W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-eo@w3.org > July to September 1999

Re: Please review Note on SMIL accessibility features

From: Geoff Freed <Geoff_Freed@wgbh.org>
Date: 4 Aug 1999 10:10:50 +0000
Message-ID: <n1278361029.44917@wgbh.org>
To: "Ian Jacobs" <ij@w3.org>, "Robert Neff" <robneff@home.com>
Cc: ij@w3.org, "Judy Brewer" <jbrewer@w3.org>, marja@w3.org, w3c-wai-eo@w3.org, "Madeleine Rothberg" <Madeleine_Rothberg@wgbh.org>
        Reply to:   RE>>Please review Note on SMIL accessibility features

Ian said...
>It would be nice to link to a demo to show what we mean. Does
>anyone have a demo handy that we can put on the W3C Web site?

I've got several SMIL demos showing captions, subtitles and descriptions.  You can see one at


Follow the directions on the Web page for switching between English and German.  You can also download this movie (CAR.ZIP) from


Sorry this clip isn't available in streaming form (which is the whole point of SMIL).  We don't have a G2 server set up yet.  


Date: 8/4/99 10:09 AM
To: Geoff Freed
From: Ian Jacobs
Robert Neff wrote:
> here are some comments and just got back form vacation land....
> 1.  i would like to see pictorial or GIF examples alongside the code.

While I agree that images or illustrations may help explain some
features, will static images convey the dynamic issues we are
discussing? Can you say a word about what you would like to see
in images?

> 2.  would like to see a simpler explanation.  Many people are going to be
> drawn to this because SMIL is starting to get HOT!  would a executive
> summary or purpose be appropriate to tell people in one section "why they
> need this and what it can do for them"

While an "executive summary" would be useful, that is not the
role of this particular piece. This one is meant for developers
(to understand what features to implement) and authors
who are not necessarily using authoring tools to produce SMIL.

> 3. I would like to see a pictoral and word flowchart that describe how smile
> file are used and their components.  For example, what are the required
> files and what is the directory structure.  Not sure what can be done
> without aligning the content with a company (does the file structure differ
> form vendor to vender?).  Geoff, one of the biggest problems I had when we
> used it here was trying to make sense of the different files and where they
> needed to be placed)

I don't believe that this is an accessibility issue. This would
be appropriate for a general SMIL tutorial or FAQ and I'm sure
that a tutorial would help all audiences. However, including
this level of detail in this Note might dilute the accessibility
points we hope to communicate.

> 4.  If i want to make a presentation with the video description, how is this
> to be added...on another track.

Marja and I will discuss this.

> 5.  I have more notes that i made on the airplane, but need to unpack to
> find them...

I suggest looking near the shaving kit. <wink>
> 6.   In the sentence, "Dynamic multimedia presentations differ from less
> dynamic pages in some important ways that affect their accessibility to
> people with disabilities:"  reword to "Dynamic multimedia presentations
> affect accessibility"  not sure what "differ from less dynamic pages in some
> important ways" adds to this?  Less dynamic pages are not explained anywhere
> and i found myself caught up in this...

The goal of the sentence was to juxtapose static pages (a la HTML)
more dynamic pages (a la SMIL). However, in editing, we lost the
context that justified this transition. We'll clean it up.

> 7.  need visual examples of discrete and stream..  can we give examples of
> how SMIL can be used?

It would be nice to link to a demo to show what we mean. Does
anyone have a demo handy that we can put on the W3C Web site?

> 8.  file extensions RM and RTX are used without explanation.  are there more
> extensions?  See item 3

Ok, we'll clarify.

Thank you for the comments Robert,

 _ Ian

Ian Jacobs (jacobs@w3.org)   http://www.w3.org/People/Jacobs
Tel/Fax:                     +1 212 684-1814

------------------ RFC822 Header Follows ------------------
Received: by wgbh.org with ADMIN;4 Aug 1999 10:00:46 +0100
Received: from w3.org (ibjacobs.dialup.access.net [])
	by mail1.panix.com (Postfix) with ESMTP
	id EF96B4EF; Wed,  4 Aug 1999 09:46:05 -0400 (EDT)
Sender: ian@panix.com
Message-ID: <37A84562.1B21F4BD@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 04 Aug 1999 09:51:30 -0400
From: Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>
Organization: W3C - World Wide Web Consortium
X-Mailer: Mozilla 4.6 [en] (X11; I; Linux 2.2.5-15 i586)
X-Accept-Language: fr,it
MIME-Version: 1.0
To: Robert Neff <robneff@home.com>
Cc: w3c-wai-eo@w3.org, Judy Brewer <jbrewer@w3.org>,
	Geoff Freed <Geoff_Freed@wgbh.org>,
	Madeleine Rothberg <Madeleine_Rothberg@wgbh.org>, marja@w3.org,
Subject: Re: Please review Note on SMIL accessibility features
References: <> <001201bede47$686a6500$64520518@alex1.va.home.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=us-ascii
Content-Transfer-Encoding: 7bit
Received on Wednesday, 4 August 1999 10:09:03 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Tuesday, 6 January 2015 21:55:46 UTC