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PDF Those pesky proprietary formats: Alternatives Save the Day Sharon Trerise Northeast ADA & IT Center PPT.

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Presentation on theme: "PDF Those pesky proprietary formats: Alternatives Save the Day Sharon Trerise Northeast ADA & IT Center PPT."— Presentation transcript:

1 PDF Those pesky proprietary formats: Alternatives Save the Day Sharon Trerise Northeast ADA & IT Center PPT

2 Northeast ADA & IT Center Most PDF files are not accessible (demo) Image only Not structured Not tagged Incorrect reading order WHY be concerned about PDF accessibility?

3 Northeast ADA & IT Center Standard 14: Downloadable/Embedded Objects 14.1 When downloadable documents [e.g., word processing documents, spreadsheets, Portable Document Format (PDF), java applets] are used, a link to accessible HTML or text version(s) will be made available. NYS Technology Standard S04-001

4 Northeast ADA & IT Center Why require accessible HTML or text? Requirements for individuals using screen readers Only 2 screen readers can read PDF format JAWS ($900 - $ maintenance agreement) Window Eyes ($800) Must have the latest versions of Adobe Reader 6.01 (full version not basic version) Wide range of users & browsing environments Slow connection, older equipment, WebTV, cell phones, PDAs

5 Northeast ADA & IT Center Why require accessible HTML or text? Authoring requirements PDF files must be structured and tagged using Acrobat 5+ (full version) MS Word (only one to preserve structure when creating PDF file) No assurances that final PDF file will be completely accessible depending on complexity of document Many existing PDF files are not accessible and would require much work to convert to accessible PDF

6 Northeast ADA & IT Center Adobe Read-Out-Loud Feature Excerpted from Adobe Reader Help: Note: The Read-Out-Loud feature can read the text of a PDF file out loud, but is not a screen reader. Some systems may not support this feature. To read a document out loud: 1. Open the Adobe PDF document you want to read, and then navigate to the page on which you want to start reading. 2. Choose View > Read Out Loud > Read This Page Only or Read To End Of Document. Does not have the full functionality of a screen reader Still requires the document to be created with some degree of accessibility; especially complex documents

7 Northeast ADA & IT Center What do you think? Is it easier to create an accessible HTML or an accessible PDF file?

8 Northeast ADA & IT Center IT DEPENDS Is the document author and person creating the PDF file the same person; ie. have control of the original document? Technical skills of the PDF file author Are you starting with a new or existing document? Current format (.doc,.pdf,.txt, etc.) Complexity (columns, tables, forms)

9 Northeast ADA & IT Center What makes a PDF file accessible? Live text (not a scanned image) Proper reading order (determined by tags) Text reflow (wraps to fit in window when enlarged) Document structure (lists, headings, tables, etc.) Alternative text for graphics (tags)

10 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating a PDF file from a simple.doc Document Not Structured: no headings Not Tagged: no alt text for graphics Conversion to PDF Conversion settings: Enable accessibility and reflow with Tagged PDF

11 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating a PDF file from a simple.doc Document Not Structured: no headings Not Tagged: no alt text for graphics Conversion to PDF Conversion settings: Enable accessibility and reflow with Tagged PDF Usable but not fully accessible Can’t list headings No text associated with graphic image Agency info in header not in correct read order

12 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating an accessible PDF file from a simple.doc Document Structured: headings Tagged: alt text for graphics Conversion to PDF file Conversion settings: Enable accessibility and reflow with Tagged PDF

13 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating an accessible PDF file from a simple.doc Document Structured: headings Tagged: alt text for graphics Conversion to PDF Conversion settings: Enable accessibility and reflow with Tagged PDF Accessible PDF file JAWS not able to list headings even though defined Graphic does have alt text Must edit tags to get header info in proper read order

14 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating accessible HTML from a simple.doc Conversion In MS Word: File / Save As / Filtered HTML Open Dreamweaver (or other familiar web editing tool) and import Word HTML Make adjustments

15 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating accessible HTML from a simple.doc Conversion In MS Word: File / Save As / Filtered HTML Open HTML editor and import Word HTML Make adjustments Accessible HTML page JAWS can read headings Graphic has alt text Header information is automatically in correct read order

16 Northeast ADA & IT Center Which is quicker / easier? Creating an Accessible PDF file or an accessible HTML page from a simple document? About the SAME?

17 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating an accessible PDF file from a complex PDF file Advanced / Accessibility / Add Tags to Document Review tags Read order? Alt text? Headings? What tag edits will be needed to make it accessible?

18 Northeast ADA & IT Center Creating plain text from a complex pdf file File / Save As / Accessible text (.txt) Review read order Edits needed to correct read order Cut and paste

19 Northeast ADA & IT Center Accessible PDF vs Accessible HTML: Which is quicker / easier? IT DEPENDS: Is the document author and PDF file author the same person; ie. have control of the original document? Authors the sameAuthors different Edits made to make a PDF file accessible will have to be repeated when document changes unless same changes can be made in original document Less DifficultMore Difficult

20 Northeast ADA & IT Center Accessible PDF vs Accessible HTML: Which is easier? IT DEPENDS: What are the technical skills of the PDF file author? Advanced SkillsBasic Skills Understanding HTML tags makes it easier to grasp the functionality of the tags palette in Adobe Acrobat Converting to an accessible PDF file takes additional steps; the Tags Palette may be intimidating; the final PDF file should be tested for accessibility. Less DifficultMore Difficult

21 Northeast ADA & IT Center Accessible PDF vs Accessible HTML: Which is easier? IT DEPENDS: Are you creating a new document or using an existing document? New DocumentExisting Document Saves time if structure (headings, lists, etc.) is defined as it is created Document may need to be edited to add structure Less DifficultMore Difficult

22 Northeast ADA & IT Center Accessible PDF vs Accessible HTML: Which is easier? IT DEPENDS: What is the current format (doc, pdf, txt)?.doc or.txt.pdf Accessibility edits can be done in familiar software Tags must be edited in Adobe Acrobat Less DifficultMore Difficult

23 Northeast ADA & IT Center Accessible PDF vs Accessible HTML: Which is easier? IT DEPENDS: How complex is the document? Simple DocumentComplex Document Straight text converts easily. Tables, columns, forms require substantially more work to be made accessible in a PDF file format. Less DifficultMore Difficult

24 Northeast ADA & IT Center Where does your organization fall in this continuum? Authors the Same Advanced Skills New Document Current format =.doc Simple Document Authors Different Basic Skills Existing Document Current format =.pdf Complex Document Less DifficultMore Difficult

25 Northeast ADA & IT Center Future? Other competing formats, eg. FlashPaper2 Future versions of Adobe Acrobat Enhancements to screen reader software Standards may be revisited?

26 Northeast ADA & IT Center START NOW Make the transition to accessible proprietary formats easier in the future Ask everyone to create documents with Accessibility in Mind Structured (headings, proper lists, etc.) Tagged (alternative text) for images

27 Northeast ADA & IT Center PowerPoint on the web PowerPoint is not a web-friendly format How to convert to accessible HTML PowerPoint Add-on (Windows only) University of Illinois: Accessible Web Publishing Wizard for MS Office v.2 (http://cita.rehab.uiuc.edu/software/office/) Use HTML slide program such as WimpyPoint or Slidemaker or OperaShow Copy the outline to an HTML page & format by hand

28 Northeast ADA & IT Center PowerPoint Accessible Web Publishing Wizard How it works: MS PowerPoint add-on Output options (examples: Text only view Text mostly view Multiple graphical views (640x480, 800x600, 1025x768, 1280x1024) Outline view Handout view Additional styling options Saving Options Local disk directory ZIP file Web DAV

29 Northeast ADA & IT Center Resources Northeast ADA & IT Center WebAIM (Web Accessibility in Mind) California Community Colleges High Tech Training Center, “Creating Accessible PDFs”, essible_PDFs.pdf essible_PDFs.pdf AccessIT (National Center on Accessible Information Technology in Education) ITTATC (Information Technology Technical Assistance and Training Center)


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