Thread Subject: Documentation Language from Three Non-USSources
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From: Day Al-Mohamed
Date: Wed, Dec 20 2006 2:55 PM
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Ergonomics of human-system interaction ? Part 20; Accessibility guidelines for information/communication technology (ICT) equipment and services
6.4.16 Replacement of equipment or service
A new version (e.g. an upgrade or new model) of an ICT equipment or service should be capable of being used by at least the same range of users as the existing version.
6.4.17 Information disclosure
Information about the accessibility of ICT equipment or services should be available in formats that can be used by people with widest range of capabilities.
NOTE When users are purchasing and using ICT equipment and services, it is important that they have information that is readily available about the accessibility of the ICT equipment and/or service so they can determine if it meets their needs.
6.4.18 User guidance
a) User guidance should be as accessible as other ICT equipment and service functions.
b) Where possible information about the range of contexts of use for which the ICT equipment or service is designed should be included in the on-line help of the equipment or service.
c) Where it is not possible to include information about the range of contexts of use for which the ICT equipment or service is designed in the on-line help, then this information should be provided in the printed and other forms of documentation for the equipment or service.
NOTE User guidance includes: prompts, feedback, status information, error management, and on-line help. ISO 9241-13 makes recommendations on user guidance.
JIS X8341-5 ?Accessibility Guideline for Office Equipment?
2. General principles
2.1 Basic policies
The basic policies which shall be followed with respect to office equipment in order to ensure and improve information accessibility are as follows:
a) During the planning, development, and design phases for office equipment, consideration shall be given to ensure that persons with disabilities are able to use the equipment.
b) During the planning, development, and design phases for office equipment, consideration shall be given to user needs, information accessibility shall be evaluated, and its evaluation result shall be reflected to the equipment.
c) The safety of the provided information accessibility features shall be ensured.
d) Even when information accessibility features are added, it shall not disrupt and disable any functions that were activated previously.
Nordic Guidelines for Computer Accessibility ? Second Edition
All documentation should be written in a language that is easy to understand by users who are not ICT professionals. It should be task oriented, not system oriented. It should be structured for different purposes, such as training, ordinary daily use, error correction etc.
On-line help and documentation should be provided, as being the most flexible documentation format. Printed documentation is often voluminous and thus difficult to handle for some persons with physical impairments.
A problem associated with printed documentation is the selection of fonts. Sometimes serif fonts (such as Times Roman) are considered the most easy to read, at least for long texts. On the other hand, sans-serif fonts (such as Arial) are often recommended for persons with low vision. A solution is to provide the documentation in electronic form, to allow alternative output.
In order to ensure that the documentation can be accessed by means of assistive devices, it should be available as pure ASCII text files. This implies, however, that pictures, diagrams and other graphic information must be converted to descriptive texts. In addition, emphasis and highlighting must be indicated by other means than different fonts and type faces.
15.1 Help text and other documentation should be provided online. It should comply with the same recommendations as are given in accessibility guidelines for the application itself.
15.2 The binding of the printed documentation should allow the user to place the documentation open on the table and turn the pages with one hand.
15.3 The documentation should be available in an accessible format such as ASCII, to allow Braille or speech output and to allow printing in alternative fonts.
Director of Advocacy and Governmental Affairs
American Council of the Blind
1155 15th St. NW
Washington DC 20015
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