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Re: Scott's Chemistry Application

From: Scott Luebking <phoenixl@netcom.com>
Date: Tue, 26 Oct 1999 21:01:21 -0700 (PDT)
Message-Id: <199910270401.VAA11214@netcom10.netcom.com>
To: kynn-hwg@idyllmtn.com, phoenixl@netcom.com
Cc: W3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Hi, Kynn

The problem is definition of "accessibility".  In this project,
the decision was to limit the number of browsers in order
to include features that blind team members felt they needed
for accessibility.  The IE 4/5 was the only one which had the
functions which the blind team members said were needed.

They believe the pages are very accessible.  The features they
requested significantly improves the efficacy of use.

If someone does not want to learn IE 4/5 and JAWS, is that sufficient
to say the pages are not accessible?


> Something is accessible if it can be used by users with disabilities.
> This is can be used by those users -- therefore it is accessible to
> them.
> For every thing we put up, there are two sets.  If I could draw reliable
> diagrams I would graph it.  In one set we have "all possible users of this
> application."  A smaller subset of that group is "users of this application
> who can't use it."
> (  users     ( who can't use it )    )
> Our goal is to reduce the smaller set to nothingness.  When we talk about
> making something more accessible, we are really talking about shrinking
> that smaller group.  A change which decreases that group by any amount
> makes the application more accessible.
> If we are talking about the Internet as a whole, we have:
> GROUP 1:  Potential Users
> Group 1 includes everyone with access to something that can speak
> HTTP and retrieve our web pages.  This is a big group.
> GROUP 2:  Users who can't use our Internet web page
> The size of group 2 depends on how we have created our application.
> Our goal is to minimize this subset of Group 1.
> By my way of thinking, we are NEVER going to be able to have "perfect
> accessibility" within the group of Group 1 -- that would mean that
> Group 2 becomes nothing, and that's not reasonable over a set of
> 180 million users.  Our goal instead is to MINIMIZE the size of Group
> 2 by making it usable by as many people as possible.
> Now, let's look at an intranet:
> GROUP 1:  Potential Users
> The people in our company.  This is a finite number, be it 8 or 800.
> GROUP 2:  Users who can't use our intranet application
> This is a subset of the number above.  We _can_ achieve this goal,
> because we can control what browsers are used, and we can find the
> small(er) number of users with disabilities and design valid
> workaround for all of them.
> Finally, let's look at your chemistry application:
> GROUP 1:  Potential users
> Blind students of chemistry.
> GROUP 2:  Users who can't use the chemistry program
> Well, if you do it right, they can all use it. So the size of this
> set becomes zero.
> Therefore, over the group of your users, the application _is_
> accessible.
Received on Wednesday, 27 October 1999 00:01:14 UTC

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