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Re: function and impacts (was: @scope and @headers reform)

From: Laura Carlson <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 24 Sep 2008 13:01:36 -0500
Message-ID: <1c8dbcaa0809241101l430feb7ah23775349a3e1cb4@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Henri Sivonen" <hsivonen@iki.fi>
Cc: joshue.oconnor@cfit.ie, "James Craig" <jcraig@apple.com>, "Al Gilman" <alfred.s.gilman@ieee.org>, "Chris Wilson" <Chris.Wilson@microsoft.com>, "W3C WAI-XTECH" <wai-xtech@w3.org>, public-html@w3.org, "Gez Lemon" <gez.lemon@gmail.com>

Henri wrote:

> I don't like the attitude of trying to fast-track this particular
> thing even by trying to use another WG to override this WG when there
> are some many other things in the queue (including the WF2 stuff from
> 2006,

HTML WG has requirements in our charter to work with  WAI, and PFWG in
particular. It says: "The HTML Working Group will cooperate with the
Web Accessibility Initiative to ensure that the deliverables will
satisfy accessibility requirements. Coordination with WAI will be
primarily conducted through the Protocol and Formats Working Group,
but direct coordination with other WAI groups, such as Web Content
Accessibility Guidelines Working Group and User Agent Accessibility
Guidelines Working Group, will also be done when appropriate." [1]

As Judy Brewer said in her May 27, 2007 message, "WAI's Protocols and
Formats Working Group (PFWG) has, as part of its  mission, reviewing
specifications under development in other W3C Working  Groups in to
ensure consideration of accessibility-related needs." [2]

In the original design principles accessibility was a "when possible"
[3], an after thought. I wasn't until November 2007 that the "when
possible" escape clause was removed. So it seems accessibility is
trying to catch up.

However the @headers issue is 14 months old. Over a thousand messages
have been written on this subject on-list. It has been an issue since
May 2007. [4] Like Julian mentioned "if each feedback loop takes two
years we have a serious problem that we need to fix, for instance by
installing more editors". [5]

> Headers pointing to td. I may be missing some practical issues here,
> but to me it seems that this is essentially a statement against
> native markup semantics enabling accessibility and for promoting
> bolt-on accessibility as an ongoing solution. To raise the overall
> accessibility on the Web, making things work out-of-the-box should be
> the way to go, so we should promote proper use of th semantics.

It is highly commendable to improve the algorithm, but retaining
headers/id functionality is needed as well as backwards compatibility.
I June 2007 PF advised grandfathering it into the spec: "a
re-engineered solution could deliver both superior usability and
authorability. But we are not starting from scratch. There is a
disability constituency that currently uses and depends on this
feature: anyone offering to remove it should be expected to
demonstrate that the replacement works better and is in service." [6]

Best Regards,
Laura

[1] http://www.w3.org/2007/03/HTML-WG-charter.html#wai
[2] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-wai-ig/2007AprJun/0045.html
[3] http://dev.w3.org/cvsweb/~checkout~/html5/html-design-principles/Overview.html?rev=1.1&content-type=text/plain
[4] http://esw.w3.org/topic/HTML/IssueTableHeaders#head-bac4baeb0cd0ea09b7f76ff9c409740257566408
[5] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2008Sep/0007.html
[6] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-html/2007Jun/0145.html
Received on Wednesday, 24 September 2008 18:02:13 GMT

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