The University’s Web pages are becoming much friendlier for those with disabilities. An automated software service enables pages to be automatically converted into a format optimized for disabled users. The software removes images, streamlines navigation and converts content into semantically structured HTML that improves comprehension when the content is read aloud by screen-reader software. The removal of images also benefits users of PDAs, cell phones and mobile browsers that have limited graphical capability and users who need faster page downloads, such as those with a dial-up connection.

“Accessible Web design techniques can make a world of difference for users who need them, yet are often subtle enough to escape notice by the rest of users,” says Nancy Tramontin, UVA’s director of Web communications.