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Re: i do not understand?

From: William Loughborough <love26@gorge.net>
Date: Wed, 28 Jul 1999 06:10:11 -0700
Message-ID: <379F0133.5C38EC8E@gorge.net>
To: Robert Neff <robneff@home.com>
CC: w3c-wai-eo@w3.org
RN:: "to share some experiences as we gear up to support..."

WL: In 1948 I worked in the engineering department of a large overseas
oil company (Bahrein Petroleum) in Manhattan. There were: 1 chief and 4
associate/assistant engineers, three engineering clerks (including me),
2 secretaries, and a "typing pool" of 4! As in the case of engineering
draftsmen, the changes in technology have radically changed this
situation and the quaint notion of a typing pool seems as remote as Mr.
Cratchett's toting numbers as an accountant's assistant.

We never said it would be easy to implement big changes in the field of
Web design and implementation, just that it is *inevitable* and
accessibility is a completely unavoidable part of that perhaps painful
process (alliteration accidental). The idea that there won't be
department-wide, branch-wide, etc. style sheets is unthinkable and that
is only one of the things that will happen. HTML and its subsequent
children will be as commonplace a prerequisite for people preparing
stuff for Webcasting as was typing for those in the pool. The tools will
be judged as much by the quality of their compliance with guidelines as
with their ease of use. 

****Conformance will be as routine as spell-checking.****

Right now it might seem that this all just too much for the people
presently doing these jobs, but none of us would qualify for Cratchett's
position and he wouldn't be too hot with a spreadsheet. Your concerns
are well noted and sympathized with, but we must lay sound criteria
(guidelines, checkpoints, and techniques) for accessibility or the Web
will continue to be, as it is now, almost totally out of touch with its
potential for "everyone, everything connected". There will be
frame/table formatters who are the "Luddites" of universal design, but
not for all that long. 

At E & O we must palliate this process so that someone who laboriously
learned to use now deprecated means of presentation won't feel too
sorely displaced from having misplaced her education. It is a process
that is not without pain, but it will happen, in fact is happening.
Received on Wednesday, 28 July 1999 09:10:08 UTC

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