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Re: Aie it's HUGE

From: Chris Kreussling <CHRIS.KREUSSLING@ny.frb.org>
Date: Mon, 07 Dec 1998 13:07:30 -0500
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-id: <s66bd402.027@ny.frb.org>
>>> <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org> (Kynn Bartlett) 12/06 3:11 AM >>>
...
Mind you, this isn't criticism of the guidelines themselves --
they're wonderful, I love them, they're complete, correct, and
a lot of other adjectives which basically mean "the techie
web geek in me really grooves on these."  I'm just at a loss,
though, when I speak to people or teach a class and say, "Uhm,
yes, it's not hard to design an accessible page -- in fact,
here's 51 pages of dense technical instructions to tell you
how!"

The people who have worked on the guidelines did a great job,
I just am worried that the guidelines continue to grow and
grow in size, and that can turn off many of the very people
who need to this information the most -- the casual or beginning
web author.
<<<

Is the casual or beginning web author interested in learning even HTML? Probably not; they just want to "put up a Web page." They're going to use a visual authoring tool. These are the people for whom Authoring Tools must *enforce* universal design. 

For example, using the <IMG ALT=> paradigm, the Tool could require that the author enter a brief one-line description of any image they want to publish on the Web. The inclusion of standard buttons and images and their descriptions with the Tool can set an example for the author of what's intended. The benefit to the author is that the Tool could include descriptions alongside images, sort of an extended directory listing, much the way many tools include the HTML <TITLE> text alongside the filenames of Web pages. The Tool could take the responsibility of adding ALT="Description" every time the author adds the image to a page. The author doesn't even need to know that the Tool is using the description to improve the accessibility of their site. *They never gave it the first thought* and they shouldn't have to.

Since the casual or beginning web author is not going to care about accessibility, they're not even going to *look* for guidelines, so their length will not intimidate them.
Received on Monday, 7 December 1998 21:43:33 GMT

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