HTML for Disabled People?

Discussion in 'HTML' started by Keith, Feb 21, 2004.

  1. Keith

    Keith Guest

    I am just about to start developing a website for a disabled organisation,
    so obviously it need to be visible to people with a wide range of
    disabilities.

    Most we can deal with, but I am a little lost with designing for blind
    people.

    I know that blind web users have 'screen readers' to read out the content to
    them and that we must use alt tags on all images without fail. However, I
    am not sure what order these 'screen readers' read the page in. If I lay
    the page out in a table with a varying number of rows and columns, can
    anyone tell me what row and column gets read in what order. I am guessing
    row 1 first, then row 2 etc., and where there are multiple colums, column 1
    first then column 2 etc. Is there any way of changing the order it is read?
    I want to have navigation down the left and right of my page with the main
    info in the centre column, and I want the centre column read first if
    possible.

    Any help or advice for building for disabled people would be helpful.

    Thanks
     
    Keith, Feb 21, 2004
    #1
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  2. Keith <@.> wrote:
    > If I lay the page out in a table with a varying number
    > of rows and columns


    You want to layout a page for people with disabilities layed out with a
    table? Are you kidding?

    > can anyone tell me what row and column gets read
    > in what order.


    Like other browsers, there's no way to determine for sure how it's read.
    This is part of the reader's setting.

    > I want to have
    > navigation down the left and right of my page with the main info in
    > the centre column, and I want the centre column read first if
    > possible.


    http://www.saila.com/usage/layouts/
    http://bluerobot.com/web/layouts/layout3.html
    http://www.projectseven.com/whims/cssp_3box/3boxnoscript.htm
    http://www.benmeadowcroft.com/webdev/csstemplates/template4.html

    To have the content read first, it must be written first in the source.
    --
    Michael Wilcox
    mjwilco at yahoo dot com
    Essential Tools for the Web Developer - http://mikewilcox.t35.com
     
    Michael Wilcox, Feb 21, 2004
    #2
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  3. Michael Wilcox, Feb 21, 2004
    #3
  4. Keith

    Keith Guest

    Hi

    I can't use CSS - the client has stipulated that CSS must not be used as
    some users will have override CSS in IE set! Kind of restricts me to
    tables!

    Some research has suggested that tables work fine with the screen readers
    disabled people use but I can't find anything that tells me the order the
    table cells get read in and if nesting tables screws it up.

    Cheers

    "Michael Wilcox" <> wrote in message
    news:1JRZb.15161$...
    > Keith <@.> wrote:
    > > If I lay the page out in a table with a varying number
    > > of rows and columns

    >
    > You want to layout a page for people with disabilities layed out with a
    > table? Are you kidding?
    >
    > > can anyone tell me what row and column gets read
    > > in what order.

    >
    > Like other browsers, there's no way to determine for sure how it's read.
    > This is part of the reader's setting.
    >
    > > I want to have
    > > navigation down the left and right of my page with the main info in
    > > the centre column, and I want the centre column read first if
    > > possible.

    >
    > http://www.saila.com/usage/layouts/
    > http://bluerobot.com/web/layouts/layout3.html
    > http://www.projectseven.com/whims/cssp_3box/3boxnoscript.htm
    > http://www.benmeadowcroft.com/webdev/csstemplates/template4.html
    >
    > To have the content read first, it must be written first in the source.
    > --
    > Michael Wilcox
    > mjwilco at yahoo dot com
    > Essential Tools for the Web Developer - http://mikewilcox.t35.com
    >
    >
     
    Keith, Feb 21, 2004
    #4
  5. While the city slept, Keith <@.> feverishly typed:

    > Hi
    >
    > I can't use CSS - the client has stipulated that CSS must not be used
    > as some users will have override CSS in IE set! Kind of restricts me
    > to tables!


    You can use CSS to suggest how the various parts of the page will be
    displayed, but if your style sheet is overridden, and you have layed your
    content out correctly, it will still be read in a logical order. Take a look
    at CSS Zengarden http://www.csszengarden.com to see how different - and no -
    style sheets work on one html document.

    Cheers,
    Nige


    --
    Nigel Moss.

    Email address is not valid. . Take the dog out!
    http://www.nigenet.org.uk | Boycott E$$O!! http://www.stopesso.com
    In the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is very, very busy!
     
    nice.guy.nige, Feb 22, 2004
    #5
  6. Keith

    kchayka Guest

    Keith wrote:
    >
    > I can't use CSS - the client has stipulated that CSS must not be used as
    > some users will have override CSS in IE set! Kind of restricts me to
    > tables!


    Is the client an expert in web design or accessibility guidelines? If
    he is, then why has he hired you for this task? If he isn't, then why
    is he telling you how to design the site?

    His reason is no excuse to avoid CSS. It will in fact be a good test
    that you've designed the site correctly - that it is still usable and
    accessible with CSS disabled. This very much meets accessibility
    guidelines, checkpoints 6.1 (priority 1) and 3.3 (priority 2) to be exact.
    <URL:http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG10/full-checklist.html>

    Your client doesn't know what he's talking about. You should tell him
    so, in a very tactful way, of course.

    --
    Reply address is a bottomless spam bucket.
    Please reply to the group so everyone can share.
     
    kchayka, Feb 22, 2004
    #6
  7. Keith

    Paul Furman Guest

    kchayka wrote:
    > Keith wrote:
    >
    >>I can't use CSS - the client has stipulated that CSS must not be used as
    >>some users will have override CSS in IE set! Kind of restricts me to
    >>tables!

    >
    >
    > Is the client an expert in web design or accessibility guidelines? If
    > he is, then why has he hired you for this task? If he isn't, then why
    > is he telling you how to design the site?
    >
    > His reason is no excuse to avoid CSS. It will in fact be a good test
    > that you've designed the site correctly - that it is still usable and
    > accessible with CSS disabled. This very much meets accessibility
    > guidelines, checkpoints 6.1 (priority 1) and 3.3 (priority 2) to be exact.
    > <URL:http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG10/full-checklist.html>
    >
    > Your client doesn't know what he's talking about. You should tell him
    > so, in a very tactful way, of course.



    That's what I've gathered in the discussions here. The html should be
    raw content ordered in the most logical way for readability so that it
    makes absolute perfect sense in the simplest text browser with style
    sheets turned off. The style sheets can add whatever colors and make
    lists format horizontally on the top or vertically on the side. The user
    may use their own style sheets with big block fonts easy to read and
    colors that don't conflict with their vision problems and that's why
    that approach is ideal for disabled viewers. If the most important
    content is in the center column, put it first in html, then move the
    navigation from the bottom to the left side with CSS. If the links don't
    start till the navigation section below, they can tab direct to those
    links or look them up elsewhere. Secondary links should go later in the
    html and can be moved up to the right side with CSS. If the navigation
    is more important than the center column article, it should go first.

    Not that I know how to do all that skillfully <g>.
     
    Paul Furman, Feb 22, 2004
    #7
  8. Keith wrote:
    > I am just about to start developing a website for a disabled
    > organisation, so obviously it need to be visible to people with a
    > wide range of disabilities.
    >
    > Most we can deal with, but I am a little lost with designing for blind
    > people.
    >
    > I know that blind web users have 'screen readers' to read out the
    > content to them and that we must use alt tags on all images without
    > fail. However, I am not sure what order these 'screen readers' read
    > the page in. If I lay the page out in a table with a varying number
    > of rows and columns, can anyone tell me what row and column gets read
    > in what order. I am guessing row 1 first, then row 2 etc., and where
    > there are multiple colums, column 1 first then column 2 etc. Is
    > there any way of changing the order it is read? I want to have
    > navigation down the left and right of my page with the main info in
    > the centre column, and I want the centre column read first if
    > possible.
    >
    > Any help or advice for building for disabled people would be helpful.


    A linearising browser will by default read each row in turn, and render (eg.
    speak) the contents of one cell before moving on to the next. Some (perhaps
    all?) such browsers provide user-controls to navigate in different ways. For
    example, IBM's Home Page Reader has a table navigation mode (Alt + T). There
    is a way to change the linearisation order of a 3-column table so that the
    centre column appears before the side columns. For example:
    http://www.barry.pearson.name/articles/layout_5_3/table_fixed_01.htm
    http://www.barry.pearson.name/articles/layout_5_3/

    One body that has examined with is the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative. They
    have published guidelines on the matter of how to use layout tables in such a
    way that they can be handled by accessibility technology. Here is a key
    reference, resulting from conclusions they reached in 1999:
    http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG10-HTML-TECHS/#tables-layout
    5.3 Do not use tables for layout unless the table makes sense when linearized.
    Otherwise, if the table does not make sense, provide an alternative equivalent
    (which may be a linearized version). [Priority 2]
    5.4 If a table is used for layout, do not use any structural markup for the
    purpose of visual formatting. [Priority 2]

    Here are some other references on this topic:

    From "Building Accessible Websites" (Joe Clark), how to build accessible
    tables:
    http://joeclark.org/book/sashay/serialization/Chapter10.html

    A Dreamweaver resource that is actually more generic advice:
    http://www.macromedia.com/macromedia/accessibility/mx/dw/tables.html

    From University of Toronto:
    http://www.utoronto.ca/atrc/tutorials/actable/

    --
    Barry Pearson
    http://www.Barry.Pearson.name/photography/
    http://www.BirdsAndAnimals.info/
    http://www.ChildSupportAnalysis.co.uk/
     
    Barry Pearson, Feb 22, 2004
    #8
  9. In article "Keith" <@.> wrote:
    > Hi
    >
    > I can't use CSS - the client has stipulated that CSS must not be used as
    > some users will have override CSS in IE set!


    That is kind of strange argument, as it is more often used as best reason
    to use CSS layout. Users that override CSS in IE usually are such that
    they can't use table layouted thing at all.

    > Kind of restricts me to
    > tables!


    People can and do use CSS to override HTML too. In fact, that is often
    even easier, which is luckily as sites done using HTML layout are more
    often shitty.

    > Some research has suggested that tables work fine with the screen readers
    > disabled people use but I can't find anything that tells me the order the
    > table cells get read in and if nesting tables screws it up.


    It's unlikely that you need nested tables, unless you actually use them
    for tabular data, and rare even then. More likely, you don't know how to
    do table layout.

    I would say that there is less people knowing how to do good table layout
    than how to do gopod CSS layout. And as most of those that know how to
    make good table layout also know how to make good CSS layout, good table
    layouts are very rare.

    Do not top post.

    --
    Lauri Raittila <http://www.iki.fi/lr> <http://www.iki.fi/zwak/fonts>
    Saapi lähettää meiliä, jos aihe ei liity ryhmään, tai on yksityinen
    tjsp., mutta älä lähetä samaa viestiä meilitse ja ryhmään.
     
    Lauri Raittila, Feb 22, 2004
    #9
  10. Paul Furman <> wrote:

    > The html should be
    > raw content ordered in the most logical way for readability so that
    > it makes absolute perfect sense in the simplest text browser with
    > style sheets turned off. The style sheets can add whatever colors
    > and make lists format horizontally on the top or vertically on the
    > side.

    [ followed by other important points ]

    That's a nice summary - actually, probably the key points in practical
    accessibility. Next comes the principle that styling should be made
    carefully so that it both pleases and helps the user (not the
    designer). Not all disabled people are blind (actually, most aren't),
    and lack of sufficient contrast, confusing layout, and too bright
    colors can cause serious problems, too. And using a fixed font size
    will not hurt blind people, and it probably won't hurt people who have
    set their browser override font size suggestions (since they can't surf
    otherwise), but it will hurt the larger group of users who have
    somewhat reduced eyesight (or just not as perfect as the designer's).

    --
    Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
    Pages about Web authoring: http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/www.html
     
    Jukka K. Korpela, Feb 22, 2004
    #10
  11. Keith

    Whitecrest Guest

    In article <Xns9497BEE95861Ejkorpelacstutfi@193.229.0.31>,
    says...
    > > The html should be
    > > raw content ordered in the most logical way for readability so that
    > > it makes absolute perfect sense in the simplest text browser with
    > > style sheets turned off. The style sheets can add whatever colors
    > > and make lists format horizontally on the top or vertically on the
    > > side.

    > That's a nice summary - actually, probably the key points in practical
    > accessibility. Next comes the principle that styling should be made
    > carefully so that it both pleases and helps the user (not the
    > designer). Not all disabled people are blind (actually, most aren't),
    > and lack of sufficient contrast, confusing layout, and too bright
    > colors can cause serious problems, too. And using a fixed font size
    > will not hurt blind people, and it probably won't hurt people who have
    > set their browser override font size suggestions (since they can't surf
    > otherwise), but it will hurt the larger group of users who have
    > somewhat reduced eyesight (or just not as perfect as the designer's).


    And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.

    The web is to big for one size fits all.

    --
    Whitecrest Entertainment
    www.whitecrestent.com
     
    Whitecrest, Feb 22, 2004
    #11
  12. Whitecrest wrote:
    > In article <Xns9497BEE95861Ejkorpelacstutfi@193.229.0.31>,
    > says...
    >>That's a nice summary - actually, probably the key points in practical
    >>accessibility. <snip>

    > And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    > some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.
    >
    > The web is to big for one size fits all.


    Perhaps, but the OP asked for accessibility advice.
     
    Leif K-Brooks, Feb 22, 2004
    #12
  13. Keith

    Whitecrest Guest

    In article <U_7_b.2233$>,
    says...
    > > And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    > > some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.
    > > The web is to big for one size fits all.

    > Perhaps, but the OP asked for accessibility advice.


    And that is what I am giving him/her. I am saying look at what you are
    trying to accomplish before selecting the solution.

    --
    Whitecrest Entertainment
    www.whitecrestent.com
     
    Whitecrest, Feb 23, 2004
    #13
  14. Whitecrest wrote:
    > In article <U_7_b.2233$>,
    > says...
    >
    >>>And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    >>>some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.
    >>>The web is to big for one size fits all.

    >>
    >>Perhaps, but the OP asked for accessibility advice.

    >
    >
    > And that is what I am giving him/her. I am saying look at what you are
    > trying to accomplish before selecting the solution.


    If you had read the post, there is a good reason for making an
    accessible site. Why must you try to second-guess everyone?
     
    Leif K-Brooks, Feb 23, 2004
    #14
  15. Keith

    Whitecrest Guest

    In article <OAf_b.2333$>,
    says...
    > >>>And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    > >>>some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.
    > >>>The web is to big for one size fits all.
    > >>Perhaps, but the OP asked for accessibility advice.

    > > And that is what I am giving him/her. I am saying look at what you are
    > > trying to accomplish before selecting the solution.

    > If you had read the post, there is a good reason for making an
    > accessible site. Why must you try to second-guess everyone?


    Just making sure he makes an informed decision. And you can not do that
    without understanding all of your options. Even the ones you might
    disagree with.

    --
    Whitecrest Entertainment
    www.whitecrestent.com
     
    Whitecrest, Feb 23, 2004
    #15
  16. Whitecrest wrote:
    > And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    > some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.


    ROTFL! That's about as wishy-washy as it gets.


    Matthias
     
    Matthias Gutfeldt, Feb 23, 2004
    #16
  17. Keith

    Whitecrest Guest

    In article <c1cvrh$1gu94p$-berlin.de>, say-no-to-
    says...
    > > And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    > > some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.

    > ROTFL! That's about as wishy-washy as it gets.


    You don't understand the web or marketing.
    --
    Whitecrest Entertainment
    www.whitecrestent.com
     
    Whitecrest, Feb 23, 2004
    #17
  18. Whitecrest wrote:
    > In article <c1cvrh$1gu94p$-berlin.de>, say-no-to-
    > says...
    >
    >>>And all of that is important on some sites. Some if it is important on
    >>>some sites. And some it is is completely useless on some sites.

    >>
    >>ROTFL! That's about as wishy-washy as it gets.

    >
    >
    > You don't understand the web or marketing.


    Hehe. You're a comedian.


    Matthias
     
    Matthias Gutfeldt, Feb 23, 2004
    #18
  19. Whitecrest wrote:
    > Just making sure he makes an informed decision. And you can not do that
    > without understanding all of your options. Even the ones you might
    > disagree with.


    "I am just about to start developing a website for a disabled
    organisation..." How much more information is needed?
     
    Leif K-Brooks, Feb 23, 2004
    #19
  20. Whitecrest <> wrote:

    > Just making sure he makes an informed decision.


    Until now, you have just been trying to distribute disinformation under
    a false name and forged address, and making noises.

    Thank you for all your bogosity signals. Anyone who takes your
    "information" seriously probably deserves what he gets.

    --
    Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
    Pages about Web authoring: http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/www.html
     
    Jukka K. Korpela, Feb 23, 2004
    #20
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