Adobe® Presenter 7 is a powerful yet simple to use tool for creating accessible, online presentations. Following a few simple steps, it is easy to ensure that online presentations are accessible to all, regardless of disability.
Accessibility and the Adobe Flash Player
Adobe Presenter 7 leverages the accessibility of the Adobe Flash Player. With integrated support for Microsoft Active Accessibility (MSAA), the Adobe Flash Player makes content available via screen access technologies such as Window-Eyes from GW Micro, Home Page Reader from IBM and JAWS from Freedom Scientific. This ensures that text, text equivalents specified in PowerPoint and accessible objects embedded within an Adobe Presenter 7 presentation are exposed to assistive technologies.
Build an Accessible Microsoft PowerPoint Presentation
Because PowerPoint presentations often contain graphics and animation, it is important to create a document that makes all visual elements available and accessible to disabled users. For example, when a blind user employs a screen reader to access the contents of an online presentation, it is necessary to give all graphics and animations the proper text equivalents to describe their function.
A wider audience can be reached when your PowerPoint presentations are made accessible. To create effective and accessible PowerPoint presentations, it is best to start thinking about accessibility right from the development stage. Here are a few key steps that will help you to begin creating accessible PowerPoint presentation:
- Add text equivalents to all images
- Limit use of animations and transitions
- Ensure that any animations that are used remain accessible
- Using the Notes panel, add text transcripts of audio tracks
For more information on authoring accessible PowerPoint presentations, see Building an Accessible Microsoft PowerPoint Presentation.
Publishing your Presentation
When publishing your presentation, accessibility is enabled by default. As long as the PowerPoint presentation itself is accessible, there are no extra steps required to enable the accessibility of your Adobe Presenter 7 presentation.
However, there is one consideration as you publish your presentation. In the Playback tab of the Adobe Presenter Presentation Settings dialog, there is an option to ‘Pause after each animation’. Display this dialog by choosing Adobe Presenter > Presentation Settings from the PowerPoint menu. This feature is disabled by default. When this option is disabled, the slide will automatically move to the final state of each slide and expose content to the user at that point.
Enabling this will force the user to press the ‘play’ button after each animation to continue. This should be enabled in two situations. First, if the author wants to lend particular emphasis to the individual bullets or objects on each slide. Second, this option should be enabled if slides are using exit animations. For example, it you have slides where each bullet exits the screen after a mouse click, then the final state of the slide might be blank. Thus the screen reader user would not be able to reach any of the content. Enabling the ‘Pause after each animation’ will allow screen reader users to access content from exit animations.
View Your Adobe Presenter Presentation
Once a presentation has been published, no additional steps are required to enable accessibility. Support for accessibility is built directly into the Adobe Presenter 7 presentation, whether it is viewed from the server or from a desktop version of the presentation.
Once the Adobe Presenter 7 presentation has determined a screen reader or screen magnifier is running, the viewer will automatically switch to the ‘mini-player’ mode. This simplified version of the Adobe Presenter 7 viewer presents the user with a smaller subset of the controls over the Adobe Presenter 7 presentation, enhancing the usability of the presentation for users with disabilities.
Adobe Presenter 7 presentations also include a number of keystrokes to help navigate the presentation. These keys allow all users the ability to control the presentation without relying on the use of the mouse.
- Page Up – Next Slide
- Page Down – Previous Slide
- P – Play/Pause
- S – Stop
- M – Mute
- V- Change View
If you are using JAWS for Windows, you should turn off the Quick Keys mode by pressing Ins + N in order to use the Adobe Presenter 7 solutions keyboard shortcuts.