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About the contributor
Duff Johnson

A veteran of the electronic document space, Duff Johnson is an independent consultant, Executive Director of the PDF Association and ISO Project co-Leader (and US TAG chair) for ISO 32000 and ISO 14289.
More contributions
Participating in the PDF Techniques Accessibility Summit

The PDF Techniques Accessibility Summit’s objective is to establish a broad-based understanding of how PDF files should be tagged for accessibilty. It’s an opportunity to focus on establishing a common set of examples of accessible PDF content, and identify best-practice when tagging difficult cases.

Modernizing PDF Techniques for Accessibility

The PDF Techniques Accessibility Summit will identify best-practices in tagging various cases in PDF documents. Questions to be addressed will likely include: the legal ways to tag a nested list, the correct way to caption multiple images, the appropriate way to organize content within headings.

Refried PDF

My hospital emailed me a medical records release form as a PDF. They told me to print it, fill it, sign it, scan it and return it to the medical records department, in that order. In 2018? To get the form via email (i.e., electronically), yet be asked to print it? Did the last 20 years just… not mean anything! So I thought I’d be clever. I’d fill it first, THEN print it. Or better yet, never print it, but sign it anyhow, and return it along with a note making the case for improving their workflow. The story continues…

Slides and video recordings of PDF Days Europe 2018

You missed the PDF Days Europe 2018? Never mind! Here you can find the slides and video recordings of all 32 stunning sessions!

Using PDF/UA in accessibility checklists

PDF/UA, like PDF itself, is internally complex, but used correctly, actually makes things easier.

Reviewing the Australian Government’s Report on PDF Accessibility

This article analyzes the recent Australian Government’s study into the Accessibility of the Portable Document Format for people with a disability published in November, 2010 by the Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) together with Vision Australia, a consultancy.
Cover of the AGIMO report
The Report accurately characterizes the current state of affairs for Assistive Technology (AT) users attempting to interact with PDF content. However, it does not clearly identify the reasons why most AT users have a poor experience with PDF. Additionally, the Report provides no comparison of PDF accessibility, functionality, remediation complexity or cost with alternative formats. As a result, several of the Report’s key conclusions are unsupported by the data presented.

I argue for an different perspective. The real story is that current Australian government is itself notably responsible for perpetuating the poor user experiences with PDF reported by AT-using Australians. To the extent that the Report’s recommendations bolster current policies, or influences other governments, equivalent access to content for AT users will suffer.

Finally, I outline an alternative approach to policy-making when addressing accessibility in any electronic document format, including PDF files.

Read the rest of the article on appligent.com


Tags: WCAG 2.0, accessibility, assistive technology, compliance, study
Categories: Government, PDF/UA