Designing an application for maximum accessibility

When designing an application, there are things you can do to make your application accessible to people with physical disabilities. To meet federal accessibility guidelines, your application must be:

  • Keyboard-accessible -- An application is keyboard-accessible if it can be used without a mouse or other pointing device.
  • Screen reader-accessible -- An application is screen reader-accessible if vision-impaired users can access your application with screen readers. Screen reader software, in conjunction with a digital speech synthesizer, provides an auditory representation of what is on the screen or what the cursor shows. In order to function, the screen reader software must have detailed information about the graphical user interface (GUI), so that it can translate the graphical display into speech.

The Notes® client is both keyboard-accessible and screen reader-accessible. On the Windows platform, Notes® uses Microsoft Active Accessibility. Although many of the objects you create in Domino® Designer have the capacity to be made accessible -- for example, you can provide descriptions, called "alternate text," for images and applets -- it is possible to create an application in Designer that is not accessible. And some design elements are not accessible. However, the Domino® server automatically generates accessible HTML whenever possible.