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RE: Guild of Accessible Web Designers starts membership drive

From: P.H.Lauke <P.H.Lauke@salford.ac.uk>
Date: Mon, 1 Dec 2003 20:16:40 -0000
Message-ID: <3A1D23A330416E4FADC5B6C08CC252B9787772@misnts6.mis.salford.ac.uk>
To: "John Colby" <John.Colby@uce.ac.uk>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
"My premise is that if you design to standards, no layout tables, no frames, no
proprietary code, validate both your code and CSS in other words follow the
specs you get accessible sites"

I'd make a slight distinction and say you get "technically" accessible sites.
Rote mastery of the spec will still not force you to write meaningful, appropriate
alt attributes, text transcripts of audio files, captions/descriptions/subtitles.
It will, however, keep you from using deprecated/perverted markup 
constructs that can and will cause accessibility (and cross-browser/platform)
issues.
 
IMHO, anyway
 
P
________________________________
Patrick H. Lauke
Webmaster / University of Salford
http://www.salford.ac.uk <http://www.salford.ac.uk> 


	-----Original Message----- 
	From: John Colby [mailto:John.Colby@uce.ac.uk] 
	Sent: Mon 01/12/2003 18:17 
	To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org 
	Cc: 
	Subject: RE: Guild of Accessible Web Designers starts membership drive
	
	
	I must agree with Harry. On Thursday last I gave a talk to the BCS in Preston on the  rteasons for and ways of making accessible. The after talk discussion (continued in the pub) tried to find a better word for 'accessible'. We tries 'usable' but that needs qualification. My premise is that if you design to standards, no layout tables, no frames, no proprietary code, validate both your code and CSS in other words follow the specs you get accessible sites - and these sites work on devices for the 'disabled' and for mobile computing, pervasive computing, webTV and all that sort of thing.
	 
	For instance thin about an Internet enables car - you talk to a computer and ask a question about road traffic conditions - the web page then speaks back to you the answers. Cloud Cuckoo Land? Maybe not, think about how you could verbally ask for road traffic reports from acomputer and not have to wait for the radio - for me I'm usually alerted just when I've passed the last turn off I could have taken to escape the problem. This type of page is also accessible.
	 
	I just wonder if setting up a separate organisation calling itself 'accessible' is the right way to go - there should really be no discrimination in the first place. We have to concentrate on the user's requirements, no matter what they are, which browsing device they are using, where they are - I really do think that 'accessible' has become a convenient watchword for a certain way of testing (not working) and has lost the emphasis on 'design for all' (don;t like the phrase, but it's the best i can come up with at the time)
	 
	My qualifications? I teach web programming to first year BSc students (among other things) and have succeeded in making them code in XHTML and CSS2 from day 1. After 10 weeks I'm getting a web page assignment set that's valid, accessible, attractive, cross-browsing device - everything you need. I don't tell them it's accessible or any other artificial title - just that this is the way that they have to design web pages. They have stylesheet switching to change colours and type size, they have stylesheets that cascade via @import staements, they have done very well indeed. And thihs is first years!
	 
	</rant>
	 
	John
	 
	John Colby 
	Lecturer, School of Computing, Faculty of Computing, Information and English 
	Room F328a, Feeney Building, University of Central England, 
	Franchise Street, Perry Barr, Birmingham B42 2SU 
	Tel: +44 (0) 121 331 6937, Fax +44 (0) 121 331 6281, Mobile: 0771 114 1621 
	 
	-----Original Message----- 
	From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org on behalf of Harry Woodrow 
	Sent: Mon 01/12/2003 16:07 
	To: 'Pat Byrne'; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org 
	Cc: 
	Subject: RE: Guild of Accessible Web Designers starts membership drive
	
	


		When I saw this invitation I felt pleased that at last Accessible Web
		Design may find a new forum and voice however my joy turned to
		disappointment very quickly.
		
		To me Accessible Web Design must focus on the users and this group
		apears to be be relegating them to a very minor place.  Accessibility is
		not a technical issue it is a people issue and it appears that the focus
		on people has been lost.
		
		An indication to this is the reference to "the disabled."
		
		Whilst when I am referred to as the disabled by most people I do not
		object as this is just ignorance however when an organisation purporting
		to be professional refers to people with disabilities in this manner I
		do as professionals should know that such references are offensive to
		many.
		
		I have great respect for the technical abilities of those who appear to
		be connected with this organisation however this site has led me to
		question the focus, making websites useable to people or performing an
		set of rituals in design regardless of the result.
		
		I hope I read this page wrong.  I fear I did not.
		
		
		Harry Woodrow
		
		
		
		
		

Received on Monday, 1 December 2003 15:17:02 GMT

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