Here's my recap of the week Joanie, Eitan, Steve, Chris, Mick, Jamie,
Frank and I spent at CSUN 2008 conference.
We had a fantastic show. Frank felt the buzz on Thursday, and this
continued straight on until the end of the show today. Open Source
accessibility is really taking off and gaining momentum, people are very
aware of what we are doing, aware of Open Source solutions like NVDA and
Orca, and it has been acknowledged in very positive comments from the
audience that dropped by our booth. The impression that I got was that
especially among the users of proprietary screen readers, there are many
more Firefox users than the screen reader vendors would want us to
believe. And the greatest message from those folks was: Those who tried
Firefox stuck with it and did not go back to IE.
There was also a big interest in more "visible" features like the full
page zoom, and it was acknowledged that, even without a magnifier,
Firefox is a very compelling solution for certain types of low-vision users.
Also very strong: Teachers at various institutes, schools, colleges etc.
that educate blind people, are encouraging them to try Firefox. many
sighted users already use it, and they are vreacted vewry happily when
they found out that Firefox works with screen readers.
Linux accessibility was also very well received, we even had a couple of
people who said "Hey, a blind friend of mine needs to get a new
computer. I saw the Orca presentation, and I'm going to put Ubuntu on
the friend's computer instead of Windows."
I gave two interviews with podcasters in the U.S., and one camera
interview with a student who is using this project to do his senior in
press filming work. When he's done and got his degree, he'll send us
links so we can watch the filmed material ourselves.
On the swaggy side: Most of the swag has been taken. The
baby-fox buttons were "sold out" on Thursday, we had to print another
stack of brochures on Saturday, and even those were all gone by the end
of the day, the buttons and stickers, and also quite a number of
temporary tatoos were high in demand.
Frank later added:
To add to Marco's comments, the day I was there we also had a number of
visitors from other vendors (including Apple, Adobe, Microsoft, and
Google) who came to the booth to talk about various topics ranging from
Firefox support on Mac (Apple) to getting applications to work with NVDA
(Adobe, Google) to creating ARIA documentation (Microsoft). It was quite
a change from two years ago when you took me around to other
booths to try to get people to pay some attention to Mozilla and
Firefox. We are definitely being looked to as a leader, with other
people working to catch up to where we are. As I told the folks at our
Thursday Mozilla dinner, "it's good to be the lead dog"
> dev-accessibility mailing list
I also wanted to take this opportunity to express my heartfelt thanks to
all the people who helped out at the Mozilla booth at CSUN, as well as
to the people at Mozilla HQ who helped with getting equipment and swag.
I was able to be there in person for only one day, so I greatly
appreciated everyone's help in making sure that the booth got set up
before the show, staffed during the show, and got packed up after the
show. Thanks again!
P.S. In case it was unclear, in my comment (quoted by Marco) about "two
years ago when you took me around", the "you" referred to Aaron.
Thanks again to Mozilla for a fantastic experience.
Open Source Assistive Technology Software