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Re: Labelling web page functionality for blind users

From: Scott Luebking <phoenixl@netcom.com>
Date: Wed, 16 Feb 2000 22:52:29 -0800 (PST)
Message-Id: <200002170652.WAA07253@netcom.com>
To: phoenixl@netcom.com, unagi69@concentric.net
Cc: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
Hi, Gregory

For the past five years I've worked with graduate students in understanding
how to evaluate designs of new products.  One of the techniques is called
"scenario analysis".  Basically, it's seeing whether an appproach
or design will work with various characters in differing situations.

I believe that part of the problem is that you have been looking at
what you would like, i.e. adjusting web pages via style sheets.
Look at how other blind people would respond in various web surfing
situations.  Given the option of selecting a button which gives
a more-tailored web page or using style sheets, how many blind people,
besides yourself, would prefer style sheets?  How many blind people
would prefer selecting a button and getting web pages which are
much easier to use, even if not exactly what they want?  Would these
blind users be willing to accept that web pages are "good enough"
match for their needs and avoid the work of fine tuning?

A number of blind users are like you in that they liked the approach
that I took in redesigning the web page.  It may not be exactly
what they would like.  However, given the amount of work they
would had to put in, hitting a link or a button, and the significant
improvement in the web page's ease of use, my impression was that they seemed
satisfied.  Again, from the feedback I got, this would seem to be a success
story in meeting users needs of improved ease of use with little
additional effort on the user's part.


> aloha, scott!
> to talk of quote stigmatization unquote and quote labelling unquote is a 
> non sequitor...
> the question isn't quote what's in a name or label unquote, it is quote how 
> can one deliver content best suited to an individual's modality and 
> personal preferences unquote, and in my opinion, quote disability profiling 
> unquote is definitely _not_ the answer...
> my opposition to your stance has nothing to do with the label blind, but 
> with a quote one-size-fits-all unquote server-side approach to tailoring 
> the presentation and ordering of content based on disability profiling...
> i don't care what others call me (most of what i'm called falls into 2 
> categories -- 4 or 12 letter words -- anyway), and i personally prefer to 
> be called blind, rather than quote visually impaired unquote, a euphemism 
> which has never made any sense to me, for (at least to my ears) it sounds 
> as if it describes one of WCAG's main target audiences -- web designers who 
> are so distracted by what they are looking at as they put together a site 
> that they fail to realize that what an author sees (if he or she is capable 
> of visual perception) is not necessarily what a user gets served up on his 
> or her computer...
> i do, however, object to being served up pages based solely upon such a 
> monolithic and inflexible classification -- to my mind, it is as 
> indiscriminate a way to serve content to a user as most of the 
> browser-sniffing which is performed today, which simply searches for the 
> string quote Mozilla unquote in the user agent header/declaration...
> just my 2 cents,
> gregory.
Received on Thursday, 17 February 2000 01:52:37 UTC

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