Don’t style :checked and :focus states identically – here’s why

I often encounter web forms designs where native checkboxes are completely restyled to not look like native checkboxes. It’s OK to do so, as long as all their inherent features are preserved. Here’s one that is too often compromised by a hasty redesign. Continue reading Don’t style :checked and :focus states identically – here’s why

Facebook to auto-caption video ads: great! But, really?

Access iQ published “Video advertisements on Facebook to be auto-captioned” lately, and the title caught me. Auto-captioning is a technical challenge that could change lives of millions of people barred from the video side of the Web.  Continue reading Facebook to auto-caption video ads: great! But, really?

RGAA (French Accessibility Guidelines based on WCAG2) now available in English

In France, the law requires that all websites of the public sector conform to international accessibility standards, namely, the WCAG2. To help organizations meet this requirement, the French government provides a testing methodology, the RGAA.

The RGAA consists of three parts: an introduction to the RGAA, application guidelines, and a set of technical documents, including a complete checklist. The RGAA is based on the normative and informative parts of WCAG2, meaning that a website passing the RGAA also conforms to WCAG2.

The RGAA is meant to provide a way for testers, developers, and other professionals, to check conformance of web content without having to pull all the information out of the WCAG2. With minimal expertise, professionals can apply the RGAA checklist and be confident about the accessibility of web pages that pass the tests.

The technical documents have been translated into English, and are available on GitHub (issues, comments and PR welcome!)

Accessibility: Should we complain about it, or fix it?

Victor Tsaran tweeted this morning:

Steve Faulkner replied to this strong statement and expressed a different view (read the full thread of replies on Twitter). Their exchange constitute a great discussion, I believe, and with their permission here it is, rearranged and slightly curated for a better readability. Then I add my own opinion about this question.  Continue reading Accessibility: Should we complain about it, or fix it?

A new accessibility business case – good news?

The WAI-Engage group has published, on its wiki, an article written by Peter Thiessen: Social Networking Application Business Case.The story is worth a read. But if you don’t have time: in short, it describes the hard path towards building a business case for accessibility. The author is a convinced advocate, but he struggled with his management while trying to prove a ROI for accessibility improvements.

Although he finally succeeded, I’m, personally, a tad disappointed by the fact that it took kind of a workaround: accessibility was sold through mobile development. All purely accessibility-related arguments were rejected, and only when it was paralleled with mobile adaptations, approval was won.

Which is not totally surprising… but it saddens me to observe that, even with considerable effort, it was not possible to prove that accessibility pays for itself – which I’m deeply convinced of.

I would argue that the problem was not the case in itself, but the lack of documentation to back up the assumptions made to support the arguments. We need more solid facts, believable and demonstrable figures, and realistic success stories.

So, in conclusion, we certainly must celebrate the fact that a high profile social networking company embraces accessibility as a business goal. But it’s still not the bullet-proof business case that demonstrates that accessibility, by itself, is a worthwhile investment.


How we could build a Body of Knowledge for Web Accessibility

It is now a well-accepted assumption that, in order to move forward, accessibility needs a unified set of resources that would be reliable, comprehensive, and easy to consume for users of all levels of proficiency in accessibility. There have been many discussions around this idea for a while. Yet, so far, it does not exist, for a disappointingly simple reason: nobody started it yet. And I’m afraid that, in the current state of things, nobody has the ability to start it the way it should be started. This article exposes the reasons why I believe so. But, moreover, it also explores some ideas and propositions that could change this state of things.

Continue reading How we could build a Body of Knowledge for Web Accessibility

Little action, great effects: improving a CSS-based tooltip in 18 seconds.

Reading this blog post about designing fancy tooltips with CSS3 tricks, I did my usual first-step test: hit the tab key and see what happens. Disappointingly, and yet expectedly (I’ve been in this business for too long, it seems…): nothing happened, apparently, when I reached the first icon

. Continue reading Little action, great effects: improving a CSS-based tooltip in 18 seconds.