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506 definition of structure

From: John M Slatin <john_slatin@austin.utexas.edu>
Date: Wed, 2 Jun 2004 10:15:15 -0500
Message-ID: <C46A1118E0262B47BD5C202DA2490D1A0183B117@MAIL02.austin.utexas.edu>
To: <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
At the 27 May telecon, Jason and I took an action item to work on the
definition of structure.  The definition appears below.  Note: it is
common practice for dictionary definitions to include examples that
illustrate how the term is used in practice.  In this spirit, the
proposed definition refers to specific technologies (HTML, SVG, and
MathML) that make it possible to indicate structural aspects of
different kinds of content. We believe that it's clear from context that
using these examples does not create an implicit requirement that SVG is
the required format for all graphics or that MathML is the required
format for mathematical expressions.
Additional note: one of our goals was to bring this definition into
alignment with our commitment to plain language. The definition as a
whole receives a Flesch Reading Ease measure of 42.4 and a Flesh-Kinkaid
Grade Level of 10.0 (which corresponds to the beginning of the second
year of high school in the US). This is actually at the high end of the
scale-- according to Canada's Northwest Literacy  Council, a grade level
of 10+ is appropriate  if the document contains specialized technical
information and the audience is familiar with the topic and has good
literacy skills.  However, the same group recommends a grade level of
7-9 for material intended for the general public that contains new terms
and concepts or specialized subject matter. (Northwest Territories
Literacy Council. A plain language audit tool.  Available at
http://www.nwt.literacy.ca/plainlng/auditool/cover.htm. The specific
material about readability is at
<proposed definition>

Structure includes all the parts of a Web resource and the way they are


The parts of a Web resource may include text, graphics, mathematical
equations, multimedia, etc. Some parts may contain other parts or create
relationships between two or more parts.     


Some relationships are hierarchical. Examples include sections and
sub-sections of HTML documents, where each section or sub-section begins
with a title that is marked as an HTML heading.  The material in each
section is logically related to the heading. The headings show the
logical organization of the document.


Some relationships are not hierarchical. Examples include links between
two parts of the same document or between two documents. 


Mathematical expressions also have structure.  It is possible to show
this structure.  For example, MathML can show the order in which
calculations should be performed.    


Graphics may also have structure. Examples include flowcharts, diagrams,
maps, and other complex images. SVG makes it possible to identify the
structure of graphics.


User agents may make the structure of Web resources evident to the user.


</proposed definition>

"Good design is accessible design." 
Please note our new name and URL!
John Slatin, Ph.D.
Director, Accessibility Institute
University of Texas at Austin
FAC 248C
1 University Station G9600
Austin, TX 78712
ph 512-495-4288, f 512-495-4524
email jslatin@mail.utexas.edu
web http://www.utexas.edu/research/accessibility/


Received on Wednesday, 2 June 2004 11:15:07 UTC

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