DIAGRAM Advisory Board Meeting – October 21, 2013
Present: Betsy Beaumon, Anh Bui, Gerardo Capiel, Jim Downs, Lucia Hasty, Glinda Hill, George Kerscher, Andrew Kirkpatrick, Sue-Ann Ma, Brian McDonald, Julie Noblitt, Elaine Ober, Ike Presley, James Pritchett, Madeleine Rothberg, Robin Seaman
Regrets: Jim Allan, Geoff Freed, Jim Fruchterman, Larry Goldberg, Bryan Gould, Markus Gylling, Jim Koopman, Helen Popper, T.V. Raman, Lore Schindler, Michael Sharpe, Jane Thompson, Laurie Vasquez, Ge Vue
Click below to listen to an audio recording of this meeting:
George is trying out a new bone conduction headset that allows you to hear your screenreader, for example, while still be able to hear other conversation. He recommends it!
1. Update from the AAP EPUB 3 implementation group (Robin Seaman)
- In July 2013, Ed McCoyd invited us to join a working group to discuss proposed baseline standard features for EPUB 3 at Random House in NY on Sept 10.
- 150 people involved – publishers, reading systems, platform providers, accessibility community. Urgency of meetings – met weekly all summer. Features, accessibility, metadata, case studies, EDUPUB meeting outreach.
- DIAGRAM provided bridge between Features and Accessibility groups. Bill Kasdorf of Apex was also a bridge. Went through 129 accessibility features. DIAGRAM’s Top Tips for Accessible EPUB3 was used as a framework for prioritizing features. George Kerscher, Elaine Ober, Suzy Haines, and Robin Seaman attended the Sept 10th meeting in person. All-day meeting resulted in triage of subset of most important accessibility features.
- Legal counsel advised group about discussion guidelines – “recommend” not “require” – and can’t talk about any players in particular (for anti-trust reasons). But, use of standards is ok. Must focus recommendations to align reading systems and conversion vendors capabilities – image descriptions and MathML are part of the recommendations, but compliance is voluntary.
- White paper is in review now and will be released publicly. “Top Tips for Creating Accessible EPUB3” were incorporated into the AAP whitepaper. Next steps: somewhat unclear. Robin met with Bill Kasdorf in Frankfurt – hoping that BISG (Books Industry Study Group) takes it over.
- George: IDPF put together test suite of ~100 EPUB docs. All hand-created. Tests and demos features of the EPUB standard. Publishers struggle with display issues across readers – some readers display incorrectly, so they end up wrapping text in a <div> to make it look right in certain readers. Trying to get that to stop. BISG has a grid of features, identifying which readers support what features. Test suite being made available. If tables or nested lists don’t work, will be clear that it’s the reading system, not the publisher content. DAISY staff heavily involved in creating test suite.
- Discussion: What should be next steps? How should DIAGRAM be involved?
- i. James: white paper has next steps section, but a little vague. IDPF and Readium Foundation a little more complete. Anti-trust lawyer said you can’t talk about implementation (what, how, or when).
- ii. Betsy: White paper can’t talk about it, but we can.
- iii. Robin: Want whitepaper to be ready for EDUPUB conference in Boston at end of Oct 2013.
- iv. Anh: Whitepaper not an action framework, but we could use it as a talking point as we do our work. Present it as another argument for image accessibility.
- v. Robin: Getting the info out to the larger publisher community may be challenging. Want to continue to work with the AAP and Bill Kasdorf, who understand the issues and can advocate. Concerned about lack of clarity of message.
- vi. George: Good outcome was consolidated recommendations on images. Please see DIAGRAM’s Image Guidelines for EPUB 3.
- vii. Elaine: Would be useful for a11y WG to finish going through the 129 items and prioritize them. Do a check-in pass through them for as many reading systems as possible. Take all priority 1 items and assign difficulty rating to them. Identify an org that could take this on. (APH?) We got through 80 of the items already.
- ix. Robin: Need to distinguish priorities and timelines – lots of discussion on this. Frankfurt buzz is that EPUB 3 adoption is not coming soon. Backlist may never be converted. Ingram in particular has 243 EPUB 3’s out of 400K titles. So, AAP’s target date of Feb 2014 is not a realistic date for publishers to begin creating EPUB 3. Bit of a disconnect between recommendation and implementation.
- x. Would have been great to have a gap analysis. What is happening now vs. ideal. Maybe best to have sample content.
- xi. No set action items, but want to be more specific about how we can push forward agenda.
2. Content WG update (Elaine Ober):
- Accessible Image Sample Book: 5 chapters completed – want 2 or 3 more. Looking for a purely decorative image and a 3D-ready file. Goal is to complete the book by Thanksgiving (mid December at latest). ACTION: if you have images we can use please tell us. Book will include info on emerging technologies such as haptics and 3-D printing. AAP meeting confirmed need for the sample book. Concrete, simple guidelines are highly desirable for publishers.
- Most recent Content WG meeting was at end of August – Gerardo Capiel & Charles Myers presented on the a11ymetadata project. When sample book is done, next big project will be accessible image repository or registry.
3. Tools WG update (Gerardo Capiel):
- W3C community group around open & interactive widgets for STEM education. Creating widget library for EPUB 3. SVG sonification widget – came out of MathTrax work. Will send out demos.
- MathJax, ChromeVox – described math with SVG formats – solution for ereaders that don’t support MathML. Richard Ladner’s Tactile Graphics with a Voice project is ongoing.
- EPUB 3 revision added support for schema.org metadata. LRMI, a11ymetadata tie to Common Core. Aria-describedat also included. See Matt Garrish’s good blog post on this.
- Poet – doing increased focus on publishers and DSS officers. MathML a11y improvements coming in NVDA, ChromeVox. Support for EPUB 3 in Poet is forthcoming – intake, image checking, export. Poet can support EPUB files going in. ACTION: let us know if you have files you want to try out. EPUB 3 output would make great sample content.
- DAISY Pipeline charter was approved: focus on STEM and non-textual content. Focus on conversion of MathML & DIAGRAM work. More support of Louis and automatic braille when source is EPUB.
4. Standards WG update (George Kerscher):
- ISO has approved EPUB as an international standard (in Japan last month). Official announcement expected in the spring.
- W3C is running the digipub WG – Markus Gylling running that. EDUPUB meeting next week in Boston. Backlist is going to be very important for a long time. (Glinda agrees!)
- W3C got ARIA 1.1 out has a draft with describedat in the spec. Both describedat and describedby are in the EPUB spec. (round of applause!!) Open annotation in W3C is starting up (Markus Gylling involved in that) – mechanism to take images in a database and merge descriptions with them and integrate them into an ebook. Need more a11y people to work on that.
- Readium Foundation – reading inside the browser – Readium SDK – development of applications for devices (phones, tablets) – gaining a lot of momentum. Learning A11y, Google, Adobe have joined – donated their DRM coding to Readium – meeting one week from today. Pre-flight a11y checker – $25K funding, programmer from Ingram.
5. Outreach WG update (Julie Noblitt)
- Not discussed due to time constraints, but notes are below.
- Next DIAGRAM webinar: Thurs Oct 24 – “Office Hours with the Image Description Experts”. 90 registrants so far, great questions and tough images sent in advance for discussion. Webinars held quarterly – next one will be January 2014. See complete suite of DIAGRAM webinars.
- Web site refresh scheduled for completion before Thanksgiving. This is not a site redesign — just migrating to WordPress, using same design template as the DIAGRAM blog. Additional accessibility features such as landmarks and contrast buttons have been added. Twitter feed and blog feed will appear on home page.
- Video work will resume when web site is squared away. Survey of DIAGRAM community on most important messaging re: accessible images has been completed – will be very helpful in focusing refreshed content on web site home page as well as video.
- Updated DIAGRAM talking points distributed to staff at Benetech’s “Accessible Books for Texas” program.
6. Next in-person meeting (Anh Bui)
- Will likely be held in June 2014
- More information forthcoming via email
from → DIAGRAM Only