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RE: ALT tools (was: Censorship by laziness)

From: Pawson, David <DPawson@rnib.org.uk>
Date: Mon, 26 Jan 1998 09:28:07 -0000
Message-ID: <81B329C63AEFD0119929006097AB82E40FEBDE@priory.rnib.org.uk>
To: W3C-WAI-IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
whilst basically supporting the position put out below, 
could I suggest a compromise position.
TV's option, Java intervention twixt browser and server sounds
straightforward for automated use - I will certainly look at getting
rid of cookies and other rubbish!

the various 'fix it' options by volunteers could be applied on a 
request basis. Rather than try to change the world, why not
do it on a request basis. This would focus effort where needed.
A request of ' I went to url xxx, need info from there, and failed
to find my way round' could then be translated into action.
	Sounds like a valuable service could be provided, 
which is tailored to need rather than spread so thinly as to be
almost unnoticable.


Larry Goldberg [Larry_Goldberg@wgbh.org] wrote:

> I also don't want to be negative, but...
> This seems like an awfully cumbersome technological fix to a
> fairly easily solved problem in Web access.  Our experience in one-
> on-one discussions with webmasters is that of all the access fixes
> they're willing to deal with, remembering to include alt-text tags is
> the 
> easiest and most readily accepted.  The proposal basically lets them
> off the hook
> of the first thing they are willing to do.
> I also think people underestimate the effort it would take to have 
> a volunteer corps of people inserting tags.  There must be millions
> upon 
> millions of tags and even those of us working in the field wouldn't be
> pleased to have to add tags to every image of every page we surfed
> during the day.
> The proposed technology may be elegant, but it seems to me that this
> would 
> actually result in less tags, not more.  Putting warning (if not
> error) 
> messages in web authoring tools seems like a more productive path to
> work on.  
> I'm also quite skeptical of any automated tagging through image
> recognition - 
> the look of even text in graphic form on the web would likely
> frustrate even
> the best OCR engine for the foreseeable future.  Let alone logos,
> photos, 
> animations, etc.  Doubtful that image (or speech recognition for deaf
> or hard-
> of-hearing people) is the likely solution.
> A similar solution has been posed for adding captions and descriptions
> to 
> multimedia on the web.  I can't imagine (my failure of imagination?) 
> a volunteer corps of captioners and describers taking up the slack 
> for busy or unsympathetic webmasters being the answer.  When the
> producer has
> the video or audio clip in hand and in house is when the captioning or
> description
> is most readily accomplished.  Quality control issues are an obvious
> problem as well.
> Better web-based multimedia captioning and description tools would be
> a vast
> help, and we may see some soon.
> I would warn against putting alot of development time into this
> centralized
> tagging concept where there seems to be so many tougher development
> tasks
> at hand.  One man's opnion...
> - Larry
> Larry Goldberg, Director
> Media Access
> WGBH Educational Foundation
> 125 Western Ave.
> Boston, MA  02134
> 617-492-9258 (voice/TTY)
> fax 617-782-2155
> Internet:  Larry_Goldberg@WGBH.org
Received on Monday, 26 January 1998 04:25:11 UTC

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