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Re: Flash and accessibility


From: Emma Duke-Williams
Date: Dec 20, 2008 9:55AM

2008/12/20 Rimantas Liubertas < <EMAIL REMOVED> >:
> Sorry, I don't buy it. If you can do it in Flash, you can do it in
> HTML (layout wise).

I'd tend to agree with Rimantas - particularly in connection with a
content driven site - in fact, with most content driven sites, I'm not
sure that Flash can ever really work. From my own point of view, I go
to certain sites to get information - not to be entertained. I think
that there are, however, sites that need to be built in Flash - due to
their purpose. For example, http://www.boohbah.com/zone.html (designed
for under 5s) is Flash driven & I think that for the intended audience
& purpose, it would be difficult to create it any other way. Screen
reader accessibility is probably a moot point, as most 5 year olds
would have to have someone to read to them anyway. This site has no
text so gets over that). There don't seem to be any instructions for
parents - though most children I've seen using it experiment & find
far more things in it than any adult anyway!

So, my view is that Flash, as an alternative to HTML layouts -
probably isn't ideal. If the site isn't content driven, but designed
for entertainment then it's a different matter.

Flash also works well, I think (perhaps as part of) education driven
sites. Clearly, in that case, alternatives may need to be thought
about (while remembering that for many learners, carefully designed
interactions / animations etc., may be much easier to understand than
text) (e.g. http://library.med.utah.edu/kw/pharm/hyper_heart1.html -
which does have text explanations as well)

Emma Duke-Williams:
School of Computing/ Faculty eLearning Co-ordinator, University of
Portsmouth, UK.
Blog: http://userweb.port.ac.uk/~duke-wie/blog/