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RE: Issue 556 and 669

From: Gregg Vanderheiden <gv@trace.wisc.edu>
Date: Mon, 17 May 2004 12:42:13 -0500
To: "'Web Content Accessibility Guidelines'" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <auto-000038906823@spamarrest.com>

This was a theoretical question for now.  

If they tested their pages against a standard tool -- then perhaps.

I was just thinking this general line of inquiry through.    

At one time I had proposed something that was an HTML gold standard.     "If
you had a (freely available) converter that would convert your content
successfully to accessible HTML form -- then you pass.  If not then you
fail. "

Still has interesting implications with networked technologies.     But
don't think we are ready for it yet.    It would solve many of the problems
that keep popping up.  But I'm sure it would create as many of its own.

 -- ------------------------------ 
Gregg C Vanderheiden Ph.D. 
Professor - Ind. Engr. & BioMed Engr.
Director - Trace R & D Center 
University of Wisconsin-Madison 

-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org] On Behalf
Of Jason White
Sent: Monday, May 17, 2004 1:06 AM
To: Web Content Accessibility Guidelines
Subject: RE: Issue 556 and 669

On Mon, 17 May 2004, Gregg Vanderheiden wrote:

> Regarding
> 1. "Structures and relationships of the content can be derived
> programmatically (for example, through a markup or data model)
> One question I have always wondered.
> If structure or relationships can be determined through automated
> heuristics, would that count too?    If so, then having the headers all
> "look" like headers (and be consistent within levels) would satisfy if
> common tools or converters were available that could 'determine'  the
> headers, lists, etc by just evaluating a page and its visual formatting.
> After all, that is all that the sighted person has.

Are you supposing that the heuristics would be 100% reliable across a wide
variety of content, and amenable to implementation in server-side or
client-side software? If so, but only under these conditions, I would
agree that 1.3 is met.

The problem in practice is that styles are not completely uniform across
documents, with the result that any heuristics are prone to error, whereas
markup supplied by the author (given an appropriate authoring environment)
is highly reliable.

Suppose there were metadata supplied by the content author or a third
party that established a completely correct mapping of style properties to
element types, but the content itself was encoded presentationally. Or
suppose there were a structure tree with pointers back to the
presentational format in which the content was stored (essentially what
tagged PDF is). Both of these in my opinion would count as satisfying 1.3,
even if the structure resided on another server, whether maintained by the
author or a third party, as long as server-side or client-side software
implemented the necessary mechanism for matching the structure with the
content and constructing a presentation to satisfy the user's

Work on RDF mechanisms in this area, notably by Lisa, should also be
mentioned here.
Received on Monday, 17 May 2004 13:42:17 UTC

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