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Re: deaf non-reader

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Sun, 20 Dec 1998 16:50:37 -0500 (EST)
To: Jonathan Chetwynd <jonathan@signbrowser.demon.co.uk>
cc: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.04.9812201642320.27975-100000@tux.w3.org>
Food for thought - I don't think I have an answer yet.

Jonathan touches on an issue that has been raised before (I forget when).

The other case which touched on these issues was where graphics were used
in place of words, analagously to the use of signs. For people who use
this as a primary mode of (visual) communication, the text is no more
accessible than it is to a blind person - it needs to be translated into a
mediun which is suitable, be that braille, graphic symbols or signs.

We should somehow make it clearer that the reasson for text being
considered the basic accessible medium is that it allows those
translations in a way that (for example) graphics does not. I don't know
if anybody in the group who is blind tried to review the sites given, to
better understand the issues, but I would expect them to have a very
difficult time if they did.

If we are going to stick to our principle that 'text is king' (as Daniel
so clearly stated it) then I think we should state that explicitly, and
exlpain why. On the one hand the guidelines need to be interpreted by
using a little common sense, but on the other that is not sufficient
unless we make clear the assumptions with which we are working.

cheers all

Charles

--Charles McCathieNevile -  mailto:charles@w3.org
phone: * +1 (617) 258 0992 *  http://purl.oclc.org/net/charles
       **** new phone number ***
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative -  http://www.w3.org/WAI
545 Technology sq., Cambridge MA, USA

On Sun, 20 Dec 1998, Jonathan Chetwynd wrote:

  I am  a teacher of adults with learning difficulties, they do not all
  conform to the above description however:
  
  "the browser should be able to select for all qualities".
  
  
  
  I take exception to your recommendation:
  A.2 Alternative text and descriptions
  Text is considered accessible to almost all users since it may be handled by
  screen readers, non-visual browsers, braille readers, etc. It is good
  practice, as you design a document containing non-textual information
  (images, graphics, applets, sounds, etc.) to think about supplementing that
  information with textual equivalents wherever possible.
  
  
  Our site specifically requires that text is kept to a minimum and that
  graphics as nearly as possible are transparent in understanding.
  
  AltText should be supplied but "the browser should be able to select for all
  qualities".
  
  Links to interactive sites:  http://www.signbrowser.demon.co.uk  no text
  
  Our Science Museum Visit:
  http://www.signbrowser.demon.co.uk/lspacegallery.htm a few
  words and sounds
  
  Our Horniman Visit: http://www.signbrowser.demon.co.uk/horniman  students
  thoughts written by them
  
  Overview of the Symbols:
  http://www.signbrowser.demon.co.uk/signbrowser_gifs.htm subject labels only
  
  
  Thank you
  
  
  ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Jonathan Chetwynd
  jonathan@signbrowser.demon.co.uk
                                                    Voice:    044.171.978.1764
    29 Crimsworth Road
    London SW8 4RJ
  ------------------------------------------------------------------------
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
Received on Sunday, 20 December 1998 16:50:50 GMT

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