Library

Telling Our Stories: Mike Ervin

Wednesday, April 20, 2011
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM Pacific Daylight Time

Guest Speaker: Mike Ervin is a writer and disability activist living in Chicago. He writes with humor and keen observations on disability and the day-to-day adventures and travails that come with being a wheelchair user—with an attitude.

 

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iPad Extras: Mounts, Switches and Other Peripherals

Wednesday, November 30, 2011
1:00 - 2:00 Pacific Standard Time

Wondering what mounts, switches, and other peripherals to get for your iPads? Jennifer was too. She'll share with you what she bought, what she didn't, what she liked, and what she's learned through this process.

Wondering what mounts, switches, and other peripherals to get for your iPads? Jennifer was too. She'll share with you what she bought, what she didn't, what she liked, and what she's learned through this process. The archived webinar is here: iPad Extras: Mounts, Switches, and other Peripherals

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Introduction to Assistive Technology

Tuesday, June 7, 2011
1:00 PM - 2:00 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Assistive Technology is anything that bridges a gap between the goals and aptitudes of people with disabilities. In this training, we will take a look at assistive technology for use in the home, school, workplace, and community environments. We'll move from the simplest low tech through the most cutting-edge high tech, and provide suggestions on how to find solutions to meet any individual's needs.

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E-Z Accessibility: Making Documents Accessible

Wednesday, October 26, 2011
12:00 PM Pacific Daylight Time

Join us as we explore specific strategies for creating accessible PDFs, Word documents, and more.

Description:  Did you know that the files you post to your website, download from the internet, or send by email might be inaccessible? PDF is particularly notorious for having problems, but even simple Microsoft Word files can present barriers.

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Free Computer AT Already in Macintosh Computers

The Macintosh OS X operating system built-in accessibility features to make the monitor, keyboard, or mouse easier to use for many people. This article provides information on these features, including how to turn them on and use them. Some of these features are also available in earlier Macintosh systems; please contact us if you would like more information. Another good resource on Macintosh accessibility is the AT Mac blog.

Mouse Assistance/Alternatives

MouseKeys

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Free Computer AT Already in Windows Computers

The Windows XP, Vista, 7, and 8 operating systems all include a wide range of built-in accessibility features. These can be activated to make the monitor, keyboard, or mouse easier to use for many people. This article provides information on these features, including how to turn them on and use them in all three versions of Windows. Most of these features are also available in earlier Windows systems.

Mouse Assistance/Alternatives

MouseKeys

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Touch-Free Devices for Indoor Use

Fixtures and devices that are responsive to motion rather than physical contact are becoming increasingly popular. These benefit not only people with dexterity disabilities, but also people with a fear of germs and people temporarily unable to use their hands because of injury or because they are holding books, groceries, or a baby. Many products are available in touch-free models; in some cases, modifications are available for existing products. Installation of these products is often a good strategy for complying with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) regulations.

Toilets

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Section 508 -- Regulations for Accessible Technology

Section 508 is the part of the Rehabilitation Act that requires the federal government's information and communication technology (ICT) to be accessible to people with disabilities.  Many states, universities, local governments, etc. have adopted some version of Section 508 as part of their plan to improve accessibility.  Section 508 gives public agencies a simple way to communicate about accessibility to the companies that create and sell ICT.

The Section 508 Standard

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Assistive Technology and Elders

When considering assistive computer technology for elders, three issues need to be addressed: how will they need to be accommodated, what technology exists to provide accommodations, and how can these technologies be presented so elders will use them.

How Do Elders Need To Be Accommodated?

For elders, disability exists on a continuum of severity. Some disabilities are a natural part of aging and are generally mild.  Other disabilities rise in incidence with age, and may be mild to severe. Finally, more people with mild to severe long-term disabilities are living well beyond retirement age.

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Accessibility Considerations for Library Software

What Are the Problems?

Using a library now means using software: online resources, Internet workstations, and the library's own website and catalogue create a software-based experience for patrons and staff. Users may have trouble:

  • Seeing content on the monitor
  • Using the keyboard or mouse
  • Understanding complicated directions
  • Any of the other typical computer software barriers

These barriers may appear anywhere in your software environment:

  • Information resources, which provide information or point to information--e.g., journal articles or bibliographic databases.
  • Administrative software, which provides an interface between users and applications, and control computer usage from signin through providing alerts when a user's time is up.
  • Security systems, which are intended to prevent malicious use of software and reset the system and programs to their defaults between users. These may also be used by other types of public computer labs.

There are easy, inexpensive solutions for almost all of these problems.

Legal Obligations

The Americans with Disabilities Act, which covers public and private libraries and many other institutions, states that “No individual shall be discriminated against…in the full and equal enjoyment of …services…." Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act, which covers some libraries, also requires accessible information technology.

Getting Started

The software used in your library should be as accessible as possible, and you can help move it in that direction without becoming an accessibility guru.  This article will go over some steps you can take:

  • Getting Close to Your Users
  • Your IT Staff
  • When You're in the Market
  • If You've Got Technical Resources

Getting Close to Your Users

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