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Cognitive Disabilities

From: <saylordj@WellsFargo.COM>
Date: Tue, 27 May 2003 15:55:14 -0700
Message-ID: <5F4C8CF803342448A809AADE36C7B03C7D2F46@msgsw55cacah05.wellsfargo.com>
To: j.chetwynd@btinternet.com, w3c-wai-eo@w3.org

Hello Jonathan,
You write,
It's my contention that only when WAI is creating graphical sites will we in
a position to contribute to this discussion. 

Doyle,
Well pictures (graphics) have certain properties.  A key property of images
that are not captured by text is the connectedness of points in something we
see.  This factorial property of image points is reflected in the neural
networks where a neuron will connect to thousands of other neurons.

The sites you reference uses some animation.  But what is the relationship
between text and animation?  Let's take the attention structure in the eye,
the retina and optic nerve have two parallel channels.  The more
evolutionarily recent pathway carries color information and has about ten
times the information in that channel as the older magnocellular system that
sees motion and 3d.

http://www.bbsonline.org/documents/a/00/00/05/11/

If one sees something move in animation the primary quality we see in
something moving is the connectedness of points in that surface.  If I see
an animation move such as a circle moving from one side of the screen to the
other I 'know' the circle on one side of the screen is the same as the
circle that reaches the other side, because that is what seeing motion does.
But some people can have a disability that injures the motion seeing system
so they don't know visually that the circle is whole, and instead they see
fragmentation of the circle which they can't construct into a whole.  That
wholeness is what we 'see' when you write,

Jonathan,
On my system bus is illustrated by a red bus, however my colleague uses a
green bus. 
in some instances (where the colleague is to actually catch a bus of a
particular color) it will be important that the color is defined.  In other
instances it will be more helpful if the color is left to the user system. 

Doyle,
Well here you are referring to the 'arbitrary' nature (Semiotic theory) of
conceptual content.  In terms of vision though we 'see' wholeness in things.
That is the primary property of seeing motion.  So if we use graphics we are
going to be utilizing connectionist properties of an image.

To use images without text means to pursue a path like text does, we have to
be able to convey two different types of image or grammarize the image
because the sensory system in humans has two pathways built in.  From those
pathways we can think of the different functions that need to be done with
images.

You write,
My current effort relates to creating a series of 'transparent' royalty free
icons to cover a range of popular topics.

Doyle,
Icons arise from prototype processes in neural networks that settle upon a
stable output about a given set of images.  We don't want icons that look
like something, we want to find a way to grab a piece of visual phenomenon
that we can connect to other things.  In a practical sense as you cite with
HUD (heads up display) is how do we attach a gunsite target icon on a jet
flying ahead of us? Or in video games, or flight trainers.

We don't want an icon in my view to look like an object we want an icon to
stick to a sparrow in such a way that it touches all birds and we know that.
That is what written words do.  They stick to an object they don't resemble
the object.  That resolves what you referred to in the example of the red
bus and green bus, is the connectedness issue between expressions such that
the green and red refer to the same bus.  

So for example I could see this as a grid super computing (see Ian Foster,
http://www.bbsonline.org/documents/a/00/00/05/11/) process that all people
share so that for a given surface in the landscape the grid computes
prototypes of the surface that connects that surface to like surfaces.  We
want our attention structure mapped and defined so that the sticking of
connections between people functions.  We stick our attention to a seen
surface and the grid calculates the prototype structure in the seen surface
so that if I use that image in a language like way someone else understands
how this cognates.

Jonathan,
perhaps we are really talking about Augmented Virtuality?

Doyle,
Virtuality refers to creating a cave like environment that we can interact
with, but how does a virtuality connect to the world?  That means that I
want to be able to find a bathroom using an Augmented Virtuality, but the
concept of Virtuality implies that the imagery is not connected but self
contained.  We want to build in a connection process.
Doyle



Doyle Saylor
Business Systems Consultant
Intranet Hosting Services
Wells Fargo Services Corporation
  
-----Original Message-----
From: Jonathan Chetwynd [mailto:j.chetwynd@btinternet.com] 
Sent: Tuesday, May 27, 2003 10:28 AM
To: saylordj@WellsFargo.COM
Subject: Re: Outreach

Doyle, 

again, I suggest this is in general better sent direct to the list, EO is
fairly quiet. 
the benefit is that I and others can then find it. perhaps we need to change
the 'subject' to cognitive disability. 

The issue you are addressing, I know as the 'red bus' problem: 

I wish to send a message to a colleague, about a bus. 
On my system bus is illustrated by a red bus, however my colleague uses a
green bus. 
in some instances (where the colleague is to actually catch a bus of a
particular color) it will be important that the color is defined. 
in other instances it will be more helpful if the color is left to the user
system. 

There is no way to solve this problem absolutely, ancient examples include
the ship load of china freighted from the mainland, with the words rather
than the colours they represent, in glaze. 

a couple of quotes from Alan Firminger might be helpful: 
One of the problems that comes from W3C is that they are committed to
universal access by any rendering method. That fails when the essence of a
site is graphic. 
or 
I have worried about absent alt text behind the 85 photographs since first
putting this together. 
I cannot compose words that describe what is important about the
photographs, singly or together. How can the message be translated. So I
cannot help a blind visitor. 
To provide words accessible to sighted visitors undermines the power of the
photographs. Everyone seeing a picture wants to read the caption - and so
close off sensitivity to image and debase the picture. Observe couples at
the National Gallery, one will read the caption then say to the other "Its a
nymph resting by a stream". 
Phil and I agreed - let the photographs do the talking. 
The solution is a separate piece of writing about Magpie Dance, like their
website. But a compelling piece of fiction would be marvellous. 
Consider the press release . This is not linked to on the site because
it would be so damaging to a visitor. 

It's my contention that only when WAI is creating graphical sites will we in
a position to contribute to this discussion. 

My current effort relates to creating a series of 'transparent' royalty free
icons to cover a range of popular topics. 
        Scaleable Vector Graphics is the appropriate W3 technology and the
fabled bus is here: http://www.peepo.com/svg/ 
If you don't have an SVG viewer then visit
http://www.peepo.com/alfi-x/about-me.html for a gif copy. 
well that together with a graphical interface to enable browsing.... 
and accessible games, did you follow the milkmaid, cow and splat thread? (it
has the same topic as yours, the toilet) the cow site would be particularly
great if it worked for blind users. 
        The point being that whereas a sited user would learn mouse skills,
the keyboard user would learn tab and enter skills, but also presumably how
to navigate accessible drop down lists, mazes, and more. The number of
activities, rather than web pages that are accessible seems to be very close
to zero. If you know of any examples, or are interested in developing one,
that would be great! 

On practical AR i have seen two excellent examples, both rather a long time
ago, one before CDs were commercial, at the Royal Society was a
demonstration of a HUD for fighter aircraft showing pylons highlighted. The
other strangely was at the new air traffic control centre, but when it was
still a research centre, this was very subtle, to enable users to remain
calm in all circumstances. It allowed the user to overlay a large range of
plans, with excellent 'transparency' (sorry another sort). near collisions
were for instance not in red. peepo follows what I can remember of the color
scheme. 

perhaps we are really talking about Augmented Virtuality? 
did you ever use logitech's ifeel mice? 
the textures here http://www.immersion.com/showcase/ce/texture.shtml are
particularly effective, if you have the kit. 
they gave us some mice to play with, but this has not taken off as a web
technique, and W3 seems unaware of the benefits. 

On the text side I am less clear, that's a good sign! over to you. 

best wishes 

Jonathan 

On Tuesday, May 27, 2003, at 04:12 pm, saylordj@WellsFargo.COM wrote: 

Hello Jonathan, 
Let's talk a little more about attention. 

In a recent discussion with blind engineers concerning how to solve certain 
kinds of problems of locating one's self in the world whether or not through

GPS or using talking signs and what will work, I got this example, will GPS 
explain to me how to get the nearest bathroom? 

If I am in a restaurant I look around the room and see the restroom sign. 
How do I attach the same information on a web page to that room so that a 
blind person knows where to go in the room? 

Suppose I am autistic, or dyslexic, or face blind, or schizophrenic? In any 
of these cases, attention structure in the person is being used. How does 
my web page fit their attention structure? Which is a related question to 
how we fit a web page to the landscape in Augmented Realism. If I attach an 
image of where to find the restroom I must understand how each group uses 
their attention structure to do their daily lives in the same sort of way. 

This is a language question not just in the sense of sharing attention, but 
clarifying how we attach data to different functional attention structures. 
For example with dyslexia, it is posited that the magnocellular channel in 
vision is affected. Therefore how do we attach that function of information 
to the persons other attentional structures so they know where the bathroom 
is? 

In what way do you want me to dilate on the above or my comments below? 
Doyle 

Doyle Saylor 
Business Systems Consultant 
Intranet Hosting Services 
Wells Fargo Services Corporation 


-----Original Message----- 
From: Jonathan Chetwynd [mailto:j.chetwynd@btinternet.com] 
Sent: Saturday, May 24, 2003 3:47 PM 
To: saylordj@WellsFargo.COM 
Subject: Re: Outreach 

Doyle, 

could you elaborate on (offlist for the moment, unless you think 
relevant) 

My interest is not exactly the same as yours, i.e. I am highly 
interested in 
the issue of cognitive disabilities (which I mean to cover more than 
the 
narrow focus some people have of the technical term) and accessibility. 

as this is exactly, what I've been working on for more than a few years. 

Jonathan 

On Friday, May 23, 2003, at 02:09 PM, saylordj@WellsFargo.COM wrote: 

Hi Jonathan, 
Thanks Jonathan for the much longer commentary. Also thanks for 
clarifying 
for the public that we are writing for EO (Education and Outreach) not 
GL 
(Guidelines). 

My interest is not exactly the same as yours, i.e. I am highly 
interested in 
the issue of cognitive disabilities (which I mean to cover more than 
the 
narrow focus some people have of the technical term) and accessibility. 

You wrote, 
There is at least as valid a case that we need to address the needs of 
individuals* and to ensure that our advice is clear and unambiguous. 
Good 
examples are invaluable, the lack of them continues to make 
differentiation of the purpose of title and alt ambiguous. 

Doyle, 
I don't see this as exactly an issue of individuals outside of 
organizations 
but how does one understand the networked social structure of IT. In 
other 
words I don't see in my mind that there is public mind outside what we 
are 
doing, but rather how does our structure work to admit any other mind 
into 
our work barrier free. That Web Accessibility means inclusion of 
everyone. 
That doesn't say what you write disagrees with that, but I focus on 
what you 
say here, 

You wrote, 
It is only by inviting 
contributions from members of the public, that we will fully understand 
the usability issues that are slowing our progress with this group. 

Doyle, 
I think it is good for the public to be a part of any of these 
discussions. 
Let's take Slash Dot as an example where a highly technical subject 
matter 
is open to the public for discussion. They have about 2 million 
subscribers 
in the last count, and a system for free expression. But what is 
missing 
from that public is the sense of how cognitive impairment shapes 
barriers in 
discourse. So I don't think of Slash Dot as a place for someone with 
Cognitive Impairment to go to get the latest about technology in a 
barrier 
free way. And therefore inviting individuals for participation has 
virtues 
but not a solution to the problem that we face with cognitive barriers. 

You wrote, 
My feeling is that the latter is a far greater proportion ~10:1 perhaps 
or even 100:1, and one can only expect this ratio to increase as time 
passes. 

We have perhaps fallen into the trap of believing that all sites are 
documents similar to those we create, and write our guidance for, 
whereas many sites in fact serve very different purposes. 

Doyle, 
In this case you refer to how the public creates their own pages. You 
make 
for example a crucial point in this comment, 

You wrote, 
Given that the site in discussion has 80 images and no text or sound, 
it would need a great story teller to maintain interest for a blind 
visitor, the challenge is well worth the effort. Do we even speak of 
story telling at WAI? 

Doyle, 
I don't think story telling is the way to approach the idea of 
Cognitive 
impairment. I prefer in theory Joint Attention theory in Cognitive 
Psychology as a means of addressing the technical issues of cognitive 
impairment. 

Any web page anyone makes is meant to share attention space/time with 
someone else. Some cognitive disabilities such as Autism are 
disabilities 
around the issue of sharing attention. 

What we don't adequately address in the technology is focus of 
attention and 
sharing attention in web pages. So if we invited a member of the 
public 
with Aspergers Syndrome (high functioning Autistic like symptoms to 
medicalize for a moment) would we have a means for them to participate 
in 
the EO or any other group in a barrier free way? 

Let me be more concrete about this issue. In Joint Attention theory, 
an 
infant gazes at a parental figure and realizes that the parent looks at 
them, and looks at other things. The child gazes at something the 
parent 
looks at and 'shares' attention. Essentially in each figures mind 
shares a 
sense that when each looks at something similar in mental activities 
happen, 
or share 'attention' structure in each persons brain. If mom looks at 
the 
toy, I am doing the same thing in my head. 

How could the technology possibly address these issues? And I would 
want 
this theorizing to include blind people who aren't going to share 
vision 
with someone. 

Technologically shared attention means that if you look at something I 
can 
cognate attention also at something we are sharing in the moment. So 
we are 
asking ourselves what is the shape and structure of shared attention 
(not a 
subset of shared attention like story telling). 

The technology of that is geographic realism (GPS and talking signs). 
We 
don't have consumer products that can address 'augmented' reality 
computing, 
but we have engineering research that points at this area 
http://www.shared-reality.de/ 
index.php?part=main&main=opener&sub=page&lang=E 
N. Walking through a landscape and sticking information to the 
landscape is 
augmented reality (the U.S. military has some programs in this area) 
http://www.augmented-reality.org/. There is research at some labs that 
address that issue http://www.media.mit.edu/wearables/ 
http://www.wearablegroup.org/. But that is the fundamental place where 
cognitive disabilities meets Web Accessibility. So that for an 
Autistic 
person as they walk through a landscape a web page is presented to 
them as 
they gaze at the landscape in a usable barrier free way. 

For example, if I had a stroke and my frontal lobe was damaged, My 
attention 
structure would be greatly altered. My remaining living brain 
structures 
having spent a life time performing together with what is missing could 
still perform attention and probably want to share with others my 
attention. 
Do we have any sense of what that sharing might be like? 

If an average autistic person joins EO do we have a sense of sharing 
attention with them? 

That is where I think the most profound work lies ahead for Web 
Accessibility. This area lies at the heart of language (where Joint 
Attention theory is posited as the foundation for language) like use 
of the 
web http://citeseer.nj.nec.com/vertegaal99gaze.html. For anyone who 
can't 
read or write, or does not speak a common language shared attention is 
the 
barrier by which we strive to succeed. 
Thanks, 
Doyle 



Doyle Saylor 
Business Systems Consultant 
Intranet Hosting Services 
Wells Fargo Services Corporation 


-----Original Message----- 
From: Jonathan Chetwynd [mailto:j.chetwynd@btinternet.com] 
Sent: Thursday, May 22, 2003 10:22 PM 
To: saylordj@WellsFargo.COM 
Cc: w3c-wai-eo@w3.org 
Subject: Re: Outreach 

Doyle, (this is eo not gl) 

in brief the perceived WAI audience is seen to be government, commerce 
and web specialists, so WAI documents are designed as far as possible 
to suit this perception. There is a somewhat valid argument that as a 
'standards' organisation this is appropriate. 

There is at least as valid a case that we need to address the needs of 
individuals* and to ensure that our advice is clear and unambiguous. 
Good examples are invaluable, the lack of them continues to make 
differentiation of the purpose of title and alt ambiguous. 

I have invited, Alan Firminger to join IG, though EO might potentially 
be a friendlier environment, he expresses interest in WAI and believes 
he has read and understood the guidelines. It is only by inviting 
contributions from members of the public, that we will fully understand 
the usability issues that are slowing our progress with this group. 

Are stats available that show the bulk relationship between 
professional and amateur authored pages? 
My feeling is that the latter is a far greater proportion ~10:1 perhaps 
or even 100:1, and one can only expect this ratio to increase as time 
passes. 
We have perhaps fallen into the trap of believing that all sites are 
documents similar to those we create, and write our guidance for, 
whereas many sites in fact serve very different purposes. 

To give a particular example from http://www.peepo.com. We understand 
that the semantic web offers the opportunity to provide plain English 
executive summaries. None-the-less due to a paucity of online 
resources, for some topics we only have links to sites which use 'child 
friendly' illustrations, which some staff and students deem 
inappropriate for our adult users. You can imagine the necessary work; 
for instance in numeracy ludo is a useful game, the only online version 
i have found is in chinese, and has child friendly illustrations. 

The use and benefits of alt/title text in general with online games is 
not well evidenced. examples of accessible games could be very helpful. 
It is not clear how alt/title text will work with SVG. In a similar way 
to drop down menus, tooltips are invaluable, yet SVG seems not to have 
standardised their usage, and there are undoubtedly reasons for this. 

Given that the site in discussion has 80 images and no text or sound, 
it would need a great story teller to maintain interest for a blind 
visitor, the challenge is well worth the effort. Do we even speak of 
story telling at WAI? 

Jonathan 

*Compare with law which applies to individuals, as well as corporations 
and indeed government, notwithstanding that it is created with legal 
advice, and there is only minimal defence that the defendant did not 
know or understand the offence . 


On Thursday, May 22, 2003, at 03:20 PM, saylordj@WellsFargo.COM wrote: 

Hello All, 
Jonathan asked me to post to the W3C guidelines. 

Jonathan makes a point (below) that the guidelines are unclear in some 
ways 
about how to make a site accessible. There are areas which leave 
things up 
in the air of course. In particular defining what it means for 
someone with 
a cognitive impairment is not well defined. 

I wonder though about not putting alt text in for images. That seems 
to me 
to be where the guidelines are most clear. Perhaps Jonathan could 
comment 
on clarity in more depth. 
Doyle 

Doyle Saylor 
Business Systems Consultant 
Intranet Hosting Services 
Wells Fargo Services Corporation 


-----Original Message----- 
From: Jonathan Chetwynd [mailto:j.chetwynd@btinternet.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, May 21, 2003 10:16 PM 
To: saylordj@WellsFargo.COM 
Subject: Re: Outreach 

Doyle, 

Perhaps you could post your comments to the list. 
This person genuinely believes they are following W3C guidelines, and 
over an exchange of a dozen e-mails has tried to develop the site to 
meet our understanding. 

You can tell there is a way to go, and much of this is because of a 
failure of clarity on the part of WAI. 
with regard to scripts, did you read: 
Client-side Scripting Techniques for Web Content Accessibility 
Guidelines 2.0 
http://www.learningdifficulty.org/develop/script-techs.html 

Jonathan 

On Wednesday, May 21, 2003, at 10:52 PM, saylordj@WellsFargo.COM 
wrote: 

Jonathan, 
When I went to the website below the images had no alt text, and 
interestingly when I put the site on my scroll bar it bounced back to 
the 
front of the desk top over my other work. I couldn't stop this 
behavior 
which is something I've never seen before. I had to close that 
window. 
Doyle 

Doyle Saylor 
Business Systems Consultant 
Intranet Hosting Services 
Wells Fargo Services Corporation 


-----Original Message----- 
From: Jonathan Chetwynd [mailto:j.chetwynd@btinternet.com] 
Sent: Wednesday, May 21, 2003 2:21 PM 
To: w3c-wai-eo@w3.org 
Subject: Outreach 

As some of you will know, it has always been my belief that web 
accessibility will be working well when individuals rather than 
organisations are creating accessible web pages. 

To that end, I'd like to mention one of the best websites that peepo 
currently links to http://www.magpol.org/s8/0.html 
(this is a personal view, it's a tough call) 

The website manager has made changes to the site that don't effect 
the 
appearance, but attempt to make it accessible within our current 
understanding. 

Jonathan 

In a way I suppose this is a request for more resources designed for 
the non-profit sector. 
We plainly are not meeting this need currently, and this is a 
significant sector of the whole market. 
Received on Tuesday, 27 May 2003 18:57:01 GMT

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