Toolkits provide a logical representation of the content of an application. Assistive technologies, such as screen readers or magnifiers, can use this logical representation to enable individuals with disabilities to browse and interact with applications.
The Accessibility ToolKit (ATK) is a development toolkit from GNOME which allows programmers to use common GNOME accessibility features, such as high-contrast visual themes for the visually-impaired and keyboard behavior modifiers (e.g. sticky keys) for those with diminished motor control, to make GNOME applications accessible.
The Assistive Technology Service Provider Interface (AT-SPI) is a toolkit-neutral way of facilitating accessibility in applications, by using native accessibility APIs. AT-SPI can also be used for automated testing of user interfaces, with tools such as the Linux Desktop Testing Project and Dogtail. AT-SPI is currently supported by GTK+ 2, Java/Swing, the Mozilla suite, and StarOffice/OpenOffice.org. Developers, such as Trolltech, are developing support for AT-SPI using Trolltech's accessible toolkit library.
The Open Accessibility (A11y) Working Group is actively investigating and testing the use of AT-SPI for adoption as a Linux standard, as well as fostering the harmonization of efforts and toolkit alignment in a platform-agnostic manner.
As the leading edge in the continuing development of ATK/AT-SPI, the Open A11y Working Group provides a centralized and open forum where collaboration between individual toolkit developers and the implementors who depend upon a consistent architecture across platforms – to ensure the compatibility and accessibility of their applications, independent of which specific platforms upon which their applications run – is facilitated, in order to achieve a truly platform-agnostic AT-SPI.