I am working on a fairly simple six page PDF. It is simple except for a detailed map of a sports complex on one page. This map will be used by people attending the sporting event to get around the complex. How do I make this accessible? Are there specific guidelines or examples available?
There is no established coherent guidance for this type of content, neither in the world of PDF documents nor for web pages or electronic books in EPUB or other formats.
That much said, ask yourself the question who the target audiences are, and how to possibly make the map available to them. Think of at least the following aspects:
- no vision: consider to provide a text only equivalent (and consider making it available to sighted users as well!)
- low vision: make sure contrast and choice of colors is good, text is using relatively large type at very good contrast, only include as much detail as necessary in the map
- vision anomalies: make sure not to rely on color alone for conveying relevant information
- cognitive limitations: simplicity and clarity are king!
- print disabilities: complement text only information (e.g. names of locations on the map) with graphical information/presentation (e.g. icons, 3D-like/pseudo realistic presentation of core aspects, etc.)
All in all: accessibility as much as usability in general benefit from simplicity and clarity (in Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's Little Prince, one of the best pieces is the maxim: "something is only complete if you can't remove anything anymore"). Throw in a good text based description (ideally as a regular part of the document, not just some Alt text) of the essential aspects on the map, and you are on a good way.