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From: Reidy Brown <rbrown@blackboard.com>
Date: Tue, 2 Jan 2001 11:25:06 -0500
Message-ID: <FB48B8939127D411B07700B0D0490332ABDBA4@bbmail1.blackboard.net>
To: "'David Poehlman'" <poehlman1@home.com>, wai-ig list <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

Thanks for forwarding this information on to the WAI-IG list. 

I'm working with Norm Coombs (at EASI) and the rest of the WebAIM (Web
Accessibility In Mind) team to implement our two-phase approach to
accessibility in Blackboard's software. Blackboard 5.5, which will be out
this spring, includes the functionality listed in the email below. Actually,
much of this functionality is already available in Blackboard 5; Blackboard
5.5 is intended to bring these features up to 100% compliance throughout the

The second phase is even more interesting (well, ok, for the tech-heads
among us)-- we're developing a new user interface infrastructure which will
allow us to create an accessible interface (probably Double A compliant) for
the entire system. There are some interesting barriers to overcome (such as
client-side scripting issues), but the end result should be well worth it.

This spring I'll be working (hopefully, with a team at the Helen Kellar
Institute) to build out the new accessible interface-- wish me luck! 


Reidy Brown 
Accessibility Coordinator/
Software Engineer 
Blackboard, Inc. 
1899 L. St., NW, 5th Floor 
Washington, DC 20036 
(202) 463-4860 x236 

-----Original Message-----
From: David Poehlman [mailto:poehlman1@home.com]
Sent: Thursday, December 28, 2000 12:28 PM
To: wai-ig list
Subject: Fw: FYI

----- Original Message -----
From: "Paul Chapin" <pdchapin@AMHERST.EDU>
Sent: December 28, 2000 12:23 PM
Subject: FYI

Blackboard, Inc is planning a new release of their course management
towards mid-year.  Included in the enhancements and upgrades was the

"Accessibility enhancements:  All system images will have alt tags,
instructors will be able to add alt tags to uploaded images in the
creation areas of the software.  Framesets will be appropriately
and will have meaningful content describing the functionality of the
layout.  Data tables will be optimized for use with screen readers."

At least they're trying.
Paul Chapin
Curricular Computing Specialist
Amherst College
413 542-2144
(The attached vfc file is a virtual business card.  If you don't know
that is, ignore it).
Received on Tuesday, 2 January 2001 11:33:33 UTC

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