By Susan H. Hildreth
At last week’s mid-winter meeting of the American Library Association, OverDrive announced that it will soon be making eBooks available that incorporate HTML 5 and EPUB 3 fixed layout and media overlays using SMIL documents, enabling libraries and publishers to provide readers with more accessible and interactive reading experiences.
This week, at IMLS’s own WebWise 2014 conference, Dr. George H. Williams, from the University of South Carolina Upstate, provided an overview and demonstration of accessible options for creating online content with two common content-management systems: WordPress and Omeka. We also heard from Marcy Goot and Sue-Ann Ma of Benetch, who demonstrated how 3D printing through “DIAGRAM” can make accessible digital images.
The adoption of accessible formats by information technology companies is a vital step in ensuring that material is published, by default, in a manner that is accessible to all individuals, including those who are blind or otherwise print disabled.
Museums and libraries play a critical role in connecting everyone to information and ideas. We are encouraged by the remarkable transition that is taking place in the area of inclusive publishing, which will enable these institutions to better serve all members of the public.