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Proposal re: scope of auto-generating tools in ATAG2

From: Richards, Jan <jrichards@ocad.ca>
Date: Thu, 10 Feb 2011 17:12:49 -0500
To: AUWG <w3c-wai-au@w3.org>
Message-ID: <F2C77FB59A1A4840A01EF5F59B1826E20A30D5113A@ocadmail.ocad.ca>
Hi all,

Sorry for the delay on this, but there are quite a few moving parts to my proposal...I may polish it a bit more tomorrow..but thoughts are welcome.

[1] Update the definition of "authors"

ATAG 2.0 uses this term in two contexts:
- As shorthand, to denote users of authoring tools.
- As part of the definition of "authoring tool". In this context, authors are people working alone or collaboratively to create or modify web content for use by other people (i.e., other authors, end-users). To qualify as an author for a given piece of web content, a person:
(a) must have *author permission* for the web content; and
(b) must be intending to communicate with other people via the web content.
Note 1: The requirement that authors must be intending to communicate with other people rules out people as authors who are unaware that their actions are resulting in web content (e.g., people filling out application forms, people whose behaviour is being automatically recorded, etc.).
Note 2: Types of authors: The term "authors" may cover roles such as content authors, designers, programmers, publishers, testers, etc. (see also " Part B Conformance Applicability Note #6: Multiple author roles"). 

[2] Update the definition of "authoring tool"

"Authoring Tool"
Any software, or collection of software components, that can be used by authors to create or modify web content for use by other people (i.e., other authors, end-users).
* Note 1: "collection of software components": Multiple applications, plug-ins, etc. can be used together to meet ATAG 2.0. Also see the note in the "Required Components of an ATAG 2.0 Conformance Claim".
* Note 2: "used by authors": The software must be used by people fitting the definition of authors to qualify as an authoring tool.
* Note 3: "for use by other people (end-users)": This clause differentiates authoring tools from the many web applications that allow people to modify web content that only they themselves experience.
* Note 4: Data collection: ATAG 2.0 does not apply to software that an organization uses to gather data from end-users (e.g., application forms, e-commerce orders, web searches, etc.), even if that data is later formatted as web content for processing, storage, etc. In contrast, software that lets someone assemble web content for use by other people that draws from these data sources could be considered an authoring tool.
* Examples of software that may usefully be considered authoring tools under ATAG 2.0:
 - web page authoring tools (e.g. WYSIWYG HTML editors)
 - software for directly editing source code (except simple text editors, see below)
 - software for converting to web content technologies (e.g. "Save as HTML" features in office document applications)
 - integrated development environments (e.g. for web application development)
 - software that generates web content on the basis of templates, scripts, command-line input or "wizard"-type processes
 - software for rapidly updating portions of web pages (e.g. blogging, wikis, online forums)
 - software for generating/managing entire web sites (e.g. content management systems, courseware tools, content aggregators)
 - email clients that send messages in web content technologies
 - multimedia authoring tools
 - software for creating mobile web applications
* Examples of software that are not usefully considered authoring tools under ATAG 2.0:
 - simple text editors: ATAG 2.0 is not intended to apply to simple text editors that can be used to edit source, but that include no support for the production of any particular web content technology. In contrast, ATAG 2.0 can apply to more sophisticated source editors that support the production of specific web content technologies (e.g. with syntax checking, markup prediction, etc.).
 - e-commerce order forms: ATAG 2.0 does not apply because the user of an e-commerce order form is not intending to communicate with other people via web content and is therefore not considered an "author", even if the data collected by the form actually does result in web content (e.g., online tracking pages, etc.).

[3] Clarify in the glossary that "content editing" and "content authoring" mean the same as "content generation". This is in order to ground the term "content being edited". (ed: I did consider that it might be more consistent to use "Authored" everywhere instead, but then we get the unfortunate term "author-authored").

Content Generation (or Content Authoring, Content Editing):
The act of specifying the web content to be rendered, played or executed by user agents <NEW>(also may be referred to as "Content Authoring" or "Content Editing")</NEW>....

[4] Move the info about what is actually being authored from the defn of "author" to a NEW defn of "Content Being Edited":

Content Being Edited:
The *web content* that an *author* can modify during an *authoring session*. The web content being edited may be a complete piece of content (e.g. image, style sheet) or only part of a larger piece of web content (e.g. a status update). The content being edited only includes web content in technologies that the authoring tool supports (e.g., a WYSIWYG HTML editor allows editing of the HTML content of a webpage editable, but not the images).

[5] Update definition of views to be clear that not every part of an editing-view needs to be editable:

A user interface function that authors use to interact with the web content being edited. ATAG 2.0 categorizes views according to whether they support editing:
- editing-views: Views in which some or all of the content is editable; or 
- previews: Views in which none of the content is editable. Often the purpose is to present content as it would appear in a user agent.

ATAG 2.0 also recognizes several approaches to presenting the content in a view: 
- source views: Only the unrendered content is presented (e.g. plain text editors); or 
- rendered views; *Content renderings (conventional, unconventional or partial)* are presented; or
- property views: Only properties of the content are presented. The authoring tool then uses these properties to automatically generate the content to be published (e.g. CMS calendar widget that generates a calendar from the numeric month and year).

(Mr) Jan Richards, M.Sc.
jrichards@ocad.ca | 416-977-6000 ext. 3957 | fax: 416-977-9844
Inclusive Design Research Centre (IDRC) | http://inclusivedesign.ca/
Faculty of Design | OCAD University
Received on Thursday, 10 February 2011 22:13:31 UTC

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