Learning Gateway and Accessibility

There's already quite a lot that you can do with Learning Gateway, and explicitly the SharePoint components, to increase accessibility to users, across devices. And this news item I read promises more:

Shared-source software kit will advance the accessibility of SharePoint-based solutions for people with disabilities

July 31, 2007 — HiSoftware , a leading provider of software, services and managed operation solutions that monitor and optimize Web content governance, quality and regulatory compliance, today announced an agreement with Microsoft to develop the Accessibility Kit for Microsoft Office SharePoint Server (MOSS) 2007. The kit will provide templates, master pages, controls and Web parts along with technical documentation to advance MOSS accessibility for people with disabilities. All of the source code will be provided via the Microsoft Permissive License and will be available on CodePlex (www.codeplex.com) later this year for customers and other Microsoft partners to download, reuse and extend.

The Accessibility Kit for Office SharePoint Server will include site templates, Web parts, documentation, instruction and tutorials enabling partners and customers to develop Web sites that conform to the guidelines set out in the W3C’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG). The solution will also provide accessibility updates for Office SharePoint Server templates and Web parts for Web publishing, corporate intranet, team and project collaboration sites and more. This allows users to create a site and replace “out-of-the-box” MOSS components with accessibility kit templates, reusable Web content and Web parts.

As part of the testing for the kit, HiSoftware will work with Microsoft, key stakeholders and early adopters to maximize value and functionality, including organizations in the UK and worldwide.

Accessibility Community for Office SharePoint Server
As part of this initiative HiSoftware will provide an extensible platform with an open API and SDK, on which other Microsoft partners can build, collaborate and extend. HiSoftware will lead a partner and customer community to share thoughts, solutions and strategies for enhancing usability and accessibility across MOSS deployments.

There aren't any more details available yet, other than what's in the HiSoftware press release, but look out for the first releases in the autumn! And when I know more, I'll post it here.

Comments (2)

  1. m.pollitt says:

    We have recently purchased a learning gateway from Azzuri – TALMOS, and this is our key technology for the next year. We see it as being essential as a web front end to our MIS system and the VLE. This will prevent client based installation issues we have faced for the last year as we begin to increase our use of the TALMOS VLE and SIMS MIS system.

    By the end of the year it will also transform our communication with parents and remove our reliance on pupil post to update our parents on their son or daughters progress.

    Having used SharePoint in business a couple of years ago, it is good to see the proliferation of this technology into education and we see a definite benefit in its implementation. The user interface will be a key benefit along with the ease of access from the home meaning that teachers can write reports from home for the first time without the need for a local copy of SIMS on their PC.

    Do you think that systems such as TALMOS and SIMS will become more focused on data management without the need to worry about a HCI due to the nature of SharePoint?

    We would love to have implemented our Gateway when we purchased it last year but are waiting for webparts from SIMS to do so which is a slight bottleneck.

  2. mshorten says:

    we are also looking at the Talmos SIMS intergration with a microsoft front end. Have therir been any issues that I should look out for?

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