ERIC Number: ED399757
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1996-Mar-28
Reference Count: N/A
Guidance from the Graphical User Interface (GUI) Experience: What GUI Teaches about Technology Access.
National Council on Disability, Washington, DC.
This report investigates the use of the graphical user interface (GUI) in computer programs, the problems it creates for individuals with visual impairments or blindness, and advocacy efforts concerning this issue, which have been targeted primarily at Microsoft, producer of Windows. The report highlights the concerns of individuals with visual impairments that they may lose employment opportunities because of GUI. The report discusses the advocacy of the National Council on Disability (NCD) and the actions that were taken to convince Microsoft to develop a screen reader applications programmer interface, so that screen readers could interpret information being sent to the screen. The report reviews the effectiveness of disability legislation and efforts to use civil rights provisions to prevent sales of Windows 95 by government agencies. The resulting shift in Microsoft's stance on GUI accessibility is noted, including Microsoft's decision to enable independent software vendors to develop third party accessibility aids to allow individuals with blindness to use Windows 95 by way of a screen reader. The role of the NCD in this issue is reviewed, and recommendations are offered for helping individuals with disabilities to benefit from advances in technology as much as others do. (CR)
Descriptors: Access to Information, Accessibility (for Disabled), Advocacy, Blindness, Civil Rights Legislation, Compliance (Legal), Computer Graphics, Computer Interfaces, Employment, Employment Opportunities, Technological Advancement, Visual Impairments
National Council on Disability, 1331 F St., NW, Suite 1050, Washington, DC 20004-1107; telephone: 202-272-2004; tty: 202-272-2074; fax: 202-272-2022.
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Council on Disability, Washington, DC.