Website Accessibility Structural Sufficiency - Website Standards PDF Print E-mail

Building a quality Web site is like building a new home. Home builders rely on industry building standards. A Web site developer codes to W3C standards. 

 The idea behind the concept...'structural sufficiency'

A home builder uses an architect's blueprint to build a home. The foundation is poured, the walls are framed in and the roof is put on. Wiring, plumbing, heating, ... the builder completes the project setting up a state-of-the-art home.

Home buyers want to be sure that their home is built with quality products and to industry building code specifications. A building inspector, who is not an Engineer or a Registered Architect,  can describe what is visible; however, the inspector would not be able to assess the home's structural sufficiency. 


Web site owners want to ensure that their Web site is built using industry standards as well.  And, that it is open to business to everyone. Although the owner may be able to readily describe what is visible he may not necessarily be able to assess his Web site's structural sufficiency.

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Structural Sufficiency - meaning ofStructural Sufficiency - page 2 of pamphlet

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Automated Web Site Validation Tools

 

Using automated Web site validation tools can be a Web developer's first assurance that coding and accessibility standards are being followed.  It is important, because if these coding and accessibility guidelines are followed, the web designer can be sure that the widest range of issues (accessibility and user agent) can be dealt with upfront not only for individuals with disabilities but for everyone -- providing Equal Access to Information For All  

And, when those three (3) automated validations have happened, it is important that every Web designer remember that when a  Web site claims conformance from only a tool, it can only mean that the page(s) passed all of the automatic tests.

"...according to web accessibility specialist Karl Groves, only about 25% of accessibility best practices can be definitely tested with automated means alone. Another 35% can be tested to provide guidance on potential issues which require manual verification. That leaves 40% of accessibility best practices that must be tested by using manual testing of some kind.

This means that 75% of a website’s accessibility cannot be determined by automatic testing with a machine." -- reported by PRWeb on  19 June 2013: WeCo Showcases Two Forms of Testing for Website Accessibility

 

Conformance from a Tool:

"HiSoftware has prepared a special 30 minute on demand Webinar on “Testing for Accessibility – What You Need to Know for a Successful Testing Effort.” Jeff Singleton, a veteran accessibility tester, will provide an overview of what is involved in testing for accessibility. He will explain the pitfalls of relying solely on automated testing tools or strictly on disabled and real world testers for accessibility evaluations. Learn more or view the Webinar at http://www.hisoftware.com/company/webinars-seminars/On_Demand_Webinar_Testing_for_Accessibility.aspx." 

 

It is also important to remember, automated Web site validation tools are available to anyone, including those that have little or no experience developing Websites.  A Web site will be judged by others who use these tools solely to point out a website's deficiency and as a means to demonstrate that the website does not meet accessibility or coding guidelines.

"Web accessibility isn't brain science. It really isn't necessary to test your website on a variety of people with different disabilities (although the DRC are recommending you do). Web accessibility is all about following design standards and then adding in a few simple accessibility features. It's not just about disabled users being able to access your website - it's about everyone being able to access your website, including people using handheld devices, WebTV and in-car browsers. Any web developer with basic HTML and CSS design knowledge, and a bit of time on their hands, can easily learn and implement web accessibility." -- Published by: Webcredible - written by Trenton Moss 

Trenton Moss, Webcredible, discusses "The problem with automated accessibility testing tools" in his blog.
  • Literal interpretation of guidelines
  • Can't check any content issues
  • Can't check many coding issues
  • Outdated guidelines are used
  • Warnings may be misinterpreted

Department of Justice (DOJ) May Apply ADA Accessibility Guidelines to Websites

"In December 2013, the DOJ may address accessibility of public Websites. These laws could broaden the degree to which the ADA applies to online shopping Websites, according to Andrew Kirkpatrick, Adobe's group product manager for accessibility and newly named co-chair of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines Working Group (WCAG), an organization that aims for international standards on accessibility for the disabled.

"The Department of Justice has indicated they will be releasing rules that will apply the Americans With Disabilities Act to the public commercial Web," Kirkpatrick told eWEEK."

Reported By Brian T. Horowitz  |  Posted 2013-04-07 -- eweek

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  Blind Taxpayers Sue H&R Block Over Web Site Accessibility

Reported by Paul Demery, Chief Technology Editor, Internet Retailer

"A lawsuit, filed April 8 in the United States District Court in Massachusetts, has requested the court to certify the case as a nationwide class action on behalf of blind people and to issue a permanent injunction to prohibit H&R Block from violating federal and state law. 

The two individual plaintiffs in the case, Mika Pyyhkala and Lindsay Yazzolino, are legally blind, residents of Massachusetts and members of the federation. The suit says they were each unable to get beyond the H&R Block log-in page for preparing their 2012 tax returns. It notes that Pyyhkala works in technical operations at a health care organization and that Yazzolino also works in health care as a researcher."

 

Captcha on Federal Website Prevents Blind from Signing Federal Petition

 Source: redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online

An online “We The People” White House petition seeking support for an international treaty to help the blind is nearly impossible for blind web users to sign due to the Captcha security requirement on the White House website.

Politico reported this week that the National Federation of the Blind (NFB) has complained about the required use of a Captcha code that is required to register to sign the online petition, which has now received just 8,200 of the 100,000 signatures required for a White House response. For its part, the White House says its website is in compliance with US accessibility standards.

Chris Danielsen of the NFB told Politico he realized there was a problem shortly after the petition was published.

“We had asked people to sign the petition and we’re getting these emails saying that people can’t,” he said. ”The constitution allows all of us to petition our government for a redress of grievance. It says nothing about needing to be able to see in order to do so.”

A Captcha is a graphic or sound of a random word or number that users must type in to prove that they are human. But the audio code option intended to help the blind complete the Captcha is incomprehensible, Danielsen said.

That same flawed audio code system is in use for people who wish to write the White House an email with suggestions or complaints regarding the “We The People” site. Danielsen said he became aware of the issue when blind people began emailing his organization, complaining that they could not sign the blind treaty petition.

“In fairness, the White House does claim that it complies with the federal standard for Web accessibility, known as Section 508,” he told The Huffington Post.

WeCo - Accessible. Aware. Independent

A thorough inspection combines automated Web site validation tools with human judgment. That is where an expert Web accessibility and usability professional can help.  Recommended: WeCo, The Wehrman Collaborative,  uses user-experienced testers to ensure the website is accessible to the real-life end user.

WeCo - Accessible. Aware. Independent. 'ADA Section 508, WCAG and WeCo's Standards of Accessibility are web accessibility standards which allow individuals with disabilities to have access to information and data that is comparable to the access and use by individuals who are not disabled. '

Find WeCo -- Accessible. Aware. Independent. on the Internet!

http://theweco.com/ 

"Help Create Jobs and Improve Web Access for People With Disabilities. The WeCo Accessibility Test Platform enables these individuals to put their life experience to work to help make websites and electronic communications more accessible for everyone."

WeCo Accessible. Aware. Independent

 

 

WeCo Puts a Human Face on Testing for Website Accessibility and is Adding Testers to Meet the Demand.  WeCo responds to the shift, from automatic checkers to people with disabilities, in the web accessibility marketplace by hiring additional Testers. Reported by PRWeb.com on March 13, 2013

 

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