Tim Berners-Lee (inventor of the World Wide Web) said:
The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone regardless of disability is an essential aspect.
Welcome to A11A, All about accessibility!
What is A11A?
A11A is a curated, categorized collection of accessibility resources to help you produce accessible content. No matter what technology, language, software application or communication means you are dealing with: you might be able to find something useful to help you produce content that is more inclusive!
There are many resources available out there to help you produce accessible content (web pages, applications, documents, videos, ETC.). They cover a wide variety of content types, and are designed for all the different stakeholders who may be interested in each type of project (designers, developers, content creators, marketers, ETC.). Yet, the majority of content that is available on the Inter.Net still exhibit critical accessibility issues that prevent people with disabilities from having a great experience that is comparable to the one non-disabled people can enjoy.
I believe that the absence of a central repository to collect such resources, classify them according to their characteristics, and “spread the word” about their existence with means and terminology that developers are familiar with is part of the problem. Therefore, I decided to create this website to fill this gap!
In addition to this, it can be hard for non-accessibility experts to determine wether a certain source of information is authoritative or not, wether guides and tutorials are complete and accurate or not, and tools really work as they are advertised. Accessibility testing can be hard, and requires highly specialized knowledge, significant efforts and amounts of time not all stakeholders can afford.
With regards to these aspects, I think that A11A can be useful by:
- only “including” accurate resources (such as guides and tutorials), and up-to-date references to technical resources (laws, regulations, standards, ETC);
- providing references to tools that are “known to work” appropriately; this means that all the resources you find on A11A have been personally reviewed (and tested where possible) by myself, or other “very reliable” members in the accessibility community;
- promote the exchange of knowledge, opinions and experiences, both inside and outside the accessibility community;
- make accessibility resources easier to discover; this is the reason why they have been grouped by different criteria (type, topic, ETC.), and you can find an internal search engine.
Resources by type
“One picture is worth 100 words”, they say. And there is who prefer videos over text. And there are the more “technically inclined” ones, who prefer official standards and highly technical documents. But sometimes introductory materials or comprehensive tutorials are necessary, and you find yourself looking for guides and tutorials; we are all different, and can have different needs over time depending on many factors. This is the reason why A11A tries to include a wide variety of resources.
- Frameworks and Libraries
- In this section you can find frameworks and libraries suitable for different usage scenarios: developing websites, native applications, or LaTeX documents; whichever scenario some good code can give you a hand is suitable for a resource to be included in this section!
- Guides and Tutorials
- It comes the time when you need a resource to get you started with an accessibility-related topic. Or the one when you need an in-depth, comprehensive tutorial with regards to a specific aspect. Or when you need a guide to help you understand an accessibility-related concept… No matter the reason you are looking for them, in this section you can find various (reviewed for accuracy!) guides and tutorials.
- Laws and Regulations
- With regards to accessibility, many laws and regulations have been passed to prevent accessibility issues from discriminating people with disabilities. There can be huge differences between laws passed in different countries, even if some international laws and regulations do in deed exist. In this section you can find some useful references to them, along with a short text explaining their purpose and the “ratio” behind them.
- Standards and Guidelines
- There are many technical standards and guidelines to regulate how things “should be made” in order to be accessible. In this section you can find references to them, as well as short summaries to help you understand what their purpose is, and how they can have an impact on more practical aspects.
- In this section you can find ready-to-use utilities such as command line tools, browser extensions, web services and software applications that have been specifically crafted to help you make documents, websites, and any content in general more accessible. Some assistive technologies and utilities to test and evaluate the accessibility of your content are included as well.
- In this section you can find videos about many different topics; whenever possible, an embedded player to easily play the video is provided, as well as references to captions and transcripts.
Resources by topic
Sometimes you may be looking for accessibility-related resources with regards to a specific topic, no matter their type. This is the reason why all resources on A11A have been classified according to many different topics they relate to!
These topics include specific technologies (iOS and Android apps accessibility, popular web development frameworks, ETC.), as well as more generic aspects (accessibility testing, assistive technologies, math, web accessibility, ETC.), hopefully making it easier for you to find in a single place all the related resources you may need!