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Re: Illustrating Guidelines

From: Anne Pemberton <apembert@erols.com>
Date: Thu, 10 May 2001 19:34:30 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: "Sean B. Palmer" <sean@mysterylights.com>
Cc: <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

	The priorities, if I remember correctly, sorta lump all image/multi-media
requirements to P3 rather than P1, so that if 100% of the web is at P1, the
needs of the largest group of disabled folks is left out.... shameful! I
would be happier with the 90% at P3 ...

	One of the "advanced mathematics" that I learned a bit about is chaos
theory, which is fascinating when it's put into a plotted graphic ... In a
book I read years ago, it was color plates in the middle of the book, but
it's interactable somewhere on the web (lost the link a while ago) ...
Quantum physics may be hard to represent in two dimensions ... but in
3D-maybe ??? (my understanding of quantum physics is limited to
occasionally watching re-runs of "Quantum Leap"...)

	For any subject, there are a some gifted teachers who have learned how to
illustrate their subject, and others who bluster .... 

	My students are getting ready for a visit from an e-mail correspondent to
the first graders, and reviewing the vocabulary to name the parts of the
computer: As I ask each student to go up and name all the parts, I find I
have a few children who have been in the lab all year, but still call the
mouse "the clicker", and the keyboard  "the typer" ... (If I told them they
had to do this to meet the state SOLs, they would grouse! I tell them they
have to learn it "for Zman", and they jump up, each eager to do and learn
to do it right ...!)



At 05:49 PM 5/10/01 +0100, Sean B. Palmer wrote:
>"Anne Pemberton" <mailto:apembert@erols.com> wrote:-
>> If by "repurposable" you mean the fact that if a user has some
>> fancy equipment, they can have the text read to them as well
>> as reading it for themselves, this is interesting, [...]
>Similarly, I think it would be interesting if equipment could one day
>scan an image an somehow relate it to a meaning - but this brings us
>both into the realm of AI and "reductio ad absurdum". Needless to say,
>there are few documents that need to be accessible outside of a
>certain scope, viz. I'd probably rather have 100% of documents conform
>to WCAG-A than 90% to WCAG-AAA, but even that is being a tad glib -
>some documents (such as WCAG itself) are going out to a wide range of
>people, whereas others (e.g. a learned text on jurisprudence) probably
>won't be.
>Back to the illustrations, I'm not sure I agree that "images convey
>concepts more widely than text" *or* vice versa. Sometimes a picture
>(of a chair?) is more recognizable than the equivalent text, and
>sometimes a picture (of mother cradling a newborn?) can say more than
>words ever can... but there are also many concepts (e.g. in advanced
>mathematics, quantum physics) that are impossbile to "draw" - you have
>to reduce them to component parts and speak in some special langauge.
>An example would be William's rant on synthesis/analysis - I doubt
>that could ever be expressed in pictures, although I challenge someone
>to prove me wrong. Also, I wonder how many Dilbert cartoons would make
>sense without words (and some without the pictures, although I know
>for a fact that some do).
>Interestingly though, when words (mainly nouns) are used, people very
>often have some kind of "visual pattern" (Platonic ideal) in their
>mind of that object - get someone to think about a tree and you'll get
>a wide response of images from individual trees, to just a generic
>picture of a tree (we tried this experiment in a philosophy class
>once...); I wonder what blind people (from birth) "picture" as being a
>tree, i.e. how does one associate the label "tree" to the concept of
>"a tree"? Are the associations distinct from the representations?
>On to illustrations for WCAG... what I find is that higher order
>concepts are very difficult to represent as pictures. Anne has made
>some valiant efforts to do so, but I'm not sure they really help - I
>think it would be a good thing to query some more people on this
>though, because it's not good practice to have just a handful of
>people's opinions on the matter. Certainly, the text in images is one
>thing that puts me off, the second being that without the text, I'd
>have no idea what the pictures are supposed to represent (Bruce
>already pointed this out).
>What I *did* find excellent though was the simple example of a picture
>of George Washington next to his name. That is just so clearly an
>example of how an visual aid associated with a run (grr... I pursued
>that on PF... should have CC'd to www-archive) of text can remove an
>accessibility barrier for some, and remain a non-nuisance for others.
>So, in summary, I think that WCAG has to be very careful to include
>scope and context into GL3.
>P.S. Is there any chance that you could change the emphasized text
>from blue with underline? That's just too close to many people's
>defaults for link text for comfort... it's difficult even for me to
>tell which is a link and which is just a bit of text (if it wasn't for
>the cursor). One way of looking at it is that you could have used <em>
>for the emph bits, and I could have changed it myself, but the other
>way is that I can just change my default link text color... it's part
>of the author vs. user thing again.
>Kindest Regards,
>Sean B. Palmer
>@prefix : <http://webns.net/roughterms/> .
>:Sean :hasHomepage <http://purl.org/net/sbp/> .
Anne Pemberton

Received on Thursday, 10 May 2001 21:02:32 UTC

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