Accessibility in ECOMP

ECOMP is an Accessible Application

The ECOMP application has been designed to accommodate the needs of accessible users per Section 508 (29 U.S.C. § 794d) of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. If you are seeing this message it is because the ECOMP application has determined that your system has accessibility aids such as a screen magnifier or a screen reader (such as the JAWS screen reader) active at this time.

To get the most out of your accessibility-aid software, please read the recommended settings described in the sections below.

Navigation of the ECOMP Application

In order to meet 508-compliance standards, this application has been designed so that a user can navigate all menus and interactive objects (such as buttons and dropdown lists) using only:

Using MSAA-Compliant Screen Readers with ECOMP

The Microsoft Active Accessibility Architecture (MSAA) is a technology developed by Microsoft to facilitate how accessibility aids work with applications running on Microsoft Windows. Many screen readers and other accessible technologies rely on the MSAA libraries to feed information to accessibility aids like screen readers. Though MSAA technologies work with other operating systems and browsers, for best results we recommend the following:

The ECOMP application has been written in Flex, which is an Adobe technology that is built off of the Flash platform. Adobe Flash is not a Windows product, but it is designed to work in Internet Explorer as a plugin. If you do not have Adobe Flash installed on your computer, you can download it here:

Using the JAWS Screen Reader with ECOMP

When developing the accessibility features for ECOMP, the screen-reading technology used as a basis for development and testing was the JAWS for Windows ®, from Freedom Scientific. Since JAWS was the screen-reader of choice for development of the ECOMP application, accessible users will experience the best accessibility results by using this software.

Once JAWS is installed, to be sure it is interacting properly with the Flex/Flash framework, one needs to install the JAWS scripts for Flex. These scripts improve the overall integration and performance of JAWS to the Flex / Flash platform:

In development it was noted that the "Virtual Keyboard" setting in JAWS causes some problems interacting with the ECOMP application; specifically, if one is navigating the application using the tab keys and spacebar, the virtual keyboard function does not always focus on the right object and does not consistently allow the spacebar to perform an action like a button press. It is our recommendation to turn off the virtual keyboard setting in JAWS, and this will allow the user to navigate the application as desired.

Using a Screen Magnifier with ECOMP

Aside from screen readers, one of the most commonly used accessibility technologies is a screen magnifier, such as the Magnifier program that is a default utility in Windows products.

To turn on Magnifier in Windows 7:

Magnifier moves around the screen depending on where one focuses the application. Focus is the center point of the user’s interest or viewing when navigating an application. Focus is generally determined by looking at either the behavior of the mouse (where the mouse cursor is) or based on the location of the cursor as based on a keyboard-press (such as a tab key). By default the Magnifier is set to follow the cursor as it is moved around by the mouse. However, the ECOMP application has been designed so that one can navigate the application by using the tab key.