Bring Accessibility Features To All Websites With TechDis Toolbar

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accesslogo   Bring Accessibility Features To All Websites With TechDis ToolbarThe web is huge and there is a lot of content for everyone. Sadly, it is not always formatted or presented appropriately for everyone. Some might need reading glasses to read a news site, others might not be able to read at all. Some might hope for a better more readable style, others might want to change the font to make a page more readable.

Web accessibility has been quite an issue for some time. Enter TechDis Toolbar. TechDis Toolbar provides a number of important web accessibility tools when browsing the Internet. It adds much needed features to almost every website out there, making it easier to access and interpret content.


Although the name mentions “toolbar”, there are a number of ways in which you can install TechDis Toolbar, which is actually part of the reason why TechDis is very useful. If you own a site, you can add the toolbar to your site so that every user can access and make use of TechDis Toolbar’s features. On the other hand if you want to install TechDis toolbar on your computer, you have even more options to choose from. You can install it via an installer, as a user script or as a bookmarklet. Let’s take a brief look at them all.

The installer is available here. This would give you the full blown version of the toolbar and is available for Windows only. If you are on another platform or just want to try things out, you can use the lite version of the toolbar. The lite version is available as a userscript or a bookmarklet. For userscript installation it is best that you visit this page and then follow the instructions for the particular browser that you use.

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installinstructions   Bring Accessibility Features To All Websites With TechDis Toolbar

Those interested in the toolbar can simply drag this link onto your bookmarks bar and click it whenever you need TechDis Toolbar on a site.

Let’s now have a closer look at the features TechDis Toolbar has to offer.

First and foremost you can increase or decrease text size on just about any webpage. Such a simple feature that one expects on every site, but it’s seldom included. Note that this is different from the standard zoom-in, zoom out feature on most browsers, which tends to magnify everything on the page making images look blurry and pages go out of shape. Here though, you are only playing with the size of text on the web page. You can also change the font of the webpage if you so please.

Not only can TechDis Toolbar make the text more legible, it can also read it out to you. Select a part of the text and then click on the Text to Speech button. You can tell TechDis Toolbar to read out only the selected portion or the entire webpage. Simply awesome, imagine having that for every page on the web.

text2speech   Bring Accessibility Features To All Websites With TechDis Toolbar

The page dictionary is another feature done well in the toolbar. Dictionaries are nothing new on the web, however TechDis Toolbar implements the feature very well. Like a number of browser dictionary extensions all you do is select a word and then hit the dictionary button on the toolbar. TechDis Toolbar will then go and fetch the dictionary entry for that particular word and display it as a popup dialog.

dictionary   Bring Accessibility Features To All Websites With TechDis Toolbar

In addition, TechDis Toolbar can also pull out references from a webpage and also allow you to change the style of the toolbar and the webpage. There a number of pre-configured styles that you can use to quickly switch back and forth. I for one use the white or yellow on black style frequently when reading in the dark!

changestyles   Bring Accessibility Features To All Websites With TechDis Toolbar

TechDis Toolbar is a wonderful addition to your browsing experience. The lite version, available as a bookmarklet, is an ideal addition to any web browser. You can quickly turn the toolbar on and off and use all of its feature anytime you need them on any site you want them on.

Do you know of any other web accessibility apps that makes it easier for people to access the web like this?   If so, let us know in the comments.

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9 Comments - Write a Comment

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Imran ahmed

Does it also have keyboard shortcuts to invoke dictionary and other tasks that require clicking?? If so, then it can be truly called fully accessible.

Aibek

I am not sure but it seems that the answers to your questions is No. i check the TechDis features page but couldn’t find anything about keyboard shortcuts.

http://www.techdis.ac.uk/index.php?p=1_29

Imran Ahmed

well, that’s a real shame. I use a screen reader. Is the toolbar installed in one of the menus of the browser? you guys do a great job though. I have been visiting this site for a long time now.

Aibek

I will let Varun answer this one as I am not really sure how it looks once installed.

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Aibek

I am not sure but it seems that the answers to your questions is No. i check the TechDis features page but couldn’t find anything about keyboard shortcuts.

http://www.techdis.ac.uk/index

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NuNet

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