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Re: Suggested issues that may be addressed in next version of guidelines

From: Jason White <jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au>
Date: Sun, 8 Aug 1999 13:55:34 +1000 (EST)
To: Web Content Accessibility Guidelines <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.SOL.4.10.9908081349050.14275-100000@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au>
Is the graph of a function equivalent to its equation? I am not sure how
to answer such a question, but I would tend to say that they both express
the same relationship in different ways. However, and more importantly,
the effect of a sound or image is usually to supplement text, and not to
operate as a substitute for it. Charles and I are in agreement that there
is an upper limit to the conceptual complexity that can be conveyed
non-linguistically.

This is why I am arguing that instead of thinking in terms of "non-textual
equivalents to text", we should instead be asking the question: under what
circumstances should non-linguistic (auditory/visual) representations be
provided as an aid to comprehension, and what recommendations can be laid
down in regard to their proper use? Charles and I are in agreement, it
seems, that not every actual and potential document conveys information
that can be represented, or clarified, non-linguistically; but there
remains a significant class of cases in which this is not only possible
but also of positive cognitive benefit. We need to find ways of
characterising these cases and formulating a more precise requirement that
can be practically applied.
Received on Saturday, 7 August 1999 23:55:46 GMT

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