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Re: Australian Government guidance on PDF Accessibility


From: Cliff Tyllick
Date: Nov 30, 2010 8:51PM

Duff, thanks for the additional background!

Cliff T.

Cliff Tyllick
Web development coordinator
Agency Communications Division
Texas Commission on Environmental Quality
>>> Duff Johnson < <EMAIL REMOVED> > 11/30/10 9:43 PM >>>

Thanks for posting this.

I have numerous thoughts, but will give the entire thing a reading before I comment in detail. Based on the summary, I'm impressed.

As the report notes, PDF/UA (Universal Accessibility) is currently under development. I thought it opportune to update the community on the current status of the International Standard for Universally Accessible PDF.

As AIIM's US chair for ISO/DIS 14289 (PDF/UA) for the past five years, I'm very pleased to be able to say that PDF/UA is now (as of November 2, 2010) a "Draft International Standard" (DIS). As the AGIMO report says, the International Committee does expect and anticipate publication in 2011 (hopefully late summer).

In fact, the International Committee for ISO 14289 is meeting this Wednesday in Ottawa to launch Part 2 of ISO 14289, which will be based on the forthcoming (and also under development) Part 2 of ISO 32000 (PDF 2.0).

Software developers with an interest in PDF should take note: ISO 14289 sets specific normative conditions that define PDF features required in order to consider PDF files "accessible"; these are so-called "file format requirements".

In addition, ISO 14289 includes requirements for "conforming readers" - software such as Adobe's Reader and its imitators. ISO 14289 also includes requirements for "conforming Assistive Technology", which usually (but not always) operates in conjunction with a PDF reader.

Adobe, Appligent and Microsoft, participants in both the US and International Committees for this Standard, gave a presentation discussing the highlights of PDF/UA at the Chicago ATIA conference in October. The presentation is available here:


AIIM's US Committee for ISO 1429 is also in the process of writing an Implementation Guide for developers and a Best Practices document for authors and end-users, to accompany ISO 14289-1.

Ok, but I digress. I will digest the AGIMO report carefully, and write a blog post with some reflections.

Thanks very much for this fine effort to discuss and educate on PDF accessibility.

Duff Johnson
Appligent Document Solutions, CEO

US Committee for ISO/DIS 14289 (PDF/UA), Chair

22 E. Baltimore Ave
Lansdowne, PA 19050
+1 610 284 4006
+1 617 553 1934 (direct)

On Nov 30, 2010, at 6:36 PM, Webb, KerryA wrote:

> The Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) has released its long-awaited report on the Accessibility of PDF documents.
> http://www.finance.gov.au/publications/pdf-accessibility-study/index.html
> --
> Kerry Webb
> Policy Office
> InTACT, ACT Government
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