On September 5th a new release was published to the beta RDA Toolkit. The release features significant developments to the site in regard to accessibility and revision tracking.
One of the primary goals of the RDA Toolkit redesign is to meet requirements for a AA rating of the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines. In June the beta Toolkit underwent a full evaluation to determine where it might be falling short of that goal. This release contains a wide range of small changes to site features and structures in order to remediate issues uncovered by the evaluation. With these changes now in place, the site will undergo a Voluntary Product Accessibility Template (VPAT) evaluation, and the resulting report will be shared on this blog. We anticipate that the beta site will achieve the AA rating. For best performance for screen readers, Chrome and Edge browsers are recommended, though the site does function properly with screen readers on the Firefox and Safari browsers.
The release also includes a first attempt at tracking editorial changes to the RDA standard. Revision History is a new section that is accessible through the Resources tab. It is not yet fully operational but will be shortly. Revision History will allow users to track changes made to the standard and to access earlier versions of the instructions. It has two components: Release Notes and the Instruction Archive.
All revisions that are of interest to Toolkit users are reported in the Release Notes. Minor changes such as corrections of typos and fixes to broken links are not reported. The Notes include a table that lists the elements and pages that have been revised, added, or deleted, a brief summary of the nature of the change and, where applicable, links to the both the new PDF of the element or page and its previous PDF. The full set of RDA PDFs for each release will be stored in the Instruction Archive. In addition, the PDFs of the last release to the original RDA Toolkit will also be stored here.
See this first set of Release Notes for details of editorial changes to the instructions. The changes are largely for formatting or consistency, but also include some deletions, relocated text, and new options. Release Notes also include links to free online document comparison tools to allow users to run a difference report for any of the revised elements or pages.