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May 2002
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May Weblog

May 21, 2002

The title of the article, "Section 508 'not as hard as people thought' ", may oversimplify the point, but the U.S. Section 508 guidelines certainly haven't caused the "doom and gloom" that some technology soothsayers predicted. Of course, not everything in American government is fully compliant yet, even though the standards have been known for over a year. One thing that's promising is how some government groups go above and beyond these simple, baseline accessibility standards. However, some groups still are not aware of the accessibility standards or may not be sure if they apply to them. That's why the disability community, government, and private industry need to continue working hand-in-hand (and further strengthen their ties) to effectively promote understanding and implementation of Section 508. Strong co-operation among these groups is the key to successful and universal adoption.

May 14, 2002

The answer to the title of Jim Byrne's article "CSS accessibility problems: is markup dead?", is undoubtedly that markup is NOT dead. Or, at least it shouldn't be. It's unfortunate that some Web designers use CSS carelessly, just like some used HTML elements such as <font> and <blockquote> improperly to achieve visual formatting. The focus of a Web page needs to be centered on the content, both its display AND structure (proper markup).

Shirley Kaiser comments further on the article, telling us "Don't Fake Your Markup". She focuses on the lack of properly marked up page headings.

I'll extend the comments further and caution readers to properly use the <span> element. Too often, a <span> tag (with CSS styling) is used to markup paragraphs, list items, quotations, and (as mentioned in the articles) headings. Use <span> only when there isn't another more appropriate tag to markup the piece of inline content.

May 02, 2002

WebReference reviewed the recently published book on Web accessibility: Constructing Accessible Web Sites. This book was a collaborative effort of eight experts in the industry, and is so up-to-date that it includes information about the new Flash MX accessibility features.