A proposal for a talk I submitted to the RNIB’s Techshare 2009 conference has been accepted. The talk on “From Web Accessibility to Web Adaptability” will be given on 17 September 2009.

The talk is based on the paper of the same name which was published recently in the Disability and Rehability: Assistive Technology journal. The talk at the Techshare conference will provide an opportunity for the ideas in the paper (which I have also outlined in a recent blog post and in an article published in the e-Access Bulletin) to be described to those in the disability community who may not read academic journals or blogs.

There is an expectation that presentations at the conference will be accessible to those with visual impairments. An approach I have taken to enhancing the accessibility of the slides (and the ideas which will be described in the talk)  has been to create a slidecast of the talk, by synching the audio of a rehearsal of the talk with the slides. This slidecast is available on Slideshare and is embedded below.

The rehearsal also provided an opportunity for me to time the talk – and I found that at 34 minutes it was slightly too long, so the version I will give at the conference will be slightly shorter.

As well as helping me with the timings and allowing me to spot where the material can be improved, creating the slidecast prior to the talk has some additional benefits:

  • It provides a back-up in case I lose my voice or am ill at the conference or fail to arrive at the conference venue due to travel difficulties.
  • Conference delegates can listen to the talk after the event.
  • The talk can be shared with others.
  • The slidecast is a richer resources than the slides on their own

In addition there are parallels with open source software development – this early release of a talk and exposing it to many eyes ears can potentially allow my peers, including co-authors of the original paper, to listen to what I intend to say and provide comments and suggestions as to how the talk can be improved. The talk isn’t trapped in my head until the live delivery!

If you have a particular interest in Web accessibility your comments and questions are welcomed.