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Re: Compatability

From: Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 20 Jan 1999 14:26:32 -0500
Message-ID: <36A62DE8.2BF78EE4@w3.org>
To: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
CC: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org

If we don't have an accessibility FAQ, this could be used
to start it off!

 - Ian

Charles McCathieNevile wrote:
> Bits of answers interspersed, with the TAKE-HOME MESSAGE at the bottom.
> The Disclaimer: The references given are 'work in progress' and the URIs
> are not necessarily stable. These are the best answers I can give at the
> moment, but I think they are reasonable ones which I will not feel a need
> to change much in the near future. It should also be noted that these are
> personal opinions, and do not necessarily reflect the views of anyone
> else. Specifically, they should not be construed as being endorsed by the
> MIT, the W3C or any of its member organisations.
> I am sending this to the GL group because there may be people there who
> can add to what I say or point out errors. (And because they were asked
>  the question as a group)
> On Tue, 19 Jan 1999, Ashlee Diehl wrote:
>   Dear Sir or Madam,
>   How can I find out if my company's Web site (www.telebankonline.com) is
>   universally accessible?
> CMN::
> You can find out if it is likely to be inaccessible. There are a
> well-known set of problems which make a site inaccessible. If it has none
> of those then it is PROBABLY very widely or universally accessible.
> AD::
>   How would a visually impaired or blind person go about getting on
>   the web? Would they have to use applications and browsers such as JAWS
>   or Lynx?
> CMN::
> Usually there are two pieces to browsing the web. The software which is
> used, and the rendering device (hardware).
> For software people use a wide variety of systems, from Lynx and W3
> (text-based browsers) to Opera, Arachne, Explorer and Netscape ('normal'
> graphic browsers) to pwWebspeak and HomePageReader (voice browsers -
> specifically designed for audio output, altouhg they usually provide some
> kind of visual display as well. These are related to the new generation of
> mobile and telephone-based browsers)
> For rendering device most blind people use a voice output system or a
> braille device. Voice output systems are not necessarily hardware - JAWS
> can use several, some of which are simply software, (although it relies on
> the speakers of course) while emacspeak and ultrasonix use the DECtalk - a
> hardware speech synthesiser (there are many other voice output systems).
> pwWebspeak (for windows) comes with a software speech synthesiser.
> AD::
>   Does a Web site have to reach certain
>   standards to be able to be used with these interfaces?
> CMN::
> A website does have to meet certain standards for these interfaces to be
> useful. It should be noted that many of these are also used by
> non-disabled people. I use Lynx as my main browser, although I do have
> Netscape, Amaya, Explorer and w3. More about the details in a minute.
> AD::
>   I would like to make our Web site as accessible as possible, but I'm not
>   sure where to begin.  Do you have any suggestions?  Is there a check
>   list that I can give to my Web master to find out how accessible we are?
> CMN::
> Universally accessible means more than simply catering to blind people.
> There are also people who are deaf, people who have various kinds of motor
> disability, and people who have combinations of these disabilities using
> the web.
> Read the WAI Page Author Guidelines (although the name may change). These
> are presently a working draft, but they represent a very thorough approach
> to accessibility issues. If you meet all the checkpoints, then your site
> will be very widely accessible. The document also includes discussion of
> rationales, and has an associated techniques document which discusses ways
> to meet checkpoints.
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/WD-WAI-PAGEAUTH is the current DRAFT version.
> There is also a set of quicktips - a checklist of 10 things you really
> really really should do. These are not a full treatment of accessibility,
> but they fit on a business card and will get you a long way towards the
> goal. Again, these are a pilot version, and may change.
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/References/QuickTips#QuickTips
> As an aid to assessing your site, you can use Bobby, an automated
> accessibility checker produced by the CAST organisation. Remember that
> being 'Bobby- approved' does not ensure that your site is accessible -
> there are features which Bobby cannot check, and it is only a computer
> program. On the other hand it is a good and quick way to find out if your
> site contains some of the most common and serious accessibility problems
> http://www.cast.org/bobby
> AD::
>   Thanks for your help,
>   Ashlee Diehl
>   Marketing Programs Manager
>   TeleBank
>   (703) 247-2099
>   adiehl@telebankonline.com
> CMN::
> Pleasure. It's good to see providers taking the problems seriously.
> cheers
> charles
> --Charles McCathieNevile -  mailto:charles@w3.org
> phone: * +1 (617) 258 0992 *  http://purl.oclc.org/net/charles
> W3C Web Accessibility Initiative -  http://www.w3.org/WAI
> 545 Technology sq., Cambridge MA, USA

Ian Jacobs (jacobs@w3.org) 
Tel/Fax: (212) 684-1814 
Received on Wednesday, 20 January 1999 14:27:57 UTC

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