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Fw: Re: Math symbols in pdf files will tagging help

From: David Poehlman <poehlman1@comcast.net>
Date: Thu, 18 Sep 2003 10:41:01 -0400
Message-ID: <009901c37df4$74cf70f0$6501a8c0@handsontech>
To: "wai-ig list" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "John Gardner" <John.Gardner@ORST.EDU>
To: <EASI@MAELSTROM.STJOHNS.EDU>
Sent: Thursday, September 18, 2003 12:35 AM
Subject: Re: Math symbols in pdf files will tagging help


Pranav.  there are two mainstream ways to present math that can be
accessible.  Well actually one method and one that is almost ready for
use.  Word math documents can be embossed on a Tiger embosser  if one
reformats the document into the Tiger environment.  Second way is to
present the math in mathML and display in Internet Explorer with the free
MathPlayer plug-in.  The next version of MathPlayer, to be released later
this year, will permit audio access to the mathML with some screen
readers.  And the document can also be embossed on Tiger.  MathML is the
right way to write math in the future.  Accessibility developments are in
their infancy, and access should get better in the next few years.  Sorry
but there aren't any other mainstream ways that are likely to be
accessible, so you're facing the need to have some sighted human do magic
to make these other methods "accessible".

John


At 04:23 AM 9/18/2003 +0530, Pranav Lal wrote:
>Hi Richard,
>
>The PDF file is a math text book. What format do you suggest? The blind
>student does not know nemeth, cannot be asked to learn it at this point and
>would be unwilling to purchase a program such as scientific notebook.
>
>to elaborate my situation is as follows. My company is a provider of
>courses that help students gain access to institutions of higher learning.
>Some of the students who have enrolled for our courses are blind. My
>employer wants to give them material in electronic format. The problem is
>that most of the material is in pagemaker format. Pagemaker can export to
>pdf and to HTML. In both cases, the math is a huge problem due to the way
>fractions, equations and other symbols are written. These blind students do
>not have money to spend on software. They just about manage to purchase a
>screen reader and an OCR and in some cases a computer. There is no state
>support so no funding of adaptive technology is possible. I need a solution
>that uses commonly available software such as Internet explorer or perhaps
>Microsoft Word.
>
>
>Pranav
>
>At 12:10 AM 9/18/2003, you wrote:
>>The answer depends on the intent of the PDF file, the complexity of the
>>equations and the braille skills of the user/student.  If the PDF file is
>>for the instruction of a blind student in a math skill then the PDF file
>>would not be a legal or appropriate presentation of the material under
>>Section 504.  If the PDF file is for the instruction of a blind student,
>>who knows Nemeth Code Braille, in some math skill then the PDF file would
>>not be legal.
>>If the PDF file is discussing another topic and just mentions a math
>>process, then an alt tag would probably be appropriate.
>>
>>Richard Jones
>>Assistant Director
>>Disability Resources for Students
>>Arizona State University, Main
>>480-965-6045
>>
>>"Our first belief is that "disability" is a rational concept.  It does
>>not reside within the individual.  Our second belief is that electronic
>>technology can alter environments in such a manner as to allow people
>>who have various functional deficits to operate without any disability
>>what so ever."  Richard Reed, CCD Newsletter, Fall 1988, v (2), EDUCOM
>>Software Initiative, 1989.
>>
>>
>>
>>-----Original Message-----
>>From: Pranav Lal [mailto:nomad42@VSNL.COM]
>>Sent: Wednesday, September 17, 2003 2:42 AM
>>To: EASI@MAELSTROM.STJOHNS.EDU
>>Subject: Math symbols in pdf files will tagging help
>>
>>
>>                 Hi all,
>>
>>I have a pdf file with math symbols and images. Will tagging allow me to
>>make those symbols and images accessible by providing descriptions that
are
>>readable by a screen reader?
>>
>>Pranav
>>
>>-----------------------
>>September online courses on accessible information technology:
>>Barrier-free Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/adaptit.htm
>>Advanced Barrier-free Web Design http://easi.cc/workshops/advwbsyl.htm
>>LD and Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/ld.htm
>>EASI Home Page http://www.rit.edu/~easi
>>CCourses and Clinics http://easi.cc/workshop.htm
>>To sign off this list
>>send e-mail to listserv@maelstrom.stjohns.edu saying
>>signoff easi
>>
>>-----------------------
>>September online courses on accessible information technology:
>>Barrier-free Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/adaptit.htm
>>Advanced Barrier-free Web Design http://easi.cc/workshops/advwbsyl.htm
>>LD and Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/ld.htm
>>EASI Home Page http://www.rit.edu/~easi
>>CCourses and Clinics http://easi.cc/workshop.htm
>>To sign off this list
>>send e-mail to listserv@maelstrom.stjohns.edu saying
>>signoff easi
>
>-----------------------
>September online courses on accessible information technology:
>Barrier-free Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/adaptit.htm
>Advanced Barrier-free Web Design http://easi.cc/workshops/advwbsyl.htm
>LD and Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/ld.htm
>EASI Home Page http://www.rit.edu/~easi
>CCourses and Clinics http://easi.cc/workshop.htm
>To sign off this list
>send e-mail to listserv@maelstrom.stjohns.edu saying
>signoff easi

John Gardner
Professor and Director, Science Access Project
Department of Physics
Oregon State University
Corvallis, OR 97331-6507
tel: (541) 737 3278
FAX: (541) 737 1683
e-mail: John.Gardner@orst.edu
URL: http://dots.physics.orst.edu

-----------------------
September online courses on accessible information technology:
Barrier-free Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/adaptit.htm
Advanced Barrier-free Web Design http://easi.cc/workshops/advwbsyl.htm
LD and Information Technology http://easi.cc/workshops/ld.htm
EASI Home Page http://www.rit.edu/~easi
CCourses and Clinics http://easi.cc/workshop.htm
To sign off this list
send e-mail to listserv@maelstrom.stjohns.edu saying
signoff easi
Received on Thursday, 18 September 2003 10:52:18 GMT

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