Introduction5:25 with Nick Pettit
In this video, you'll get a brief introduction to web accessibility and learn about the organizations that set accessibility standards. You'll also find out why accessibility is important to the health of the web.
[?mellow guitar music?] 0:00 Think Vitamin Membership - Est. 2010 membership.thinkvitamin.com 0:03 Accessibility Fundamentals - Introduction with Nick Pettit 0:07 Web accessibility is the practice of making websites that can be used 0:13 by people of all abilites and disabilities. 0:17 In this video, you'll get a brief introduction to the topic. 0:20 You may have heard of accessibility in the past, 0:23 or maybe you heard somewhere that your website should be accessible. 0:26 But what does that even mean? 0:31 The idea of anyone being able to use a website 0:33 sounds simple enough, but it's more nuanced than that. 0:36 There are lots of people in the world, 0:40 and many considerations to be made. 0:42 In general, though, there is one guiding principle 0:44 that should make accessibility a lot easier 0:47 for anyone to understand. 0:50 Web standards and best practices 0:52 tend to lead toward more accessible websites, 0:55 and in turn, designing a website to be accessible 0:59 has a tendency to lead you towards 1:02 web standards and best practices. 1:05 For example, screen-reading software that assists users 1:07 with visual impairments can sometimes 1:11 have difficulty when tables are used for layout 1:14 rather than being used for tabular data. 1:18 There are many different types of impairments 1:21 that encompass vision, hearing, motor skills, and more. 1:23 In upcoming videos, we'll look at specific techniques 1:27 to accomodate all types of users, 1:30 but before we get into the technical details, 1:32 let's back up for a second, because sometimes 1:35 web developers and designers wonder why 1:38 they should be concerned with accessibility at all. 1:40 There are numerous reasons, 1:43 but here are the top three. 1:45 First, and most importantly, it's just the right thing to do. 1:47 The web represents a giant leap forward 1:51 in the quality of life for people that live with disabilities. 1:54 For example, before the advent of online news and screen readers, 1:57 it was difficult, expensive, and sometimes impossible 2:01 for a person with visual impairment 2:04 to read a daily newspaper on their own. 2:07 That alone should be reason enough. 2:09 Second, as I mentioned earlier, 2:12 building accessible websites has a tendency 2:14 to lead towards HTML markup that is semantic 2:16 and easy for everyone--even computers-- 2:20 to understand and interpret. 2:22 Every designer and developer should be able to understand and relate 2:25 to the importance of this. 2:28 Lastly, you can get in trouble legally, 2:30 if you're not careful. 2:32 Many countries have laws that require government agencies 2:34 along with public and private organizations, 2:37 to maintain web content that is accessible 2:40 to people of all abilities and disabilities. 2:43 In the year 2000, a blind Australian man 2:47 engaged in a court case 2:50 against the Sydney Organizing Committee 2:52 of the Olympic Games, and he won 2:54 because under the Australian Disability Discrimination Act of 1992, 2:57 the official website of the Sydney Olympic Games 3:02 failed to provide adequate accessibility to blind users. 3:05 Legal disputes of this nature can be extremely costly, 3:09 but they're so easily avoidable 3:13 by simply providing accessible content. 3:15 The World Wide Web Consortium, or W3C, for short, 3:18 is an organization that sets the rules for HTML and CSS 3:23 and many other standards. 3:28 A W3C project, known as the Web Accessibility Initiative, 3:30 or WAI, published the first version 3:35 of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines in 1999. 3:39 Since then, and especially in recent years, 3:44 it has been accepted as the gold standard 3:47 for creating accessible websites. 3:50 By the end of 2008, 3:53 the WCAG 2.0 had been released 3:55 as a recommendation. 3:58 To see the WCAG 2.0 recommendation, 4:00 visit w3.org/TR/WCAG20. 4:03 In 1998, the United States Congress 4:12 amended the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 4:15 to include Section 508, which you can check out at section508.gov. 4:19 Section 508 requires federal agencies 4:26 to make electronic information accessible 4:29 to people with disabilities. 4:32 The portions regarding web technology 4:34 are based on the guidelines 4:37 developed by the Web Accessibility Initiative of the W3C, 4:39 and this is also the case 4:44 for laws and regulations around the world. 4:46 In the UK, for instance, 4:48 the Publicly Available Specification, or PAS78 published in 2006, 4:50 also references the WAI guidelines. 4:55 This also true in Canada, Spain, Japan, 4:58 and many other countries. 5:01 Even so, you should study the laws that are local to your country 5:03 and strive to comply with them. 5:07 Hopefully, this video helped you to understand 5:09 the scope of accessibility. 5:12 In the next video, we'll look at ways to improve accessibility 5:14 for users with visual impairments. 5:17 [?mellow guitar music?] 5:19 Think Vitamin Membership - Est. 2010 membership.thinkvitamin.com 5:22
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