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Re: Authoring Accessible PDFs - HP Exstream Dialog Version 8 and Other Software


From: Bevi Chagnon
Date: Jan 10, 2012 9:06PM

The best way to handle "multiple channels of content contribution" as well
as multiple methods of distribution (print, web, electronic, PDF) and
accessibility is with XML.

If possible, make sure your XML tags (DTD, schema) use common accessibility
tags rather than custom XML tags. Since you'll be making PDFs, I recommend
using the tags in Adobe's PDF ISO specification whenever possible,
195ff-7cd8.w.html , which are recognized by assistive technologies.

Note that some XML workflows use their own XML tags, which is the nature of
XML, extensible markup language. Each workflow writes its unique XML rules
with a DTD or schema. Most XML-ers I work with haven't yet adopted tags for
accessibility, but a few are hopping on the bandwagon.

However that's not much of a barrier for anyone schooled in XML. If your
workflow can't use the PDF standard tags, then an XML-er can write a
transform that will convert the custom XML tags to PDF standard tags before
pouring the content into a website, a Word file, or an InDesign layout file.
Not a big deal, but it is another step in the process before you can make an
accessible PDF from these source documents.

I am not familiar with HP Exstream Dialog Version 8 but there are many
vendors creating one-stop document preparation. You'll need to test them to
see how well any of them can handle your content, especially document
hierarchy, tables, forms, and other common stumbling blocks.

--Bevi Chagnon

Bevi Chagnon | <EMAIL REMOVED>
PubCom - Trainers, consultants, designers, and developers
Print, Web, Acrobat, XML, eBooks, and Federal Section 508
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-----Original Message-----
[mailto: <EMAIL REMOVED> ] On Behalf Of Elle
We are looking to upgrade our PDF authoring process to create fully
accessible PDFs, and we're trying to discover what the best solution is for
large volumes of complex documents. Has anyone worked with HP Exstream
Dialog (version 8) to author accessible PDFs? If so, what kind of process
do you use to compile the content? Does anyone have a suggestion that would
work for a large organization and multiple channels of content contribution
(data merge files, XML, etc.)?
Much appreciated,