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ISO 9241-171:2008 provides ergonomics guidance and specifications for the design of accessible software for use at work, in the home, in education and in public places. It covers issues associated with designing accessible software for people with the widest range of physical, sensory and cognitive abilities, including those who are temporarily disabled, and the elderly. It addresses software considerations for accessibility that complement general design for usability as addressed by ISO 9241-110, ISO 9241-11 to ISO 9241-17, ISO 14915 and ISO 13407.

ISO 9241-171:2008 is applicable to the accessibility of interactive systems. It addresses a wide range of software (e.g. office, Web, learning support and library systems).

It promotes the increased usability of systems for a wider range of users. While it does not cover the behaviour of, or requirements for, assistive technologies (including assistive software), it does address the use of assistive technologies as an integrated component of interactive systems.

It is intended for use by those responsible for the specification, design, development, evaluation and procurement of software platforms and software applications.