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Re: Proposal for Guideline 2 as well as a proposal to trim WCAG 2.0 to 3 guidelines (won't william be glad?)

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 4 Jan 2001 11:02:56 -0500 (EST)
To: Wendy A Chisholm <wendy@w3.org>
cc: <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0101041102450.29358-100000@tux.w3.org>
The proposal works for me.

Charles McCN

On Wed, 3 Jan 2001, Wendy A Chisholm wrote:

  Happy New Year!

  This e-mail contains some reasoning about why, how, and where I ended up at
  a proposal for trimming our draft to 3 guidelines.  At the end is a 2
  question questionnaire that I would appreciate responses to.

  There were several proposals about how to reword Guideline 2, as well as a
  couple threads about the myth of separating content from
  presentation.  I've been trying to synthesize all of this information into
  the new draft.

  Another aspect I've been considering is ensuring that we answer the "who,
  what , why, where, how" questions.

  If we look at Guideline 1, I think it generally states "what needs to be
  done."  The checkpoints under Guideline 1 state "how to do it" and the
  explanatory text of the checkpoints elaborate on the "how" as well as "why
  do it" and "what it means."  The techniques will further describe "how to
  do it" at a technology-specific level.

  Therefore, in looking at Guideline 2 it currently reads:  "Separate content
  and structure from presentation."  This sounds more like a "how" than a
  "what."  I am also concerned about the myth of separating presentation from
  semantics, but I won't discuss that here.  I want to focus on the mechanics
  of the document.

  We are also trying to create something that is easy to understand by
  less-technical or non-technical people.

  With all of this in mind, it seems that Guideline 2 should describe what
  needs to happen to make the structure accessible.

  The checkpoints describe how:
  1. Use markup languages according to specification
  2. Use style languages to control layout and presentation.
  3. Use markup or a data model to provide the logical structure of content.

  What do these things accomplish?  We are asking the designer to expose the
  structure of the document.  What is structure?  Structure primarily
  describes relationships between different size "chunks" such as a heading
  to a paragraph,  n number of chunks that make up a chapter.  Hierarchy.

  The "what" is that we need to know the logical order in which to navigate
  the relationships of the document or application.

  While Guideline 1 says, "Design content that can be presented visually,
  auditorily or tactually, according to the needs and preferences of the
  user."  Guideline 2 should say, "Design content that can be navigated and
  presented according to the needs and preferences of the user."

  Checkpoint 2.2 really falls under Guideline 1.  In fact, I think everything
  can fall into 3 basic categories:

  Guideline 1: Presentation (combine with parts of 5 - device independence,
  and 6 - graceful transformation)
  Guideline 2: Interaction (combine with 4 - browsing and navigation and
  parts of 5)
  Guideline 3: Comprehension

  In a sense this is separating presentation from structure, behavior, and
  content along the lines of the Model/View/Controller paradigm.

  Therefore, here is a rough reformulation of WCAG 2.0.  I have combined some
  of our existing checkpoints, subsumed others.  I have not made a map
  between them.  The checkpoints are probably not technically complete.  The
  idea is to test the new structure not determine if the wording of each
  checkpoint is exactly as it should be.  If the structure seems ok, then I
  propose to take another pass at wording, adding back the examples and
  rationales.  This is just a sweep to look at the mechanics and structure of
  our document.

  Guideline 1. Graceful transformation. Design content that can be presented
  visually, auditorally, or tactually, according to the needs and preferences
  of the user.

  1.1. Provide a text equivalent for all non-text content
  1.2. Synchronize text equivalents with multimedia presentations (captions).
  1.3. Synchronize a description of essential visual info with multimedia
  presentations (auditory descriptions).
  1.4 Use style languages to control layout and presentation (create for
  specific devices if able).
  1.5 Ensure that content transforms gracefully (no matter what technology
  the user has or doesn't have, they are able to interact with your content)

  Guideline 2. Device independence. Design content that can be interacted
  with without a mouse, only with a keyboard, only through voice, without
  voice, or with or without other devices, according to the needs and
  preferences of the user.

  2.1 Use markup languages according to specification.
  2.2 Use markup or a data model to provide the logical structure of content.
  2.3 Minimize the use of or give the user control of content that may
  interfere with their ability to focus (animations, blinking text, scrolling
  banners, etc.)
  2.4 Give the user control of mechanisms that cause extreme changes in context
  2.5 Provide consistent interaction behaviors (navigation mechanisms,
  interface controls)
  2.6 Provide various search options
  2.7 Give users control over how long they can spend reading or interacting
  with content.
  2.8 Use device independent event handlers
  2.9 Design assistive-technology compatible user interfaces

  Guideline 3. Comprehension. Design content that is easy to understand.

  3.1 Use consistent presentation
  3.2 Emphasize structure through presentation, positioning and labels
  3.3 Divide information into smaller, more manageable chucnks
  3.4 Write clearly and simply
  3.5 Use graphics to illustrate concepts
  3.6 Summarize complex information
  3.7 Define key terms, abbreviations, acronyms, and specialized language

  Please complete the following questionnaire:
  Question 1: Does this proposal oversimplify the guidelines, creating
  something that is too general to understand?
  yes __
  no __

  Question 2: should we proceed with a trimmed down structure similar to the
  one proposed in this e-mail in the next draft?
  yes __
  no __


  Thank you,
  wendy a chisholm
  world wide web consortium
  web accessibility initiative
  madison, wi usa
  tel: +1 608 663 6346

Charles McCathieNevile    mailto:charles@w3.org    phone: +61 (0) 409 134 136
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative                      http://www.w3.org/WAI
Location: I-cubed, 110 Victoria Street, Carlton VIC 3053, Australia
until 6 January 2001 at:
W3C INRIA, 2004 Route des Lucioles, BP 93, 06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex, France
Received on Thursday, 4 January 2001 11:02:56 UTC

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