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RE: Accessing PDFs

From: Aaron Smith <aaron@gwmicro.com>
Date: Fri, 25 Oct 2002 09:38:17 -0500
Message-Id: <5.2.0.5.0.20021025092306.012a4fd0@mail.gwmicro.com>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
At 10:22 AM 10/25/2002 -0400, Access Systems wrote:
>>I think you would be surprised to hear the number of calls and e-mails we 
>>gets from our customers thanking us for assisting in making PDFs accessible.
>
>SO do it for ALL formats not just M$, many many thousands of disabled
>computer users have systems that run Mac OS, BsD, Linux, Unix, etc etc.

But you've stated that the cost is already too high for assistive software 
as it is. How could we even begin to start supporting everything you've 
mentioned without hiring new employees for developing, testing, and 
supporting without increasing our prices even more?

>>It seems to me that, whether we like PDFs or not is irrelevant to the 
>>fact that people now have access to them.
>
>NO! only a select few who have lots of $$$$$ have limited access to them,
>what about the rest of the world?

Again, you want cheaper access, but what about the cost of development?

>Bob

Thanks, Bob.

>>Aaron
>>At 03:04 PM 10/25/2002 +0100, Jon Hanna wrote:
>> >The idea though is to move forwards, moving has little virtue in itself.
>> >
>> >PDFs have moved forwards, but still lag behind HTML even before you 
>> consider
>> >accessibility issues.
>> >
>> >The inaccessible PDFs at least have a certain honesty. PDFs modus operandi
>> >still seems predicated on the assumption that the only thing someone might
>> >want to do with them is to print them on paper. They are poor for anyone to
>> >read online, no matter what physical abilities they may or may not possess.
>> >The "Portable" in their name is only in comparison to trying to roll up a
>> >print out and stick it down a telephone.
>> >
>> > > -----Original Message-----
>> > > From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org]On
>> > > Behalf Of Aaron Smith
>> > > Sent: 25 October 2002 14:05
>> > > To: David Poehlman; kestrell; Access Systems
>> > > Cc: RUST Randal; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
>> > > Subject: Re: Accessing PDFs
>> > >
>> > >
>> > > So, in other words, we should never embrace new technology because older
>> > > technology already exists? In my opinion, that's a stifling point of 
>> view
>> > > that will never assist in advancing the accessibility market.
>> > > That line of
>> > > thinking is part of the reason that accessibility isn't more mainstream.
>> > > If, instead of pushing the envelope, we sit back and say, "The heck with
>> > > it. I'll just use what I already have," then we might as well give up.
>> > >
>> > > What's the point of moving from Windows 9X to XP, IE 5 to IE 6,
>> > > Office 2000
>> > > to Office XP? Because the latter products have more/better accessibility
>> > > built in, as well as more general features. Same thing with PDFs.
>> > > Originally, there were not accessible at all. Now they are accessible.
>> > > Maybe not 100% of them 100% of the time, but to say, "It's not
>> > > perfect, so
>> > > let's not use it" violates the whole direction of accessibility 
>> advocacy.
>> > >
>> > > At 12:21 PM 10/24/2002 -0400, David Poehlman wrote:
>> > >
>> > > >the problem with this logic is that it totally misses the mark when
>> > > >those documents can just as well be much more accessible by not 
>> being in
>> > > >pdf.
>> > > >
>> > > >----- Original Message -----
>> > > >From: "Aaron Smith" <aaron@gwmicro.com>
>> > > >To: "kestrell" <aeryadne@theworld.com>; "Access Systems"
>> > > ><accessys@smart.net>
>> > > >Cc: "RUST Randal" <RRust@COVANSYS.com>; <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
>> > > >Sent: Thursday, October 24, 2002 9:02 AM
>> > > >Subject: Re: Accessing PDFs
>> > > >
>> > > >
>> > > >The point is that we had to start somewhere. I know for a fact that the
>> > > >IRS
>> > > >are working on accessible PDFs, as are other government agencies. The
>> > > >more
>> > > >we spread the information that there is a way to make PDFs accessible,
>> > > >the
>> > > >better the chances that those practices will become mainstream.
>> > > >
>> > > >At 07:29 AM 10/24/2002 -0400, kestrell wrote:
>> > > >
>> > > >
>> > > > >It is also worth noting where the quote accessible unquote pdf docs
>> > > >are:
>> > > > >Of course the screen reader manuals are accessible, because any 
>> company
>> > > > >who produced a pdf doc that had any relation to screen readers 
>> and did
>> > > >not
>> > > > >assure it was accessible would be crazy, though there are a lot of
>> > > >crazy
>> > > > >company decisions out there. Places to check for accessible pdf docs
>> > > >would
>> > > > >be government web sites, such as the IRS web site, or materials 
>> online
>> > > >at
>> > > > >university libraries, or just about any eBook sold in the pdf format.
>> > > >The
>> > > > >rate of inaccessibility just sky-rocketed to about eighty percent
>> > > >there.
>> > > > >
>> > > > >kestrell
>> > > >
>> > > >--
>> > > >To insure that you receive proper support, please include all
>> > > >past correspondence (where applicable), and any relevant
>> > > >information pertinent to your situation when submitting a
>> > > >problem report to the GW Micro Technical Support Team.
>> > > >
>> > > >Aaron Smith
>> > > >GW Micro
>> > > >Phone: 260/489-3671
>> > > >Fax: 260/489-2608
>> > > >WWW: http://www.gwmicro.com
>> > > >FTP: ftp://ftp.gwmicro.com
>> > > >Technical Support & Web Development
>> > >
>> > > --
>> > > To insure that you receive proper support, please include all
>> > > past correspondence (where applicable), and any relevant
>> > > information pertinent to your situation when submitting a
>> > > problem report to the GW Micro Technical Support Team.
>> > >
>> > > Aaron Smith
>> > > GW Micro
>> > > Phone: 260/489-3671
>> > > Fax: 260/489-2608
>> > > WWW: http://www.gwmicro.com
>> > > FTP: ftp://ftp.gwmicro.com
>> > > Technical Support & Web Development
>> > >
>> > >
>>--
>>To insure that you receive proper support, please include all
>>past correspondence (where applicable), and any relevant
>>information pertinent to your situation when submitting a
>>problem report to the GW Micro Technical Support Team.
>>Aaron Smith
>>GW Micro
>>Phone: 260/489-3671
>>Fax: 260/489-2608
>>WWW: http://www.gwmicro.com
>>FTP: ftp://ftp.gwmicro.com
>>Technical Support & Web Development
>
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--
To insure that you receive proper support, please include all
past correspondence (where applicable), and any relevant
information pertinent to your situation when submitting a
problem report to the GW Micro Technical Support Team.

Aaron Smith
GW Micro
Phone: 260/489-3671
Fax: 260/489-2608
WWW: http://www.gwmicro.com
FTP: ftp://ftp.gwmicro.com
Technical Support & Web Development
Received on Friday, 25 October 2002 10:38:21 GMT

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