Google’s Matt Cutts Explains Why Your Web Site Images Should Have Alternative (Alt) Text

Google’s rockstar search engineer and public figure Matt Cutts has recently posted a really great video that gives an overview of how you can add alternative (alt) text to the images in your HTML web page, how it helps Google, and accessibility for people with disabilities.

Check out the video and then pass it around to your friends.

CNET Shows Leadership By Providing Captions For Their Online Video

CNET TV has recently shown a great deal of leadership in the online video space by starting to provide captions for their video. This is great news! I know it’s not easy to caption video… this is a big move for them. I hope more video shops (like Revision 3) will follow their move and start providing captions.

There is a chunk of the W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 that deals with captioning. Success Criteria 1.2.1 says…

1.2.1 Captions (Prerecorded): Captions are provided for prerecorded synchronized media, except if the synchronized media is an alternative to text and is clearly labeled as such . (Level A)

Let’s Advance WCAG 2.0

Shawn Henry of the W3C’s Web Accessibility Initiative recently wrote a blog post entitled “Is WCAG 2.0 almost done?!” Well after reading the document, I say let’s advance the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 to it’s next stage.

Like Shawn, I’ve been following the development of WCAG 2.0 for a while and I think that this is one of the working group strongest drafts yet.

I’m going to start using WCAG 2.0 when making Web sites.  Will you join me?

W3C Publishes Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 as a Last Call Working Draft

Well today the World Wide Web Consortium has just published the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 as a Last Call Working Draft. For those of us who’ve followed the development of WCAG 2.0, getting things to this stage is definitely a long time coming and we’re all very excited to see what the WCAG Working Group has come up with.

According to the WAI document “How WAI Develops Accessibility Guidelines through the W3C Process…“, Last Call Working Draft means the following:

When a Working Group believes it has addressed all comments and technical requirements, it provides the complete document for community review and announces the Last Call. For example, see the WCAG 2.0 Last Call Announcement and Extention e-mail. (Note that after the Last Call comment period, it can take weeks or months for a Working Group to formally address all comments, document the resolutions, and make necessary changes.) If there are substantive changes, the technical report would go through another Last Call Working Draft before moving to the next stage.

According to the Call for Review, “The WCAG Working Group hopes that it has resolved all substantive issues with this draft, and looks forward to progressing to the next stages in completing WCAG 2.0.”

Sweet!

If you’re going to review WCAG 2.0, make sure that you also check out the following updated documents…

I’m going to be doing a detailed review of WCAG 2.0. I’ll be publishing my thoughts here as soon as I get time to sit down with the document.

Stay tuned…

Listen to Podcast of me on KPFA’s Pushing Limits

So Friday was another first for me, I was a guest on the  KPFA radio show Pushing Limits in Berkeley, California. The show is about disability life.

That episode was covering Web accessibility.  We had a really great discussion about things like Flash accessibility, CAPTCHA, and practical guidance for people making Web sites.  It was a TON of fun.

Well… if you’re interested,  you can now listen to the podcast of the show on their Web site.  Let me know your thoughts.    I think it went really well for me first time on the radio professionally.

WCAG 2.0 July 2007 Update

If you haven’t heard, there has been the following update about the W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0

The WCAG Working Group received many constructive comments on the 17 May 2007 Drafts. They separated the comments into about 450 issues, ranging from minor edits to technical issues. In the first two weeks of July, the Working Group had eight half-day worksessions where they addressed about 150 of those issues and started work on another 100. It will likely take 3 to 4 months to address all of the issues and prepare the next draft.

The Working Group will respond to each comment. Once the comments have been addressed, the Working Group plans to publish a second WCAG 2.0 Last Call Working Draft to provide for review of the completed edits before moving on to the next stages. The next stages are described in How WAI Develops Accessibility Guidelines through the W3C Process.

Just Bought Shawn Lawton Henry’s New Book

Cover of Shawn's Book Just Ask

I have known Shawn Lawton Henry for a while and I’m excited that my copy of her new book is in the mail. It’s called “Just Ask: Integrating Accessibility Throughout Design.

You can purchase a paperback copy of the book or you can get read the whole book online on Shawn’s web site.

Expect a review soon…