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About the contributor
Duff Johnson

A veteran of the electronic document space, Duff Johnson is an independent consultant. He is Executive Director of the PDF Association and ISO Project co-Leader (and US TAG chair) for ISO 32000 and ISO 14289.
More contributions
What is a “Competence Center”?

The PDF Association started in 2006 as the “PDF/A Competence Center”. The mission was to identify – and thereby establish – a common interpretation of the PDF/A-1 specification. With that accomplished through meetings open to all members, the secondary …

“PDF can do THAT?!”

PDF files deliver a complete package of information that defines a document; everything that’s needed to represent the text, graphics and layout that the recipient receives. To most people, PDF is “electronic paper” – the digital expression of a cellul …

The only digital document format

What is a “document”? A document is a record of some (typically written) content – a publication, a contract, a statement, a painting – at a moment in time. Until the advent of computers (and scanners), the media typically considered useable for such r …

Save the Date: PDF Days Europe 2018, May 14-16, in Berlin

PDF Days Europe is the most popular PDF event of the year. It’s where the PDF industry meets, and where institutional and corporate users come to learn what else PDF could do for them. The first two PDF Days will offer a broad range of educational sessions focussed on current and perennial topics in the world of PDF technology implementation.

The Power of the Page

It’s a question that vexes vendors of web-based solutions everywhere: why do people still insist on PDF files? And why does PDF’s mindshare keep going up? “PDF is such antediluvian technology!” they say. “It’s pre-web, are you kidding me? It’s so old-f …

“Achieving WCAG 2.0 with PDF/UA” now available


As previously discussed, since completing work on PDF/UA-1, AIIM’s Committee for PDF/UA have been busy developing documents to support PDF/UA, and especially, to help developers use PDF/UA in the context of other accessibility standards.

It was for this reason that the US Committee developed “Achieving WCAG 2.0 with PDF/UA“.

What is the Purpose of the Mapping?

If you can map PDF/UA to WCAG 2.0, why do you need PDF/UA? Why aren’t the PDF Techniques for WCAG 2.0 sufficient?

This document articulates the alignment between WCAG 2.0 and ISO 14289-1:2012 (PDF/UA), the international standard for accessible PDF technology. PDF software developers can achieve conformance with applicable WCAG 2.0 Success Criteria via implementations that follow this mapping to PDF/UA. As such, this mapping shows how to validate, in PDF file-format terms, a PDF/UA document against WCAG 2.0.

Conformance with PDF/UA does not guarantee conformance with WCAG 2.0. For some Success Criteria, especially those pertaining to media, actions, scripting, design or content considerations, authors and developers must refer directly to WCAG 2.0.

Why Use this Document?

Vendors who deliver PDF files in many cases are being asked to deliver PDF files in conformance with WCAG 2.0. For many vendors this is unknown territory, and WCAG 2.0 does not provide sufficient PDF-specific technical information to achieve similar results between situations or implementations.

Since this mapping shows what’s necessary to create, process and validate, in PDF file-format and conforming reader terms, a PDF/UA conforming document and reader to meet all applicable WCAG 2.0 Success Criteria, it’s useful whether you are reading PDF/UA and the ISO 32000-1 from a WCAG 2.0 perspective, or the other way around.

Where can I get it?

Achieving WCAG 2.0 with PDF/UA is hosted on AIIM’s site.


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Categories: PDF/UA