Q. What is the best way to get started on making my Web pages accessible?
A. On our Resources page there are a couple Web applications and toolbars which can help show you which parts of the page currently are not accessible. Focus on the WAVE online evaluation tool and the WAVE Firefox toolbar plugin or AIS Internet Explorer toolbar plugin. Please note that a passing grade while using these toolbars does not mean your pages are in compliance with the policy; they are just a means to get started making your pages more accessible.
Q. How do I get captions to play in Windows Media Player v11?
A. Place the .wmv media file and the .smi caption file in the same folder. Make sure that the base names for the two files are exactly the same. Check the following settings in Windows Media Player. These two settings must be set properly for captions to work.
Under the Play menu, set Lyrics, Captions and Subtitles to “On if available”
Under the Tools menu, select Options, select Security tab, then click the checkbox to "Show local captions when present"
Click Apply, then OK. You must exit Windows Media Player and relaunch before captions will be displayed
View a video tutorial. Click on the Web Media tab, then select Windows Media: Captioning with SAMI files. It’s only 3 minutes long. View the video directly on YouTube.
Q. Why are repetitive navigational links a problem?
A. Some assistive technologies need to present the content of the web page in a linear fashion. This makes it difficult or impossible for the end user of these technologies to skip around the page. If the navigation links are at the top or left of all of the pages in a site the user of these assistive technologies would need to read or listen to, all of the navigation links each time a new page is loaded. Experienced users of the assistive technology find reading through all of these repeated links aggravating. Users who are newer to the assistive technology frequently become confused about whether the contents of the page are even changing when a link is selected.
Q. I have some narrated PowerPoint presentations on my site. What should I do about the accessibility of these presentations?
A. If a script was written to create the narration, then it could be posted along with the PP presentation. If no script is available, does the PP file have notes that go with each slide? (Notes are usually used by the presenter and not seen by the audience viewing the PP slides.)
Regarding notes, the Microsoft Office Web site states:
"Because audience needs and computer equipment varies, consider accompanying your narration with notes. This benefits anyone who is deaf or hard of hearing or whose computer lacks a sound card. If you save the presentation as a Web page (.htm file), the notes will appear beneath each slide as it displays. If you save it as a presentation (.ppt) file, you can print out the notes and make them available to your audience."
If notes are included in the presentation, the "equality" of the notes versus the audio must be judged. If either the slide itself or the notes contain the important information spoken in the narration, then that should be sufficient. If important information is missing, then it must be added to the slide or the notes.
If the presentation is posted as a (.ppt) file, we strongly encourage you to add a sentence or two on the page stating that the notes are available. That will allow those who need or want to use them to find them. The statement could be something along the lines of "Slide notes are available for each slide in the presentation. The notes can be printed when the PowerPoint file is open."