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Re: Accessibility issues regarding interactive browser-based diagramming

From: Ramón Corominas <listas@ramoncorominas.com>
Date: Thu, 19 Apr 2012 22:19:28 +0200
Message-ID: <4F907350.6030905@ramoncorominas.com>
To: Robert Muetzelfeldt <r.muetzelfeldt@ed.ac.uk>
CC: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Hello, Robert and all.

Yesterday I found this survey about accessibility to diagramas for 
people with visual impairment:

Diagram accessibility survey
http://goo.gl/jAPgx

I don't know much about it, but maybe it can be interesting for you (or 
maybe you're the owner of the survey?). I have already taken the survey 
(smile)

And yes, it is a challenge to do an app that allows a blind user to 
create diagrams, I have sent this survey also to my blind friends.

Regards,
Ramón.

Robert said:

> New member here - and, frankly, new to the whole topic of web 
> accessibility.
> 
> I am developing a browser-based app for viewing and drawing generic 
> 'graphs' - i.e. node-and-arc (or box-and-arrow) diagrams (for example, 
> electrical circuit diagrams, carbon cycle diagrams, topic maps, mind 
> maps, road networks etc).   This is conventionally very demanding on 
> both visual and mouse-using abilities.   I would very much like to 
> improve the level of accessibility of my app, but, after a quick look 
> around the WAI site, I have not come across anything that specifically 
> addresses this.
> 
> First thoughts are that even the passive reading of existing diagrams is 
> not straightforward.   Sure, we can express the diagram in some 
> appropriate format (e.g. XML), then have a reader for that, but this 
> makes huge demands on the user, given the often complex, network nature 
> of the diagrams.   Rather, we need to allow for considerable user 
> interaction, to allow them to choose which of various branches to follow 
> as they work through the diagram.
> 
> Allowing the user to actively build or edit such diagrams introduces 
> additional challenges, though it is not necessary to handle actual 
> layout - the user can specify topological relationships ("A is connected 
> to B and C"), and automated graph-layout tools can be used to produce 
> what (to a sighted person) are reasonable diagrams.
> 
> I am wondering if there is a group working on these issues?
> 
> Many thanks,
> Robert Muetzelfeldt
Received on Thursday, 19 April 2012 20:20:07 GMT

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