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Re: [grouper-dev] Draft Minutes: Grouper-dev Call 12-Oct-2011

Chronological Thread 
  • From: "GW Brown, Information Systems and Computing" <>
  • To: Emily Eisbruch <>, Grouper Dev <>
  • Subject: Re: [grouper-dev] Draft Minutes: Grouper-dev Call 12-Oct-2011
  • Date: Wed, 26 Oct 2011 09:14:47 +0100

--On 19 October 2011 13:06 -0400 Emily Eisbruch

[AI] (Gary) will email the Grouper-Dev list with specifics on UI
accessibility issues

Apologies for the delay:

The original admin UI aimed to be accessible and deliberately avoided the use of Javascript, partly because of cross-browser compatability issues, but also because of accessibility constraints. We have subsequently added Javascript for tooltips, and the Lite UI is AJAX-based.

With the Grouper UI redesign slated for v2.2 extending Javascript use, it is important to ensure that the UI is accessible. This is mandated by legislation in various countries and, in particular, is an important factor for adoption in some HE institutions.

Fortunately, accessibility standards have developed, and there are many cross browser Javascript libraries which are designed to facilitate the creation of accessible applications. So, in addition to the original W3C standards <>, the new UI should aim to comply with WAI-ARIA (

It looks like validation tools are a bit thin on the ground - partly because WAI-ARIA is supported in HTML 5 which is still being finalized, however, <> and <> have some support.

I've always thought that there are two parts to accessibility:
1) the box-ticking conformance with standards
2) actual usability by real individuals who rely on accessibility

Even if we make the effort during the re-design to ensure conformance with standards it is hard to know how 'successful' we have been. Also, compliance often drifts over time as new features are added (as has happened with the current UI). Ideally we could do with some external agency (or someone with a real interest) to check our compliance and its effectiveness.


GW Brown, IT Services

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