Thursday, October 13, 2005
Feed Readers Not Easy For Visually Impaired Users
Through The Blog Herald, a story on a report by the American Foundation for the Blind. The report finds that feed readers can be challenging to use for the blind and visually impaired. If you go to the article, there is a nice summary of the findings. The report evaluated various feed readers, and it found Bloglines and Newsgator to be the most screen reader friendly using JAWS, "an assistive technology product that reads the text and images on a computer screen." If readers go to the full report, they will also find information on how to make blogs accessible for people with vision loss and the evaluation of the feed readers. One obstacle, which is one thing that did not even occur to me, is the fact that many services require use of captcha's (those little wiggly letters you have to retype to verify you are a human) for registrations; I use that here for my comments, and so do a lot of people. This little tool that can cut on the spam can be an obstacle for tools like JAWS cannot read them. It does make me wonder if there could be down the road a better way to reduce the spam without alienating some readers.