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RE: 22 Aug 2002 - WCAG WG Teleconference Minutes

From: john_slatin <john_slatin@forum.utexas.edu>
Date: Fri, 23 Aug 2002 08:50:21 -0500
Message-ID: <6AC4E20EED49D411941400D0B77E52F0074B95CF@forum.cc.utexas.edu>
To: "'jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au'" <jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au>, Web Content Guidelines <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

As usual, Jason has articulated something I wasn't quite able to say
yesterday: the main reason I was so concerned that 3.1 should make room for
the structural elements of media other than text media other than text was
precisely that the proposal for 4.1 focuses so closely on written language.

During yesterday's telecon the question arose of how to mark up structural
aspects of (for example) older documents that don't conform to contemporary
ideas about document design.  This issue also came up during the face to
face meeting in Linz last month.

The best resource I know of for addressing this concern is the Text Encoding
Initiative's (TEI) DTD.  The TEI, headed up by C.M. Sperberg-McQueen (who's
familiar to many on this list, I think) and Lou Burnard of Oxford
University, is an interdisciplinary consortium of scholars in the
humanities.  Their goal was to produce a set of tags for maring up a wide
variety of literary and linguistic documents from many different historical
periods and countries, written in many different languages.  One important
concern was to preserve the kind of metadata that literary historians,
bibliographers, and others often demand regarding the state of the material
artifact (i.e., the physical, paper (or parchment, or vellum, or papyrus))
text that serves as the basis for an electronic edition.  The TEI DTD may
offer some useful tools for Web authors who need to identify and expose
structural devices that fall outside the HTML elements.

The TEI site is at http://www.tei-c.org/.


John Slatin, Ph.D.
Director, Institute for Technology & Learning
University of Texas at Austin
FAC 248C, Mail code G9600
Austin, TX 78712
ph 512-495-4288, f 512-495-4524
email jslatin@mail.utexas.edu
web http://www.ital.utexas.edu

-----Original Message-----
From: Jason White [mailto:jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au] 
Sent: Thursday, August 22, 2002 11:42 pm
To: Web Content Guidelines
Subject: Re: 22 Aug 2002 - WCAG WG Teleconference Minutes

With apologies for my inability to attend today's meeting, here are my
comments on the minutes:

1. If checkpoint 4.1 is rewritten as Avi, Lisa et al., have suggested,
   viz., "Use plain language", then it will not be possible to move
   what is currently in checkpoint 3.1 under checkpoint 4.1.

2. At today's meeting, the overlaps between 1.3 and 3.1 success
   criteria were addressed and I think excellent progress has been

3. The point referring to "reading order" was not intended simply to
   address tables, much less tables used for layout; it is a much more
   general claim that (within a single document/user interface) it
   must be possible to create a reasonable, linear reading order.
   Everything from columnized text (with no markup to disambiguate it)
   to tables (again without proper markup) to the use of graphical
   layout operators, for example in SVG, to control the presentation
   and arrangement of text (again without adequate markup) should fail
   to satisfy this point. The underlying claim is that there ought to
   exist sufficient semantics (in markup/data model as per checkpoint
   1.3) to enable a reading order to be constructed. Thus the requirement
   belongs as a success criterion under 1.3.

In general I think the meeting was excellent, judging by the minutes.
Received on Friday, 23 August 2002 09:50:29 UTC

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