W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > September 2007

Re: Screen-reader behaviour

From: Charles McCathieNevile <chaals@opera.com>
Date: Mon, 10 Sep 2007 09:28:11 +0200
To: "Sander Tekelenburg" <st@isoc.nl>, public-html@w3.org, wai-xtech@w3.org
Message-ID: <op.tyfgc9d3wxe0ny@widsith.lan>

On Sun, 09 Sep 2007 03:40:44 +0200, Sander Tekelenburg <st@isoc.nl> wrote:

> At 15:20 -0400 UTC, on 2007-09-04, David Poehlman wrote:

>>> From: "Sander Tekelenburg" <st@isoc.nl>
>>> [...] I wonder why a Jaws user
>>> does not use such a dedicated aural UA for his Web access? Is it too
>>> complicated to learn to use both tools? Is it too expensive to buy  
>>> both?

The real reason is probably complexity of learning multiple tools.

>>> Does using both generate conflicts, or crashes?

Yes. Both. Plus it is often confusing.

>> there are none currently in production that I know of
>
> See
> <http://esw.w3.org/topic/HTML/UAs#head- 
> a137e73d13abc9d5a8e4a8a83974f2aa96775fab>.

Opera was only speech-enabled for Windows, only in English, and as a voice  
browser wasn't as helpful to a serious user as a screen reader and regular  
browser. On that list, the closest thing to a voice browser that is in  
current development is probably FireVox.

>> [...] It is far better to use an integrated solution for many reasons
>> than to use a different solution for each task as which is part of the
>> reason for instance, that Microsoft Office is so popular.
>
> That's just an opinion. Many are of the opposite opinion: that it works  
> far better to use dedicated apps that do one single thing good.

Not many screen reader users are of that opinion (of all those I have ever  
met in a decade working on Web Accessibility, the total number who believe  
this is the best way to work with voice apps in the real world is zero)

> Unless, and that's why I asked, there are compatibility or other problems
> that keeps people from doing that.

Which there are.

>> HTML5 needs to be developped to be
>> technology neutral because... html5 being jaws centric will hurt badly.
>
> Yeah. Agreed.

Ditto.

> [... @longdesc crashing Jaws for years]
>
>> AT is often developped througha process of trial
>> and error and based on certain forces which are likely to contribute to  
>> its growth.  If such a force dictates that something is done which
>> inadvedrtantly breaks something else, it will be done.
>
> Yeah, a new feature might result in breaking an old feature. But *crash*  
> bugs are unacceptable per definition.

Not really. Among their problems, screen readers generally cause systems  
to crash quite frequently.

> If that was so widespread, and existed  for
> so long, that accessibility advocates started advising authors to not use
> longdesc, there is something very, very wrong.

Yep. There are lots of things wrong in accessibility. There are some  
things very right, and a lot of things just about right enough to be  
useful sometimes. Features that we take for granted just don't work, or  
crash, or behave in some way that users can't understand (watch  
screenreader users try to interpret a page for a while and you will find  
nearly all of them at various times get an incorrect idea of what they are  
looking at).

cheers

Chaals

-- 
   Charles McCathieNevile, Opera Software: Standards Group
   hablo español  -  je parle français  -  jeg lærer norsk
chaals@opera.com   http://snapshot.opera.com - Kestrel (9.5α1)
Received on Monday, 10 September 2007 07:28:27 UTC

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