And, as ever, I wonder why organisations/people decide to fork bootstrap (meaning it'll go out-of-date unless devs actively work on keeping it in sync) or to make changes to bootstrap markup via a plug-in, instead of – in both cases – making pull requests on bootstrap itself. Serious question here…I've found the bootstrap team to be, like most other maintainers of a large complex repo, quite open to good pull requests provided that they're well documented, follow the preferred style, and pass unit tests (if it's JS stuff). Serious question, not just trolling…what are the barriers to contributing to bootstrap directly?
That's a great question. I suspect in the case of the U.S. government, it's the perception of control (for it and implementors) and perhaps an (ego-driven) argument that government is better suited to meeting standards (Section508.gov demonstrates how this isn't true). Clearly I'm just speculating.
For PayPal's solution, it's an add-on not a fork (correct me if I am wrong). It's easier to bring *existing* Bootstrap implementations to some level of accessibility via just another include, easing barriers to uptake. That doesn't explain, however, why this isn't also being rolled into ongoing Bootstrap development (via pull requests., bugs, etc.).
Thanks for your post – you were the one to help me discover the Assets.CMS.gov framework.
I looked all around and there was no easy templates built on top of it, so I went a head and created one.
If someone reads it and is looking for an accessible, bootstrap based, HTML template, take a look at: http://accessible-template.com/
I think it’s great that you are expanding on the Assets framework to make it more accessible — it certainly has some issues.
However, looking at your site (accessible-template.com) a quick browse of the home page shows me some key areas where it fails the WCAG AA compliance it claims to meet:
1. There are no focus styles on some links, including the logo and the hamburger menu on the right of the primary navigation. I do think it’s great the navigation styles are the same for hover and focus otherwise.
2. The footer links do not have any focus nor hover styles. There is no underline and outline is disabled. Restoring either one of those may be adequate.
3. The footer links also do not meet WCAG AA contrast requirements (#0099da text on #333333 background color is a 3.95:1 contrast ratio, which fails for body text).
I’m not trying to pick on you or your work (those three just jumped out at me immediately), but in my experience when you claim a product meets certain accessibility standards (or SEO standards, or validation standards, or whatever standards), people will look at your own site to see if it meets those same standards.
Sadly the http://accessible-template.com/ website is not accessible and is not using my own template…
it is on my to-do list though.
The web started out as boring, logically-flowing text. Now we live in a world where the visual aesthetic trumps readability. I feel it is important we don’t forget about the millions of people we basically ditched for “pretty” web sites that could otherwise use our products and services.
A tremendous thank you for this short but useful article.