Wednesday, May 21st, 2008

An easier and more accessibe YouTube player

Category: Accessibility, Usability

We’ve covered the YouTube JavaScript API here before and especially the chance to write your own players in HTML and JavaScript with it. Especially the ext.js based one to one copy of the YouTube interface was of interest.

At the Accessibility2.0 conference in London earlier this year, Antonia Hyde of United Response gave a talk about rich media and web apps for people with learning disabilities and outlined a perfect media player for the needs of this group of disabled web users.

Whilst not ticking all the boxes, I took the YouTube API and created an easy interface for YouTube videos that has big friendly buttons and easy to use volume controls:

Easy YouTube player showing a video

You can just add a YouTube URL to the end of the player URL to play the video or download the whole player to host it yourself and style it any way you want.

Check out the blog post about Easy YouTube player to get all the information and try it out.

What I found was that neither mine, nor the extJS nor the demo pages on the YouTube API page work in Opera, which means there is a bug in the API itself.

Posted by Chris Heilmann at 4:50 am

3.8 rating from 19 votes


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Great to see opens APIs used to create accessible applications like this. Especially love that it is easily customisable and integrated into your site.

It seems Accessibility has taken a bit of a back seat lately with the advent of increasingly rich interfaces, kudos to the Accessibility2.0 folk for putting it back on the agenda.

Comment by GalloNero — May 21, 2008

Shouldn’t the play button be green and the other buttons be yellow?

It just looks wrong the way it is now.

Comment by JimNeath — May 21, 2008

@jimneath this is the “active” state. I changed it a bit now and in any case, it is fully customizable.

Comment by Chris Heilmann — May 21, 2008

Just a small suggestion, don’t use Red or Green as the default color, as there are lots and lots of people who cannot differentiate between the two. Better use a neutral color for default buttons.

Comment by Hans Schmucker — May 21, 2008

That’s a very good point Hans, but I don’t understand why you would penalize everyone by catering to color-blind people. I feel those colors carry a very strong connotation, and if someone cannot differentiate the colors, they can still rely on the strong iconography.

But perhaps if there were other colors that could be differentiated better by those with color-blindness, they could serve as the icon color?

Comment by restlessdesign — May 21, 2008

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