargeant (Software Development Engineer, Microsoft), Neil Soiffer (Software Developer), Phil Schatz (Developer, OpenStax), Ross Reedstrom (Senior Developer, OpenStax), Sina Bahram (President and Founder, Prime Access Consulting), Taliesin Smith (Inclusive Design Research Specialist, PhET, University of Colorado Boulder), Volker Sorge (Managing Director, Progressive Accessibility Solutions),  Jennifer Grant (Senior Research Systems Specialist, Educational Testing Service) and Cliff Tyllick (EIR Accessibility Coordinator,Texas Health and Human Services Commission)!

DIAGRAM Office Hours

A photograph of Mark Hakkinen waving at the camera during the Office Hours Event as other people mingle behind him. This year more people attended the DIAGRAM Office Hours event than ever before! Conversations around block languages and teaching accessible computer science abounded, as well as discussions about doing more code sprints. As usual, there were some on-the-fly demos around the room, including an app on song-based speech therapy and one app prototype intended to help people with blindness navigate the subway in New York.  It was wonderful to catch up with old friends, meet new ones, discuss potential partnerships and exchange ideas face-to-face. In fact, thanks to the Office Hours event, a potential expansion for RRAI is now in the works which you can learn more about in the upcoming newsletter. Thanks to everyone who was able to join, and we look forward to catching up again next year!

 

DIAGRAM Sessions

  • Bright and early Thursday morning DIAGRAM team members from Benetech, Sue-Ann Ma and Lisa Wadors, joined long time community member Sina Bahram, President and founder of Prime Access Consulting, to introduce CSUN attendees to one of DIAGRAM’s newest resources in their session titled Repository-Registry of Accessible Images: Find and Share Alternate Formats. The session focused on teaching participants how to use RRAI, which is a collaborative web-enabled collection prototype, to eliminate redundancies in the production of alternate formats in STEM. Not only was the session well attended, but we now have several potential new partnerships with DDS offices and independent organizations running tactile websites, which is an exciting prospect. The slides from the presentation are available for download here.
  • Next up on Thursday Lisa Wadors and Robin Seaman presented the session “Create, Build, Find & Buy Accessible: Creating a Fully Accessible Education”. Lisa went over resources where people can find accessible material. She also reviewed the guidelines for educational institutions on how to buy accessible content. Robin then introduced participants to Benetech’s accessibility certification program and concluded with an overview of how educators can create their own accessible PowerPoints, Google Docs, Microsoft Word Documents and PDF files. You can download the PowerPoint deck here.
  • Friday morning DIAGRAM team members from Benetech, Charles LaPierre, Sue-Ann Ma and Ginny Grant, along with DIAGRAM community member Volker Sorge from MathJax Consortium and Progressive Accessibility Solutions presented a session, “Accessible Mathematics – Highlights from the Past Year and What Lies Ahead”. They explored the landscape of MathML and MathML standards, as well as various options for hosting digital math and what’s currently being done and what will be done to help make digital math more accessible. Slides from their session can be downloaded here.
  • Friday afternoon George Kerscher (Benetech/DAISY), Charles LaPierre (Benetech) and Rachel Comerford (Macmillan Learning) gave their session “Finally, Certified Accessible Educational Materials from Publishers”. Participants were taken through an in depth review of the standards at the core of accessibility and the “must have requirements” for accessible EPUB. They were then treated to a sneak peek at one of Benetech’s newest pilots, an accessible certification system. The slide deck for the presentation can be downloaded here.

All in all it was a full two days of sessions, and of course DIAGRAM’s weren’t the only ones. If you would like to share a summary of a session you gave or found particularly interesting, we’d be thrilled to add it to our CSUN recap roundup. Simply email it to info@diagramcenter.org, or to me directly at amayaw@benetech.org.

Connections

One of the great things about CSUN is that it is a chance to catch up with colleagues face-to-face and the DIAGRAM team made the most of this opportunity. We had a great time reconnecting with people, planning potential partnerships and getting to know people we haven’t worked with before. Below are some highlights from the many meetings we had. We’re always happy to include more, but didn’t want to overwhelm our readers, so if we didn’t mention a meeting you’d like to see included, let us know and we can put it in our blog and newsletter. Feel free to email info@diagramcenter.org, or Amaya directly at Amayaw@benetech.org.

  • We met with Geoff Freed and Bryan Gould of WGBH/NCAM to discuss the progress of our joint project around Peep and the Big Wide World. We now have four finished stories and one live action story that is almost complete. Also finished is a keyboard accessible memory game. The next steps for this endeavor will be to finish the audio description and captions for the live action stories and to decide what else will be produced. Find out more about the Peep and the Big Wide World project in the next edition of our newsletter.
  • Anh Bui, Charles LaPierre, Lisa Wadors and Amaya Webster met with George Kerscher (co-chair of the Standards Working Group), Neil Soiffer and Sina Bahram, (co-chairs of the Developers Working Group), Jason White (chair of the Drag and Drop sub-committee), Elaine Ober and Lucia Hasty (co-chairs of the Content Working Group) and Jim Allen (chair of the 3D Tactile Standards working group). It was a chance for us to come together and share what each of the groups have been working on and discuss areas of overlap so as not to duplicate or contrast efforts. It quickly became apparent that all the working groups and the Drag and Drop sub-committee are interested in how interactive interfaces and scenarios can be made accessible. In fact, there was so much interest, that the group decided to meet post-CSUN to further discuss how accessible interactives can be better addressed. You can read more about this meeting and the follow-up discussion in the next edition of the DIAGRAM newsletter.
  • We got together with Mark Hakkinen and his team of researchers from ETS. It was the first time many of us had met in person and we had a great time getting to know one another and discussing how we might be able to collaborate in the future.
  • We met with DIAGRAM General Advisory Committee member Emily Moore (PhET) to talk about the interactives work that PhET has been doing. Accessible interactives is a theme that keeps coming up among DIAGRAM and the DIAGRAM community and we are looking forward to further exploring this area with Emily and her team at PhET.
  • Developer Working Group member Jamie Teh (NVDA) squeezed in a meeting with us right before the DIAGRAM Office Hours event. We compared notes on DIAGRAM and NVDA’s respective roadmaps.
  • We caught up with Ed Summers and the SAS team for a demo for their latest accessible charts. Doug Schepers joined the conversation as well and we all exchanged notes on where we see the future of charts and graphs going.

Final Words

CSUN is always an exciting, exhausting, enjoyable whirlwind and 2017 proved no different. There are several things I love about the conference, learning what new technology is out there, what other people are working on and catching up with people being quite high on the list. But my very favorite thing is the momentum it builds. We are coming out of this year’s CSUN with new prototypes and potential new projects to work on, new partnerships and new potential partnerships, new Working Group members, and renewed energy to make the world a more accessible place. If you have stories, pictures, comments to share, please send them my way. Let’s keep the momentum going!

info@diagramcenter.org or Amayaw@benetech.org

NextBillion.org is accepting mentor and mentee applications until April 14, 2017

2017 April 11
by Amaya Webster

NextBillion.org is a community & mentorship program for people with disabilities in tech. It is now accepting mentor and mentee applications for Cohort 2 – a 12-week online mentorship program that connects people with disabilities to industry professionals from top technology companies such as Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Paypal, etc. You can learn more about the program on their website and read impact stories from Cohort 1 to learn more about their community.

Students with disabilities & professionals in engineering, product, design or technology in North America are eligible to participate as mentees or mentors. Apply online at www.NextBillion.org, before April 14, 2017.Nextbillion.org logo

Community Spotlight

2017 February 28
by Amaya Webster

Spotlight on Emily Moore

A head shot photograph of Emily Moore smiling. Emily Moore is an educational technology expert and a new member of DIAGRAM’s General Advisory Committee as well as the Technical Advisory Subcommittee. She’s been highly involved in our interactives work as well as helping to build partnerships to further the accessibility work. Emily is the Director of Research and Accessibility for the PhET Interactive Simulations project at the University of Colorado Boulder. Founded in 2002, PhET works to creates free interactive math and science simulations based on extensive education research. The purpose of these simulations is to engage students through an intuitive, game-like environment where students learn through exploration and discovery. On a more personal note, Emily is from Georgia but spent her teen years traveling around the western United States in a camper van with her parents.  This past August she and her husband welcomed a beautiful baby girl, Adalene Blue, into their family. Congratulations Emily and thanks for joining our community, we are thrilled to have you!

Two photographs of Emily Moore's daughter. In one she is lying on her back smiling and in the other she is lying on her stomach on a piece of paper that she is finger painting on.

New Accessibility Conformance Specification; W3C and IDPF Complete Combination

2017 February 28
by George Kerscher

Since the beginning of the year, a lot has happened in the Standards space. Here is a very short summary.
On January 5, 2017 the IDPF officially published the EPUB 3.1 family of specifications for digital publishing. Most interesting for the accessibility community is the inclusion of the EPUB Accessibility 1.0 Conformance and Discovery Requirements for EPUB Publications.

On January 5, 2017 the IDPF officially published the EPUB 3.1 family of specifications for digital publishing. Most interesting for the accessibility community is the inclusion of the EPUB Accessibility 1.0 Conformance and Discovery Requirements for EPUB Publications.  http://www.idpf.org/epub/a11y/accessibility.html For the first time we have a formal specification that enables publications to be certified as accessible. This specification builds on WCAG 2.0 and adds requirements specific to published documents.

On February 1, the combination of the W3C and the IDPF was announced. The press release can be found at: https://www.w3.org/2017/01/pressrelease-idpf-w3c-combination.html.en This merger enables all IDPF Members to participate in the W3C Publishing Business Group (PBG) for two years at the same rates as were paid under the IDPF. Also, the EPUB 3.1 family of specifications, including the EPUB Accessibility 1.0 Specification have been submitted to the W3C. We are looking forward to having the W3C Lead the Web to its full potential for publishing! The Work previously conducted by the IDPF is moving to a variety of W3C groups:

  • The “Digital Publishing Interest Group” is developing a charter for a publishing working group that will lead to a specification to add the functionality of web publications (books in browsers) as well as an off-line downloadable form (e.g. EPUB 4).
  • The “Publishing Business Group” will be formed to lead publishing activities in the W3C.
  • An “EPUB 3 Community Group” has been formed to further develop the EPUB 3.1 family of specifications.  This is of particular importance because the publishing community needs a rock solid specification to use now and in the future; this provides a clear roadmap for publishing to use EPUB 3 now and eventually move to EPUB 4 and to web publications.

The EPUB 3 Community Group is free to join and open to anybody. You can learn more and sign up at:
https://www.w3.org/community/epub3/

New Microsoft Accessibility Features

2017 February 28
by Amaya Webster

Contributed by Elise Livingston

Editor’s note: Elise Livingston works for Microsoft as Program Manager on their Office Graphics team in Redmond, Washington. DIAGRAM staff members Amaya Webster and Sue-Ann Ma, had the pleasure of working with Elise last year, doing user testing on the upcoming Poet Training Module, with members of her team as well as product managers from Microsoft’s Mountain View, California location.We’re excited to have her contribute a post to the blog!

This year, Microsoft is making improvements to alt text in Microsoft Office. With guidance from the DIAGRAM center, Microsoft Office aims to make alt text more usable and discoverable for everyone. Early in the year, machine learning and computer vision will be used to help generate descriptions for photographs inserted into Office. This feature aims to bring alt text into the document writing process for all Office users and make more documents more accessible. Look out for this and other improvements made for alt text in Office365 coming this year. Microsoft is always looking for feedback on our work. If you would like to provide feedback or allow Microsoft to contact you for usability studies and interviews, please reach out to Elise Livingston (elisel@microsoft.com).

Update on Accessibility Certification Work

2017 February 28
by Charles LaPierre

Benetech has added two new publishers to the pilot program certifying the accessibility of books and have thus far inspected 30 EPUB books.  Here are our current findings:

Based on our review of a broad sample set of publisher files reviewed in the pilot to date, the current average score is 63% and we are observing the following trends:
1. Lists are generally well constructed with a current average of 86%
2. Tables present a challenge to publishers and fail on an average of 55%
3. General accessibility which includes styling, navigation, metadata, etc. is also very poor with an average score of 60%
4. Image accessibility including alt-text, longer descriptions when needed and decorative designations where appropriate is currently averaging 47%

The results thus far provide terrific insight into concrete places for improvement and next steps. Stay tuned for news about upcoming activities in this new certification arena!

Save the Date – DIAGRAM will be hosting a new webinar!

2017 February 28

DIAGRAM will be hosting a brand new webinar on March 15th at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time. Andreas Stefik of the University of Nevada Las Vegas, Sina Bahram of Prime Access Consulting and Richard Ladner of the University of Washington will be presenting on accessible coding and computer science. Details and registration information coming soon!

DIAGRAM General Advisory Committee

2017 February 28

The DIAGRAM General Advisory Committee held their first meeting of 2017 which opened with the introduction and welcome of the newest committee member, Patricia Snyder. Attendees were updated on one of DIAGRAM’s newest projects the Registry Repository of Accessible Images (RRAI) as well as on the progress in the Born Accessible arena including the recent publication of the EPUB 3.1 specification family, the IDPF and W3C merger and Benetech’s work on accessibility conformance review. The bulk of the discussion focused around the upcoming DIAGRAM Report which will examine new and upcoming technology that will likely have an impact on people with disabilities. Those technologies consist of:

  1. Coding/computer science
  2. Machine learning
  3. Speech recognition
  4. Personalized learning
  5. Multimedia interactives
  6. Multi modal user interface and tactiles
  7. Video
  8. Artificial intelligence –which we grouped up into machine learning
  9. 3D printing
  10. Robotics
  11. Gaming
  12. Haptics
  13. Gesture recognition
  14. Augmented reality
  15. Emotion detection
  16. Sonification

It was a lively meeting and more detailed accounts of each project discussed will be given in our next newsletter so make sure to check back!

DIAGRAM Standards Working Group Update

2017 February 28
by Charles LaPierre

On January 5th 2017 the IDPF released the latest EPUB 3.1 specification and a new Accessibility 1.0 Conformance and Discovery Specification which for the first time finally draws a line in the sand on what makes an EPUB book accessible at a baseline.  This specification along with its accompanying EPUB Accessibility Techniques document will help publishers and authors to create truly accessible publications.  Not only does this specification help the publishers with creating accessible materials but also will help everyone Find Accessible EPUBs with the new accessibility metadata that must be added to these books in order for them to be certified as being accessible.  I was fortunate to be a part of this historic moment as co-chair for this accessibility task force who helped create this accessibility specification, and a big thank you to all those who contributed in making this happen.

DIAGRAM Content Working Group Update

2017 February 28

While the Content Working Group has not met yet this quarter, that hasn’t stopped them from being productive. The group is currently working hard to migrate the HTML version of the Accessible Image Sample Book to the DIAGRAM website so that it can be linked to the DIAGRAM Image Description Guidelines. This will hopefully make both resources easier for everyone to use. Special thanks to Kimi Sugeno and Joshua Tallent for spearheading this project. The Content Working Group is looking to meet in late March to discuss next steps and implementation of new content for the Accessible Image Sample Book. Exciting things are afoot!

DIAGRAM Developers Working Group Update

2017 February 28
by Amaya Webster

It’s a busy time for the Developers Working Group and the Drag and Drop sub-group. Both are gearing up for the second annual DIAGRAM hosted code sprint at the CSUN conference, this year in partnership with Macmillan Learning. Several members of both groups will be working alongside developers from all over the world to explore challenges and hopefully prototype solutions to interactive learning mechanisms such as interactive charts and graphs.

DIAGRAM Out And About

2017 February 28
  • George Kerscher will be giving the Key Note address, titled “Ushering in the Born Accessible Era” at a NFB hosted a one-day training seminar, eBooks and EPUB Accessibility. The event takes place in Baltimore, MD on Thursday, March 23, 2017 and will focus on how to create and implement accessible EPUB 3 in a variety of different settings. Brad Turner and Sue-Ann Ma will also be in attending.

What We Are Reading

2017 February 28
by Amaya Webster
A big thank you to all of you who sent us articles to be included in this edition of “What We Are Reading” Please keep them coming! You can send them to info[at]Diagramcenter[org] or to me directly at amayaw[at]benetech[dot]org.

CSUN 2017: Final Countdown

2017 February 10

Day and Time set for the annual DIAGRAM Office Hours

  • Thursday, March 2
  • 5:00 – 7:00pm Pacific Time
  • Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel, DIAGRAM Hospitality Suite

A DIAGRAM Center tradition at CSUN, the Office Hours event is a great time for DIAGRAM community members to grab a snack,  have a drink, catch up with friends face to face, make new connections, exchange ideas and share work. We’ll even have tables set up for anyone who feels like doing an impromptu demo.It’s a lot of fun and we hope you’ll join us!

Office Hours with the DIAGRAM Center at CSUN 2016

Office Hours with the DIAGRAM Center at CSUN 2016

 Of course, there is also another DIAGRAM Center tradition at CSUN. We won’t know the exact suite number until we’ve checked in, at which point we will send out an email to those of you who have expressed interest in stopping by. So please let us know if you are interested in coming and/or if there is someone you think we should be sure to include. Email us at info[at]diagramcenter[dot]org and we will make sure you are on the event notification list.  We are looking so forward to CSUN and can’t wait to reconnect with as many of you as possible!

DIAGRAM Interactive Code Sprint at CSUN

Accessible Math Sprint at CSUN 2016

Accessible Math Sprint at CSUN 2016

The DIAGRAM Center is thrilled to announce that we will be hosting a one-day code sprint in partnership with Macmillan Learning on Tuesday, February 28th  in San Diego. Following on the successes of last year’s math-focused code sprint, which brought together over 20 participants from the accessibility community, the DIAGRAM Center is excited to continue this open source, community-driven tradition with a second-annual event targeting challenges and solutions related to interactives. For instance, we’ll look at developing ways to support various drag-and-drop scenarios, interactive tables/charts, and further progress in digital math solutions. At the end of the day, we hope to ignite collaborative momentum towards developing at least one new tool aimed at making it easier, faster, and cheaper to interact with digital content.

Sessions that are explicitly about DIAGRAM or DIAGRAM products:

Thursday, March 2, 9:00 am PT – Balboa C, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Sue-Ann Ma, DIAGRAM Center; Lisa Wadors Verne, Benetech and Sina Bahram, Prime Access Consulting

Learn how to use the Repository-Registry of Accessible Images (RRAI), a collaborative web-enabled collection, to eliminate redundancies in the production of alternate formats in STEM.

Slide Deck: Accessible Image Repository_CSUN 2017

Thursday, March 2, 2:20 pm PT – Mission Beach C, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers

Presenters: Lisa Wadors Verne and Robin Seaman, Benetech

We are in a golden age of digital information. Unfortunately, students with disabilities are often at a disadvantage because educational content is often not accessible.

Slide Deck: Create, Build, Find and Buy Accessible

Friday, March 3, 10:00 am PT- Golden Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Charles LaPierre, Benetech; Ginny Grant, Bookshare; Sue-Ann Ma, DIAGRAM Center and Volker Sorge, MathJax Consortium, Progressive Accessibility Solutions

Learn about the latest advances in research, standards, and tools, all in efforts to provide more personalized access to digital mathematics.

Slide Deck: CSUN2017_Accessible Mathematics

Friday, March 3, 2:20 pm PT – Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Richard Orme and George Kerscher of DAISY Consortium and Amaya Webster, Benetech

Digital publishing should mean regular books can be inclusive. Come and learn how to tell which reading systems are accessible (and legal) for everyone.

Slide Deck: Accessible reading solutions from mainstream publishers

Friday, March 3, 3:20 pm PT – Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: George Kerscher, DAISY Consortium; Charles LaPierre, Benetech and Rachel Comerford, Macmillan Learning

Publishers can now claim conformance to WCAG 2.0. “Certified by Benetech” guarantees the conformance claims are true. The process follows the approved EPUB Accessibility Standard.

Slide Deck: CSUN2017-EPUB Certification – Kerscher LaPierre Comerford

Sessions hosted by DIAGRAM community members related to DIAGRAM’s goals:

Wednesday, March 1, 9 am PT – Mission Beach C, 3rd Floor Between Harbor and Seaport Towers

Presenter: Joshua Miele, Smith-Kettlewell

We will discuss overTHERE, a free iOS app for blind pedestrians that uses audio and gestural feedback to accurately pinpoint nearby businesses and other places.

Wednesday, March 1, 10 am PT – Gaslamp AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Rick Johnson and Chris Auclair, VitalSource Technologies; Amy Salmon and Andre Lukatsky, Tech for All

This presentation provides information on how VitalSource developed a robust, interactive, and accessible EPUB3 experience with interactive activities that work in different environments.

Wednesday, March 1, 11 am PT – Ocean Beach, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers  

Presenters: Taliesin Smith and Clayton Lewis, University of Colorado

With a study of 12 users, we examine strategies for making an interactive science simulation accessible using descriptions accessed via a screen reader and keyboard.

Wednesday, March 1, 11 am PT – Balboa C, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Jason White and Mark Hakkinen, Educational Testing Service

We explore the interplay of sensory and cognitive issues in the design of accessible user interfaces, then examine their implications for research and standards development.

Wednesday, March 1, 11 am PT – Hillcrest AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Quentin Christensen, Michael Curran, James Teh and Reef Turner, NV Access

An overview of recent developments concerning the popular, free NVDA screen reader, plus an introduction to some exciting new NV Access products and projects.

Wednesday, March 1, 11 am PT – Golden Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenter: Geoff Freed, WGBH National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM)

NCAM participated in the DoT’s Advisory Committee on Accessible Air Transportation. Learn how the committee is solving the problem of inaccessible in-flight entertainment and communication.

Wednesday, March 1, 3:20 pm PT – Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Sina Bahram, Prime Access Consulting and Andreas Stefik, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Quorum now supports physics and has an accessible visual editor. This enables students with disabilities to create engaging, complex, and accessible games, accessibly.

Wednesday, March 1, 4:20 pm PT – Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenter: Ed Summers, SAS

Join a blind data scientist for a demonstration of SAS statistical analysis software that is free for students of all ages.

Thursday, March 2, 8:00 am PT – Balboa C, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenter: Wendy Holden, Central Washington University

The Central Access Reader is a free text to speech program and a useful tool for producing accessible STEM content.

Thursday, March 2, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm PT – Regatta A/B room

SAS will present unprecedented access to data science and data visualization and participants will have a chance to experience the technology themselves during a hand-on data lab. To attend please register in advance by emailing email accessibility@sas.com

Thursday, March 2, 10:00 am PT- Mission Beach C, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers  

Presenters: Luis Perez, Inclusive Learning Consultant and Yue-Ting Siu, San Francisco State University

This session will focus on tools and strategies for developing successful online communities of practice for assistive technology professionals and inclusive educators.

Thursday, March 2, 10:00 am PT- Gaslamp AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower 

Presenters: Rachel Comerford and Kelly Lancaster, Macmillan Learning

Is technical compliance the ultimate goal for educational materials? We share insights from testing products with screen reader users for usability, not just compliance.

Thursday, March 2, 11:00 am PT- Mission Beach C, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers  

Presenters: Steve Noble, University of Louisville;Shari Butler and Su Park of Pearson; Cricket Biddleman and Edgar Lozano

Online testing environments for ELA and mathematics tests will be discussed, with a focus on usability testing with students with visual and learning disabilities.

Thursday, March 2, 11:00 am PT -Balboa C, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenter: Steve Landau, Touch Graphics, Inc.

Touch-responsive, 3D printed models of animals bring universal access to zoos and aquarium exhibits. This presentation explains how these exhibits were fabricated and programmed, and how Touch Graphics is working with museums to add multi-sensory displays that invite every visitor to touch, listen and learn.

Thursday, March 2, 1:20 pm PT – Gaslamp AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Mark Hakkinen, Cary Supalo and Carlos Cavalie, Educational Testing Service

Consistent pronunciation and presentation of content by Text to Speech Synthesis can be achieved if AT were to support the Speech Synthesis Mark Up Language.

Thursday, March 2, 1:20 pm PT – Seaport Ballroom F-Deque, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Glenda Sims Deque and Jim Allan

The next version of WCAG is being drafted right now! The W3C Low Vision Task force has been researching user needs and writing proposed WCAG 2.1 success criteria and sufficient techniques. Come see what is proposed for low vision in WCAG Next.

Thursday, March 2, 2:20 pm PT- La Jolla A, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Bryan Gould and Geoff Freed, WGBH National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM)

NCAM is developing CADET (Caption and Description Editing Tool), free, downloadable caption-authoring software that enables anyone to easily produce high-quality, web-ready caption files.

Thursday, March 2, 3:20 pm PT- Mission Beach C, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers

Presenters: Larry Goldberg, Yahoo; Mary Bellard, Microsoft; Kate Sonka, Michigan State University; Jeff Wieland, Facebook

The Teach Access Project: tech companies and universities collaborating to expose ALL students in relevant majors to the fundamentals of accessible design and development.

Thursday, March 2, 3:20 pm PT – Seaport Ballroom H-Microsoft, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower 

Presenters: Elise Livingston and Seth Fox, Microsoft

Microsoft Office helps users create accessible content using the accessibility checker along with emerging image recognition technology.

Thursday, March 2, 4:20 pm PT- Cortez Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Jeanne Spellman, Paciello Group; Shawn Lauriat, Google; Andrew Kirkpatrick, Adobe; Michael Cooper, W3C

Learn the goals, process and priorities of the next major upgrade to accessibility guidelines after WCAG 2.1. Get the latest status and opportunities to contribute.

Friday, March 3, 8:00 am PT- Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: BJ Epstein, Greg Kehret, Frank Welte of LightHouse for the Blind and Visually Impaired; Jerry Kuns and Theresa Postello

Learn best practices of how to design, use, and teach tactile graphics in this presentation and hands-on demonstration, based on the authors’ expertise and experiences.

Friday, March 3, 8:00 am PT- Golden Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenter: Gian Wild, AccessibilityOz Inc

Covering the accessibility issues of each of the four main social media sites (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn).

Friday, March 3, 9:00 am PT- Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: John Gardner, ViewPlusTechnologies Inc. and Volker Sorge, Progressive Accessibility Solutions, Ltd

Developing software for fully automatic creation of accessible SVG diagrams.

Friday, March 3, 10:00 am PT- Ocean Beach, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers

Presenter: Shaun Kane, University of Colorado Boulder

Smart garments offer new possibilities for assistive technology. We reflect on the evolutionary trajectory of this area and identify future directions for assistive wearables.

Friday, March 3, 10:00 am PT – Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Eric Hansen, Mark Hakkinen, Jason White and Carlos Cavalie of Educational Testing Service

We report on the usability of a web-based tool for sonification of numerical data tables for screen reader users in realistic science assessment tasks.

Friday, March 3, 11:00 am PT – Balboa C, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Rick Johnson, VitalSource Technologies, Inc.; George Kerscher, DAISY Consortium and Benetech and Jonathan Thurston, Pearson

Accessibility leaders will discuss the challenges of implementing accessibility standards to create an end-to-end solution for students and will highlight recent steps toward that goal.

Friday, March 3, 2:20 pm PT- Golden Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Michael Cooper and Judy Brewer of W3C and Andrew Kirkpatrick, Adobe

Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.1 builds on WCAG 2.0 to provide updated guidance that reflect technology changes and new needs.

Other sessions of possible DIAGRAM interest:

Wednesday, March 1, 9 am PT – Old Town AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Dana Marlowe and Sharon Rosenblatt, Accessibility Partners

A presentation of case studies on how museums both big and small can implement accessibility for their patrons with disabilities.

Wednesday, March 1, 9:00 am PT – Golden Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Lainey Feingold, Law Office of Lainey Feingold and Linda Dardarian, Goldstein, Borgen, Dardarian & Ho

Join two internationally recognized disability rights lawyers for a fast-paced review of digital accessibility legal settlements, court cases, laws and regulations. Web, mobile, kiosks, and more.

Wednesday, March 1, 10 am PT – La Jolla A, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenter: Abraham Glasser

An evaluation of Automatic Speech Recognition services showed that there was a relationship between ASR accuracy and readability levels by IBM Watson and Microsoft Azure.

Wednesday, March 1, 2:20 pm PT – Old Town AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Gareth Ford Williams and Nigel Megitt, British Broadcasting Corporation

Over 100 years of learnings from key research into the readability, legibility and accessibility of fonts are explored in this presentation.

Wednesday, March 1, 4:20 pm PT – Balboa C, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Jennifer Gauvreau, Michael Bennett and Elizabeth Whitmer, CGI

CGI will explore potential accessibility barriers with charts, graphs, and interactive dashboards and share practical lessons learned in designing and developing inclusive data visualization solutions.

Wednesday, March 1, 4:20 pm PT – Old Town AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenter: Atsushi Imai, Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK)

At present, audio description services are mainly for pre-recorded programs, such as dramas. We propose a new audio description service for live TV sports programs.

Thursday, March 2, 10:00 am PT- Golden Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenter: Lisa Seeman, IBM Corporation, and facilitator of WCAG‘s Cognitive Accessibility Task Force

IBM is getting ready to address new success criteria in WCAG 2.1 for people with cognitive disabilities. What tools will be useable by all?

Thursday, March 2, 11:00 am PT – Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Chaals McCathie Nevile, Yandex and Léonie Watson, The Paciello Group (TPG)

What does it take to make SVG accessible? How accessible can SVG be today?

Thursday, March 2, 1:20 pm PT- Balboa AB, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Ken Perry and Jeanette Wicker of American Printing House for the Blind and Venkatesh Chari, Orbit Research

The Graphiti™ is a dynamic multilevel tactile touch display that allows students and adults to access a wide variety of on-screen graphics by touch.

Thursday, March 2, 1:20 pm PT- Balboa C, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenter: Michael Kolitsky, nextgenEmedia

iPad or iPad Pro audio buttons located directly beneath complex image tactile template regions provide one-to-one link between audio information and tactile location being touched.

Thursday, March 2, 1:20 pm PT- Golden Hill AB, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Lisa Seeman, IBM Corporation, and facilitator of WCAG‘s Cognitive Accessibility Task Force, Maureen Kraft and Will Scott, IBM

Thursday, March 2, 3:20 pm PT- Seaport Ballroom G-Google, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower 

Presenters: Caile Collins and Noah Wang, Google

Learn about improvements and innovations in automatic closed captioning.

Thursday, March 2, 4:20 pm PT- Mission Beach C, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers  

Presenter: Jeff Witt, Fidelity Investments

We present practical design and implementation guidelines toward universal usability for charts, including palette design, keyboard interaction, and markup. Related usability research is discussed.

Friday, March 3, 9:00 am PT- Seaport Ballroom A-SSB Bart, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower 

Presenters: Chris Lane and Nat Tarnoff of SSB BART Group

Review the architecture of Angular 2 applications, and explore the use of Components, basic unit testing with Karma, and end-to-end testing with Protractor.

Friday, March 3, 10:00 am PT – La Jolla A, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Julie Grisham, Sandy Watson, Levon Spradlin, Anthony Fernando and Corey Fauble of Pearson

An open discussion on the evolution of accessibility needs for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals and how needs change when moving from K-12 to postsecondary education.

Friday, March 3, 10:00 am PT- Seaport Ballroom A-SSB Bart, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Mark Barlet, AbleGamers Foundation and Jessie Hall, SSB BART Group

From AAA titles to indie studio releases, look at game companies doing accessibility right. Delve into best practices, relevant legislation, and trends in the industry.

Friday, March 3, 10:00 am PT – Seaport Ballroom H-Microsoft, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower  

Presenters: Saqib Shaika and Anirudh Koul, Microsoft

When we think about sound, we generally assume it needs to be heard. How can we make the auditory world more inclusive for people who are Deaf or hard of hearing? Drop by our talk to find out how AI and visualizations can help convey the meaning of sounds.

Friday, March 3, 11:00 am PST – Ocean Beach, 3rd Floor, Between Harbor and Seaport Towers  

Presenter: Larwan Berke

To compare methods of displaying speech-recognition confidence of automatic captions, we analyzed eye-tracking and response data from deaf or hard of hearing participants viewing videos.

Friday, March 3, 2:20 pm PT – Seaport Ballroom A-SSB Bart, 2nd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenter: Alistair Garrison, SSB BART Group

ML/NLP is all over the news. Let’s look at how we can use it to make accessibility testing faster and easier for QA teams.

Friday, March 3, 3:20 pm PT – Hillcrest CD, 3rd Floor, Seaport Tower

Presenters: Jason Carroll and Martin McKay, Texthelp

This session will focus on and demonstrate various examples of cloud-based technologies that can support a wide range of learners in reading, writing and math.