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The potential of adaptive interfaces as an accessibility aid for older web users

The potential of adaptive interfaces as an accessibility aid for older web users

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingOther chapter contribution

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  • David Sloan
  • Matthew Tylee Atkinson
  • Colin Machin
  • Yunqiu Li

Research units


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationW4A'10
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the 2010 International Cross Disciplinary Conference on Web Accessibility (W4A)
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
ISBN (Print)978-1-4503-0045-2
StatePublished - 2010
Event7th International Cross-Disciplinary Conference on Web Accessiblity - Raleigh, United States


Conference7th International Cross-Disciplinary Conference on Web Accessiblity
CountryUnited States
Internet address


Supporting effective and enjoyable Web usage by people with sensory, motor and cognitive impairments requires more than just accessible Web content. There is an additional task of matching people with an accessibility solution that best accommodates their particular needs - which, especially for older Web users, may fluctuate in severity, number and combination. Lack of awareness of one's own accessibility needs and the solutions that may exist to accommodate them may lead to a reduced quality Web browsing experience or even abandonment. This paper discusses the difficulties in matching people with less severe, but multiple, impairments with the most appropriate accessibility features at a given time, and explores the role of automated or semi-automated adaptations as a solution for this problem. We review related work, and report on the early stages of our own work conducted to prove the concept of adaptations for accessibility in the specific context of supporting Web users with age-related capability decline. We also consider the potential ethical issues of automated and semi-automated accessibility adaptations on the wellbeing of older Web users, and how these might best be managed in a suitably sensitive way.



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