Issue #4

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What Can I Do Now for Better Accessibility?

I’m on the road this week, so I’m sharing a tip previously published on my blog, called, What Can I Do Now for Better Accessibility?

If I could do a few basic things in my projects right now, what should they be? Start simple. Focus on ensuring users can navigate your site using the keyboard. Make sure you have :focus styles where appropriate, and that each style has a reasonable contrast.

Further reading: Building a Strong Foundation with Keyboard Accessibility.

Next, make sure each control follows web standards. What do I mean by that? Items that behave like links, buttons and form fields should be just that: <a>, <button> or <input>. Don’t make your own interface elements from scratch. Use native elements, which come with accessibility features built in, and enhance from there.

Further reading: Links Are Not Buttons; Neither Are DIVs and SPANs.

Lastly, provide a <label> element for each form field in your code. Labels allow screen reader users to know what a field is meant to do or what that field needs in order to move on in an interface. Don’t make it harder.

Further reading: Accessible Form Controls and Placeholder Attribute is Not a Label.

News and links

W3C publishes Working Group Note for transcript extension for HTML: The note describes an: “extension to HTML which explicitly identifies a transcript linked to a media object such as audio or video.”, Inc. agrees to expand closed captions on Amazon Video: From the news release: “The National Association of the Deaf (NAD), a non-profit civil rights organization of, by, and for deaf and hard of hearing individuals, and, a leading online streaming entertainment provider, have reached an agreement that will extend Amazon’s ongoing captioning even deeper into its back catalog of TV shows and movies streamed through its on-demand entertainment service, Amazon Video.”

Old Chromium skip link bug resurfaces: The bug had been recently closed, and causes skip links to not work properly.

Webkit is implementing the touch-action property from Pointer Events: That means you will be able to disable the 300ms delay in Webkit without disabling zoom.

Resources, tools and tutorials

New to A11y?

The Nielson Norman Group reminds you to ensure that the contrast on text is high enough when placed over images.

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