Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

I’ve moved

March 25, 2010

Just a quick post to say I’ve moved to

Things will stay on this site for a bit but I won’t be posting anything new here.

Channel 4 news piece on people with learning disabilities online

June 30, 2008

Channel 4 News has put out a report today, talking about how people with learning disabilities are being excluded online.

It was a really good piece which showed some of the real-life problems many people with learning disabilities have accessing information online. The report gave some examples including how difficult it is to find a job or anything about voting online. (We are doing some work around this issue at United Response).

The piece ran at 12 noon and I really hope it makes it into more news programmes. You can watch the piece or read the article on their website.

The best thing about it was that the report showed people with learning disabilities either using websites themselves or talking about the difficulties they face. Rather than someone else doing the talking for them.

The report featured people using assistive technologies at The Rix Centre and there was a great spokesperson from Mencap. I know the producer worked hard with lots of people, including United Response on this piece and guess what? I think we all said the same things.

It’s excellent that this has been highlighted in this way and I hope some good things come out of it.


RNIB Surf Right Toolbar

June 18, 2008

The RNIB has released a Beta version of its RNIB Surf Right Toolbar (for IE).

The RNIB Web Access Centre blog has everything you need to know about the Surf Right Toolbar including how to install it and information on its features.

The RNIB worked with The Web Accessibility Tools Consortium, and Steve Faulkner from the Paciello Group to make this toolbar for people who use Intenet Explorer. It enables users to access some of the accessibility features of the browser quickly by just using the toolbar. This includes turning images on and off and setting options.

It’s nice and big and easy to install. I also like the use of green ticks and red crosses.

Easy Flickr photo viewer

June 18, 2008

Christian Heilmann has been working on the Flickr API!

He’s created a simple picture viewer for Flickr which lets you search for 20 pictures at a time. It’s really easy to use with visual navigation to get you from one picture to another. And it just lets you search for pictures, with nothing else in the way!

Use this screen shot example to go to the player:

Easy Flickr screenshot

Once again, Christian has put time and effort into making it easy for other people to host the interface. You can get the documentation from his blog.

And he’s posted documentation on how he created the viewer on his site. Go to his step-by-step guide

Inclusive New Media Design project

May 21, 2008

On Monday, I went to The Rix Centre at the University of East London to join four other people to appear on a panel as part of the Inclusive New Media Design project. The project has been working with web designers and developers to explore the best ways to encourage them to make websites which are accessible to people with intellectual disabilities.

Each person on the panel was asked to present on one practical thing the developers and designers could take away and do. My 5 mins was on Big is Beautiful, encouraging people to, well, make things big and maybe bigger than their comfort zone might want. This to help improve the user experience for people with learning disabilities and to prevent people from being locked out of information or indeed websites.

The other speakers were Jonathan Hassell, Head of Audience Experience and Usability at the BBC, freelance web accessibility consultant Ann McMeekin, Nick Weldin from Padington Arts and Simon Detheridge from Widgit Software.

It was a really good opportunity and a joy to present to the group.


May 21, 2008

I intended on having crafted a shiny new good-looking accessible blog before I posted again but too many good things have been happened before I’ve had time to organise anything.


A couple of weeks ago I went to Futuresonic 08 in Manchester. There were some really interesting things going on and some inspirational people.

Highlights for me included The Drake Music project who I have admired for a while. They performed at the weekend. They use technology to work with disabled and non-disabled people so they can make music together. It’s really powerful and great music.

Drake Music Project

I also really enjoyed a presentation by Future of Sound. Some very awe-inspiring innovation and talent there . A demonstration of 4-D sound was just one highlight and the approach to technology and art/ music really got my mind racing.

Martyn Ware talked about his Illustrious Company which produces really ground-breaking work. All things sensory can really benefit some people with learning disabilities or mental health needs and one thing that caught my attention was a sensory theatre they are working on to benefit children with learning disabilities in Bath.


April 26, 2008

Yesterday, I gave a presentation at Accessibility 2.0: a million flowers bloom, a one day conference in London organised by Abilitynet. The day was fantastic. The people I met were great.

Due to various reasons, I ran out of time.

So, I wanted to share the full presentation with anyone who is interested. If you need it in another format, please let me know.

Here it is: :-)

Hello world!

April 26, 2008

So, after all of these years of deciding not to blog, I’ve decided to blog.

I’ve just set this up really quickly.  It’s a temporary home for my blog.