In mid 2010 Anthony Kolber and Ben Schwarz started a discussion about the usability of W3C specifications, this resulted in Ben and Anthony’s initial restyled version of the W3C HTML5 – Edition for Web Authors.
Feedback was provided about aspects of the accessibility of the design, suggested changes were not implemented due to constraints on Ben’s time. Not wanting to be a lazy accessibility curmudgeon who complains but doesn’t do anything “all mouth no trousers“, after waiting a respectful 6 months and after discussion with Ben and Mike Smith, I spent some time modifying the original design to improve accessibility, this resulted in the latest incarnation of HTML5 – Edition for Web Authors. It is hoped that Ben or somebody else with more design chops than I will continue to develop HTML5 – Edition for Web Authors with accessibility in mind, but until someone else steps up to give it some love, I am happy to work on it. Please provide feedback on ways it can be improved!
Changes made to the original design
- Text and background colours modified to provide sufficient contrast for users with low to moderate vision impairments.
- added CSS
:focuspseudo selectors, so a clear indication of current focus is provided.
- Left aligned content to provide increased usability for screen magnifier users. (helpful or not?)
- Underlined links within paragraphs so that color is not the only differentiator between link text embedded in plain text. (helpful or not?)
- Removed text shadows.
- Added extra borders to data tables. (helpful or not?)
- Hid some of the boiler plate text guff.
- Changed default body text to verdana then changed it back to sans-serif type and then back again to verdana after discussion with John Foliot, while there is no conclusive evidence as to the readability or legibility of serif vs sans-serif fonts, I find serif fonts harder to read in large blocks of text (irony that this blog uses serif fonts is noted). What about you?
Still to do
- Make the pop up menus on
dfnelements keyboard operable and usable by assistive technology users.
- Any problem colour combinations missed?
- Re-organise boilerplate text so it is available, but not in the way.
- Respond to any feedback provided.