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Authoring Web-accessible Mathematical Diagrams

David Austin
Volker Sorge
Diagrams are an important means of conveying information in mathematical subjects. However, their accessibility in electronic documents is still a rarity as even in online teaching and learning material, diagrams are commonly given in standard image formats leaving them inaccessible for visually impaired learners. In addition there is even less accessibility support for authoring diagrams with the majority of tools relying on WYSIWYG editors with inaccessible drag and drop interfaces. In our work we aim to support visually impaired learners and educators in both the authoring and reading tasks. The basic idea is to provide a simple, descriptive, yet powerful enough language that allows the easy generation of accessible diagrams, for everyone, so they can be used for communicating information to both their sighted and non-sighted peers. Accessibility can then be achieved by means of automatically annotating the diagram with information that can be exploited by assistive technology for visual adaptation, screen reading, or sonification.