I just got home from the awards banquet for the AIR Houston competition. We won. Seriously. We actually won... third place. I am so very proud of our team. Our team was lead by my husband, Geri Druckman, under the name TechSophic, and supported by me and Heather Mortensen. This was our first year as competitors, and I could not be more pleased with the outcome.
Just in case the winning sites are linked from the AIR site anytime soon, I must point out that this competition was about accessibility, not aesthetics, and this is what we focused on during the 8-hour competition. I must also give acknowledgement to the trainers who helped prepare everyone for this competition, Eric Fruin and Kelsey Ruger, both of Houston, Texas, were so instrumental in everyone's successes.
I am still a little shocked that we actually won an award, as we were competing with top web developers and designers. We have some pretty great people here in Houston. We did try as hard as we could to keep it simple and follow all the rules of accessibility, and I suppose it did pay off.
Web accessibility is an important thing to strive for as those of us in the field try to break down the barriers between human and content. This is as important for a person using a screen reader as it is for someone viewing a web site on their cell phone. Competitions like AIR help us all learn together and sharpen our skills to allow us to make the web a more inclusive space.
Congratulations to everyone who participated in AIR Houston, and in other AIR competitions in other cities. I highly recommend seeking one out and signing up. You'll learn something, and help make the world a better place. How cool is that?