The DeveloperSpace and this Walkthrough Page
The developer space is an international collaborative resource for developers of all types. This includes people developing assistive technologies, as well as developers from mainstream companies who are adding accessibility features to their mainstream products. It is a place for consumers to contribute ideas, communicate with teams, see what is happening, and offer to act as testers.
The developer space has rich resources to help developers learn new strategies, components to more quickly build solutions, links to communities to help develop better solutions, and tools for getting solutions to market internationally.
In order to help people find their way around the site, the following examples are offered highlighting the different parts of the website. To make it easy to both hear about the different sections and to try them yourself we have broken the presentation down into short presentations that are just a minute or less in length. On the left, you can see the text of the presentation with live links that let you jump to each of the places on the website that are being discussed. On the right, are the one minute clips showing you the website pages being discussed. At the end of each clip you are invited to visit the sections of interest. The links at the end of each section will open up in a new window to make it easy for you to easily come back and continue the presentation here.
How to use this page
This page presents a series of short (60 second) videos highlighting different features and benefits of the DeveloperSpace.
Each video snippet has the transcript of the text directly alongside, with links to each of the pages visited in the video. You can view the video or just read the text and go to the pages yourself.
The best way to use this page is to click on the "open a companion page" link to open a companion Page.
Then position the Companion Page right alongside this page. As you click on links on this page - they will open up on the companion page making it easy to explore as you read this page.
1) AT Developer expanding their product line into a new disability
Learning about a new disability area
Sam develops assistive technology and wants to expand into the cognitive area. Before getting involved in discussions with experts and other consumers, he wants to learn more about the area. He goes to close to the Learn section and finds there is a wide range of different resources available to him there. He is drawn to the Accessibility Masterlist where he finds a complete listing of all of the different strategies for all of the different types of disability. Clicking on cognitive limits it down to just the cognitive issues. He finds that underneath each one of the strategies there is another page that talks about how that strategy would work for different disabilities, and then gives a list of the different types of products many of which are free and he can use to both explore his competition and to try these things out and look for technologies. He also finds that there is a list of related research papers. This is much more than he hoped to find and will put him in a very good position as he plans his product and as he begins discussing it with consumers and experts.
Try the - MasterList of Access Strategies
- filter the strategies by disability
- click on any of the strategies to learn more about it - uses, products and research
- see what components or building blocks exist to help a developer in adding the capability to their product
Also check out Showcase
- See the Showcase menu for examples of companies who have used the DeveloperSpace to create projects
Finding Components and building blocks for a new assistive technology/
Looking through the master list Sam noticed that there were references to components that were available in the "Develop" section of the DeveloperSpace to help him in implementing some of the techniques and strategies he was interested in. So he looks under the "Develop" menu and he sees "Components" . He selects it and he finds that there are over 700 different components listed here. He searches for "speech output" and he finds 16 different pieces of code or programs that he could use in building his program. The registry brings together components from all over the web and tags each one by technology, license, and disability type. He finds a number of components he can use - some directly - and some just as models for how to do things. He also hears about the " Questions & Answers" section, and he finds that this is a great place both to find information and to get information about the things he needs.
Try the - Component Library
- Go to the Components page and select a disability type, a technology, and a license type
- See the counts change as you make filter selections
- Look at the resulting components
- If you see and error or omission - or if you have any other comments, use the handy link at the bottom of each page to let us know so we can add/correct it.
- If you are a programmer, visit the Questions & Answers page and see if you hold the solution to someones problem
Connecting to Experts or Consumers to help with design
Since Sam is new to this disability area he's interested in learning more from experts. He saw the Tutorial section under the "Learn" menu, but he wants more direct, one-on-one consultation, that can talk directly about his ideas. So he goes to the connect menu and he finds several resources here that would be helpful to him. First he finds the Developer Communities that could allow him to contact both mainstream and disability specific developer communities so that he can tap them for advice. He also sees User Associations where he can get in contact directly with consumers he's interested in working with and set up a dialogue. Finally he sees there's a "Testers" section that he can use to put in a request for testers that can help him in evaluating his product and his prototypes when they are far enough along to test.
Try the - Connect features on the site
- See if there is a Developer Community that relates to your product interest
- See how many different countries have a User Association that might help with your type of disability
- Look at Tester Connection - and see how easy it is to either volunteer as a tester - or ask for one.
Getting the product to Market
A big concern of Sam is marketing his new assistive technology. He is concerned that he does not know how to reach his market, he does not know what his competition is and he is concerned about his ability to reach a broad market with his limited budget. He looks to the Market section and finds all three aspects covered here. First the "Disability Market" section provides a concise yet broad set of resources for better understanding the disability market internationally. The "Unified Listing" provides him with the ability to quickly find all of the products for his target group, from all of the databases around the world. He also find that it's very easy to have his product listed in the "Unified Listing" and to have it automatically fed to all of the different databases around the globe. He can also use this same platform to update his product descriptions at any time.
Try the - Marketing Resources
- See if there is a resource in the Disability Market section that you would find helpful
- Pick a product type - and search the Unified Listing to see how many products you can find -- and from how many countries
- Check out the Submit your product to the Unified Listing page and see how easy it is to have a product listed internationally
2) Professor and Student wanting to do project related to accessibility.
Searching for Ph.D. student research topic.
Professor Lei and her student Ishmi are looking for a topic for Ishmi's Masters and PhD research. They heard the DeveloperSpace was a great place to look and so they came here and immediately see the "Challenges" on the front page. They click, and it takes them to a list of Challenges large and small, all the way from tasks that can be done quickly through Challenges and Grand Challenges. They noticed that some of them have prizes or awards for their completion. Ishmi notices one that deals with a problem that her cousin has, so she's immediately attracted to it. She scrolls down she sees the information about it and decides to tackle it. She goes to the "Learn" section and decides to look in the Accessibility MasterList to see what she can find. Scrolling through she finds there's actually a page talking about Flash and seizures and reducing distractors for people who have seizure disorders. On this page she finds not only what's available currently but also all of the other resources on the DeveloperSpace, including one about "What is Photosensitive Epilepsy" that provides her with additional information on the disorder and a bibliography showing research projects on it.
Try the - Challenges Listing
- Explore the Tasks, Challenges, and Grand Challenges page.
- Suggest your own Challenge or Grand Challenge useing the link at the bottom of the page.
Finding background research to help with development of new technique or strategy
Next Ishmi starts looking for background research that she can build off of. She goes back to the "Learn" section and sees immediately the Bibliography. So she tries seizure and comes up with a number of them including "What is Photosensitive Epilepsy Seizure Disorder" and from here she can see a description about the disorder and also research papers about it. She then tries looking in the "QuickSheets". And again using the search she finds that there is a number of different resources in the site that are available to talk about the photosensitive seizures and how to monitor and block, and again resource pages about them. Finally she looks under the "Tutorials" and also under the "Accessibility MasterList". In looking in the MasterList she quickly finds that there again is a page talking about preventing seizures and on here she can see the existing products and again anything else that was found on the DeveloperSpace related to this topic including the QuickSheets and other resources.
Try the - Learn Resources
- Go to the Accessibility MasterList and pick an accessibility strategy that you have knowledge of.
- Are there products and uses you were not aware of?
- And if you know of a strategy not on the list - we really want to hear from you.
Researcher earns money from her reference list.
As she reaches the end of her research, she remembers when she was looking at the "Challenges" that there was a reward for additions to the MasterList. So she comes back to the site and sure enough there it is there are rewards for each new reference. She has 68 references that she's gathered in connection with her thesis, which he sends in. 60 of them are accepted which yields her three hundred dollars for her efforts.
Earning a reward based on your research references.
- Go to the Accessibility MasterList and pick an accessibility strategy that you have knowledge of.
- Do you know of other research papers on that topic?
- Send a list of key references and earn some money.
Check out the Success Stories
And before you go - check out the success stories in the Showcase section of the site. There are Stories, Demos and a listing of R&D Projects in Accessibility and Inclusive Design. And as always, when you see something that is not listed - use the link at the bottom of each page to let us know about it.