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Re: Repository software conformance to WCAG2 and ATAG2?

From: Charles McCathieNevile <chaals@opera.com>
Date: Fri, 16 Mar 2007 17:43:59 -0700
To: "Sarah Currier" <s.currier@intrallect.com>, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-ID: <op.tpa5nlgvwxe0ny@widsith.local>

On Wed, 14 Mar 2007 03:22:31 -0700, Sarah Currier <s.currier@intrallect.com> wrote:

> 1. IntraLibrary is not "web content" in the old sense of WCAG 1.0- but
> the new guidelines are supposed to cover web content and applications.
> I think an instance of intraLibrary is a "web unit".

I think this is correct, as I understand WCAG 2.

> However, we are
> not allowed a conformance statement that "horizontally" excludes certain
> content from the statement.  In our case we would need to say that
> intraLibrary's baseline is X, and that we conform to Level X, and that
> this conformance statement excludes content held WITHIN intraLibrary
> ... We need to be able to state which URLs or range of URLs DO
> conform and we can't do that. 

This seems like a reasonable requirement - you aren't the only ones trying to do this.

> 2. You would then think - well it's because intraLibrary is a piece of
> software that is a tool- perhaps using ATAG 2.0 would be better- the
> first part of it relates to WCAG 2.0.  Surely the conformance of a tool
> doesn't have to include the content used IN the tool... except- it's
> supposed to ensure that content produced from the tool DOES conform
> (which we don't do- you could easily import then export a package or
> resource from intraLibrary that didn't conform, as there is no means
> within intraLibrary to modify content).  It's not even definite that a
> LO repository is an authoring tool as far as ATAG is concerned- it's on
> the very outlying boundary of the definition, and until I found the
> conformance problem listed above I was on the verge of ditching it as
> something we had to consider.

As a former editor of ATAG, my feeling is that the tool is well and truly covered by ATAG, that it is not going to reach a high level of conformance (if any) since it doesn't interfere with the content you are presenting, but that you should nonetheless implement as much of ATAG as you can to the extent that you can.

I think the reasons why ATAG insists on covering the content the tool manages or produces are good ones. That said, I think it is far better for accessibility to meet any subset of ATAG checkpoints you can think of, and forget the fact that you don't meet a defined conformance level, than to simply decide not to worry about it.

I spent a fair bit of time working on EARL - http://www.w3.org/TR/EARL10 - in part as a result of my work on ATAG, where it became clear that implementing as much as you can and then stating what requirements you actually meet is probably more important to the world than waiting until you find some kind of conformance stamp that covers what you can do and implementing the things it covers.

just my two cents worth

Chaals

-- 
  Charles McCathieNevile, Opera Software: Standards Group
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Received on Saturday, 17 March 2007 00:44:13 GMT

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