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Re: Fw: online obstacles discourage blind

From: Phill Jenkins <pjenkins@us.ibm.com>
Date: Mon, 21 Jun 2004 08:50:22 -0500
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Cc: kha@sjmercury.com
Message-ID: <OFE2ED3263.11C56CEA-ON86256EBA.00486E3A-86256EBA.004C067F@us.ibm.com>
The article make several good points:

1. implement the standards:

"... The answer, activists say, is to universally implement consistent Web 
standards that ensure accessibility and usability."

2. The standards consists of more than just the web content standards:

"The [W3C] group's guidelines ... cover not only the content of Web pages, 
but also the tools used to write the content as well as the Internet 
browser or media player that interprets the content."

3. The experience is improving:

"Despite her difficulties online, Rhodes stressed that her Internet 
experience has dramatically improved since she first began using computers 
in the 1980s. "

My observation has been that when all the stake holders do their part, the 
experience improves.  As my Dad would tell me while working on my first 
car: "we need all eight cylinders firing in the engine before it will 
really go!"

Screen readers & magnifiers have improved significantly since the 1980's - 
heck they didn't even exist before then.  The IBM Screen Reader for DOS 
wasn't announced until 1986, I believe. 

The browser support for UAAG standards has significantly improved.  The 
standard wouldn't have been published if there wasn't an implementation of 
them.  Authoring tool support for ATAG, although improving, perhaps is the 
furthest behind. 

And policy makers and users are making significant progress as well. 
Policy makers are making the need for standards compliance aware to more 
people in business, government, and education.  Users are learning and 
taking advantage of the improvements in the assistive technology, 
browsers, and web content. 

Phill Jenkins
Received on Monday, 21 June 2004 09:51:34 UTC

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