We started the year with a great project – conducting some testing for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind – and ended with some great training – content author and developer training for the University of Sydney. We’ve again had a busy year creating some amazing partnerships in Australia and the United States, including a joint presentation with Adobe on PDF accessibility (and how it is improving!) for PEATworks (access the recording at a11yoz.com/presentations). However, our biggest news for 2017 is our work with CCC Tech Center – we are thrilled to announce that we have been awarded a $2 million, five-year project providing accessibility testing services to support more than one hundred Californian Community Colleges.
In the United States, we are proud to be partnering with Georgia Tech’s AMAC Accessibility Services division to provide accessibility testing. We have cemented our relationship with Disability Rights Washington by building their landmark DDOmbuds site (ddombuds.org), their main web site (disabilityrightswa.org) and partnering to provide specific solutions to other Disability Rights organizations across the United States. In November, we presented at Accessing Higher Ground with George Mason University – who are in their third year of using OzART! –on using OzART in higher education.
In Australia, we are proud to be partnering with the amazing Russ Weakley, who has been delivering training on HTML5, ARIA and form accessibility. AccessibilityOz is also partnering with the Digital Gap Initiative, a non-profit run by Gisele Mesnage (who rose to fame by suing Coles for having an inaccessible web site in 2014). We have worked on some great projects this year, including the Telstra Smart Home mobile app, the DTA Digital Marketplace and myGov. It is great to see the Australian Government’s high commitment to accessibility in action.
Our CEO, Gian Wild, was nominated for the 2017 Australian of the Year award and is one of MLC’s 2017 Women of Influence. She has spoken at fourteen conferences this year – including at SAP’s Public-Sector User Experience Working Group – on topics as varied as mobile, social media, interactive maps, slideshows, PDFs, web accessibility in higher education and building an accessible site (access these presentations at a11yoz.com/conferences).
We welcomed some new staff this year: Sheryl Dwyer, Sam Bouchat, Kisiah Powell-Timmons and Bess Monti-Plummer. Sheryl has spent more than a decade running accessibility for the Victorian Government and is now our new Operations Manager; she makes sure projects run on time (and staff take breaks!). Sam is Gian’s new PA, replacing Lauren Hayes who has moved into a tester role. Sam lives and works on the Oregon Coast, but she always knows exactly what Gian is doing and where she is! Kisiah Powell-Timmons has more than twelve years’ experience in accessibility and is our new Business Development Manager in the United States. Bess has just started as our new book-keeper and accessibility tester.
We released OzART Toto 3.0 in July this year, with some great new features, including automatically finding keyboard traps, movement and scanned PDFs. Now you can test just the content of the page, and automatically generate Word audit reports. Version 3.5 will be released in February – complete with a dashboard feature. We’d love to show you the results of your site: please get in touch if you’re interested (firstname.lastname@example.org).
In August 2016, we reached one thousand examples in OzWiki – our database of accessibility errors and solutions. There will be another large increase of examples in 2018 as we include the new ARIA techniques from WCAG2.1.
OzPlayer was a finalist for the ANZIA (Australian and New Zealand Internet Awards). In 2017 we added multi-lingual captions, better integration with YouTube and support for audio descriptions on Android. Gian and our Accessibility Specialist (and expert screen-reader tester), Rafal, repeated the video player testing from last year, testing 37 different video players. Only two players – OzPlayer and AblePlayer – did not have a critical accessibility error. This year OzPlayer scored 97%. You can watch the webinar yourself by selecting the “Video player (in)accessibility” at: a11yoz.com/presentations. We also changed the pricing structure, so please get in touch if you would like more details (email@example.com). You can now go straight to the OzPlayer Code Generator: www.a11yoz.com/ozplayer-code-generator, and generate the code to insert OzPlayer into your site.