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BarCamp on Accessible Media @ Stanford on November 1

From: Arthur Barstow <art.barstow@nokia.com>
Date: Thu, 17 Sep 2009 13:06:15 -0400
Message-Id: <254792DD-593B-49C2-97A5-0F28BA442A46@nokia.com>
Cc: David Singer <singer@apple.com>, John Foliot <jfoliot@stanford.edu>
To: public-webapps <public-webapps@w3.org>
Below is some information about a 1-day BarCamp-type gathering on  
"accessible media" to be held at Stanford on Sunday November 1  
(precedes the W3C's annual TPAC meeting week [1]).

The organizers of this event are Apple's David Singer and Stanford's  
John Foliot. If want to attend, you are asked to contact David or  
John ASAP (contact info at the end).

N.B.:

[[
"To attend the workshop, you must come prepared to present on one of  
the questions above, or a suitable other question, drawing from your  
experience or expertise to help inform the discussion and make  
progress on proposing solutions."
]]

-Regards, Art Barstow

[1] http://www.w3.org/2009/11/TPAC/


Begin forwarded message:

> From: ext Philippe Le Hegaret <plh@w3.org>
> Date: September 16, 2009 2:49:00 PM EDT
> Subject: Re: workshop on Accessible Media
>
> We plan to hold an informal workshop or two on the subject of
> Accessibility of Media Elements in HTML 5.  The media elements are  
> audio
> and video, and their supporting elements such as source.
>
> This will be an informal workshop, as we wish to hold it before the
> November 2009 TPAC and there is not sufficient time to announce a  
> formal
> workshop (six weeks' notice is required
> <http://www.w3.org/2005/10/Process-20051014/events.html#GAEvents>).
>
>
> The current specification of Timed Media elements HTML5 takes a fairly
> hard-nosed approach to what is presented as timed media:  it is  
> inside the
> timed media files that are selected from the sources.
> There is currently no provision for linking or synchronizing other
> material, and there is no discussion of how to manage the media so  
> it's
> accessible.  This needs addressing.
>
> We would like to understand the 'landscape' and put in place good
> architectural support in general, as well as making sure that specific
> solutions exist to the more pressing problems.  We anticipate  
> working, in
> public, to develop proposals for any changes to specifications that  
> might
> be suggested by the work, and also to develop a cohesive 'best  
> practices'
> document that shows how those provisions can be used, by authors,  
> by user
> agents (browsers), and users, to address the issues we identify.
>
> We are aware that good accessibility rests on four legs (at least):
>
>   1. Proper provision in the specifications and documentation of those
> provisions and how to use them;
>
>   2. Willingness and ability to use those provisions effectively on  
> the
> part of authors;
>
>   3. Provision of the right preferences, tools, and user interfaces in
> user agents to enable access to the provisions, perhaps  
> automatically; and
>
>   4. The ability of those who need the provisions to find, enable or
> access them, and understand what they get.
>
> It's easy to fail on one of these, and good accessibility is not then
> achieved.
>
> Accessibility provisions for Timed Media might themselves be timed  
> (e.g.
> captions) or un-timed (e.g. a readable screen-play or transcript).  We
> wish to consider both categories.
>
>
> The questions we would like to address include, but are not limited  
> to the
> following:
>
> # What accessibility issues, and what are the 'classic' provisions for
> them, in timed media?
>
> We are all aware of captioning for those who cannot hear the audio;  
> less
> common is audio description of video, for those who cannot see.
> The BBC recently had some content that had optional sign-language
> overlays.  Issues can also arise with susceptibility (e.g. flashing  
> videos
> and epilepsy, color vision issues, and so on).
>
>
> # What solution frameworks already exist that would be relevant?
>
> We are all aware of the existence, for example, of screen readers and
> perhaps even Braille output devices.  We've seen tags in other  
> parts of
> HTML that are there to support accessibility, and frameworks such  
> as ARIA.
> Are there existing good practices that naturally extend to Timed  
> Media?
>
>
> # Are there solutions that will benefit, be tested and seen by, and  
> more
> likely authored by, the wider community?
>
> There have been ongoing debates about whether 'unique' provision for
> accessibility (functions with no other purpose) are desirable.  We  
> do not
> intend to have this philosophical debate, but it would be useful to  
> hear
> of related problems and opportunities that help make the debate
> irrelevant.  For example, the provision of a transcript or separately
> accessible captions, in text form, makes indexing and searching  
> content
> much easier.  Are there problems like this that we can address that  
> will
> make it more likely that authors build accessible timed media?
>
>
> # What new problems and new opportunities arise when we use digital  
> media
> embedded in the world-wide-web?
>
> Much of the work and research in this area has been done for isolated,
> analog, systems (classic television). Instead, we have a digital  
> content
> presented in a rich context (web content).  What new opportunities and
> solutions are opened up by this?
>
>
> # What technologies and solutions exist that we should notice?
>
> The work of the W3C on a common Timed Text format, and the  
> existence of
> general frameworks such as ARIA (Accessible Rich Internet  
> Applications),
> suggest that there are pieces of the solution space we should  
> consider.
> What are they?
>
>
> # What can be done today, given the structures we have? What  
> experiments
> and proof-of-concept work should we notice?
>
> We are aware that there are a number of pioneering organizations in  
> this
> area.  The BBC's work with sign-language has already been noted;  
> workflows
> for captioning content have been developed in a number of places.   
> There
> have been script-based experiments on captioning.
> What are some of these systems and experiments, and what can we  
> learn from
> them?
>
>
> This informal workshop will last one day, and the first one will be  
> held
> in the Bay Area on November 1st at Stanford University.  To attend the
> workshop, you must come prepared to present on one of the questions  
> above,
> or a suitable other question, drawing from your experience or  
> expertise to
> help inform the discussion and make progress on proposing solutions.
>
> We expect the workshop to spend perhaps two-thirds of the time on  
> these
> presentations, with short Q&A for each.  Then we may have a panel  
> session
> or two, or moderated discussion, to address focused questions.  As  
> stated
> in the introduction, we are looking for a framework and solutions with
> good 'longevity', simplicity, and efficacy, that will be embraced  
> by the
> standards community, content authors, user agent developers, and end
> users.  This is ambitious but achievable, we believe, and  
> opportunities
> such as this to 'get it right from the start' come up all too rarely.
>
> We think that at least the following communities and groups might be
> affected:
>
> * HTML 5, the place where the Timed Media tags are specified, and the
> integration therefore must occur;
> * PFWG, where much thought has gone into this general problem space;
> * Media Annotations, who are concerned with metadata for Timed Media;
> * Timed Text, owners of DFXP, one of the likely text formats;
> * CSS, who define the styling of text, and also the nature of  
> 'rendering
> surfaces' (and a presentation where a provision is needed, such as
> captions, might be seen as a rendering surface of a specific kind).
>
>
> If you feel prepared to attend, present, and work cooperatively on  
> this
> problem, please contact the workshop organizers as soon as possible.
> --
> David Singer
> Multimedia Standards, Apple Inc.
> singer@apple.com
>
> John Foliot
> Stanford University Online Accessibility Program
> jfoliot@stanford.edu
Received on Thursday, 17 September 2009 17:07:12 GMT

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