Benetech and American Printing House for the Blind have been discussing making the tactile graphic library more easily discoverable via accessibility metadata, and this page is the result of these discussions. It is NOT a public page (it does not link into the WordPress site hierarchy), but the content is hosted there. The URL is private between Benetech and APHB. APHB has an extensive tactile graphic library available on their Tactile Graphic Image Library website. In order to make this more easily discoverable, we have discussed adding accessibility metadata tags. The current pages have a minimal amount of information available and it’s not clear if there is more in the database locked away and not visible. I added a few tags for what I imagine would be data in the database. The key is that I added the information in two phases: what is required for accessibility search and then refinements that will improve overall search results.
The tags below declare that this is an image, give its name, and then describe it’s accessibility: it is an image with a tactile graphic. If it has braille, which many do, it should also declare that in a mediaFeature.
<div itemscope="" itemtype="http://schema.org/ImageObject">
<meta itemprop="accessMode" content="tactile" />
<meta itemprop="mediaFeature" content="tactileGraphic" />
<meta itemprop="mediaFeature" content="braille" /> (and the corresponding </div>)
A few other tags can be added to be a bit more useful for education search, as these are learning resources. These are from LRMI tags, and their meaning is very clear.
<meta itemprop="learningResourceType" content="illustration" />
Finally, a few more tags, such as keywords and the content area can be listed, improving search results. This information was not on the page, but was in the page navigation hierarchy, so I deduced the “about” and “keywords.” I also put the name attribute on the span for the title.
<meta itemprop="keywords" content="ecology" />
<meta itemprop="keywords" content="carbon" />
<meta itemprop="about" content="Science: Ecology" />
<span style="font-weight: normal" itemprop="name">carbon cycle</span>
<meta itemprop="thumbnail" content="./APHB-TGIL_CarbonCycle_files/t_465.jpg" />
Now let’s look at the pages and the summary from Google Structured Data Testing Tool.
All this powers a Google Custom search engine, which allows for searches based on the properties, whether accessMode or mediaFeature. You can see an example if you do the following searches:
- A search of our index for anything about ecology – note that this returns a large set of results
- A search of our index for anything about ecology, but also with mediaFeature=tactileGraphic – note that this returns a much more refined set of results