Accessibility statement

This is the accessibility statement for DECEMBER14.NET. It borrows from a fine example set by Mark Pilgrim. If you have any questions or comments, please contact me.

Access keys

Most browsers support jumping to specific links by typing keys defined on the web site. On Windows, press ALT + an access key; on Macintosh, press Command + an access key.

All pages on this site define the following access keys:

  • Access key 1 - Home page (the blog).
  • Access key 2 - Replays (the blog archives).
  • Access key 3 - Ways (web design techniques).
  • Access key 4 - Displays (examples and give-aways).
  • Access key 5 - Essays (assorted scribbled thoughts).
  • Access key 6 - Forays (journeys to the far-flung reaches of the Web).
  • Access key 9 - Contact form.
  • Access key 0 - Accessibility statement.
  • Access key c - Jump straight to content; skip navigation.
  • Access key t - Jump to top of page.

Standards compliance

I am working to make all pages on DECEMBER14.NET meet the standards benchmarks set out below. Not all pages satisfy these standards at present, but I’m pretty close.

  1. All pages are at least Bobby A approved, and comply at least with all the Priority 1 guidelines of the W3C Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.
  2. All pages are Section 508 approved, and are validated with Bobby to comply with all of the US Federal Government Section 508 Standards.
  3. All pages validate as XHTML 1.0 Transitional and CSS2.
  4. All pages use structured, semantic markup. H1 tags are used for main titles, H2 tags for subtitles. For example, on this page, JAWS users can skip to the next section within the accessibility statement by pressing ALT+INSERT+2.

Navigation aids

As appropriate, each page has rel=previous, next, up, and home links to aid navigation in text-only browsers. Netscape 6+ and Mozilla users can also take advantage of this feature by selecting the View menu, Show/Hide, Site Navigation Bar, Show Only As Needed (or Show Always). The Opera 7+ browser has similar functionality.


Many links have title attributes which describe the link in greater detail, unless the text of the link already fully describes the target (such as the headline of an article).

Links are written to make sense out of context. Many browsers (such as JAWS, Home Page Reader, Lynx, and Opera) can extract the list of links on a page and allow the user to browse the list, separately from the page.

Link text is never duplicated; two links with the same link text always point to the same address.

There are no "javascript:" pseudo-links. All links can be followed in any browser, even if scripting is turned off.

There are no links that open new windows without warning.


All “content” images used in this site include descriptive ALT attributes. Purely decorative graphics include null ALT attributes.

Visual design

This site uses Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) for visual layout.

This site uses only relative font sizes, compatible with the user-specified “text size” option in visual browsers. If you are using Internet Explorer, for example, you can make your default text size larger under the View menu by selecting Text Size, Larger (or Largest).

If your browser or browsing device does not support stylesheets at all, the content of each page is still readable.

Older browsers get the “no stylesheet” treatment by default, because their support for CSS is so poor. If you are still using one of these old browsers, find out how you can upgrade to a better Web browsing experience.

Accessibility references

  1. W3C accessibility guidelines, which explain the reasons behind each guideline.
  2. W3C accessibility techniques, which explain how to implement each guideline.
  3. W3C accessibility checklist, a busy developer’s guide to accessibility.
  4. US Federal Government Section 508 accessibility guidelines.

Accessibility software

  1. JAWS, a screen reader for Windows. A time-limited, downloadable demo is available.
  2. Home Page Reader, a screen reader for Windows. A downloadable demo is available.
  3. Lynx, a free text-only web browser for blind users with refreshable Braille displays.
  4. Links, a free text-only web browser for visual users with low bandwidth.
  5. Opera, a visual browser with many accessibility-related features, including text zooming, user stylesheets, image toggle. A free downloadable version is available. Compatible with Windows, Macintosh, Linux, and several other operating systems.
This page was last modified on Thursday, February 26, 2009