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Re: Please advise on how to make our Discussion Forums more Accessible

From: Al Gilman <asgilman@iamdigex.net>
Date: Fri, 11 Jul 2003 15:25:04 -0400
Message-Id: <5.1.0.14.2.20030711150454.022e7ec0@pop.iamdigex.net>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

It's a forum of one page-repairer and the world reading the web.

But review what is done in the new A-Prompt.

  http://ultrajuan.ic.utoronto.ca/jan/aprompt2/Aprompt2.html

It's very like your design.

Which is very like a consensus core for any WebDAV or WorkFlow system.

I don't know what it will take to port the UI techniques from code
to Web, but it's got to be worth checking out.

Al

At 04:54 AM 2003-07-11, Julian Voelcker wrote:

>We created some discussion forums on a voluntary sector site some time
>ago and now want to try to convert it into a more Accessible format.
>
>The forums were designed to mimic your average mail reader software
>using frames to provide a listing of the messages (message date,
>subject and author) in a (static) tree structure at the top half of the
>screen and then the bottom half of the screen is used for displaying
>the actual messages (you click a message in the top half to display in
>the bottom) or for providing a form for adding new messages.
>
>To give you a better idea I have posted a screen shot to
>http://www.charityskills.org/forums.gif
>
>Now I realise that it is in theory possible to create Accessible framed
>pages, however I have always believed that they weren't a good idea so
>am trying to look at alternatives without compromising usability.
>
>We already have a number of changes lined up including:-
>+ Changes to the message listing to make it more visually appealing
>(it's a bit cluttered at the moment)
>+ Providing an option to display the message listing in chronological
>order or thread order (as it is now)
>+ Adding an enhanced new message editor with options for html
>formatting, email alert on responses, signatures.
>+ Advanced printing options - print single message/complete thread/all
>messages
>
>One of the key requirements from the Users' point of view is to be able
>to see a full listing of all messages because they may be following
>several threads/conversations at once - the forums are used for holding
>virtual meetings, so the user's refresh the message listing quite
>regularly to see new messages.
>
>The only alternative that I can think of is to have a single page with
>the message listing at the top and the message viewer/editor at the
>bottom, although this will result in the user having to scroll down the
>to bottom of the page each time they want to see a message or create a
>new one.  OK, I can put some skip links in, but then the user might
>miss new messages (these are flagged up with a visual indicator).
>
>What do you suggest?
>
>Can I get away with leaving them as they are, apart from some minor
>tweaks?
>
>Do you know of any good accessible forums?
>
>Any help would be appreciated.
>
>Cheers,
>
>Julian Voelcker
>Cirencester, United Kingdom
Received on Friday, 11 July 2003 15:27:40 GMT

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