Alternative Browsers

Just as there are a number of disabilities that can make it more challenging for people to use the Web, there are a number of browsers and assistive technologies that are designed to level the playing field to a certain degree. I'm going to discuss some common types of assistive technologies here so that when you design your web pages you can consider how they'll be used by people with disabilities.

Disabled users access the Web in a variety of ways, depending on their degree and type of disability. For example, some users just need to use extra large fonts on their computer, whereas others require a completely different interface from the standard used by most people.

Let's look at some of the kinds of browsers specifically designed for disabled users. For users who read Braille, there are a number of browsers available that provide Braille output. Screen readers are also common. Rather than displaying the page on the screen (or in addition to displaying it), screen readers attempt to organize the contents of a page in a linear fashion and use a voice synthesizer to speak the page's contents. Some browsers also accept audio inputusers who are uncomfortable using a mouse and keyboard can use speech recognition to navigate the Web.

Another common type of assistive technology is a screen magnifier. Screen magnifiers enlarge the section of the screen where the user is working to make it easier for users with vision problems to use the computer.

Sams Teach Yourself Web Publishing with HTML and CSS in One Hour a Day
Sams Teach Yourself Web Publishing with HTML and CSS in One Hour a Day (5th Edition)
ISBN: 0672328860
EAN: 2147483647
Year: 2007
Pages: 305

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