I enjoyed learning new and practical things in week two.
I add two things of the course design which have given me good experience.
- It provides exercises and quiz in the section which are designed timely and not lengthy.
- People’s comments provide extra useful resources.
Technology can be very helpful. Human can design and create assistive technology to compensate for limitations relative to mobility and speech. I suppose this is “When God closes a door, He always opens a window.” Having a disability does not exclude people from discovering and pursuing their passions in life. The incredible examples are:
- Dr. Stephen Hawking has assistive software called ACAT,
- Musician Jason Becker uses vocal eyes (an eye-movement spelling system) to compose, and
- film-maker Simon Fitzmaurice uses the Eye-gaze technology to continue making films.
I have started to aware many technologies I never heard of. I listed some below. I thought I would be able to use these technologies easily, but actually it’s complex, especially I had to try them in some way that I don’t usually do. For instance, I tried the NVDA on Windows 10. I closed my eyes, and only used the keyboard to work out what a webpage looks like by listening to what the software tells me. It’s no success I could follow and find the information easily. Listening to the robot voice made me tired and annoyed too. The exercises let me see how technologies/documents/webpages have been designed without thinking of accessibility. Online resource creators (including me) can easily forget the accessibility guidelines.
- Screen reader tool – Job Access With Speech (JAWS)
- Optical character recognition (OCR)
- Document accessibility checker:
The most import point of this week is learning how to make document accessible. Here are things I learnt particularly and I have started to apply them in my own document creation from this week.
- I never noticed that there is an “Insert captions” feature for an image in MS-Word. I often create an caption under the figure/image myself.
- Between Decorative image, Informative image, and Functional image, I felt I haven’t used the “alt” tag in the functional images properly most of time. The W3C Web Accessibility Initiative tutorial is really helpful.
- Using”alt” tag for Group of images
- A mistake – using style (e.g, bold enlarged text) instead of proper headings
- A mistake – putting blank lines between paragraphs rather than setting the “space before/after” attribute for paragraphs
- The accessibility guideline provided in the course is very useful for auditing a document for accessibility.