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Re: [attempted summary] Techniques, Procedures, and Checklists

From: Alistair Garrison <alistair.j.garrison@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, 14 Jun 2012 11:44:19 +0200
To: Shadi Abou-Zahra <shadi@w3.org>, Eval TF <public-wai-evaltf@w3.org>
Message-Id: <B4CD507D-1146-4FDB-8794-38B3A0220A5B@gmail.com>
Hi Shadi, 

All sounds fine… 

But, can I just check… 

Say I'm an evaluator with my own set of direct checks for WCAG 2.0 SCs… Would it be the case that in order to use each of my own checks for conformance - I really should create a technique, provide the check I wish to use as a way to evaluate this technique, and then publish it - so it can become a publicly documented, vetted, and broadly consensed/recognized Technique.  I suppose it could even be published through the "Techniques for WCAG 2.0 submission form"... http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/WCAG20/TECHS-SUBMIT/ 

All the best 

Alistair  

On 14 Jun 2012, at 11:25, Shadi Abou-Zahra wrote:

> Hi Alistair,
> 
> As far as I know WCAG WG is very clear that the instance of Techniques that they publish are *not* exhaustive and *not* exclusive. In fact, they encourage the development of Techniques by technology developers, specific to different languages and regions, or specific to particular contexts (for example in a particular network setting or such).
> 
> However, they *do* encourage the use of publicly documented, vetted, and broadly consensed/recognized Techniques for the particular context (country, region, technology, etc) for development and evaluation.
> 
> The emphasis is clearly on the Success Criteria rather than on the Techniques, which is why they are optional in the methodology.
> 
> Regards,
>  Shadi
> 
> 
> On 14.6.2012 11:11, Alistair Garrison wrote:
>> Hi Shadi,
>> 
>> With all the debate, I think the "elephant in the room" question is for the W3C/WAI WCAG 2.0 WG to clearly answer:
>> 
>> "Do they envisage, and wish to encourage, WCAG 2.0 SCs to be evaluated directly using an evaluators own checks and intuition; or do they envisage, and wish to encourage, WCAG 2.0 SCs to be evaluated through the test procedures from the _instances_ of 'sufficient' Techniques (and failure conditions) that they regularly publish?"
>> 
>> All the best
>> 
>> Alistair
>> 
>> On 14 Jun 2012, at 10:38, Shadi Abou-Zahra wrote:
>> 
>>> Dear Eval TF,
>>> 
>>> There has been a lengthy discussion with many different points raised in it. This is an attempt to summarize key points to try and draw out some decisions; please add clarifications or points I may have missed.
>>> 
>>> 
>>> #1. Making the use of Techniques mandatory
>>> 
>>> The thread was initiated in a request to make Step 1.e "Define the Techniques" to be used as non-optional. Here is the initial mail:
>>> -<http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-wai-evaltf/2012May/0008>
>>> 
>>> It seems that the base assumption for this request is that developers will use documented Techniques and provide a comprehensive list to an evaluator to check. Several people have responded that this model may not always work, and that the methodology also needs to work when the evaluator has no information about how the website has been developed.
>>> 
>>> *Suggested action:* decide if Step 1.e should be optional or mandatory.
>>> 
>>> 
>>> #2. Difference between Techniques and Failures
>>> 
>>> A second related thread was initiated in a request to use the term "Test Procedure" rather than "Technique": Here is the initial mail:
>>> -<http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-wai-evaltf/2012Jun/0019>
>>> 
>>> It seems that the motivation for this request is to differentiate between guidance that the developer follows to implement accessibility features and checks that the evaluator uses to determine barriers. It seems that the misunderstanding stems from the fact that WCAG 2 uses "Techniques" as an umbrella term for both "Sufficient Techniques" and "General Failures". Also "General Failures" seem less well explained.
>>> 
>>> *Suggest action:* revise how we refer to and explain "WCAG Failures".
>>> 
>>> 
>>> #3. Open-ended concept of WCAG 2 Techniques
>>> 
>>> Throughout the discussion there seems to be misunderstandings around the _concept_ of Techniques (the umbrella term) and the _instances_ of Techniques that are regularly published by the WCAG Working Group. It seems that this point also relates to the previous point about the clarity of explanations in WCAG 2, especially for evaluators.
>>> 
>>> While we are not chartered to develop Techniques (including "General Failures") nor to edit the supporting documents for WCAG 2 ("Techniques for WCAG 2.0" and "Understanding WCAG 2.0"), we can suggest changes to the WCAG WG. We can also add specific explanations and references that are particularly relevant to evaluators in our methodology.
>>> 
>>> *Suggest action:* explore potential improvements to WCAG 2 resources from the perspective of evaluators.
>>> 
>>> 
>>> Regards,
>>>  Shadi
>>> 
>>> --
>>> Shadi Abou-Zahra - http://www.w3.org/People/shadi/
>>> Activity Lead, W3C/WAI International Program Office
>>> Evaluation and Repair Tools Working Group (ERT WG)
>>> Research and Development Working Group (RDWG)
>>> 
>> 
>> 
> 
> -- 
> Shadi Abou-Zahra - http://www.w3.org/People/shadi/
> Activity Lead, W3C/WAI International Program Office
> Evaluation and Repair Tools Working Group (ERT WG)
> Research and Development Working Group (RDWG)
Received on Thursday, 14 June 2012 09:44:53 GMT

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