Tuning Up the Accessibility Engine, or, Grinding Gears and Pleasurable Growing Pains

When we last wrote, people had begun to sign up. We were all excited and hopefully anticipating all sorts of helpful feedback. And by George, we got it, though it wasn’t all quite what we expected.

Those of us who have been poking around on the web are used to the idea that accessibility is not always what it should be, even if it’s getting better all the time. So, if the “play video” button turns out not to work for whatever reason, well, we tab one more time, find the “Wistia” button and try that. Or, if there’s no heading that says “video player”, we’ll look around until we come up with some controls, somehow or other.

However, as we discovered, much of our potential market doesn’t have this kind of experience. And so came the feedback, much more to do with frustration around inability to access the content than anything else. But on a positive note, the assistive tech professionals who were able to access the content gave very positive feedback about the approach we’re taking, so we were not to be discouraged.

Once again, Aaron Morin and Nick Foster at thinkific.com have demonstrated their commitment to becoming a fully accessible platform. After a couple of private support webinars plus an ongoing exchange of correspondence, accessibility of The Eyes-Free Academy has been dramatically improved. We are thrilled to know that we can now get on with content creation in an accessible cross-platform environment.

So, there you have the biggest and latest news from the iHabilitation partners. Of course, there are several other recent and even brand new technological developments that are going to make it that much easier for us to get content out there. For one thing, iOS11 will sport a native screen-flow and audio recorder. With it, when we want to show you how something works, we’ll soon be able to turn on the recorder, do the demo and shoot it on over to YouTube, Facebook, Vimeo… wherever, and no extraneous equipment required. Gee, we’ll be able to record the stuff while sitting down by the ocean! Doesn’t sound too much like hard work, does it?

We’ve also been checking out www.zoom.us and all its accessible webinar possibilities. This process has been seriously augmented by the release of Jonathan Mosen’s latest book “Meet Me In The Cloud”. So, all the little demos that we record in the phone will easily be incorporated into live webinars. Amazing how all these things fit together.

Finally, there’s all the work happening as we slowly learn more about automation and all the ways in which it can be productively utilized by a very small team to better serve a large customer base. But more about that as we go through the learning process. If you want to join in, rest assured that you’ll be doing it in an accessible way. We suggest that you check out the podcast series from Damashe Thomas and Michael Babcock at www.yourownpay.com/dm

That’s it for this time. We hope you’ll check out our new and shiny accessible free beta course and help us do a good job on our Fall multimedia course offerings, one of which will be “What’s New In iOS11 For Beginners”. We’ll keep you posted as we bring it all together, and thanks in advance for your support.