Tuesday, January 27, 2015

International Association of Accessibility Professionals: example webinar

This item is unabashed commercial promotion. RantWoman is so impressed with the language of the advertisement for this webinar series and so interested in remembering the name of the organization (International Association of Accessibility Professionals) that she is reprinting verbatim!

Webinars: Increase Your Influence, Build Your Career - Scaling Accessibility from Specialist Niche to Business-as-Usual

Archive: Increase Your Influence, Build Your Career - Scaling Accessibility from Specialist Niche to Business-as-Usual

Live Broadcast Held On: Thursday, January 22, 2015
Length: 1.5 hours
Fee: $39 for members; $79 for nonmembers

Purchase webinar archive

Speaker: Jonathan Hassell, Director, Hassell Inclusion

Target Audience: Every "accessibility superhero" who wants to punch above their weight

Skill Level: Intermediate

Overview: Accessibility professionals are driven by wanting to get organizations they work for or with to prioritize accessibility across all their digital products. They become skilled at understanding the needs of disabled people and the technologies they use to access websites and apps. They become skilled in accessibility testing and finding solutions to accessibility issues. They find success helping colleagues use WCAG 2.0, and may become their organization’s "accessibility superhero," relied on to deliver accessibility over an increasing numbers of products, day in and day out. But they are also likely to have frustrations where products they worked on didn’t live up to their values, as the people they were working with didn’t share those values. They want help to fight for accessibility more effectively, to get it taken more seriously, so they’re not the only one pushing for it in their organization and so accessibility becomes “just the way we do things around here.” This webinar gives them the framework to make that happen and build themselves a sustainable career path before all their passion and energy burns out.

Learning Objectives:

Participants will be able to:

1. Transform their organization’s attitude to accessibility from “avoiding losing” to “winning” by expanding their understanding of how to find which combination of the four main business benefits of accessibility that most motivates the organization.

2. Use their organization’s improved motivation for accessibility to generate buy-in and budget for embedding accessibility and inclusion as values and competencies in the organization’s staff and policies.

3. Enable their organization’s digital production teams to create products that are accessible by giving them a process to follow (which enriches the accessibility guidelines they already follow) that results in accessible products every time.

4. Ensure the continued funding and prioritization of their accessibility program by measuring the effect all of this has on their organization’s users/customers, brand reputation, and bottom line, so they can prove return on their investment in accessibility.

Speaker bio: Professor Jonathan Hassell is a thought leader in enabling organizations to ensure their websites and mobile apps include all audiences, including older and disabled people, with over 13 years' experience of embedding accessibility within digital production teams and sharing best practices at international conferences. He is lead author of BS 8878 – the British Standards for Web Accessibility – and author of the forthcoming book “Including Your Missing 20%: How to Make Great Digital Experiences for Everyone,” which provides a blueprint for organizations to become competent and confident in accessibility. Through Hassell Inclusion, he provides digital inclusion training and consultancy to organizations worldwide and leads innovation projects to make inclusion easier and cheaper to implement. He is the former head of usability and accessibility for BBC Future Media, where he combined usability and accessibility disciplines to support user-centered design across Web, mobile and IPTV. He has won awards for managing accessibility on projects including the video-on-demand service BBC iPlayer, the personalization tool MyDisplay, the accessibility information site My Web My Way, and the sign-language recognition game uKinect Boris Games.

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Sunday, January 25, 2015

White Canes, Sidewalk A-boards. Manners. "Accidents."

RantWoman is holding the Court of Peeves about various issues to do with blindness, blind people, use of white canes.

First RantWoman feels obliged to post a positive constructive video full of smiling people who navigate things like planters successfully.

In the realm of sowing coonfusion willy-nilly, with the software RantWoman uses to blow things up and the temerity to use that phrase even though RantWoman is aware it could be misinterpreted, RantWoman has chosen this video of a person using what can be identified by the black bands around the white cane as a folding or collapsible cane. RantWoman has chosen this cane in direct contrast to the near-religious zeal of some people who insist that the only tru white canes are the non-collapsible long ones with metal tips. RantWoman does not apologize for boring bystanders with esoterica about this religious war but does suggest moving on to the video.

Enough of that positive, constructive, smiley stuff. Now we see the reasons sometimes a person is tempted to call in the Ambassador Thwack School of Debris Management and Percussive Pedagogy.


It's not really that RantWoman WANTS all this sidewalk signage to have the "accidents" it is so ardently begging for, it's just that, well, accidents happen.

Same goes for the combined effects of gravity and RantWoman's knee on a low-lying beer display in the AISLE, not in the cooler of a brandname store RantWoman is otherwise happy to visit. This brandname store offers a number of positive community gestures including making sure fresh fruit is available and providing customers who ask for them talking prescription labels. Look, RantWoman is GLAD to patronize your store but does not feel the least bit contrite about the beer display. Word!

Saturday, January 24, 2015

This Man Kept HARASSING Women On The Streets. Until One Day... MOM!?

in Spanish with English subtitles:
RantWoman finds this video terribly interesting for two reasons:

This approach about how to deal with harassers makes RantWoman smile.

RantWoman is delighted to see women in a Spanish-speaking country speaking up for themselves. RantWoman long ago travelled in Mexico and was amused that Mexican men taunted EVERY woman, or at least everyone from the US, not just the cute ones. The taunting everyone made the behavior less objectionable and even a game. So RantWoman is delighted to see a cultural shift.

Oregon was Founded as a Racist Utopia

Definitely not some of the prouder truths in the history of the west or the US in general, but important Truth, preserved here in Blog as Filing Cabinet form.


Friday, January 23, 2015

Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This) by Genghis Barbie

The 1980's never looked or sounded this good.

RantWoman sends a particularly vivid shout out to the reasons one wants to walk with caution in certain sections of the orchestra. String players spread clouds of rosin dust but the brass section, as one femal french horn player puts it, gets to "dump water!"

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Lost in Sound one-woman play at Town Hall Friday January 23

Dear friends,

I hope you and your family had a wonderful holiday season and that everyone's is starting off with good health and happiness!

There is a special program coming up at Town Hall is this Friday! We've used FB and the HLAA-WA Sound Waves to spread the word, but here's a personal invitation! I hope you, your friends, family and colleagues can attend! Please share this invitation and please post on social media!!

This coming Friday, January 23, we would love for you, your colleagues, friends and family to join us at Town Hall Seattle for Kimberly Parker's Seattle debut of her One Woman Play; Lost in Sound. Lost in Sound is Kimberly's story of growing up with hearing loss, becoming deaf, and hearing again with the miracle of technology. Kimberly's monologues, vignettes and original solos will inspire you, make you laugh, cry and leave you talking.

Kimberly chose Town Hall for her Seattle debut for its commitment to accessibility to people with hearing loss. Thanks to 4Culture for making this possible! The user friendly hearing loop installation means many who have CI's or hearing aids can understand clearly without seeking staff assistance and borrowing a separate receiver. Their receiver is their personal CI or hearing aid allowing them to tap into the assistive technology, even discreetly, whenever or however they choose. Headset/Receivers are available for those who do not have prescriptive aids.The Hearing Loss Association of America-Washington is proud to sponsor CART Captioning. With these seamless and universal accessibility options in place, Kimberly will be able to share her stories with everyone regardless the degree of hearing loss.

Kimberly, is an elected HLAA-WA trustee and Gallaudet trained Peer Mentor who has dreamed of using her talent as a writer, actress and singer to engage an audience, to challenge them to think and to inspire them to take action. She says; "I know that live theater can be cathartic and has the power to transform, that's why I wrote Lost in Sound."

This event will work at so many levels to help people with and without hearing loss--teachers, students, employers, policy makers, physicians, parents and children alike, understand the invisible disability of hearing loss, emotionally, technologically, and practically---and it would be a lovely evening out to boot.

Might this program be something your community would enjoy? Tickets are just $15 for students and seniors; $18 for general audiences. I've attached a flyer for you to post or hand out to your clients and friends. I would be happy to provide a couple of complimentary tickets. Please let me know if the ticket price is a hardship for anyone and I'll be happy to supply complimentary tickets.

Tickets are on sale now for:
Lost in Sound: A One Woman Play
Join us as we enjoy the wonderful hearing-accessible performance “Lost in Sound”, the true story of one woman’s journey into hearing loss. See the flyer.
Friday, January 23, 2015, at 7:30 pm. Seattle Town Hall
Purchase tickets

Please let me know if I may answer any questions. I hope to see you Friday!

All my best,



Culture of lawlessness: Traffic Laws

RantWoman did not attend Seattle's annual Martin Luther King celebration expecting to come home needing to have a tirade about a culture of lawlessness in the realm of ...traffic law enforcement. Such is the bounty of RantWoman's world!

In particular, at least two small cities in east King County seem to have problems about cars, drivers on cellphones, and at least one pedestrian crossing in the crosswalk and with a traffic light.

It is illegal to run over pedestrians. It does not matter whether a pedestrian is blind or possibly has some mental illness going on. It is still illegal to run over pedestrians.

It is illegal to run into pedestrians crossing streets with the light and in crosswalks.

It is illegal to text or talk on a cellphone without a hands free device while driving.

The white cane law is SUPPOSED to confer additional legal protection on people who use a white cane. Carrying a white cane does nothing to change various laws of physics or the timing involved in seeing a white cane and reacting accordingly, but the white cane law is supposed to create further options for traffic law enforcement.

It sounds like several local jurisdictions need reminders of this.

RantWoman would love to hear that this post prompts some local traffic engineers to take a look at citations and accident patterns. RantWoman thinks it would be AWESOME for this to occur without anyone having to go to court, but at this point RantWoman offered a business card and the possibility of some blind people coming to court just to show up and observe.

This year's MLK day event featured the usual parade of social justice cheerleading, vibrant civic energy,  signage contributed by labor unions and various socialist fractions, and the all-important opportunity to MINGLE.

While mingling RantWoman ran into another person using a white cane. Not physically ran into; RantWoman has enough vision, if she looks at something the right way to tell when someone else is carrying a white cane. This does NOT mean RantWoman can necessarily see the mak truck barreling up alongside or the driver of a given vehicle or what caused a broken windshield or any number of other circumstances. But it is more than enough vision for a lot of things including sowing confusion among other people.

RantWoman struck up a conversation. RantWoman learned that she has met blind person before and that he travels about 1.5 hours each way on a bus to come to Seattle. His wife is from another country but she is dying of cancer. RantWoman also found herself saying "we are the Council of the Blind, not the Council of all that other stuff you want to talk about." But RantWoman listened, offered a business card, and expressed willingness to see whether some blind people might be willing to come ... to COURT.


Yep. There are both personal injury and criminal lawyers involved. The blind person RantWoman met has been hit at least twice. His injuries require surgery. RantWoman's inclination to let the lawyers figure out what needs to be said is competing with  personal inclination to bristle about a culture of lawlessness and people who disregard traffic laws possibly injuring other people in these communities.

It sounds like the cops are not enforcing basic traffic
laws. RantWoman quaintly thinks that even in teeny tiny jurisdictions it is reasonable for a blind person to be able to cross a street safely in the middle of a town business district.

It is not any less illegal to hit people in the crosswalk just
because someone is mentally ill. It is not any less illegal to talk on
the cellphone while driving just because the person you hit is
mentally ill. It is not any less illegal to ignore the white cane law

Please bear with RantWoman's severe humor impairment.

RantWoman's Blind roommate from college was run over by a bus a few years after graduation while commuting home. Blind Roommate died for being 5 feet tall and crossing a street in front of a bus at dusk. Blind roommate's father, a civil engineer said there had been other accidents at that intersection too. RantWoman is not in a position to comment about the locations and other accidents, but RantWoman  would love to to know others have also taken into account that possibility!

And while RantWoman was looking for some images to speak to the more visually oriented of her audience, her search engine served up:

List of 10 Don'ts for drivers around white canes

I stop for white canes and Dog Guides Lions Club bumper sticker