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Biting the Hands that Feed

Chris Hofstader answers the question of why the NFB would pursue those that push the boundaries while letting others of the hook.

At the NFB convention in 2010, they gave Apple one of their accessibility awards. In 2011, Apple decided that because of its upcoming Lion operating system release that they would not attend any of what we in the blindness biz call “the summer shows” – including the national NFB convention, the ACB convention, Sight Village in UK and various smaller conferences. Apple representatives explained to NFB that they needed to focus on the accessibility of their new OS release and of numerous smaller initiatives they were preparing for autumn 2011.

Curtis Chong, head of NFB in Computer Science, the portion of NFB responsible for computing issues decided to threaten people at Apple with a resolution of condemnation if they didn’t attend the convention. Then, at the convention, he pushed through a resolution deploring the company that has provided an excellent out-of-box experience that is years ahead of their competition. It seems that Curtis did this because his feelings were hurt or some other completely childish motivation for biting the hand that feeds us best.

via The Hands That Feed | hofstader.com. And Daring Fireball

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Ignoring accessibility, or how to make an iPhone less useful

Joe Clark throws down the gauntlet:

How many hot-hot-hot! new iOS apps have impressed legions of fans while demonstrating their developers are too irresponsible or incompetent to make them accessible under VoiceOver?

Shall we start a list?

via Hot new iPhone apps by irresponsible developers Personal Weblog of Joe Clark, Toronto.

Joe ¬†hits out at some great apps that just ignore some of the best accesibility API’s in any development environment.

W3C details draft standards for touch interfaces

W3C publishes a draft standard for touch based interaction for web applications. The draft specifications are intended to provide a standards driven approach to web application awareness of touch based events, such as hover which is currently not supported. The draft is primarily driven by web-kit based strategies given the dominant position held by web-kit based browsers in the touch screen market. Such specifications and approaches should also serve as a basis for assuring the development of accessibility methods for touch based web applications.

Touch Events Specification

iPhone, FaceTime and iZ

ZVRS rolled out their iZ app for Apple’s fourth generation iPhone. The app, called iZ is designed to utilize ZVRS’s video relay service. Video relay services allow deaf and hard of hearing individuals to have telephone conversations with hearing people. A WiFi version of the iZ is expected to be relased July 26th, the which is the 20th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.

FaceTime, Apple’s ground-breaking video phone protocol, is currently WiFi only. AT&T was involve in the development of the iZ app and it is expected to be available for 3g users shortly. ZVRS has not yet updated their web site.

Additional information at ZVRS’s web site

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