From: Neil Soiffer <NeilS@DesSci.com>

Date: Wed, 17 Nov 2004 22:51:09 -0800

Message-ID: <0c2001c4cd3a$fc67e100$6601a8c0@raindrops>

To: "Ben Caldwell" <caldwell@trace.wisc.edu>, <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

Date: Wed, 17 Nov 2004 22:51:09 -0800

Message-ID: <0c2001c4cd3a$fc67e100$6601a8c0@raindrops>

To: "Ben Caldwell" <caldwell@trace.wisc.edu>, <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

First a quick introduction: I've been a member of the WG for a couple of months, but haven't had time to catch up with all of the work you have done -- this is a amazingly prolific group! I've been a member of the MathML WG (currently an Interest Group) since it's beginning. I was originally Wolfram Research's (Mathematica) MathML representative and moved to Design Science (MathType, MathPlayer) a couple of years ago and have been a MathML representative there. At Design Science, I have spearheaded the company's efforts to make math more accessible to those with print-related disabilities (blindness, low-vision, and certain learning disorders). To date, this has mainly involved making MathPlayer (a free MathML plug-in for IE which can be downloaded from www.dessci.com) work with screen readers and LD software [synchronized highlighting of subexpressions as their are spoken]. I apologize for the last minute nature of my comments. Other than a few easy editorial corrections noted below, my comments probably should be classified as the first non-WG comments on the working drafts. Neil Soiffer email: neils@dessci.com Senior Scientist phone: 562-433-0685 Design Science, Inc. http://www.dessci.com "How Science Communicates" MathType, WebEQ, MathPlayer, Equation Editor, TeXaide http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/WCAG20/WD-WCAG20-GENERAL-20041116/content-structure-separation-programmatic.html#content-struct-math-exp Section: Alternative views of mathematical expressions MathML will typically scale with the rest of the text. One of MathPlayer's features is "MathZoom" which redraws the expression using larger fonts (click on the expression to make it bigger). This is not hard to do and could be easily added to Mozilla/Netscape/FireFox's MathML support if the developers decide to do it. Because of this, I feel that MathML should be listed before SVG as a suggested method to allow for zooming. http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/WCAG20/WD-WCAG20-HTML-TECHS-20041116/#markupnotimage Section: Markup and style sheets rather than images: the example of math FYI: there are at least three projects that I know of that are working on searching math based on MathML. FYI: two of the largest math websites, mathworld.wolfram.com and functions.wolfram.com, will be offering their mathematical content as MathML as part of an NSF grant. This allows their math content to be searched and also allows it to be used as input to many mathematical computation systems. Although TeX is widely used in a number of very important communities such as research mathematics and physics, a survey of technical publishers done by Design Science a few years ago found that over 80% of their submissions were Word documents -- math was typically done by the built-in equation editor to Word or by MathType, the equation editor's "professional" upgrade. Hence, the phrase "TeX is commonly used..." overstates TeX's prominence. Also, an important option for those using TeX to publish on the web are TeX tools that produce MathML for the math part of the output. Some examples are Hermes (www.aei.mpg.de/hermes), TeX4ht (www.cse.ohio-state.edu/~gurari/TeX4ht/mn.html), and Ttm (hutchinson.belmont.ma.us/tth -- site seems dead right now). These allow people to author in TeX/LaTeX and still produce documents that have the accessibility benefits of MathML. The option of generating MathML from TeX should be mentioned here, and it probably should be listed as desirable approach to take. References The MathML reference should point to MathML V2.0 (Second Edition) (http://www.w3.org/TR/MathML2/) -- the current recommendation. Currently, MathML 1.0 is referenced.Received on Thursday, 18 November 2004 06:51:40 GMT

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