Web Accessibility: A Missed Quality RequirementPatrick Maher, SPR Companies
About the Topic
If a website is not accessible to all potentials visitors, is it a quality website? Making the benefits of the Web available to all people globally is a goal of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C), an international web standards development community that is led by Web inventor Tim Berners-Lee. There are 25.2 million adults in the U.S. who report problems seeing or are blind based on a survey of the U.S. National Center of Health Statistics. Additionally blindness or low vision affects approximately 1 in 28 Americans older than 40 years according to the Eye Disease Prevalence Research Group. Access to the services, products, information, and entertainment on the Web can be available to the millions of blind or visually impaired consumers by complying to web accessibility standards. Assistive technologies like screen-reading software enable Web use by converting web page text and images into computerized voice. But these technologies cannot interpret websites or web applications which are not built and tested for compliance to the ADA Section 508 standard.
Join us and learn how software quality assurance, testing, and business analysis professionals can champion and ensure that web accessibility requirements are defined and tested for web projects. Gain insight into the standards that developers can easily design and code to which will indeed make the web accessible to all.
About the Speakers
As Managing Director of the nAblement channel of SPR Companies, Pat is responsible for developing and implementing its mission to establish career opportunities for qualified candidates with disabilities in technology. He is a co-producer of The forerunners, Silver Hugo and CINE Golden Eagle award-winning documentary film that is intended to drive more minority and disability students into STEM disciplines. Pat was co-investigator for the research on Demand-Side Factors Related to Employment of People with Disabilities: A Survey of Employers in the Midwest Region, published by The Journal of Occupational Rehabilitation in its December, 2010 issue. In 2009 he was honored with the Henry Betts Employment Advocacy Award for his long-term efforts to strengthen opportunities for qualified candidates with disabilities in the workforce.
Robbie is a tenured developer and tester who is also a native user of screen reader technologies. He has been an accessibility analyst on SPR projects for Section 508 Web Accessibility Audits and performed testing for Sonnenschein, Nath & Rosenthal, Sidley-Austin, William Blair and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois, as well a valued consultant to the accessibility testing practice. Robbie has trained blind users on Microsoft operating systems, Microsoft Office products, and assistive technology for the State of Illinois Department of Human Services.