WAI-ARIA Roadmap Announced

The W3C (World Wide Web Consortium) WAI (Web Accessibility Initiative) have just announced the latest addition to their accessibility stable – the ARIA (Accessible Rich Internet Applications) Roadmap, which will make dynamic web content accessible.

The Roadmap is essentially a suite of documents made up of:

* the WAI-ARIA Roadmap itself – addresses the accessibility of dynamic Web content by describing “the technologies to map controls, AJAX live regions, and events to accessibility APIs, including custom controls used for Rich Internet Applications”. It also “outlines new navigation techniques to mark common Web structures such as menus, primary content, secondary content, banner information and other types of Web structures”, which can improve accessibility.

* Roles for Accessible Rich Internet Applications (WAI-ARIA Roles) – provides a means of identifying roles in dynamic web content, in order to improve interoperability with assistive technologies.

* States and Properties Module for Accessible Rich Internet Applications (WAI-ARIA States) – enables the behaviour of an element to be included in XML (eXtensible Mark-up Language), which can then be used in conjunction with assistive technologies or to dynamically render content via different style sheets.

Further information is available from the press release.

EU DIADEM Project Aims to Personalise Web Experience

The DIADEM (Delivering Inclusive Access for Disabled and Elderly Members of the community) Project has just received European funding to develop technology to help elderly people and people with cognitive disabilities use the internet.

One of its main objectives will be to develop software which monitors how a user interacts with web based forms and which then automatically personalises the computer interface accordingly.

It is a joint project between Brunel University, the Norwegian National Computer Centre (Norsk Regnesentral), and several IT suppliers – Bluegarden (Norway) and MORE (Norway) – and government services – CSI-Piemonte (Italy), Sheffield City Council, and Citta di Torino (Italy).

Further information is available from the press release and from the DIADEM Project website.