AI can be used in very constructive, inclusive, and accessible ways; and it can also be used in destructive, exclusive, and harmful ones. And there are a ton of uses somewhere in the mediocre middle as well.
(From: Opportunities for AI in Accessibility – A List Apart)
In this post, Aaron shares some examples of where ‘AI’ could be used to make content more broadly accessible. This is a controversial subject, because there are many automated ‘solutions’ that don't actually remove barriers, so caution is warranted. Such solutions often focus on people who want to comply with accessibility instead of people with disabilities. And accessibility is about people with disabilities, period. Aaron acknowledges this in the post, and calls for including people with disabilities.
What if, he suggests, users could ask specific questions about complex charts? As Aaron acknowledges, hallucinations exist, there could still be a use, especially with more diverse training data. Other examples of where ‘AI’ could remove barriers in his post: voice preservation, voice recognition and text transformation.
I'm still sceptical, because I've seen too many claims from automated tools that don't work that well in practice, but I understand it's worth to at least explore different options, and weigh them against the reality of today's web. For the voice and text tools I am actually somewhat optimistic.