Monday, February 4, 2008

Did IBM Kill Bobby?

Anyone that has had to build an accessible website, pretty much ever, has probably used Bobby. It has been a tool to allow a web developer, home hobbyist or school librarian to check to see if a given page or a whole site was useable by disabled visitors. This little application existed long before section 508 and has been around since the mid 90s.

Well, today I went to check to see if a site was valid with Bobby and there was a little message saying that it is no longer accessible. It appears that WatchFire, an IBM company, is now trying to make money from something that has been used by schools, non-profits and government agencies to ensure that their sites were accessible for more than a decade.

Nice work IBM, you've certainly made an impression on one web developer.

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