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Web Accessibility and Content Management Systems

Web Accessibility and Content Management Systems

Why and how to implement accessibility into Content Management System Development

Nic Steenhout

December 08, 2008
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  1. Web Accessibility
    and Content
    Management
    Systems
    By Nicolas Steenhout
    At Open Source Developers
    Conference 2008

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  2. Accessibility & CMS
    Nicolas Steenhout
     Disability Advocate
     Physical
     Internet
     Web Geek
     1993
     HTML 1
     1996 – first awareness

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  3. Accessibility & CMS
    Analogies From “Real World”

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  4. Accessibility & CMS
    What is Web Accessibility?
     Several meanings:
     Able to get online
     Site up and running
     Etc
     Accessibility is:
     An accessible website is a site that people with
    disabilities can use.

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  5. Accessibility & CMS
    Who is Accessibility For?
     Visual, Hearing, Physical, Sensory,
    Learning
     Non-native language speakers
     Alternate devices – Cellphones, PDAs
     Search engines
     Your server & bandwidth

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  6. Accessibility & CMS
    Legal Environment
     Legislation in varying countries
     §508 vs. WCAG vs. ???
     Which sites do regulation apply to?
     Sydney 2000 Olympics website
     Target
     Global situation

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  7. Accessibility & CMS
    Why Should We Care?
     Increased target market (20%) for users
     Getting into new markets for CMS
    (education, government, NGO)
     Legality (who gets sued?)
     Right thing to do – corporate responsibility

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  8. Accessibility & CMS
    Basic & Easy Access Checks
     Visit site on text-only browser (Lynx)
     Visit site on PDA or cell-phone
     Navigate site with keyboard only
     Turn CSS off
     Turn images off
     Turn Javascript off

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  9. Accessibility & CMS
    Accessibility & CMS – Front-end
     Front-end should allow visitors to use the
    site.
     CMS itself not accessible
     Provide tools for site owners to make
    accessible front-end
     Guideline – WCAG 1.0 or WCAG 2.0

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  10. Accessibility & CMS
    Accessibility & CMS – Back-end
     People with disabilities may be content
    managers
     Limiting markets
     Guidelines WCAG & ATAG

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  11. Accessibility & CMS
    Accessibility & CMS – Fancy stuff
     Graceful degradation
     Progressive enhancement
     WAI-Aria
     Fancy stuff vs. Usability vs. Accessibility

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  12. Accessibility & CMS
    Guidelines – Be Aware
     Guidelines not definite/complete
     Some guidelines are old
     Some guidelines not complete
     Be all and end all?
     Guidelines vs. Best Practices

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  13. Accessibility & CMS
    Implementation Scope
     How much to implement?
     Old code – Refactoring or rewrite?
     New code – Planning
     Feature creep

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  14. Accessibility & CMS
    Concerned Parties – Buy-in
     Development team
     Everyone on the same page
     Knowledge
     3rd Party developers
     Buy-in to changes
     Knowledge
     Users
     Push vs pull
     Unobtrusive changes benefit those needing it

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  15. Accessibility & CMS
    Technical Know-how
     Accessibility is specialist topic
     Treating accessibility like usability – no-no
     Basic skills for all
     Mission critical issues

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  16. Accessibility & CMS
    Documenting Changes
     Internal documentation
     New developers
     Revisiting changes down the track
     Ongoing learning
     External documentation
     Track changes for users (themes/skins/etc)
     Tutorials for adapting existing designs

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  17. Accessibility & CMS
    Trust
     Lack of trust between team members
     Accessibility is “fluff”
     Code jockeys “don’t get it”
     Planning
     Communication

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  18. Accessibility & CMS
    Technological Conflicts
     Using technology just because it exists
     AJAX vs Accessibility
     Priorities – how to decide?
     Graceful degradation vs progressive
    enhancement

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  19. Accessibility & CMS
    Working with Old Code
     Legacy code problematic
     Organic growth
     Bits of code left in – no one knows why
     Code/database structure limiting expansion
     Limit to how much improvement - rewrite

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  20. Accessibility & CMS
    Backward Compatibility
     Demand for backward compatibility
     Just *what* do users really want?
     How long do we keep compatible?
     Ability to upgrade easily

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  21. Accessibility & CMS
    Challenge, Questions, and Discussion
     Implement 5 critical accessibility
    improvements on your site or project this
    month!
     Please raise questions not addressed
    during presentation.
     Nic is available to discuss further during
    conference, or by email
    ([email protected]).

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