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RE: Conformance confusion

From: Denise Wood <Denise.Wood@unisa.edu.au>
Date: Sat, 27 Oct 2001 19:46:23 +0930
Message-ID: <E1962E8F1DF0D411878300A0C9ACB0F902463757@exstaff4.magill.unisa.edu.au>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
I agree David. 

I tested the SLC site with Bobby and also A-Prompt. What I found curious was
the fact that both reported problems with colour contrast (and any of us who
were able to view the site could have suggested that without an automated
test.) However Bobby reported that the colour contrast issue was a Priority 2
level problem whereas A-Prompt reported it to be a Priority 1 level problem.
Perhaps A-Prompt could not differentiate between issues relating to W3C's
Guideline 2.1 about ensuring that all information conveyed with colour is also
available without colour (priority 1) and guideline 2.2 which is concerned
about ensuring that foreground and background colour combinations provide
sufficient contrast when viewed by someone having colour deficits ... [Priority
2 for images, Priority 3 for text]. Neither of these applied to the SLC site
though - sure the contrast between text and b/g is poor but colour is not used
in this context to convey any particular meaning and when I checked with
VisCheck the colours were not reported as problematic for the 3 main types of
colour deficit. So I guess this means that automated tools cannot make such
fine differentiations and it really does demonstrate the risk in relying on
automated checks alone. On that basis Bobby reports the site to conform at
least at the Priority 1 level. Yet, as most of the members who have responded
to the discussion on the accessibility of the SLC site have suggested, it
really is not an accessible site.


Dr Denise L Wood
Lecturer: Professional Development (online teaching and learning)
University of South Australia
CE Campus, North Terrace, Adelaide SA 5000
Ph:    (61 8) 8302 2172 / (61 8) 8302 4472 (Tuesdays & Thursdays)
Fax:  (61 8) 8302 2363 / (61 8) 8302 4390
Mob: (0413 648 260)

Email:	Denise.Wood@unisa.edu.au
WWW:	http://www.unisanet.unisa.edu.au/staff/homepage.asp?Name=Denise.Wood

-----Original Message-----
From: David Woolley [mailto:david@djwhome.demon.co.uk]
Sent: Saturday, 27 October 2001 6:30 PM
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: Re: Conformance confusion

> I will readily admit that I do not particularly understand the entire 
> issues of conformance and testing. I am aware that the issues are 

I'm not clear of the context of the question, but standards in a
commercial environment, as against the original RFCs which were in
a mutual cooperation environment, need to have something that can
be used to contractually define whether or not the standards are
being complied with, without the need to call in a jury to apply
reasonablenss tests.

Conformance tends to refer to a list of things that an implementation
must do before it is considered to comply with the standard, and testing
to the process that mechanically demonstrates that it does do so.

Some standards have multiple conformance levels, allowing people to
partially implement the standard and still claim to be fully conformant
to a subset of the standard, such that users can limit themselves to that
subset and still have many implementations that will work.

Although the WAI guidelines have three conformance levels, they are not
mechanically testable, so they are problematic from this point of view.
Things like Bobby attempt to do the mechanical tests, but people
can be misled into believing that they fully test conformance.
Received on Saturday, 27 October 2001 06:16:27 UTC

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