W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > May 2007

Testing Accessibility Re: Accessibility is for everyone

From: Charles McCathieNevile <chaals@opera.com>
Date: Mon, 07 May 2007 16:58:56 -0600
To: "Preston L. Bannister" <preston@bannister.us>, "Denis Boudreau (WebConforme)" <dboudreau@webconforme.com>
Cc: "Philip Taylor (Webmaster)" <P.Taylor@rhul.ac.uk>, "HTML WG" <public-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <op.trzbgicpwxe0ny@widsith.local>

On Sun, 06 May 2007 18:45:08 +0200, Preston L. Bannister <preston@bannister.us> wrote:

> ... For all I know there could be some aspect of my
> application that is extremely bad for accessibility.  I had and have
> no wayof knowing!
>
> Assume hiring an expert on accessibility is out of the question (as was the
> case).  In the end, the degree of "accessibility" in an application I have
> written is something to which I simply have no insight.
>
> What I as a developer need is not random features or guidelines, but rather
> some means on "testing" accessibility ... some test consisting of more than
> just checking from the presence of attributes.

You should probably look at some standard resources. http://www.google.com/search?client=opera&rls=en&q=test+accessibility&sourceid=opera&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8 gave me a page of links to testing tools, plus an article on why standard automated testing is not enough. Anyone who has argued that a DTD cannot support sufficient constraints to express the semantics of HTML (or followed such a discussion) should be ableto understand something of the arguments that would be adduced in such an article.

There is a LOT of stuff on how to test - from the W3C site there is a list of tools of various types, ...

If you want a recommendation, for learning how to do testing Hera [1] is a good tool - it does automated tests as much as it can, guides the user throug the various tests that cannot be completely automated, supports collaborative evaluation, is open source and multilingual (if you want to point out something badly translated I would be happy to work on it), and for entreprise level testing AccMonitor [2] which is efficient, cand can be customised to do all sorts of tests. There is a version of the engine running the free web-based service CynthiaSays [3]. I have been involved in the development of both these tools, and it is some time since I made an effort to really compare tools, so my advice is not impartial and perhaps not up to date, but there are plenty of people working in the field who will discuss their preferences (and the whys and wherefores).

[1] http://sidar.org/hera
[2] http://www.hisoftware.com/access/newmonitor.html
[3] http://cynthiasays.com/

cheers

Chaals

-- 
  Charles McCathieNevile, Opera Software: Standards Group
  hablo español  -  je parle français  -  jeg lærer norsk
chaals@opera.com  Catch up: Speed Dial  http://opera.com
Received on Monday, 7 May 2007 23:00:24 UTC

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