Pro HTML5 Accessibility – review

A new book Pro HTML5 Accessibility by  Joshue O’connor.


The book is a valiant attempt at covering a voluminous, complex and fast changing subject area. The chapters I  liked (my area of interest) were those that make good primers to understanding AT and accessibility APIs:

  • Chapter 2: Understanding Disability and Assistive Technology
  • Chapter 4 API and DOM

I also appreciated the overview Chapter 9:  HTML5, Usability and User-Centered Design, a subject area which is one of Joshue’s strong suits.


The static format of the printed book (and unfortunately the PDF copy links were not linked) does not lend itself to ease of access to the many valuable links to resources that are liberally sprinkled throughout the book. Chapters 11: WCAG 2.0 Client-Side Scripting Techniques and 12: Definition of WAI-ARIA Roles is information available online, and subject to change over time and therefore more appropriately accessed online.


Solid information on a complex subject area. If you buy it, get an ebook version to more easily access the feast of  pointers to online resources.

Categories: Technical

About Steve Faulkner

Steve was the Chief Accessibility Officer at TPGi before he left in October 2023. He joined TPGi in 2006 and was previously a Senior Web Accessibility Consultant at vision australia. Steve is a member of several groups, including the W3C Web Platforms Working Group and the W3C ARIA Working Group. He is an editor of several specifications at the W3C including ARIA in HTML and HTML Accessibility API Mappings 1.0. He also develops and maintains HTML5accessibility and the JAWS bug tracker/standards support.


Ryan B says:

A book on accessibility that’s not accessible? Oh the irony!

Bill Tyler says:

Got the book a couple months ago. I really like and recommend it (I only got the e-book version though).

It and WCAG 2.0 Made Easy are the only books I’ve found that could be considered “current enough” to deal with 21st accessibility guidelines. It’s the only one I’ve found that covers other current topics (HTML5, Semantic HTML, some Mobile, WAI-ARIA, NVDA, Voice Over).

Most of my library (and “comprehensive” online references) is terribly outdated (WCAG 1.0, Netscape 4) and overdue for new editions. Is everybody waiting for the new Sect. 508 before publishing?

I also found chapter 4 very helpful. It was the first book to get into those details and, as the author suggested, useful in understanding how AT actually works.