Issue #27

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Featured: A Review of Adaptive Web Design: Crafting Rich Experiences with Progressive Enhancement (2nd Edition)

Once you start thinking and practicing accessibility deeply, you realize something. You can’t classify neatly it into a category. It doesn’t fit anywhere. It’s as much research and content strategy as it is design and development. That’s the beauty of Aaron Gustafson’s Adaptive Web Design, Second Edition. He weaves accessibility into the conversation throughout.

Adaptive Web Design presents some of the most foundational lessons and principles to woking on the Web. Gustafson starts framing the advantages of progressive enhancement from the beginning, starting at content and markup, and working his way up from there. This isn’t a book of code examples or a technical deep dive. It’s a book about how to build web experiences when stripped down to their core. Minus any technical restrictions or user-based assumptions. Using the knowledge here means that you can build something today that will work for everyone now and well into the future.

My favorite chapter in the book centers on markup. Why? Because not everyone thinks twice about markup. It’s just this thing you not have to do before you get to the good stuff, like CSS or JavaScript. But Gustafson goes over some of the details of markup that matter most, like which HTML elements are focusable and how HTML is able to work in today’s browsers and yesterday’s too. You’ll learn how to make your markup truly meaningful.

You may think that learning accessibility and how assistive technology works sounds like voodoo. It’s really not. It starts with some of the foundational principles of web, which Gustafson lays out in Adaptive Web Design. Give it a read and you’ll be on your way to building better web experiences for today and tomorrow, no matter what changes.

More about Adaptive Web Design: Crafting Rich Experiences with Progressive Enhancement.

Resources, tools and tutorials

New to A11y

For International Day of Persons with Disabilities in 2016, Barclays launched a video to help everyone better understand accessibility.

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