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RE: General Exception for Essential Purpose

From: Cynthia Shelly <cyns@whatuwant.net>
Date: Tue, 31 Oct 2000 17:33:25 -0800
Message-ID: <F0CBA28A8CE1D311B64300508BC216225559B6@SARUMAN>
To: "'Ian Jacobs'" <ij@w3.org>, "Leonard R. Kasday" <kasday@acm.org>
Cc: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org, jacobs@w3.org, kynn@idyllmtn.com, asgilman@iamdigex.net
 2) It is better for designers and users to produce fewer sites that
    the needs of more users.

Now you're treating designers the way many complain they treat users <grin>
You're presuming to know their needs better than they do.  Why *restrict*
designers to single interface?  Why not let them decide for themselves how
much work they're willing to do to create optimized interfaces?

-----Original Message-----
From: Ian Jacobs [mailto:ij@w3.org]
Sent: Sunday, October 29, 2000 10:56 AM
To: Leonard R. Kasday
Cc: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org; jacobs@w3.org; kynn@idyllmtn.com;
Subject: Re: General Exception for Essential Purpose

"Leonard R. Kasday" wrote:
> Ian, Kynn, Al
> Thanks for all the detail on the 2.0 philosophy but I'm still not sure I
> understand the essentials.  Would you indulge the following lapse into
> math-ese.
> Consider
> the set of all user groups U1, U2, U3... with different sets of abilities
> and disabilities.
> and the guidelines UA and GL for user agents and web content.
> 1. Is the goal of WAI to produce UA and GL guidelines such that if both
> followed in their entirety, than each user groups U1, U2, U3... will have
> available maxium feasible access to all web sites?  Here "maxium feasible"
> means the maxium that can be obtained with current knowledge and

At first glance, yes. Users have needs, we try to write guidelines 
to meet those needs, by assigning responsibilities to meet those 
needs to different parties. It's up to us to choose the scope of those
guidelines, how many problems in the real world to account for, etc.
> 2. And is it completely acceptable to fulfill this goal by providing each
> of the user groups U1, U2, U3,.... with different versions of the site S1,
> S2, S3... ?

Yes, but:

 1) I think that it may not be possible to meet some needs anyway,
    large the set of sites is.
 2) It is better for designers and users to produce fewer sites that
    the needs of more users. Also, this doesn't take into account the 
    issue of providing content that has been tailored to specific needs
    and therefore may be inaccessible to other users. (The issue of
    whether accessibility has to be measured on the client side or
    it can also be measured on the server side, as long as users have
    access to full content, etc.)

> If at all possible, please answer with one of the following
> - "yes"
> - "no"
> - "what  _are_  you talking about Lenny?"  <grin/>

So, yes and yes. As I mentioned in an earlier email, this is a new
model that I'm playing with in my head, and so I expect it to be fragile
at this stage of its existence.

 - Ian

> or offer rephrasings of a sentence or two (with or without math-ese) to
> which you can say "yes".
> Len
> p.s.
> Also, if this is the philosophy, I don't understand where Kynn's
> accessible" fallback fits in.

Ian Jacobs (jacobs@w3.org)   http://www.w3.org/People/Jacobs
Tel:                         +1 831 457-2842
Cell:                        +1 917 450-8783
Received on Tuesday, 31 October 2000 20:30:43 UTC

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