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Re: belittling designers, two kinds of accessibility

From: David Woolley <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
Date: Sat, 21 Oct 2000 20:12:52 +0100 (BST)
Message-Id: <200010211912.UAA05352@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Kynn wrote:
> 
> For starters, the idea of a "document". :)

The document concept is much more of a commercial internet thing than
a world wide web concept.  The WWW uses the term resource, indicating that
it can be almost anything that can be sent down a wire (or optical fibre!).

Most commercial web sites are an attempt to synthesize a single, isolated,
document out of HTML, images, and maybe .wav's and Flash animation.  The
thing that makes them single documents is that the typical site only has
a single approved entry point, and has very few, if any, references to
other sites (generally to the single entry point of those sites).  Front
Page uses the term "web" for these documents, but this is far from the
world wide one.

A penalty for using HTML technology for this is that the logical document
becomes a mess of individual files, and there is a high risk of broken
internal links.  The only real benefit of doing this is that the "web"
can be incrementally loaded, however modern developments in HTML means
that single file PDF documents can also be incrementally loaded over the
web - this has always been possible from local files.  A secondary benefit
is that one can construct the individual textual pages with simple tools,
which produces a low cost of entry for people like students.

Although I haven't looked at them deeply, Microsoft "HTML Help" (.chm)
files are an attempt to re-integrate the logical document into a single
file, although they are normally only used off local file systems, and
I'm not sure how well they work over the internet; they need proprietory
user agents, of course.
Received on Saturday, 21 October 2000 16:30:48 GMT

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