In this video, see an analogy of what the experience is like for users of assistive technology which helps you to understand why we do what we do when remediating PDF documents.
- [Instructor] As someone who is tasked with making PDF files accessible, which is often referred to as PDF remediation, I think it's beneficial to understand what it's like for someone to read a document using assistive software. Now PDF remediation is done for the benefit of many different users which includes blind, visually impaired, mobility impaired, as well as others. For the sake of illustration, I'm going to use the experience of a blind person in this example. I like to use the analogy of a newspaper when I discuss the experience for someone using assistive software.
As a sighted user, when I pick up a newspaper, you can use this analogy even if you read the newspaper on a computer, the first thing that I do is read the headlines to determine which article is of interest to me and to determine if I want to keep going or not. This saves me a lot of time and allows me to not waste my time reading about an article that doesn't interest me. What allows me to do this is how the newspaper is formatted. The headlines are big and bold, images are used to support the article and it provides me with a good reading experience.
The same is true for someone using assistive software. Keep in mind that to these users, their keyboard is their eyes and that keyboard is what allows them to interact with the content. So when a PDF file is properly remediated, someone using assistive software is provided with the same experience. Let's take a look at this example. Imagine that in order to read this newspaper, we had to do so by cutting a hole in an 8 1/2 by 11 piece of paper. And by moving that paper around, I can read each section of the document and that's provided that the PDF is properly structured.
This is a similar experience encountered by someone using assistive software. By having that document properly created, they gain the same experience as a sighted user has. Now imagine that same newspaper with no formatting at all. This would be a horrible experience to a sighted user and this is the same experience that someone using assistive software experiences when a document is not properly prepared. It wouldn't be acceptable to a sighted user and it's not acceptable from an accessibility perspective either.
This is what you're going to be learning how to do throughout this course to ensure that the experience of reading a document is equal for all.
- What is accessibility?
- The screen reader experience
- Setting up Acrobat DC
- PDF remediation workflow
- Tagging content, including lists and tables
- Adding metadata, bookmarks, and alt text
- Generating a PDF with Microsoft Word and Adobe InDesign
- Creating accessible PDFs from PowerPoint and Excel
- Adding hyperlinks
- Controlling tag and reading order
- Adding cross-references and tables of contents