Improving Access to Web Content at Google

Loretta Guarino Reid ([email protected]) Srinivas Annam ([email protected]) March 12, 2008


Overview Accessibility developments for : • • • • • • •

Gmail Search Toolbar Maps & Transit Books Video & Captions Short Topics

– Calendar, Google Groups, Documentation


Gmail • Different ways of getting to your Gmail – Standard Interface, Basic HTML, Mobile – POP, IMAP

• Standard Interface

– Improved keyboard navigation – Decorated links work with Enter key – ARIA roles


Gmail – basic HTML • No Javascript. • Supports older and newer browsers alike. Lynx anyone? • Access keys; section headers • Labels, filters, multi-account support 4

Google Search Universal Search

Plus Box

Changes to Text Ads


Desktop Search • CTRL+ALT+G shortcut • MSAA Support for deskbar, floating deskbar, sidebar


Google News


Google Toolbar 5 Beta for IE • Recent accessibility changes – ALT+G shortcut – Keyboard navigation, MSAA Support – Access for options dialog, reorder buttons

• How to turn-on/off auto-fill? – Adjust Toolbar Options ! Options ! AutoFill

• Documentation in Help Center – Includes sections on accessibility


Maps & Directions

• Driving Directions • Find Businesses


Google Transit “Using my screenreading application, this site is completely accessible for people with visual loss. It can be a terrific commuting and trip planning tool” - Rob Sleath


Google Books • Book content • Finding accessible books • Accessing books


Copyright Status • In US, books published before 1923 assumed out of copyright • In other countries, based on local laws • Conservative in: – Reading of copyright law – Known facts for a particular book


Books in Public Domain • Download feature: – – – –

Available in text as well as page images Full pages available All pages available Problems or errors? • Go to “About this book” page • “Provide feedback” link

• Not all public domain books have download feature – Adding support as quickly as possible


Books Under Copyright • Author or Publisher in Partner Program – Provide permission to display limited preview – Generally 20% (can be more with permission) – No text view

• Otherwise – At most, snippets available – No text view


Finding Books • Book Views – Full View – Limited View – No Preview

• Filter for “Full View” – Advanced Search – Search Results page

• Check for “View plain text” link 15

Viewing Books • “View page image” vs “View page text” • Page Text View exposes text to screen readers • Search term highlighting only in Page Image View


Default view • View page image • Standard mode


Switch to text view • View page text • Standard mode


Standard vs HTML Mode • Applies to the “chrome”, not the book • HTML Mode recommended – “Basic HTML Mode” link – Becomes default mode for session

• Zoom tools only in Standard Mode – Limited magnification


HTML mode and text view • View page text • Basic HTML mode


Page Navigation • Keyboard shortcuts (only in HTML mode) – Next or Previous Page (when focused on document) • Space, Arrow keys • Page Up, Page Down • Access Keys: “P”, “N”

– Access Key “S” for search box

• Headings

– Book title – H2 – Navigation areas – H3 21

Video & Captions • Captions and search – CC icon on search results – “Start playing at search term” • Captioned videos on only

• Captions on by default • Select caption language





Mobile Calendar • Light-weight XHTML interface • Quick access, minimal UI • User functionality – View Events – Quick Add Events – Modify/Update Settings • Enable/disable different calendars 26

Google Groups


Audio captcha for • Joining a group • Creating a group


Documentation • Improvements to Help Center, API documentation – – – –

Alt-text for images Summary attribute for data tables Scope attribute for table headings Acronyms and abbreviations


Contact Email: [email protected]*

* Requires group membership


Improving Access to Web Content at Google - Research at Google

Mar 12, 2008 - No Javascript. • Supports older and newer browsers alike. Lynx anyone? • Access keys; section headers. • Labels, filters, multi-account support ... my screen- reading application, this site is completely accessible for people with visual loss. It can be a terrific commuting and trip planning tool”. - Rob Sleath ...

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