Book Review: Web Accessiblity: Web Standards and Regulatory Compliance

After reading the excellent review in Roger Johansson’s article about this new book, it took me a couple weeks, but I finally decided to buy it. I ordered the book from my local bookstore and two days later had the book in hand.

The book covers lots of material, and specifically details steps web developers can take in making their sites more accessible. I haven’t read the whole book yet, it’s over 500 pages! However, individual chapters can easily be read out of order. The chapter on Acrobat PDF was extensive and very detailed; I was able to follow it only because of the detailed research I did last December on the accessibility of Adobe Acrobat 7.0.

My only concerns about the book is the timeliness of the material. Much of the material is current for this year, but will quickly become outdated as new methods and technologies are introduced. For example, a reference is made to Kiko and Google Calendar. Kiko is no longer in business. The code for Kiko, a Web 2.0 online calendar application, was auctioned on eBay recently. It’s likely to remain on Google search for a while, but I wonder how many web developers are familiar with it.

4 thoughts on “Book Review: Web Accessiblity: Web Standards and Regulatory Compliance

  1. Great review Deborah.

    This is something Chris Heilmann talked about in our interview on Web Axe. A book is a great way of sitting down and being able to learn something from start to finish, but with the pace of the internet it is hard to keep it current.

    Obviously if you have time reading through news, blogs, etc is going to keep you more up to date than a book but it is much more time consuming and harder on the eyes.

  2. I agree. I would much rather read a book than read pages of content on a monitor.

    Something I didn’t mention in the book review is the site redesign chapter by Patrick Lauke. We spoke about it briefly at the Refresh Detroit meeting last night.

    I was incorrect in saying the chapter was by Patrick Griffiths. Patrick Griffiths and Dan Web were the developers behind the Son of Suckerfish navigation menus.

    Patrick’s explanation of improving accessibility at the University of Salford is well worthwhile for anyone involved in a website redesign.

  3. Web Accessibility is indeed a very comprehensive book. It also covers accessibility law and assistive technologies, and testing. Yes, content will gradually become outdated as with any printed publication, but I think it will be a longer time before that happens for the bulk of the content of this particular book.

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