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!PDF Association expands its board of directors
Catherine Andersz of PDFTron Systems, Alaine Behler of iText Software and Peter Wyatt, ISO Project Leader for ISO 32000 enrich the newly elected board of the PDF Association.
Organizations tasked with ensuring their electronic content is accessible aren’t really interested in the technical details. They need straightforward solutions, usable workflows, reliable results and accountable systems.
Throughout the US federal government the accessibility requirement these agencies must meet is Section 508, which itself identifies WCAG 2.0 Level AA as its standard, among other requirements.
Many other governments worldwide also use WCAG 2.0, and increasingly, it’s being adopted in commercial settings engaged in improving their accessibility to disabled populations.
As an operational matter, the process of assuring that content is accessible involves substantial training, adequate software and sufficient staff-time. Anything that helps streamline this process, reduces costs, or facilitates accessibility upgrades or validation in more content, is of interest.
PDF remains indispensable. A recent analysis presented at PDF Days Europe 2018 concluded that 1 in 20 static web pages was a PDF file. But the web holds just a small fraction of documents. Trillions of PDF files exist in private collections as the embodiment of documentation, contracts, invoices, statements, policies, records, terms, maps, academic papers and so many more applications.
Due to PDF’s inherent flexibility, the testing required to account for the potential variety of content in PDF files can be substantial. PDF/UA, the ISO specification for accessible PDF, packages these requirements together and includes (according to the Matterhorn Protocol) 136 distinct tests for accessible PDF files.
This might seem daunting. Which is unfortunate, because it should be liberating.
Of the 136 tests described in the Matterhorn Protocol, 87 may be fully automated with software. Human intervention is only required to assess and correct any errors located by software.
The 47 checks that may require human judgement boil down to:
All of these tests may be performed very efficiently by software designed for PDF/UA validation. For example. it’s possible to perform most of these tests via a quick review of pages and tags.
Applying PDF/UA to accessibility-validation processes allows one to package sets of tests together, streamlining the validation process.
If agencies can learn to use the PDF/UA indicator, accessibility checklists can get a lot easier. Authors and vendors could leverage PDF/UA as part of a declaration of conformance ( VPAT in Section 508 jargon) for each document. Deliverables specifications might then be summarized as:
This approach would set clear, consumable expectations and reduce testing complexity to help drive achievement of organizational accessibility objectives.