We want to explore accessibility from the perspectives of technology, profitability, politics, and higher education. Experts on seven panels will briefly describe their own work and their view of accessibility and then discuss the issues.
The entire event will be translated into German, English, and German Sign Language.
Friday, 27 March 2009
- 8:00 – 9:00 am
- Arrival, coffee
- 9:00 – 9:20 am
Linda Mauperon | Member of Cabinet of European Commissioner for Information Society and Media
- 9:20 – 10:20 am
Accessible Web Applications
Desktop applications like e-mail are increasingly moving to the web. What are the market leaders doing to keep their applications accessible to as many people as possible? Which desktop paradigms are being adopted? How are web applications making new strategies necessary or possible?
- 10:20 – 10:40 am
- Coffee break
- 10:40 – 11:40 am
Mobile Access – Device-independent or Accessible?
The requirements for accessible websites and the best practices for mobile devices overlap in many sections. Still critics insist that accessibility focuses on the person, not the device, so the needs of people with disabilities should be addressed first. But isn’t mobile use about people too? And how are the boundaries blurred when we take into account temporary disabilities caused by illness or accident?
- 11:40 am – 12:40 pm
Comparison of National Accessibility Guidelines
All European guidelines for web accessibility are based on the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) of the W3C. Nonetheless, they differ fundamentally in their scope, emphasis, goals, and approach. What can we learn from one another? How and when will WCAG 2 be incorporated into legislation?
- Prof. Dr. Christian Bühler | Faculty of Rehabilitation Sciences, Technical University of Dortmund, Germany
- Raph de Rooij | Web Guidelines Specialist, ICTU, Netherlands
- Dr. Jonathan Hassell | Head of Audience Experience & Usability, British Broadcasting Corporation | Acting Chair, British Standards Committee on Web Accessibility IST/45, UK
- Peter Krantz | Strategic Development Officer, previously with the Swedish Administrative Development Agency, Verva
- Moderation: Eric Eggert | Webkrauts
- Video: Comparison of National Accessibility Guidelines
- 12:40 – 1:40 pm
- Lunch break
- 1:40 – 2:40 pm
Accessible Rich Internet Applications (ARIA)
The forthcoming W3C standard for Accessible Rich Internet Applications adds machine-readable semantic information about how elements behave and relate to one another. This plugs the gaps in (X)HTML and creates the basis for an accessible Web 2.0. What is currently possible with ARIA? Can the ground rules of ARIA be applied to accessible Flash?
- 2:40 – 3:40 pm
Web Standards and Accessibility in Higher Education
Though experts say the browser is “
the most hostile software development environment imaginable”, universities often deride HTML as not being a “real programming language”. As a result, some educators have fallen years behind current developments and are still teaching table-based layouts and
fonttags. This is making it increasingly difficult for companies to find qualified frontend developers. Why is this happening? How will the web standards and accessibility curricula developed by the panel participants help change this?
- Lars Gunther | The Web Standards Project Education Task Force
- Chris Mills | Developer Relations Manager, Opera Software
- Dr. Carlos Velasco | Competence Center Manager, Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology (FIT)
- Moderation: Prof. Hartmut Wöhlbier | Head of the Institute for Interactive Media, Department of Design, Mannheim University of Applied Sciences
- Video: Web Standards and Accessibility in Higher Education
- 3:40 – 4:00 pm
- Coffee break
- 4:00 – 5:00 pm
Harmonising European Accessibility Guidelines
Information and communications technologies (ICT) are responsible for half of all productivity growth in Europe. Accessibility opens up these technologies to the largest possible portion of the population. It is also a core principle of the e-Inclusion 2010 programme, which is designed to close the digital divide. Earlier today, we heard about the different approaches to accessibility being taken in Europe. Companies in Europe have an interest in standardised guidelines. Is there any hope of harmonisation? What measures are being implemented to achieve it?
- Shadi Abou-Zahra | Activity Lead, W3C WAI International Program
- Miguel González-Sancho | Deputy Head of Unit ICT for Inclusion, Information Society Directorate General, European Commission
- Melanie Müller | German Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs
- Moderation: Martin Ladstätter | Editor, BIZEPS-INFO
- Video: Harmonising European Accessibility Guidelines
- 5:00 – 6:00 pm
The Business Value of Accessibility
Accessibility has grown up. No longer a handout to marginal social groups or a tool for cultivating one’s image, accessibility now means maximising target groups, which goes hand in hand with real economic interests – a win-win strategy. How is this benefiting companies and society? What must be done to secure a long-term place for accessibility within companies?
- Ellen Engel | Manager for Sociodemographic Groups and Persons with Reduced Mobility, Deutsche Bahn
- François-René Germain | Vice President, Group Accessibility Department, Orange | France Télécom
- Charlotte McClain-Nhlapo | Senior Operations Officer, The World Bank
Nicola Palmarini| IBM EMEA Human Centric Solutions
- Moderation: Jürg Stuker | CEO, namics
- Video: The Business Value of Accessibility
- from 6:00 pm
Moloko at Google Maps, Kurt-Schumacher-Strasse 1, 60311 Frankfurt
Delicious food and drinks in a cool atmosphere. The Moloko is wheelchair-accessible, alas the restrooms are not.
Saturday, 28 March 2009
- from 10:00 am
Breakfast with Free WiFi
Iimori Pâtisserie at Google Maps, Braubachstrasse 24, 60311 Frankfurt
Breakfast for anyone still in Frankfurt. Charming Japanese-French café with WLAN. The entrance and part of the café are at ground level, but unfortunately the restrooms are tiny and not suitable for wheelchairs.