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Ang: Re: Comments on WCAG2.0 Working Draft

From: Sophie Wretenby <Sophie.Wretenby@hi.se>
Date: Fri, 29 Jun 2001 11:39:26 -0400
Message-Id: <>
To: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org

Sorry, I sent only a word version of the document earlier. Thanks for 
reminding me, Charles McCathieNevile.

Below come the text of the document with comments on WCAG 2.0 Working Draft.

Have a nice weekend

Sophie Wretenby

Comments on the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 2.0
Working Draft 28 March 2001

Design for ease of comprehension.

Comment: Short easy to read conclusions
We would like to emphasis in this paragraph the need for easy-reading short 
conclusions. A short easy conclusion at the beginning of a page or new 
chapter enhances the reading experience for most people and are crucial for 
people with comprehension and other disabilities. It helps people with 
limited resources to decide if the information is worth the effort to 
understand. It is a way of guiding/navigating as well.
Comment: Seven, plus or minus two
We would like to recommend in this paragraph that no more than seven (plus 
or minus two) new choices (links) should be added per new page. The human 
brain has limited resources to handle several abstract choices at the same 
time. People with a comprehension disability need to have clear, limited 
choices preferably with graphical guidance.
Comment: Navigational aid
We would like to suggest a comment on using all available stimuli to help 
users identify their position in the structure. A simultaneous use of text, 
colours, and symbols (or graphics with an intuitive meaning) can emphasise 
the content structure. See also comment on 3.1, below.

2. 1 Provide consistent interaction behaviours and navigation mechanisms
Comment: Pathways
To avoid confusion it is important to know were you are coming from and 
have the choice to be able to return. We believe a pathway is a good 
navigation mechanism to provide this information. Example:
Home > Page 1 > Page 2

In the example the pathway builds up while navigating, but the user can 
always view the links too and therefore return to previous pages.

3.1 Use consistent presentation
Comment: Navigational Aid
A picture, a colour and a heading symbolising a content block should be 
present on each page throughout the entire content block. The simultaneous 
stimulus of text, colour and visual meaning helps people with cognitive 
disability to orient them in the structure.
Suggested new texts

Design for ease of comprehension. The human capability to comprehend 
information is limited. A normal human being can have approximately seven 
chunks of information in the short time memory at one time and a person 
with cognitive disabilities can generally handle less than that. To design 
for ease of comprehension is to help your audience access your content, by 
guiding them, not overloading them with the information.
Limit the amount of choices on each page, to clarify your structure.
By using several different stimuli (text, symbols, colours and sound) to 
convey the same message you will help your audience to comprehend.

Have short introductory summaries to explain to your audience what they can 
expect of your content on each page.

Point 3.3, 3.5 and 3.7 covers parts of the first point (easy-reading short 
conclusions), but not to its full extent. One way of making the 
recommendation more consistent to our suggestion is to phrase point 3.5:
3.5 Summarize information, both complex and simple
An easyreading summary with a conclusion of your content is a way of 
letting your audience know why they should read the whole text or watch the 
whole movie. You guide your viewer to the content in the same way, as the 
ingress of the newspaper story helps you to decide if you want to read it 
or not.

Content is considered complex if the relationships between pieces of 
information are not easy to figure out.
Examples of complex information:
§ Data tables
§ Concepts that are esoteric or difficult to understand
§ Content that involves several layers

If the presentation of the information is intended to highlight trends or 
relationships between concepts, these should be explicitly stated in the 

2. 1 Provide consistent interaction behaviors and navigation mechanisms
Interaction behaviors are the results of user actions. They include, for 
§ rollover affects and popup menus,
§ submitting a form after the user presses a submit button,
§ interface controls created with applets,
§ events caused by the user activating a link.

Navigation mechanisms help the user find information in your site and may 
help the user skim a document. These mechanisms may include:
§ a table of contents,
§ a site map,
§ an index,
§ navigation menus or navigation bars,
§ a link that jumps over navigation links and positions the user at the 
beginning of the primary content on the page,
§ a link at each heading that skips to the next heading.
§ image maps
§ (new)a pathway or a path bar showing were in the structure the user comes 
from and providing the ability to return to a previous page

Navigation mechanisms and interface controls should be easy to locate and 
behave consistently.

Suggested new text for point 3.1:

3.1 Use consistent presentation.
Consistency helps users determine the relationships between items in the 
content. This ability to understand the structure helps users navigate, 
orient themselves, and thus understand.
A picture, a colour and a heading symbolising a content block should be 
present on each page throughout the entire content block. The simultaneous 
stimuli of text, colour and visual meaning helps people to orient 
themselves in the structure especially people with cognitive disabilities.

General on WAIs site
We recognise the problem of structuring a website the size of WAIs. 
Especially when the information is so complex and voluminous. We appreciate 
the effort of trying to make it more accessible and support your work in 
this area.

On-screen keyboards
On-screen keyboards often cover a big part of the desktop. We have noticed 
a frequent use of fixed sizes and layouts of webpages resulting in a small 
space left for the actual information. Is this an issue covered by WAIs 

" The magical number of seven plus or minus two"  by Miller, G.A, 1956 
Psychological Review Vol. 63, 81-97

The Swedish Handicap Institute has been working close to people with 
disabilities, their technical aids and accessibility in the society since 
1968. These comments are partly based on that experience. The major part of 
our work is published in Swedish.
If you need further information we will try our best to assist you.  These 
comments were provided by:

Sören Hansson
Mail: soren.hansson@hi.se
Phone: +46 8 620 18 71

Sophie Wretenby
Mail: sophie.wretenby@hi.se
Phone: +46 8 620 18 38

Björn Lestell
Mail: bjorn.lestell@hi.se
Phone: +46 8 620 18 76

Postal address:
P.O. Box 510

Sophie Wretenby

  + 46 8 620 18 38
The Swedish Handicap Institute           www.hi.se
Sorterargatan 23                   +46 8 6201700 
Received on Friday, 29 June 2001 11:30:31 UTC

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