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Re: Support for cognitive disabilities

From: Jon Gunderson <jongund@staff.uiuc.edu>
Date: Wed, 20 Jan 1999 14:04:49 -0600
Message-Id: <199901202003.OAA12077@staff1.cso.uiuc.edu>
To: <po@trace.wisc.edu>, "'GL - WAI Guidelines WG'" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
I think it is difficult to come up with one solution that helps all,
especially with LD.  What helps one person will make it more difficult for
another.  I think the only general page authoring mechanism is to ask the
author to provide redundent forms of information and hopefully the user
agent will allow the user to filter the representations that is most
effective for themselves.

At 10:25 AM 1/20/99 -0600, Gregg Vanderheiden wrote:
>During the teleconference last week, the "Support for Cognitive
>Disabilities" issue was discussed. The working members on the call felt that
>we covered the basic issues for cognitive disabilities, but we wanted to
>bring to the list a discussion of the priority levels of those items.
>The following excerpt is from the Guidelines open issues list (at:
>We are concerned that there is not a P1 checkpoint specifically for
>cognitive disability concerns but the group could not come up with any
>others that didn't seem to already be covered (at their base level - they
>will be expanded on in the techniques doc).    During the teleconference we
>discussed B.3.1 and B.3.2 as possible checkpoints to raise in priority.
>Checkpoint B.3.1 is currently a Priority 2. Could it be raised to Priority
>"Use the simplest and most straightforward language that is possible for the
>content of your site. [Priority 2] "
>1. We will be requiring people to use "as simple as possible" language.
>2. It is hard to determine if people follow. However, we don't rate things
>based on how easy it is to comply with but on how necessary it is for
>3. On some sites, simplifying the vocabulary means a loss of precision. Will
>the wording of this guideline address this problem or will people just
>complain that their sites don't lend themselves to simple language?
>4. This is similar to what the HTML 4 working group went through with ABBR
>and ACRONYM. They aren't defined that differently in the dictionary, people
>have different interpretations and UAs already had various implementations.
>Therefore, they decided they didn't need to define the difference between
>them nor outline how decide which to use; they left them both in.
>5. With at least one of these as a Priority 1, we would show strong support
>for cognitive disabilities.
>Checkpoint B.3.2 is currently a Priority 3, but might be a Priority 2.
>"Use icons or graphics (with alternative text) where they facilitate
>comprehension of the page. [Priority 3] "
>1. Should not be a Priority 1 because it is sometimes harder to interpret
>images rather than words.
>2. Increasing the priority to at least 2 might decrease the perception that
>we say "images are bad, don't use them."
>We also considered giving one or both a variable priority, along the lines
>of, "If the information is important to understanding the page, make it a P1
>otherwise P2."
>The Editors
Jon Gunderson, Ph.D., ATP
Coordinator of Assistive Communication and Information Technology
Division of Rehabilitation - Education Services
University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign
1207 S. Oak Street
Champaign, IL 61820

Voice: 217-244-5870
Fax: 217-333-0248
E-mail: jongund@uiuc.edu
WWW:	http://www.staff.uiuc.edu/~jongund
Received on Wednesday, 20 January 1999 15:03:57 UTC

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