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(c) Web pages shall be designed so that all information conveyed with color is also available without color, for example from context or markup.

Make sure that color is the secondary carrier of information on your template by following these guidelines: Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998 established standards for electronic and information technology so that individuals with disabilities can use them. All U.S. federal agencies must bring their web sites and other electronic information into compliance with Section 508 by June 21, 2001.
  1. If you want to highlight certain portion of text, do not do so with color. Instead, use bold, italics, or different font sizes. Also, highlighting a paragraph of text can be accomplished by using titles or other preceding or succeeding descriptive textual information.
  2. In graphics, make sure to use high contrast between any information that is presented on the graphic and its context. The best way to test this is to print your graphic on a black-and-white printer and see if anything is difficult to read.
  3. If use of high-contrast colors is unavoidable, make sure to duplicate information conveyed by graphics with text title or "longdesc" tag. Of the two methods, the text title is the preferred.

(d) Documents shall be organized so they are readable without requiring an associated style sheet.

Do not interpret this guideline to mean that you cannot use style sheets. In fact, style sheets are the most forgiving way to format content, as they do not require authors to introduce in-text markup, such as font face, color, and size tags. The key to meeting this criterion when designing a template is to make sure to test the template with content in it and style sheets rendering turned off to be sure that it remains readable.


(e) Redundant text links shall be provided for each active region of a server-side image map.

Do not use server-side image maps in your template design. Server-side image maps are obsolete. Instead, avoid using image maps altogether by breaking them up into text links or several image links.


(f) Client-side image maps shall be provided instead of server-side image maps except where the regions cannot be defined with an available geometric shape.

If the use of server-side map is unavoidable, duplicate its regions as a list of text links. Text links should precede the map in the reading order of the page.


(g) Row and column headers shall be identified for data tables.

Do not use tables for layout in template design. Use CSS absolute positioning instead. Absolute positioning is a safe and easy way to design elements on the page without needing to use tables as supporting structures. CSS will also allow you to order the elements of layout in any way possible. For example, all supporting graphics can be placed on the page last, thus ensuring that readers do not stumble through them while scanning content.

If the use of tables in unavoidable, make sure that the tables are identified as "supporting structures" in "longdesc" and "label" attributes. Estrada will also automatically handle tables in the content.


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