The Web plays a significant role in the everyday life of people, yet many sites have inadequate usability and accessibility. Automated evaluation has gained prominence as a way to help web site builders to produce more usable and accessible sites. But what does it mean to automate web site evaluation? How effective are automated evaluation approaches and tools? Where do they fit into web practitioners' work practices?
This book is a culmination of over five years of Melody Ivory's research and practical experience in the Web domain. It is the first in-depth look at automated web site evaluation methodologies and existing software tools from both the researcher's and practitioner's perspectives. Ivory documents the current state of the field and highlights promising research and tool development directions. She summarizes surveys and analyses of automated web site evaluation methodologies and tools, describes a novel automated evaluation approach that she developed (the WebTango approach), and presents results from empirical studies of automated evaluation tools and of the web site design process itself. She discusses the role of automated evaluation tools in practitioners' work practices, reports on tool usage, and compares tools along several dimensions.