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Fwd from CHI-WEB: Amazon's version for the Visually Impaired

From: Scott Luebking <phoenixl@sonic.net>
Date: Thu, 13 Dec 2001 17:56:07 -0800
Message-Id: <200112140156.fBE1u7GZ022137@newbolt.sonic.net>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Date:    Thu, 13 Dec 2001 09:57:12 +0100
Subject: Amazon's version for the Visually Impaired

Hello all,

Do you know that amazon.com has developped a specific version of the
site for the Visually Impaired ?

See http://www.ecommercetimes.com/perl/story/15199.html for an article
and http://www.amazon.com/access to reach the site.

When we saw it we (the usability team) say :

- oupsss !!! (we provide an ASP software which is able to transform web
sites in an accessible and personalized way for all the visually
impaired (including blind and all people who need some visual comfort))

- great !!! they did a good job and all the pages are designed in the
good way : no more graphic (but a text only version yet exist), no more
marketing blabla, search engine in the top and so on...

We ask on a french list for the blind what they think about this site,
the way it is designed and is utility... For the moment, we are very
surprised by the answers ! Blind people do not find it so efficient :
they have the feeling of a "poor site" and they absolutely dislike that
there are two versions of the same site : one for "normal" people and
one for "visually impaired" ! They think designers have to put all their
efforts in designing one and only one site, and not to make "ghettos"
for the blind.

What do you think about that ?  It seems that the text only version is
preferred because much more informations are presents !
Someone has tested this version ?
Is it the better way to improve accessibility (visual accessibility) ?
And what about the URL ? Is it the good name ?

Of course, i will try to make a summary to the list of all the answers i
will get !

Thank you

PS : I am french, please excuse my english ! :)

Received on Thursday, 13 December 2001 20:56:17 UTC

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