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Accessibility, perfect or better Re: hit testing and retained graphics

From: Charles McCathieNevile <chaals@opera.com>
Date: Fri, 01 Jul 2011 16:41:26 +0200
To: "E.J. Zufelt" <everett@zufelt.ca>, "Paul Bakaus" <pbakaus@zynga.com>
Cc: "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>, "John Foliot" <jfoliot@stanford.edu>, "Charles Pritchard" <chuck@jumis.com>, "Richard Schwerdtfeger" <schwer@us.ibm.com>, "Cameron McCormack" <cam@mcc.id.au>, "Cynthia Shelly" <cyns@microsoft.com>, "david.bolter@gmail.com" <david.bolter@gmail.com>, "Frank Olivier" <Frank.Olivier@microsoft.com>, "Mike@w3.org" <Mike@w3.org>, "public-canvas-api@w3.org" <public-canvas-api@w3.org>, "public-html@w3.org" <public-html@w3.org>, "public-html-a11y@w3.org" <public-html-a11y@w3.org>
Message-ID: <op.vxx23c1wwxe0ny@widsith.local>
On Thu, 30 Jun 2011 15:52:52 +0200, Paul Bakaus <pbakaus@zynga.com> wrote:
> Am 29.06.11 15:50 schrieb "E.J. Zufelt" unter <everett@zufelt.ca>:
>> On 2011-06-29, at 9:33 AM, Paul Bakaus wrote:

>>> …Mostly, today's canvas applications are game demos and drawing apps.
>>>
>> What about tomorrow?
>>
>>> If you are writing your GUI in canvas, you are doing it wrong...

(Agreed. That doesn't mean it won't happen)

>> And, when developers build a GUI on canvas, and therefore are "wrong",
>> how will persons with certain disabilities access that GUI so that they
>> can be full participants in the "wrongness", be it at school, work, or
>> for entertainment?
>
> If we try to fix their "wrongness", wrong will become right. We don't  
> want that to happen. Disabled people *should* complain about GUIs
> written in Canvas.

Yes, they should. And people who see people building their GUI in canvas  
should complain to them about it too. But in many cases, that will amount  
to so much hot air.

We want to make the Web more accessible. Disabled people can complain all  
they want, but if the only way to make the UI accessible is completely  
rewrite it, then only the people who are prepared (i.e. have the  
knowledge, capacity, and desire) to do a perfect job are likely to go  
there. And most of those people (whom I claim are relatively rare) will  
already have done that - so they're not part of the problem we're trying  
to solve.

If there are ways to make incremental improvements then many organisations  
who recognise their responsibility to do what they can, but don't have the  
resources to actually Do The Right Thing Properly will at least have a way  
to patch and improve what they have. People put in the position of arguing  
that a few disabled people mean they have to re-tool from the ground up  
because they made a bad design decision often don't get very far in  
practice. Anyone who can demonstrate that everything their company does is  
perfectly accessible can claim the moral high ground here. But I don't  
think you'll have a lot of company there. Anyone who knows that sometimes,  
for some reason, a corner gets cut, should understand the issue clearly  
enough.

Letting the perfect be the enemy of the good (and even more of the "at  
least a bit better") provides for a little bit of very good accessibility  
- but not enough to even make a ghetto, let alone allow people to act  
independently. Unfortunately with accessibility (like with most of the  
rest of what we do in standards) we need to actually work with the tools  
we have in the world we live in, and can't afford to spend our time  
dreaming up Utopias. So although we don't *want* to allow the wrong thing,  
the whole of HTML5 is predicated on the idea that we need to work with  
what people do rather than what would be a very good thing for people to  
do.

cheers

-- 
Charles McCathieNevile  Opera Software, Standards Group
     je parle français -- hablo español -- jeg lærer norsk
http://my.opera.com/chaals       Try Opera: http://www.opera.com
Received on Friday, 1 July 2011 14:42:48 GMT

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