United Kingdom Chapter News
TechShare Pro 2018 – "twice as big" and going global
The UK's largest accessibility and inclusive design event took place last week and was twice as big as in 2017 – with more and more companies realising the benefits of making their digital products and services accessible and inclusive.
TechShare Pro, which is organised by AbilityNet and RNIB, with sponsors including Barclays and Google, saw nearly 300 digital professionals gather to discuss the future of technology. This year the event went global with guests flying in from around the world to the conference hosted at Barclays’ HQ in Canary Wharf, London. Experts from Apple, Procter and Gamble, Amazon, IBM, Google, Microsoft and Facebook were all in attendance.
Our guests learned about many things including WeWALK - a piece of technology which fixes to a traditional white cane and enhances its capabilities for people who are blind or have a visual impairment. Technology has been steadily improving, but the white cane has stayed the same for a hundred years - the WeWALK team saw an opportunity to enhance it.
As reported in the E-Access Bulletin on TechShare Pro - video game developers were asked to make their products more inclusive for players with disabilities. Games journalist Mark Brown started a presentation by stating that "video games are a particularly difficult topic for accessibility, because they basically touch on every category of disability."
Throughout the afternoon of the day-long conference a highly popular Professional Practice stream was running, with presentations on topics that included user research through a product’s lifecycle, authoring accessible written content and models for an organization-wide accessibility programme. Guests benefited from these highly practical workshops with speakers from Scope, Barclays, Google, the BBC and Government Digital Services (GDS).
In the afternoon Neil Milliken from Atos and co-founder of AXSChat spoke about making accessibility sustainable and how Atos, alongside other organisations, have been looking at apprenticeships to ensure the next generation of accessibility professionals – the first intake likely to be in 2019. He also shared his frustration at how the inaccessibility of a product or service is often put on the ‘risk register’. Legislation on its own isn’t enough and his call-to-arms was that we need carrots and sticks – consistently enforced penalties along with business incentives to be accessible - it has to be fair and balanced.
For more information about TechShare Pro, including videos and slides from the event, visit the AbilityNet website or sign up for AbilityNet’s newsletter. More content will be added and shared over the coming weeks and months.
Claim your discount code for the largest accessibility event in the UK!
TechShare pro is organised by AbilityNet and RNIB and supported by Barclays and Google and takes place at Barclays HQ in Canary Wharf, London on Thursday 29 November.
As the largest gathering of accessibility specialists in the UK it offers a chance for digital professionals from all disciplines to share their knowledge and learn more about inclusive design. With keynotes from Apple, Google and Barclays, plus expert sessions on accessible gaming, accessible theatre and accessible advertising, the focus is on understanding how digital tech can help transform the lives of disabled people.
The Professional Practice Workshops offers a chance to share top tips which can be used on your next project. The Show and Tell lounge is an informal space to learn more from the people behind a range of inclusive products. We’ll also have inspiring talks from young people and a closing show from Lost Voice Guy, who won this year’s Britain’s Got Talent.
Most of the tickets are now sold but IAAP members can still claim a 15% discount by using the code IAAPGuest15.
More details about TechShare Pro 2018.
UK Chapter Lead Organization, AbilityNet, helps organize Techshare Pro November 29, 2018
TechShare Pro is a one-day conference for digital professionals, with global experts in inclusive design and accessibility sharing knowledge with accessibility and UX specialists, digital designers, developers and product managers. TechShare Pro has been organized by AbilityNet and RNIB and will be hosted by Barclays at their HQ in Canary Wharf. Google is the main sponsor and other sponsors are to be confirmed.
Topics planned for this year include artificial intelligence, robotics, augmented and virtual reality, accessible user research, professional development, accessible smart cities and much more. You'll meet the people who are building the latest tech innovations as well as the people who are providing the tools you need.
Register for TechShare Pro 2018
In 2018 the UK Chapter is focusing on three main items:
- Partnering on the TechShare Pro conference that will be held on November 29th in London and promoting the value IAAP can bring.
- Promoting certification through existing channels and events that happen in the UK. They will look to reach out to people through existing events such as ATEC, Accessibility Meetups, etc. and help communicate the value of certification to accessibility professionals.
- Seeking to get more organizations from the UK to join the IAAP in hopes that some of them will become engaged in helping the UK Chapter identify local activities that benefit UK based accessibility professionals and provide input to IAAP on how to drive new programs.
On Thursday, November 23, 2017, AbilityNet, Atos, Barclays, Lloyds and Texthelp launched in London the IAAP UK Chapter to a packed conference at TechShare Pro. At the conference we ran a workshop on the mission of the IAAP and the reasons why we are so keen to come together here in the UK.
The plan for the UK Chapter is coming together, thanks to the stakeholder group, and our main aims for 2018 are:
A personal commitment to raise awareness of the benefits of IAAP and the UK Chapter.
Expand the UK Chapter stakeholder group so we have wider participation and representation.
Find other events across the UK that we can partner with to promote IAAP membership and the certification program.
Run a specific chapter event in partnership with TechShare Pro in the autumn of 2018.
We are excited that we have formed the UK Chapter and really heartened by the interest we received during the workshop on the 23rd with a significant interest in the mission and values of the IAAP.
What will make our profession strong is having you as a member. Regardless of your knowledge level in accessibility, we all play a role in growing this profession. Help guide us to being a great professional association serving our diverse needs.
Through use of IAAP Connections, you can join an existing discussion or even start your own. You can also blog, upload resources to libraries and join some of our committees.
Get involved today.
Make IAAP a strong community.