Presented at 11:30am in Virtual D on Thursday, November 9, 2023.#37983
- Jia Ma, Microsoft
- Length of Session: 1-hr
- Format: Lecture
- Expertise Level: Intermediate
- Type of session: General Conference
Imagine having an AI Copilot to help develop digital products that are accessible to as many people as possible. In this session, Jia will introduce the AI Copilot developed by her team at Microsoft. This tool assists Software Engineers in creating organically accessible products before deployment. Discover the problems this AI Copilot can solve and learn how to access it.
Accessibility issues that are addressed after a product is deployed remain a problem. Due to shifting priorities or limited engineering capacity, these issues often go unresolved. This leaves people with disabilities without proper access to necessary products and increases legal risks for companies. At Microsoft, we found that fixing an accessibility bug post-production costs 30x more than fixing it during development.
Big tech companies like Microsoft spend millions each year hiring Trusted Testers to assess the accessibility of their products and services. Our research shows that the cost of these services is harmful for businesses and there is no effective solution.
However, recent advancements in AI have shown that it is possible to use natural language models to build a system that helps software engineers write accessible code from the start. This system can also act as an auditor, automatically scanning code and recommending fixes for high severity issues.
- The use of AI can enhance the process of creating digital products that are accessible to all users.
- Incorporating accessibility earlier in the development process is not a complex task.
- Fixing an accessibility bug post-production costs 30x more than fixing it during development.
Jia Ma is a skilled technical product manager for digital accessibility with 8+ years of experience. She is the go-to expert at her companies for digital accessibility. Once a software engineer, she understands technical challenges of digital accessibility, and knows how to demystify accessibility for all engineers she works with. With sharpened business acumen, she brings business stakeholders and leadership team along the accessibility journey to achieve company's lofty goals in Diversity and Inclusion, and empowers her companies and customers she serves to achieve more.