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Re: Introduction

From: Wendy A Chisholm <wendy@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 14 May 2001 16:21:34 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: "Paul Bohman" <paulb@cpd2.usu.edu>, <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

This is a good intro.  I've read it through once and would like to spend 
more time with it.  great work!  I like the "who benefits" and "techniques".

Issues that you raise that the group ought to discuss:

1. Disability Type Specificity (in section 1.5)

2. The appropriate phrase to address cognitive disabilities.  From what 
people have told me, it is to use cognitive and learning disabilities as 
two categories.  Other terms: developmental disabilities, intellectual 
disabilities, writing disabilities, etc.  However, I've just been using the 
CD/LD split to address all of these.

3. Optimization Techniques Documents (section 1.4)

4. Seizure disabilities (re author's note in section 1.2)


At 07:39 PM 5/11/01 , Paul Bohman wrote:
>This is a summary of the conversation between Paul Bohman and Adam Victor
>Reed that was held off-line:
>PB: My introduction (to WCAG 2.0) can be accessed at
>AVR: You may want to fix the following. Please let me know if you disagree -
>1.2: "cognitive impairments" is too narrow. I suggest "processing
>impairments", so that attention deficits are included.
>PB: I understand what you're saying, but I wonder if there isn't a more
>understandable way of saying it. "Mental processing impairment" maybe?
>"Cognitive processing impairments"? And, to my way of thinking, although I'm
>sure others would disagree, attention deficits can be included under the
>term "cognitive", even without the word "processing." The act of processing
>information is a cognitive act, isn't it? Even if the word "cognitive" seems
>slanted away from attention deficits, I think that the word "processing"
>slants too far towards it and away from other types.
>AVR: The use of the same word - in this case "cognitive" - for both a
>category and a sub-category within it - inevitably confuses the reader into
>conflating the category with the sub-category. I don't insist on
>"processing", but in practice, when content-makers are asked to address
>"cognitve impairments", they almost always do it in ways that actually make
>their content _less_ accessible to people with attention deficits.
>PB: I'm not opposed to coming up with a better title for this category. I'm
>just not sure what that would be.
>AVR: After the third sentence in the paragraph below the list, add:
>"Processing impairments include limitations in learning, cognition and
>PB: I think a sentence such as this would be a good idea. In fact, it would
>be a good idea to add a few more examples under each category.
>AVR: Also, including only sensory deficits among examples of visual
>disabilities may be misleading - I would add limitations in visual
>perception and object agnosias.
>PB: I would tend to place visual perception and object agnosias in the
>cognitive/processing/mental category. Agnosias are usually the result of
>brain damage which doesn't necessarily affect sight capabilities. What is
>affected is the ability to process information that is precieved through
>AVR: The effect, though, is that people with impairment of visual perception
>and visual agnosias can't use pictorial presentation of content. In
>addressing content accessibility it may make sense to group them with
>"visual impairments".
>PB: You may have a point there. Does anyone else have a comment on this one?
>AVR: 1.4: I would like to volunteer to add techniques documents for
>"attention deficits" and "impairments of visual perception".
>PB: I think that would be great. The list of disabilities/conditions is
>really almost infinite, but I think that documents for those disability
>types would be appropriate.
>AVR: 1.5: I would add the following after "Disability Type Specificity":
>  Contextual Compliance
>  Sites serving specific groups of individually identified users must meet
>detailed compliance criteria, as enumerated in the Optimization Techniques
>Documents, to assure accessibility for every identified user. For example,
>the web site of a university seminar must be accessible to all participants
>in the seminar.
>PB: I think this is a concept worth exploring too. My concern with any
>conditional statements, including my "Technology Type Specificity" and
>"Disability Type Specificity" are that they add another layer of complexity
>that has the potential of rendering the guidelines less usable. The more
>difficult it is to understand or comply with the guidelines, the more
>backlash we can expect, and the more difficult it is to convince anyone to
>use them. I do agree that these conditional statements make the guidelines
>more accurate. I always advocate for accuracy, but there is a point at which
>simplicity needs to take preference over specificity. At some point we'll
>have to draw that line.
>Paul Bohman
>Technology Coordinator
>WebAIM: Web Accessibility in Mind (www.webaim.org)
>Center for Persons with Disabilities (www.cpd.usu.edu)
>Utah State University (www.usu.edu)

wendy a chisholm
world wide web consortium
web accessibility initiative
seattle, wa usa
tel: +1 206.706.5263
Received on Monday, 14 May 2001 16:17:35 UTC

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