InReview: MadeToTag

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CreativePro Magazine Issue 11 coverThis article appeared in Issue 11 of CreativePro Magazine.

Demand for accessible PDF files—those that provide unimpeded access to their content to users with visual, auditory, and mobility impairments—has increased significantly over the past several years, especially in such sectors as government, education, and nonprofit organizations.

Back in 2011, InDesign CS5.5 made a huge leap forward with new features that streamlined the process of creating accessible PDF files, which used tags to define the logical structure of the content in a file. With InDesign’s accessibility features, we could apply tags to content formatted using paragraph styles, as well as define tag order with the Articles panel, and we could easily add alternative text (aka alt text) to images within an InDesign file.

Despite the fact that Adobe has added some minor improvements in successive versions of InDesign, creating an accessible PDF file is still a labor-intensive task that leaves room for human error. To put it bluntly, InDesign still falls short in some areas regarding accessibility.

MadeToTag by Axaio Software is an InDesign plug-in that promises to streamline the accessible PDF creation process, and it picks up with unique features where the InDesign feature set falls short. The software is designed specifically for users who regularly create accessible PDF files.

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This article from CreativePro Magazine is for members only. To continue reading, please log in above, or sign up for a membership today! Thanks for supporting CreativePro!

More Resources To Master Accessibility

Join us at the 5th annual Design + Accessibility Summit, the essential HOW-TO event for design professionals who need to master accessibility, coming to a device near you October 8–11, 2024.

It’s no secret that accessibility is a hot topic. In fact, ensuring your documents are accessible is not just a good idea: it’s the law. Whether you’re extending your company’s DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) focus, expanding your market to include the estimated 25% of the population who have disabilities, or safeguarding your company against legal risks, it’s important to make accessibility a business priority.

Creative professionals must learn how to design documents that are accessible for people with vision and hearing impairments, mobility challenges, cognitive, and other disabilities. And those who ramp up their knowledge and expertise in accessibility will find themselves in high demand supporting their business’ efforts; while those who don’t will risk falling behind.

At The Design + Accessibility Summit, you will learn practical techniques for building accessible documents with InDesign, Acrobat, PowerPoint, and other tools widely used by creative professionals.


LEARN MORE

Members get a special discount on registration! Sign up today.

Chad Chelius is a trainer, author, consultant, speaker and Director of Training Solutions and Principal at Chax Training and Consulting. He resides in the Philadelphia area and has been using Adobe products for over 25 years. As an Adobe Certified Instructor, Accessible Document Specialist, and consultant he teaches and advises on all Adobe print and web products, specializing in InDesign and InCopy workflows, Illustrator, automation, and PDF accessibility using InDesign, Word, and Adobe Acrobat. He works with clients both large and small in and outside of the United States, helping them to solve design, workflow, and accessibility challenges using Adobe products.

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  • Aaron A says:

    So the blurb after the brief excerpt says “To continue reading, please log in above.” I have done so, but still no full article.

    • Mike Rankin says:

      Hi Aaron- I just checked the article and you should be able log in and see it if your membership is current. Try logging out and back in. If that fails, please contact us using this form and we’ll get it figured out: https://creativepro.com/contact/

      • Aaron A says:

        Thanks Mike. Well, I was an unpaid user; maybe that was the rub. (In which case the blurb should be amended accordingly.) I have now paid for a year and have read the article…

  • Aaron A says:

    On another note, I’m not sure why weird substitute characters appear in place of dashes and apostrophes in this article. Not true for another article I’m viewing…

  • Maria says:

    Hi Chad, thanks for the article. Are these PDFs WCAG compliant too?

    • Chad Chelius says:

      Yes. Although MadetoTag strives for PDF/UA compliance, these files are typically also WCAG compliant as well. The thing that typically prevents them from being WCAG compliant is the lack of minimum color contrast on elements in the file.

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