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Re: User and user needs conflict- BIG ISSUES REMAINING TO BE DISCUSSED

From: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-edapta@idyllmtn.com>
Date: Sun, 30 Sep 2001 17:55:11 -0700
Message-Id: <a05100307b7dd6d2d00ca@[]>
To: "Lisa Seeman" <seeman@netvision.net.il>, <jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au>
Cc: <gv@trace.wisc.edu>, "_W3C-WAI Web Content Access. Guidelines List" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
At 9:02 AM -0700 2001/9/30, Lisa Seeman wrote:
>Some things just contradict -  keep the bandwidth low, but illustrate.
>So as I said basic accessibility works on one page. But I want ALL my users
>to surf and not crawl.

They only contract if you take a data-centric model of the web instead
of a user-centric model.  In a user-centric model, the server and/or
client processes _transform_ the data to meet the needs of the user
(this is the Edapta model I've been talking about since before I even
heard of Edapta).

In a data-centric model, the user, server, and client have to adapt
themselves to fit the needs of the data.  Data-centric typically says
"here's the data first, we'll pretend it's all complete, and if you
can't use it then there's probably something wrong with you."  A user
centric model says "let's give you the best access possible even if
it means we have to compensate for something on your end or even a
factor that's beyond your control."

In the user-centric model, illustrations and bandwidth do not conflict
but rather complement.  There is a trade-off, yes -- if you're low
bandwidth _and_ you want pictures, a choice needs to be made.  But that
choice should be the user's choice and the server should respect it,
not a single decision made by the web designer for all models of user

(Technical scenario:  User has set preferences via CC/PP to indicate
what the optimal level of graphical content is -- a continuum should
exist from "no graphics" to "any graphics possible" -- as well as the
characteristics of the network connection being transmitted in the
CC/PP profile as well.  The end server recognizes the user's preferences
and the constraints of the connection and provides the appropriate
level of graphical detail.  The user should be able to EXCEED the default
as well, to allow for an "extended graphical version" which is beyond
the base visual experience, such as filling in illustrative pictures
whenever possible [*].  This is how you produce an optimal user interface
based on the needs of the _specific_ user.)


[*] Many news services automatically add links to news stories about
     companies or famous people -- see Yahoo! news for example.  It
     wouldn't be hard to similarly include a small thumbnail of George
     Bush, the trademarked logos of corporations, or a link to a map
     of Afghanistan or wherever, if producing an extended graphical

Kynn Bartlett <kynn@reef.com>
Technical Developer Liaison
Reef North America
Accessibility - W3C - Integrator Network
Received on Sunday, 30 September 2001 22:13:35 UTC

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