AEGIS Open Accessibility Framework

AEGIS released the Open Accessibility Framework (D1.2.1 AEGIS OAF and high-level architecture). It consists of two things:

  • A document describing the framework of things needed for 3rd generation accessibility, as validated by the prototypes and user/developer feedback in AEGIS
  • A collection of largely open source prototypes and code Deliverables implementing various aspects of the OAF, proven in AEGIS and contributed back to the open source projects of which they are part

This Deliverable (D1.2.1) contains the initial AEGIS Open Accessibility Framework (OAF) description.  It is based upon:

  • The accessibility API and framework support from the existing Open Desktop (GNOME Accessibility framework) and the Java platform (the Java Accessibility API, keyboard operability guidelines, and theme support);
  • The AEGIS generic accessibility framework requirements (AEGIS ID1.2.1).

In addition, this Deliverable is informed by the early feedback from AEGIS consortium developments – highlighting anticipated areas that the OAF will necessarily need to cover.  This includes:

  • ARIA implementations on various UI elements,
  • Initial work on JavaFX accessibility,
  • Alternate input systems for users with physical impairments (both for the open desktop as well as “thought experiments” for mobile),
  • Development of the RIM Blackberry mobile accessibility API and its use by the Oratio screen reader.

Finally, this Deliverable is informed by developments in the field of accessibility external to AEGIS development work.  This includes:

  • ISO 13066 work to standardize AT-IT interoperability generally, and specifically to codify the set of information that must be provided via accessibility APIs;
  • The U.S. Access Board release of their “Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking” for the refresh of the Section 508 and Section 255 accessibility regulations/guidelines;
  • The Apple iPhone 3GS/4 (and iPad) which include a built-in screen reader and screen magnifier, both of which rely on a new set of multi-touch gestures for use;
  • The Android v1.6 and later operating system which includes the 'Talk Back' screen reading functionality.

This initial OAF description will be updated throughout the remainder of the AEGIS project with the practical information we gain from implementing it in the desktop, web, and mobile space.

For more information, visit the OAEG OAF section. It outlines the Six Steps to Making an Accessible World: The Open Accessibility Framework.