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Starting over (was: RE: Report on WCAG2 comments relating to cognitive, learning, and language disabilities)

From: Slatin, John M <john_slatin@austin.utexas.edu>
Date: Thu, 15 Mar 2007 14:17:10 -0500
Message-ID: <6EED8F7006A883459D4818686BCE3B3B05B203BE@MAIL01.austin.utexas.edu>
To: "lisa" <lisa@ubaccess.com>, "David MacDonald" <befree@magma.ca>, "Bailey, Bruce" <Bruce.Bailey@ed.gov>, "j.chetwynd" <j.chetwynd@btinternet.com>
Cc: "Loretta Guarino Reid" <lorettaguarino@google.com>, "Sofia Celic" <Sofia.Celic@visionaustralia.org>, "Jan Dekelver" <jan.dekelver@khk.be>, "Chuck Hitchcock" <chitchcock@cast.org>, "Hiroshi Kawamura" <hkawa@rehab.go.jp>, "Gez Lemon" <gez.lemon@gmail.com>, "Clayton Lewis" <clayton.lewis@colorado.edu>, "Gian Sampson-Wild" <gian@tkh.com.au>, "Keith Smith" <k.smith@bild.org.uk>, "Roberto Scano" <rscano@iwa-italy.org>, "Stephen Shore" <Tumbalaika@aol.com>, "Nancy Ward" <nward@thedesk.info>, "Paul Bowman" <pbowman@gmu.edu>, "John Slatin" <jslatin@mail.utexas.edu>, "Elbert Johns" <ejohns@thearclink.org>, "Gregg Vanderheiden" <gv@trace.wisc.edu>, "Michael Cooper" <cooper@w3.org>, "Judy Brewer" <jbrewer@w3.org>, "WCAG" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>

Can we restart this discussion? We'll lose our focus if people get
angry. 

This is a difficult issue. I think everyone on this list wants to find
good solutions. We're working hard to understand each other.

I'm asking for help understanding the sites that use Bliss or other
symbol languages. I have been to the sites that Lisa listed, and I've
chosen the links to display Bliss or other symbol languages.

I didn't understand the results. In some cases my screen reader spoke
most of the words and phrases twice. 

This may have been because the content was presented in *both* English
and Bliss, so the screen reader read both the English text and the alt
text for the individual Bliss symbols.

It was very difficult to understand!

In another case I couldn't tell whether the content changed when I
selected Bliss. Maybe that was because it worked correctly-- that is,
maybe the content was presented only in Bliss, and JAWS read it like
English because it was using alt text.

I also visited one of the sites that Jonathan mentioned as an example
that uses icons effectively. My screen reader couldn't handle it.

I think something useful will emerge from all this. But we need to be
patient with each other and explain as best we can.

Thanks,

John
"Good design is accessible design."

Dr. John M. Slatin, Director 
Accessibility Institute
University of Texas at Austin 
FAC 248C 
1 University Station G9600 
Austin, TX 78712 
ph 512-495-4288, fax 512-495-4524 
email john_slatin@austin.utexas.edu
Web http://www.utexas.edu/research/accessibility 



-----Original Message-----
From: lisa [mailto:lisa@ubaccess.com] 
Sent: Thursday, March 15, 2007 1:22 PM
To: 'David MacDonald'; 'Bailey, Bruce'; 'j.chetwynd'
Cc: 'Loretta Guarino Reid'; 'Sofia Celic'; 'Jan Dekelver'; 'Chuck
Hitchcock'; 'Hiroshi Kawamura'; 'Gez Lemon'; 'Clayton Lewis'; 'Gian
Sampson-Wild'; 'Keith Smith'; 'Roberto Scano'; 'Stephen Shore'; 'Nancy
Ward'; 'Paul Bowman'; 'John Slatin'; 'Elbert Johns'; 'Gregg
Vanderheiden'; 'Michael Cooper'; 'Judy Brewer'; 'WCAG'
Subject: RE: Report on WCAG2 comments relating to cognitive, learning,
and language disabilities


 >Could you send a link to the RDF document? I don't remember seeing
that in completed form.

It never was in a final form
it was put on the non critical list and no one had time to review it.

>The Peebo site requires SVG which requires a special download for most
browsers. The messages that the browsers give are 
>>not too friendly to cognitive users. They give a warning that Active X
controls can be dangerous. Many people with cognitive 
>disabilities would not know what to do with that, I would say.


and yet many real people have enjoyed using it - people who can not use
99.9% of WCAG accessible sites 


>The DART site uses language and vocabulary (at least in English) which
is
quite advanced.

your need to select the option in BLISS or pictures.

I sent you these links because you seemed to want to see what was being
done
- what products are available etc, so you could understand how many
people
with disabilities use the web outside the WCAG communities.

If you prefer to pick holes in how they are doing it, that is Ok too,
but I
don't see that will help anyone.


Lisa

-----Original Message-----
From: David MacDonald [mailto:befree@magma.ca] 
Sent: Thursday, March 15, 2007 6:32 PM
To: 'lisa'; 'Bailey, Bruce'; 'j.chetwynd'
Cc: 'Loretta Guarino Reid'; 'Sofia Celic'; 'Jan Dekelver'; 'Chuck
Hitchcock'; 'Hiroshi Kawamura'; 'Gez Lemon'; 'Clayton Lewis'; 'Gian
Sampson-Wild'; 'Keith Smith'; 'Roberto Scano'; 'Stephen Shore'; 'Nancy
Ward'; 'Paul Bowman'; 'John Slatin'; 'Elbert Johns'; 'Gregg
Vanderheiden';
'Michael Cooper'; 'Judy Brewer'; 'WCAG'
Subject: RE: Report on WCAG2 comments relating to cognitive, learning,
and
language disabilities

Hi Lisa

>>and these techniques came of the to do list until after last call.

I don't think this is an entirely fair statement. I looked at the
Telecommunications Problems and Design Strategies for People with
Cognitive
Disabilities report and printed out the excerpts you listed. I compared
our
guidelines to those recommendations. I think that we've done much of
what
the report was recommending, to the extent that it applies to the web to
the
degree that it was testable. Also, many of the untestable techniques in
that
document are listed advisory as advisory in the guidelines. Much of that
was
due to your hard work and contribution while on the group. 

The primary reference for the Telecommunications document was the TRACE
centre research which is active on our committee.

Could you send a link to the RDF document? I don't remember seeing that
in
completed form.

I personally do not have a problem with renaming advisory techniques
"advisory and/or untestable techniques". The conformance section says
that
advisory techniques consist of helpful advice and techniques that are
untestable. But I'm ok with saying that in every section. Of course it
would
depend on consensus.

I did a brief examination of the sites you sent as models for cognitive
accessibility.

-The Peebo site requires SVG which requires a special download for most
browsers. The messages that the browsers give are not too friendly to
cognitive users. They give a warning that Active X controls can be
dangerous. Many people with cognitive disabilities would not know what
to do
with that, I would say. Once I finally installed SVG, I went to the web
portals page, and was met with a password dialogue box. I think that
would
confuse many people with cognitive disabilities. When I backed out of
the
unauthorized page warning, back to the homepage, I tried to link to
other
pages ("forms, splat, radio etc.) but the links were dead. 

-I went to handicom. I didn't find anything on the site itself that
seemed
particularly oriented to help people with cognitive issues. They sell
Bliss,
but they don't really use bliss on the web site. There was rotating gif
on
the home page, which for me we distracting. The language of the site is
not
particularly oriented to people below secondary level education. Here's
an
excerpt:

"Handicom focuses its activities on the tangent plane between handicap
and
computer. Tomorrow's techniques are used for the development of adapted
computer and communication tools. It's mainly software we make."

-The DART site uses language and vocabulary (at least in English) which
is
quite advanced.

--The ISSAC site uses icons on the nav bar and bliss symbols beside
links.
Which is good but again the language at least in English, is quite
academic.


-The Widget site uses icons but not much else on it was specifically
gears
to Cognitive. Again the language doesn't seem geared to people with
cognitive disabilities. He's an exceprt.

"2,000 new diverse and relevant symbols for WWS2000 and In Print to
bring
resources to life."

None of the sites listed meet the guidelines set out in the 1991 report
that
was point as a guide. Nor would I expect them to.

However, one common feature that I see on these sites that seems
particularly geared to cognitive issues is the use of symbols. Which it
think is a great idea and I think we should create a technique under
2.4.2
titled 

"using pictures or symbols compliment link text"

I think it is perfectly fine to say more research can to be done in this
area. With cognitive issues I would say, we are currently where blind
people
were 30 years ago. And it's hard work from pioneers like you that is
moving
it forward.



David MacDonald

access empowers people...
        ...barriers disable them...
 
www.eramp.com

-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org] On
Behalf
Of lisa
Sent: Thursday, March 15, 2007 4:56 AM
To: 'David MacDonald'; 'Bailey, Bruce'; 'j.chetwynd'
Cc: 'Loretta Guarino Reid'; 'Sofia Celic'; 'Jan Dekelver'; 'Chuck
Hitchcock'; 'Hiroshi Kawamura'; 'Gez Lemon'; 'Clayton Lewis'; 'Gian
Sampson-Wild'; 'Keith Smith'; 'Roberto Scano'; 'Stephen Shore'; 'Nancy
Ward'; 'Paul Bowman'; 'John Slatin'; 'Elbert Johns'; 'Gregg
Vanderheiden';
'Michael Cooper'; 'Judy Brewer'; 'WCAG'
Subject: RE: Report on WCAG2 comments relating to cognitive, learning,
and
language disabilities



Hi David

This discussion has proved my point. That it is not a lack of research
that
is the primary problem for accessibility for cognitive disabilities, but
other factors - such as adoptability, interest "appropriateness" etc..

It is essential that people do not think that following WCAG is the best
they can do for these communities.

Look  at the work of WAACI  and http://www.handicom.nl/  and
http://peepo.com/  and ld-web.org. That will help you get an idea of
what is
doable - today. 

 WCAG does not contain guidelines that will help you achieve this type
of
accessibility.

In terms of commercial websites that have adopted symbolic based
accessibility - no I do not know of any. There is no legislation to
drive
them, and the discrimination against these groups are huge.

BY the way, the 2001 email was just a sample. I spent years writing and
writing test criteria's and guidelines for accessibility for cognitive
disabilities. I wrote a CSS techniques, and an RDF techniques document
and
rewrote the success criteria a bunch of times. We need to view the
archives
to glean the different approaches and suggestions from over the years,
Research existing successes and methodologies, perform a gap analysis
etc.....

A few sticky plasters is not what is needed. We as standard writers know
that. We need a consistent integrated roadmap for access for cognitive
disabilities. We have had years to do it but we decided to make it low
priority, and these techniques came of the to do list until after last
call.
We can not now claim that we did the best we could.

All the best
Lisa


 

-----Original Message-----
From: David MacDonald [mailto:befree@magma.ca]
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2007 6:04 PM
To: 'Bailey, Bruce'; 'lisa'; 'j.chetwynd'
Cc: 'Loretta Guarino Reid'; 'Sofia Celic'; 'Jan Dekelver'; 'Chuck
Hitchcock'; 'Hiroshi Kawamura'; 'Gez Lemon'; 'Clayton Lewis'; 'Gian
Sampson-Wild'; 'Keith Smith'; 'Roberto Scano'; 'Stephen Shore'; 'Nancy
Ward'; 'Paul Bowman'; 'John Slatin'; 'Elbert Johns'; 'Gregg
Vanderheiden';
'Michael Cooper'; 'Judy Brewer'; 'WCAG'
Subject: RE: Report on WCAG2 comments relating to cognitive, learning,
and
language disabilities

>>>For an example of a government site that is oriented towards people 
>>>with
cognitive disabilities:The Medicaid Reference Desk http://thedesk.info/ 

A prime feature for a cognitive person would be to be able to ask a
question, I would say. But the link to the "ask question" page gives a
404
link error. And it appears to have been like that since 2002. 

On the home page, the additional info summaries above the link list do
not
work for keyboard users, only for mouse users. 

Any page that is accessed from the home page comes up in a tiny window
with
all the Chrome from the browser. A cognitive person can't find the back
button. Having the opened window tiny like that means that there are
other
visible windows on the computer screen, which would be confusing for
many
people with cognitive disabilities.  

David MacDonald

access empowers people...
        ...barriers disable them...
 
www.eramp.com 

-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org] On
Behalf
Of Bailey, Bruce
Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2007 10:56 AM
To: David MacDonald; lisa; j.chetwynd
Cc: Loretta Guarino Reid; Sofia Celic; Jan Dekelver; Chuck Hitchcock;
Hiroshi Kawamura; Gez Lemon; Clayton Lewis; Gian Sampson-Wild; Keith
Smith;
Roberto Scano; Stephen Shore; Nancy Ward; Paul Bowman; John Slatin;
Elbert
Johns; Gregg Vanderheiden; Michael Cooper; Judy Brewer; WCAG
Subject: RE: Report on WCAG2 comments relating to cognitive, learning,
and
language disabilities


For an example of a government site that is oriented towards people with
cognitive disabilities:
The Medicaid Reference Desk
http://thedesk.info/

Nancy Ward and Clayton Lewis have been particularly involved with that
project.  I did not find concept maps however.

The claim to Triple A status (with a link to CAST no less) is troubling.

P.S.:  Follows is a link to the HTML version of the PDF mentioned in
Lisa's
post from 2001.
Telecommunications Problems and Design Strategies for People with
Cognitive
Disabilities http://www.wid.org/archives/telecom/


> -----Original Message-----
> From: w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org
> [mailto:w3c-wai-gl-request@w3.org]On Behalf Of David MacDonald
> Sent: Tuesday, March 13, 2007 10:23 AM
> To: 'lisa'; '"~:'' ????????????"'
> Cc: 'Loretta Guarino Reid'; 'Sofia Celic'; 'Jan Dekelver'; 'Chuck 
> Hitchcock'; 'Hiroshi Kawamura'; 'Gez Lemon'; 'Clayton Lewis'; 'Gian 
> Sampson-Wild'; 'Keith Smith'; 'Roberto Scano'; 'Stephen Shore'; 'Nancy

> Ward'; 'Paul Bowman'; 'John Slatin'; 'Elbert Johns'; 'Gregg 
> Vanderheiden'; 'Michael Cooper'; 'Judy Brewer'; 'WCAG'
> Subject: RE: Report on WCAG2 comments relating to cognitive, learning,

> and language disabilities
> 
> Hi Lisa
> 
> Can you provide a link to a successfully implemented concept map on a 
> commercial (or private site)? I would like to see one in use. Thanks.

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