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RE: NEW Checkpoint 4.S.1 (taken from S-1. Goes in Section 4. )

From: phoenixl <phoenixl@sonic.net>
Date: Fri, 22 Feb 2002 11:21:04 -0800
Message-Id: <200202221921.g1MJL46L023469@newbolt.sonic.net>
To: GV@trace.wisc.edu, w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
Hi,

My first assumption is that no version will handle ALL disabilities
because if a person has multiple disabilities, some of the person's
disabilities may have conflicting needs.

This semester Berkeley's computer science is offering a course on
assistive technology.  In various discussions I've had with the students
who are coming more from the technology side rather than the disability
side of the issues, I'e been re-thinking accessibility issues.

If a person is visually impaired and doesn't use screen magnification,
the output they receive is basically words which are presented by
speech or braille.  If a format is being suggested to cover a range of
disabilities, it might make sense for the primary focus to be words.
This can avoid a number of problems.  One is that there would probably
be greater accuracy of what the web page developer is trying to communicate.
Rather than trying to guess at what words the assistive technology will
be choosing to convey what it thinks the web page developer is communicating,
the web page developer just provides the words for the assistive technology
to present.

If assistive technology could automatically and accurately choose appropriate
words, this approach wouldn't be very useful.  However, if the web page
developer has to expend effort to write HTML to meet certain standards
in order for assistive technology to understand what is being meant,
the web page developer might as do the word selection himself/herself.
This approach reduces the amount of effort that a web page developer
needs to put into such related tasks as determining if the HTML being
written is in conformance.

The web page developer could skip such things as lay-out tables, scripts,
etc, and create a very basic web page.  One advantage could be that
if the web page developer creates a basic web page, it could be used
by people with various disabilities and also people who have access
to only very basic browser functionality.  In this way, there is
more benefit for the web page developer to develop this type of
page.  This type of page could be called a "generic browser web page"
which wouldn't have any reference to disability for people who
are sensitive to that issue.

For people who are concerned about versions of a web page being
kept in sync, that really is more a question of using the right technology.
For example, there is technology out there where one file can be
used to generate different versions of a web page.

Scott


> Clearly - it is to be accessible.  But if no version works across
> disabilities then how  do we make sure that one of your disabilities
> isn't handled with one version,  and one is handled by another.   So you
> can't use either.
> 
> I don't like having to require that one version be for all either.   But
> I don't see another solution.
> 
> Can you think of a solution that will guarantee that a persons multiple
> disabilities won't be split across different versions?  
> 
> Gregg
Received on Friday, 22 February 2002 14:21:06 GMT

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