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September 2015 Standards Working Group Update

2015 September 30
by George Kerscher

The Transition to Inclusive EPUB 3 (TIES) and the DIAGRAM Standards Working Group continue to meet twice a month. So far the group has submitted 9 requirements to the EPUB 3.1 process and developed a specification for audio only plus navigation to be used by EPUB 3 and media overlays. The reading systems that support media overlays with reflow should support this mechanism for delivering audio books.

Five modular extensions to EPUB 3.0.1 have been approved as final Recommended Specifications.  The specifications include:

In the W3C’s Protocol and Formats working group, extensive discussions have taken place to identify the best mechanism(s) for linking to external descriptions when longer ones are needed, such as those made possible through the Diagrammar.  While there have been formal objections to using longdesc, and also to aria-describedat, the “details” element in HTML 5.1 is being considered.

MathML, in addition to other issues, continues to be discussed in the W3C Digital Publishing interest group (DPUB). While there have been improvements in MathML accessibility, publishers sometimes remove the MathML and replace it with an image of the math, because reading systems are not displaying the MathML properly.

In the Book Industry Study Group (BISG) the “Top Tips” is being revised at the same time as the “Quick Start Guide is being developed. BISG is look at a publishing date in November for the Quick Tips Guide.

The work of testing reading systems continues at www.epubtest.org. The accessibility of the various reading systems is being broadcast, and it seems that educational institutions are now considering the accessibility information in their decision making process.

IDPF will open a European Headquarters in Paris. Read the announcement at:

http://idpf.org/news/idpf-to-open-european-headquarters-in-paris

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