PDF Association releases Matterhorn Protocol, the Definitive Accessibility Testing Model for PDF Documents and Forms

PAC 2.0, the PDF Accessibility Checker, is the first implementation of the Matterhorn Protocol

August 7, 2013 Berlin, Germany. The PDF Association is pleased to announce the publication of Matterhorn Protocol 1.0 to promote conformance with PDF/UA (ISO 14289), the international standard for accessible PDF files, readers and assistive technology.

PDF technology is a rich and complex architecture to represent documents; PDF/UA reflects that richness and specifies how content in PDF is made accessible to users with disabilities. From reading order to fonts, PDF/UA specifies precise conditions that must be present in order for page content, form-fields, annotations, metadata and other elements of PDF files to be expressly and reliably accessible to users who depend on specialized tools and features to read and interact with electronic content.

The Matterhorn Protocol is designed to foster adoption of PDF/UA by providing a set of 31 Checkpoints and 136 Failure Conditions that help software developers exchange detailed information on PDF/UA conformance and create software to make it easier for document authors to create fully accessible PDF files and forms.

Each Checkpoint represents a discrete area of conformance requirements, such as “Declared natural language” or “Metadata”. Each Failure Condition defines a specific test for a given Document, Page, Object or JavaScript. Each Failure Condition may be evaluated by either machine (a computer) alone, or requires a human.

An example of a Failure Condition requiring human evaluation is 14-001: “Headings are not tagged.” A Failure Condition that may be evaluated by a machine is 13-004: “Alternative or replacement text missing for Figure tag.”

PAC 2, the new PDF Accessibility Checker from Access for All, a Swiss non-profit foundation, is the first implementation of the Matterhorn Protocol. The company that developed PAC 2, xyMedia, is a member of the PDF/UA Competence Center, and collaborated closely on development of the Matterhorn Protocol.

The Matterhorn Protocol will be presented and discussed at the forthcoming PDF Association Technical Conference North America 2013, this coming August 14 and 15 at the Adobe Systems campus in Seattle, Washington, in the USA.

Download the Matterhorn Protocol 1.0: http://www.pdfa.org/matterhorn-protocol

Beginning in 2006 with the PDF/A Competence Center, the PDF Association exists to provide software vendors with information and resources on the various International Standards for PDF to help them make the most of their investment in PDF technology.

For more information, contact:

Irina Leichsenring, PDF Association
irina.leichsenring@pdfa.org
Tel +49 30 4439 0310
http://www.pdfa.org

About PDF Association

Founded in 2006 as the PDF/A Competence Center, the PDF Association exists to promote the adoption and implementation of International Standards for PDF technology.