Examples of text customized

black text on white backtround. added space before headings. increased line-spacing
brown text on tan backtground. large main text in serif font. small headings in different fonts, colors, and borders.
black background. main text: yellow and sans serif font. heading text: large, lavender, serif font, and indented

Text Customization for Readability


Millions of people cannot read normally-formatted text, and millions more will not be able to in the coming years as their vision declines due to ageing. Many people with low vision, dyslexia, and related conditions and situations that impact reading cannot read the text in print books, newspapers, manuals, etc. (even with reading glasses). However they can read text that is formatted differently, for example, with larger letters, different font, more spacing, etc.

Electronic media (websites, PDF files, e-books) offers the opportunity for unprecedented access to information for people with print disabilities because accessibility barriers of print can be overcome through technology. With technology such as word processing software, electronic text can be customized (with larger font, etc.) to be readable by more people with visual perceptual impairments.

However, some mainstream technologies and tools do not provide sufficient text customization functionality to make text readable.

PDF files are of particular concern because:

Part of the issue is that some accessibility guidelines and standards do not sufficiently address text customization requirements in order for people to be able to read electronic text.

Please learn more about:

Supporting research and references are throughout the website.

You can help!


If you...

The TAdER Project

The TAdER Project aims to encourage product managers to include specific text customization functionality in their products (including Adobe Reader for PDF, e-book readers, web browsers, and other 'user agents') by:

The first phase of the project is researching, analyzing, and communicating users' needs.

This work is currently a personal project of Shawn Henry. Some of it was done for an MSc in Digital Inclusion. There is much more work to be done in this area. I hope the project will continue and expand in the future. Contributions and funding are welcome.

Note: Not W3C WAI

Please be careful in referencing the information on this tader.info website and e-mails from uiAccess.com as from the individual Shawn, not W3C or WAI. Although Shawn also works for the W3C WAI, these are not W3C WAI publications.

For more information

Shawn Henry

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