Come to Cambridge the weekend of June 13 and 14 for a conference that addresses an important skill set for technical communicators: accessibility. This skill set may be just what you need to tackle an important market sector – your colleagues and customers with disabilities. This conference looks at issues specifically related to hearing and vision. For example, how do we make our communications usable by people with hearing and sight difficulties, and how do we work with colleagues and customers who have hearing and sight difficulties?
The Society for Technical Communication UK and Ireland chapter is hosting this event in Cambridge, UK, at the Moller Conference Centre.
Prices are lowered at this event to help out with the “credit crunch”: only £150 for two days for members of the STC UK and I chapter. Pricing details are on the booking site.
A variety of top speakers on different aspects of accessibility has been assembled at this conference; topics include designing for all, learning about signing, meeting the needs of Deaf people, and what’s happening in the world of standards and accessibility. The latest news from the conference is the addition of Richard Hodgkinson to the great line-up of speakers. He’ll join us to speak about “ICT Accessibility… Where are we?”
Who else is speaking?
- Katie Grant , Raincharm, will discuss “designing for all” and what “accessibility and inclusion” mean, in addition to holding a communications clinic where people can bring in samples of their work that they wish to make more accessible.
- Pauline Sadler will teach you how to finger spell, as well as give you some very basic training in signing. Pauline will look at how style must change when you converting written text to signing.
- David Spicer, Aeroflex, will talk about how loss in different frequency areas affects the comprehension of speech. David looks at the effects of room acoustics and the use of background music/sounds in audio/visual on the presentation of information. He also discusses the different needs of hearing impaired people who become deaf and those that are born deaf.
- Pam Spicer, Norfolk Deaf Association, will speak about the NDA’s Listen Here bus that visits remote rural communities providing services to clients and the role the NDA web site has in publicity and outreach for the service.
- Leonie Watson, Nomensa, will discuss website design. People with disabilities access the web in different ways, depending on their task, location, experience and ability. Leonie will help you discover the access technologies people use, the challenges they present, and what you can do to your website to help people with disabilities make the most of the information you provide.
As Richard Truscott, incoming president for the chapter, notes,
[this is] a top class event giving you practical information you can use. We have quality speakers that help you gain a competitive edge for your products and services. This is a quality training and lecture programme that is useful and insightful as well as affordable. Including workshops on website design, accessibility standards in the USA and EU.
Registration and Hotel Information
Why not head straight to the booking site at http://accessibilitytechcomms.eventbrite.com/ and book your spot at the conference today? There are generous discounts for members of STC and affiliated organisations. The price includes all material, notes, breaks and meals.
Accommodation is not included in the above prices. Rooms can be booked directly with the Møller centre. The Møller Centre offers high-quality hotel-style rooms with wireless and wired Internet access, and (astonishingly for Cambridge) ample free parking. The rooms cost £87 per night plus VAT. Book (and pay) directly with the Centre by contacting Mignon Bout at the Centre on +44 (0) 1223 465501 or mignon.bout @ chu.cam.ac.uk.
If you want a room, book *really quickly* – as of 18th May, there were only 9 rooms left.
A social event and a gala dinner are also planned for this major event.
See you in Cambridge!
How important is this market sector with people with disabilities? The US Department of Labor’s Office of Disability Employment Policy just posted an article in the May issue of “Business Sense” that says that people with disabilities are the third largest market section in the US.
What’s the third largest market segment in the United States? The answer might surprise you. It’s not a particular ethnicity, gender or age group. It’s people with disabilities. The size of this population—54 million strong—surpasses Hispanics, African Americans and Asian Americans, as well as Generation X and teens. Add in their families, friends and associates, and you get a trillion dollars in purchasing power.
Read the full article in the May 2009 issue of Business Sense. Please share if you have similar statistics for Europe. A trillion dollars or its equivalent in Euros is a nice market to have!