Navy will give its LifeLines portal a 508 checkup

The Navy plans to use AccMonitor Server from Hiawatha Island Software Inc. to see how well its LifeLines portal complies with Section 508 requirements.

By scanning the portal's server, the Concord, N.H., company's AccMonitor will test for accessibility and content quality. The Navy established the LifeLines portal in January 1999 as an intranet to improve the quality of life for sailors. Among its offerings, the portal provides self-help information, education services and crisis assistance.

The goal of the testing project is to make sure the site, at www.lifelines2000.org, is accessible to disabled users, as required by Section 508 of the Rehabilitation Act Amendments of 1998. The Navy bought a software license from the company for about $20,000, said Maj. Ramon Lao, director of business operations for LifeLines.

'It allows us to automate the process of 508 compliance,' Lao said. The server 'crawls my site to ensure all the appropriate tags are included.'

The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command created and maintains LifeLines. SPAWAR developers created the site using Microsoft Active Server Pages and HTML.

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