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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Implementing User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG) 2.0

James Allan, Kelly Ford, Jeanne Spellman (eds), W3C Technical Report
Members of the W3C User Agent Accessibility Guidelines Working Grouphave published a First Public Working Draft for "Implementing UAAG 2.0:A Guide to Understanding and Implementing User Agent AccessibilityGuidelines 2.0" and an updated version of of the "User AgentAccessibility Guidelines (UAAG) 2.0" specification. Comments on thetwo documents should be sent to the W3C public list by 16-April-2010.
The "User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG) 2.0" specification ispart of a series of accessibility guidelines published by the W3C WebAccessibility Initiative (WAI). It provides guidelines for designinguser agents that lower barriers to Web accessibility for people withdisabilities. User agents include browsers and other types of softwarethat retrieve and render Web content. A user agent that conforms tothese guidelines will promote accessibility through its own userinterface and through other internal facilities, including its abilityto communicate with other technologies (especially assistive technologies).Furthermore, all users, not just users with disabilities, should findconforming user agents to be more usable.
In addition to helping developers of browsers and media players, thedocument will also benefit developers of assistive technologies becauseit explains what types of information and control an assistive technologymay expect from a conforming user agent. Technologies not addresseddirectly by this document (e.g., technologies for braille rendering)will be essential to ensuring Web access for some users with disabilities.
The Working Draft for "Implementing UAAG 2.0" provides supportinginformation for the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines (UAAG) 2.0. Thedocument provides explanation of the intent of UAAG 2.0 success criteria,examples of implementation of the guidelines, best practice recommendationsand additional resources for the guideline. It includes a new sectionsupporting the definition of a user agent. also the updated UAAG 2.0 specification:

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