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RE: Possible format for techniques Doc.doc

From: Jason White <jasonw@ariel.its.unimelb.edu.au>
Date: Sat, 19 Mar 2005 13:09:37 +1100
Message-ID: <16955.35297.667882.887791@jdc.local>
To: "John M Slatin" <john_slatin@austin.utexas.edu>
Cc: "Gregg Vanderheiden" <gv@trace.wisc.edu>, <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

John M Slatin writes:
 > Hmmm. I hadn't understood the difference between Reference and
 > Application sections quite this way. I had understood the Reference
 > section much as you describe it, but I had thought the Application
 > section would be focused on apply the techniques in various desin
 > scenarios, such as trying to create an accessible form or a complex
 > table, or designing a navigation scheme, and so forth. The idea would be
 > to appeal to task-oriented developers and designers who come to WCAG
 > seeking guidance about how to accomplish some specific task in a
 > conforming way. I think this might make it more difficult to write
 > technology specific techniques in a way that lends itself readily to
 > both orderings.

These are exactly the right issues to be raising, and they allow me to
offer the extended treatment that I should have given yesterday, but
which I omitted for the sake of brevity.

First, note that tasks and language features correspond quite well,
especially in formats that have numerous features, as is true of HTML.
All of the tasks John mentions can be tied to specific language
features or to the techniques that would be written anyway to cover
the success criteria (e.g., those related to navigation and

Having said this, there are several options that could be taken.

1. The task-oriented and reference sections could be two different
   orderings of the same material within each techniques document.
   This would constitute the least amount of work, I suspect.

2. The task-oriented section could be written as a tutorial for the
   application of the guidelines. This would require writing and
   maintaining it separately from the reference section, for each
   techniques document.

3. As another alternative, a single, task-oriented tutorial-style
   presentation, covering all of the available techniques documents,
   could be written. This way, the task-directed material would cover
   multiple technologies in an integrated fashion, instead of
   comprising a separate section of each techniques document.

While I think a task-directed tutorial should be written, it is less
clear whether this is the responsibility of the WCAG working group.
Further, considerations of effort, time and resources will need to be
weighed against the advantages of including such a deliverable within
the ambit of WCAG techniques, focusing first and primarily on what is
needed to bring the guidelines to Recommendation status. It is with
these desiderata firmly in mind that I have included option 1 as the
minimalist alternative.
Received on Saturday, 19 March 2005 02:10:09 UTC

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