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DIAGRAM Goes to Accessibility Camp

2016 December 30

Technical Camp

by Charles LaPierre

All the sessions were very well attended and had a tremendous amount of information to share. The sessions I attended were:

  • “Enhancing Accessibility for Date and Time selector: Lessons Learned” by Alan Souza where we coded a date/time selector and saw how it interacted with a screen reader. Experts in the audience offered alternative ways to accomplish the task and insights into some best practices.
  • “Accessibility Testing Tools for Developers” by Gerard Cohen was very interesting and highlighted a number of automated tools for checking a website for accessibility. Gerard, who is visually impaired, took a selfie of his debut presentation with VoiceOver activated on his phone, and it was so cool to hear how Voice Over told him the number of faces it found in the picture as he snapped the shot.
  • “Time to start exploiting ARIA (Accessible Rich Internet Applications) 1.1” by accessibility expert Matt King, who explained that ARIA 1.1 includes eight new roles and thirteen new states. He pointed out some that had deprecated, I was surprised to learn that one was Drag and Drop. Of course, I had to tell Matt about our brand new Drag and Drop Developers sub-committee and he seemed very interested in learning more about it.

All in all the camp was well attended, well organized and had an outstanding lineup of presenters with substantive content. Many thanks to the event sponsors and LinkedIn for hosting.

Accessible User Interface Design Camp

by Deanna McCusker

I attended the session “Inclusive Design Thinking” presented by Bo Campbell, the A11Y design lead from IBM. This session emphasized the importance of including personas of people with disabilities in the task analysis. This session was similar to the one on mockup and wireframe review which discussed ways to ensure that accessibility is included in product development by including specifications in the design and mockups. Both of these sessions encouraged more A11y awareness in the product design phase so that it is carried forward into the development phase.

The session “Android A11y” given by Renato Iwashima from LinkedIn was a review of Android accessibility features, including the new “voice access” feature which was released at CSUN this year, but is still in beta. I also attended a session on law by disability rights attorney Lainey Feingold. She explained what is and is not currently in the legal code regarding digital accessibility and described her efforts at gaining corporate compliance through Structured Negotiation.

This year’s camp was just as good and informative as last year’s camp, and I look forward to attending next year.

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