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Re: Accessible ways to read pdf documents with screen readerson windows


From: Karen McCall
Date: Sep 1, 2021 6:19AM

I don't read PDF in a browser and don't like that even when I make Adobe Acrobat Pro my default PDF reader, they still open in a browser. I don't have access to some of my tools in a browser where I do in a stand alone application. I also don't know if the document is tagged or not.

I typically just save the PDF, convert it to Word and read it. That is faster than trying to read PDF in Adobe Reader or Acrobat. I use JAWS and because we are in virtual view of PDF's focus can suddenly shift to another page, the top of the document, when I get a list of headings I might be able to navigate to the heading but the second I try to read the content under the heading focus shifts back to where I was in the document.

While some of the "blame" might be the adaptive technology, an equal part of the "blame" rests with all the span tags and unnecessary tags that are added to PDF documents. I'm finding "illegal" nesting of paragraph tags in paragraph tags for a single paragraph, figures are nested in paragraphs...it is like a wild west of tagging which doesn't help when you are using adaptive technology.

Navigating Word documents is faster/

I also can't use the Find or search in a PDF...it is still inaccessible after over 15 years of asking it to be accessible.

Most of the PDF you'll find are not tagged. This means you will need to infer the reading order which isn't reliable and doesn't create true/actual tags.

Whish I could be more optimistic. I have to access PDF every day which is why I invested in ABBYY Fine Reader.

Cheers, Karen

-----Original Message-----
From: WebAIM-Forum < <EMAIL REMOVED> > On Behalf Of Vsevolod Popov
Sent: Wednesday, September 1, 2021 7:47 AM
Subject: [WebAIM] Accessible ways to read pdf documents with screen readers on windows


Soon I will be reading a lot of pdf documents, I would like to know what are the accessible ways that are convenient for doing it on windows with NVDA or Jaws.

I know 2 methods:

1. To open each pdf file in chrome and read it.
2. To convert each pdf document into word using Abby Finereader and

But I would like to read pdf documents themselves without converting to the word format when it's possible.

I will really appreciate your suggestions.

Thank you!


Best regards,