[Athen] AutoCad & Visually Impaired Student

Bourne, Sarah (MASSIT) sarah.bourne at mass.gov
Thu Mar 16 05:44:53 PDT 2017

Just in time! Out today in Smashing Magazine: a wonderful and very readable article describing how and why accessibility APIs work.
Accessibility APIs: A Key To Web Accessibility<https://www.smashingmagazine.com/2015/03/web-accessibility-with-accessibility-api/>, by Léonie Watson & Chaals McCathie Nevile.


From: athen-list [mailto:athen-list-bounces at mailman13.u.washington.edu] On Behalf Of Bourne, Sarah (MASSIT)
Sent: Wednesday, March 15, 2017 2:20 PM
To: Access Technology Higher Education Network
Subject: Re: [Athen] AutoCad & Visually Impaired Student

"Microsoft Active Accessibility" (MSAA) is Window's application programming interface (or API) for communicating accessibility information. AutoCAD is apparently saying that they pass object, name, and state information to the API that can then be used by assistive technologies. If it doesn't work with JAWS, however, they are probably not sending enough of the right information, or that they have actions that can't be completed by keyboard alone - if you can't get to an object, it can't send information about it and you can't operate it.

By the way, Microsoft is replacing MSAA with Microsoft UI Automation. (This is a (fairly technical) comparison article from Microsoft: https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ms788733.aspx<https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-3A__msdn.microsoft.com_en-2Dus_library_ms788733.aspx&d=DwMFAg&c=lDF7oMaPKXpkYvev9V-fVahWL0QWnGCCAfCDz1Bns_w&r=rhLenV33VPpmkT7iP0-OkUlRYw9YWn3HMLHZVP2q9y8&m=dEQJDxW4WqUBXH1z0iSRgA4Q5DQ9FM_GNdoCNwauqXw&s=1DXROGmSPfYKECJOPlRtMkRfS00IWnzdKK86PgphUgM&e=>) I'm not sure that AutoCAD should be proud that they're still using the older and more limited MSAA.

Sarah E. Bourne
Director of IT Accessibility, MassIT
Commonwealth of Massachusetts
1 Ashburton Pl. rm 811 Boston MA 02108
sarah.bourne at mass.gov<mailto:sarah.bourne at mass.gov>

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