Social justice wizard, future library/archives/info mgt student. She/her.
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Free Online Course “Introduction to Web Accessibility”

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Today, 3rd December 2019, on the International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) and UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (UNESCO IITE) are announcing a new online course “Introduction to Web Accessibility” scheduled to start on 28 January 2020.

This course provides a strong foundation for making websites and apps work well for people with disabilities, meet international standards, and enhance the user experience for all web users. It is designed for technical and non-technical audiences, including:

  • developers
  • designers
  • content authors
  • project managers
  • people with disabilities
  • others

Optional course material helps you learn more about the topics you are most interested in. It covers:

  • What is Web Accessibility (2 sections)
  • People and Digital Technology (5 sections)
  • Business Case and Benefits (2 sections)
  • Principles, Standards, and Checks (5 sections)
  • Getting Started with Accessibility (2 sections)

The course is designed for 4 weeks of about 4-5 hours effort per week. It is self-paced so you can complete it in a shorter or longer time frame.

The course is free. Optionally, you can choose to get a Verified Certificate for $99 USD to demonstrate successful course completion.

This unique course is based on the open curricula from the Education and Outreach Working Group (EOWG) of the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI). It is part of the W3Cx training platform and brings together international expert trainers from Deque, Infoaxia, Intopia, Knowbility, The Paciello Group (TPG), and Web Key IT.

In addition to being an excellent introduction for people who are new to accessibility, this course helps people who already know about accessibility fill in gaps” said Shawn Henry, W3C WAI Outreach Coordinator. “It covers resources from the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative website, and helps you know how to find addition information on multiple aspects of digital accessibility.”

Whether you are new to web accessibility or need a refresher, this course gives you the necessary skills to take first steps in accessibility and to know where to find more information – enroll now.

Logo of UNESCO IITE Logo of the W3C Web Accessibility Initiative

Additional information:

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32 days ago
Melbourne, Australia
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Domain overseer lifts all price caps on .Org domain names - Domain Name Wire

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ICANN ignores community input and agrees to lift price restrictions on .org domains.

Circular shapes with .org in them and mouse pointers. Green, blue and pink colors.

As many feared, the comment period was just a formality.

ICANN has agreed to remove price restrictions on .org domain names, letting the domain’s manager, Public Interest Registry, charge as much as it wants for the domains. (It also agreed to let .info manager Afilias charge whatever it wants for .info.)

This is despite only six out of over 3,000 comments being in favor of removing price caps.

You can blame two things: ICANN wanting to make its life easier with a misguided attempt to make its registry agreements similar, and regulatory capture.

ICANN’s decision foreshadows that the organization will agree to .com price increases. Eventually, caps on .com domains could disappear.

10 million .org domains are currently registered and were registered under a system in which Public Interest Registry could not increase prices at will. Now, non-profits and other organizations that have been using these domains for years could face steep price increases.

The good news is that Public Interest Registry’s management is competent and well-guided. They will likely wait a while before making any major changes to avoid comments of “we told you so”.

But management changes. Boards change. And one day, it could get ugly.

It will be interesting to see if any parties consider antitrust challenges.

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69 days ago
Melbourne, Australia
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The org that doles out .org websites just sold itself to a for-profit company

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Today, the Public Interest Registry (PIR), which maintains the .org top-level domain, announced that it will be acquired by Ethos Capital, a private equity firm (via Domain Name Wire). This move will make PIR, previously a non-profit domain registry, officially part of a for-profit company — which certainly seems at odds with what .org might represent to some. Originally, “.org” was an alternative to the “.com” that was earmarked for commercial entities, which lent itself to non-profit use.

That’s not all: On June 30th, ICANN, the non-profit that oversees all domain names on the internet, agreed to remove price caps on rates for .org domain names — which were previously pretty cheap. Seems like something a for-profit company might want.

Removing price caps wasn’t exactly a popular idea when it was first proposed on March 18th. According to Review Signal, only six of the more than 3,000 public comments on the proposal were in favor of the change.

In an “open letter” published on May 1st, just days after the comment period had closed, PIR said that it had “no specific plans for any price increases for .org.” But that was then, and if the rates for .org domains do go up in the future, it could affect non-profits and institutions that rely on low domain name fees to maintain their websites.

.info and .biz, which also used to have price caps, had them removed this year as well.

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69 days ago
Melbourne, Australia
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Machine Learning Captcha

2 Comments and 5 Shares
More likely: Click on all the pictures of people who appear disloyal to [name of company or government]
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69 days ago
Melbourne, Australia
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2 public comments
68 days ago
It's a trick. Don't do it!
Wilmington, NC, USA
69 days ago
No pic of me kneeling in supplication to my blender?
Bend, Oregon

Non-binary "singular they" endorsed by Merriam-Webser


"Singular 'they': Though singular 'they' is old, 'they' as a nonbinary proonoun is new — and useful", Merriam-Webster Words We're Watching:

Much has been written on they, and we aren't going to attempt to cover it here. We will note that they has been in consistent use as a singular pronoun since the late 1300s; that the development of singular they mirrors the development of the singular you from the plural you, yet we don't complain that singular you is ungrammatical; and that regardless of what detractors say, nearly everyone uses the singular they in casual conversation and often in formal writing.

They is taking on a new use, however: as a pronoun of choice for someone who doesn't identify as either male or female. This is a different use than the traditional singular they, which is used to refer to a person whose gender isn't known or isn't important in the context, as in the example above. The new use of they is direct, and it is for a person whose gender is known, but who does not identify as male or female. If I were introducing a friend who preferred to use the pronoun they, I would say, "This is my friend, Jay. I met them at work."

M-W's action got a lot of  media play, mostly positive or neutral — e.g. "Merriam-Webster adds non-binary pronoun 'they' to dictionary" (WaPo), "When Dictionaries Wade Into the Gender (Non)Binary" (NYT), "Merriam-Webster dictionary adds 'they' as nonbinary pronoun" (The Guardian), "Merriam-Webster adds nonbinary 'they' pronoun to dictionary" (NBC), and so on.

Predictably, there were some negative reactions as well, e.g. "'Non-Binary' Nonsense" (The National Review), "The problem with calling Sam Smith 'they'" (The Spectator), "Merriam-Webster Redefines 'They' to Include a Non-Binary Person" (Christian Headlines), etc.

Let's note that the usual political philosophies tend to be inverted in this case — the rightward end of the political spectrum, generally opposed to regulation and in favor of market forces in economic matters, comes down squarely in favor of central planning and control in matters of usage, at least when bottom-up innovations are at issue. See "Authoritarian rationalism is not conservatism", 12/11/2007; "Peever politics", 11/20/2011; "James Kilpatrick, Linguistic Socialist", 3/28/2008; "Querkopf von Klubstick returns", 6/10/2008.

Another politico-linguistic puzzle is the fact that Quaker thee began as a similar sort of authoritarian rationalism — see "George Fox, Prescriptivist" (10/24/2010), and "That false and senseless Way of Speaking" (7/1/2016).



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112 days ago
112 days ago
Melbourne, Australia
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Python Insider - powered by FeedBurner

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 increasing the security of the Python Package Index with another new beta feature: scoped API tokens for package upload. This is thanks to a 

grant from the Open Technology Fund

, coordinated by the 

Packaging Working Group

 of the 

Python Software Foundation


Over the last few months, we've 

added two-factor authentication (2FA) login security methods

. We added Time-based One-Time Password (TOTP) support in late May and physical security device support in mid-June. Now, over 1600 users have started using physical security devices or TOTP applications to better secure their accounts. And over the past week, over 7.8% of logins to <a href="" rel="nofollow"></a> have been protected by 2FA, up from 3% in the month of June.

Now, we have another improvement: 

you can use API tokens to upload packages

 to PyPI and 

Test PyPI

! And we've designed the token to be a drop-in replacement for the username and password you already use (warning: this is a 

beta feature


we need your help to test


How it works: 

Go to your 

PyPI account settings

 and select "Add API token". When you create an API token, you choose its scope: you can create a token that can upload to all the projects you maintain or own, or you can limit its scope to just one project.

The token management screen shows you when each of your tokens were created, and last used. And you can revoke one token without revoking others, and without having to change your password on PyPI and in configuration files.

Uploading with an API token is currently optional but encouraged; in the future, PyPI will set and enforce a policy requiring users with two-factor authentication enabled to use API tokens to upload (rather than just their password sans second factor). Watch 

our announcement mailing list

 for future details.


These API tokens can 


 be used to upload packages to PyPI, and not to log in more generally. This makes it safer to automate package upload and store the credential in the cloud, since a thief who copies the token won't also gain the ability to delete the project, delete old releases, or add or remove collaborators. And, since the token is a long character string (with 32 bytes of entropy and a service identifier) that PyPI has securely generated on the server side,

 we vastly reduce the potential for credential reuse on other sites and for a bad actor to guess the token.

Help us test: 


try this out

! This is a 

beta feature

 and we expect that users will find minor issues over the next few weeks; we ask for your bug reports. If you find any potential security vulnerabilities, please follow our 

published security policy

. (Please don't report security issues in Warehouse via GitHub, IRC, or mailing lists. Instead, please directly email <a href=""></a>.) If you find an issue that is not a security vulnerability, please 

report it via GitHub


We'd particularly like testing from:

  • Organizations that automate uploads using continuous integration
  • People who save PyPI credentials in a .pypirc file
  • Windows users
  • People on mobile devices
  • People on very slow connections
  • Organizations where users share an auth token within a group
  • Projects with 4+ maintainers or owners
  • People who usually block cookies and JavaScript
  • People who maintain 20+ projects
  • People who created their PyPI account 6+ years ago
What's next for PyPI: 

Next, we'll move on to working on an advanced audit trail of sensitive user actions, plus improvements to accessibility and localization for PyPI (some of which have already started). More details are in 

our progress reports on Discourse


Thanks to the 

Open Technology Fund

 for funding this work. And please sign up for the 

PyPI Announcement Mailing List

 for future updates.

Written by Sumana Harihareswara, published initially to <a href="" rel="nofollow"></a>

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118 days ago
Melbourne, Australia
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