why I never posted my research paper on RIA Accessibility

As readers may know, I graduated with my Masters in Computer Science this Spring. My research topic for my final Capstone project was on RIA (Rich Internet Application) Accessibility. When I first started digging deep into the subject, I posted about it frequently, and it has always been my intention to share my findings.

As it turns out, however, I can’t do this in the means I’d anticipated. Ultimately I found the topic was simply not amenable to “a research paper”. When I started diagramming out all the different permutations of the material I wanted to present, I really could find no linear order. So in true web2.0 fashion, I received permission not to present a paper, but a wiki. In this way I could cross-reference related topics without enforcing a specific order.

For example:

  • rationale for accessibility: regulatory compliance or usability
  • nature of RIA: DOM-based or Plugin
  • Suites of Browser/OS/Assistive technology

I was also fortunate enough to engage directly with leaders in the web/ria accessibility field, and I will admit I was less than comfortable publishing their first-hand interviews and emails on the web. While they knew I was doing this research for a school paper, I wasn’t sure about reproducing them online.

That being said, I am obviously still interested in sharing what I learned, and will be doing so via a series of short posts. Hopefully that will make the information more palatable!

3 thoughts on “why I never posted my research paper on RIA Accessibility

  • Web accessibility is one area in which we are all pretty ignorant. I know that Flex is supposed to have excellent support for web accessiblity but I’ve never been sure about Ajax – I’ve assumed Ajax simply doesn’t support it.

    Anyway, I’ll be interested in following your posts on this subject.


    • Actually, it seems that AJAX (what I call DOM-based RIA) is way more advanced in terms of being made accessible. It’s easier for a screen reader to respond to changes in the DOM than have to worry about the additional level of complexity that a plug-in adds.

      I’ll be bleeding them out bit by bit, so check back! 🙂

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