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WebAIM description of low vision

From: GF Mueden@ <Mueden@>
Date: Sun, 16 Sep 2012 08:36:56 -0400
Message-id: <5055C7E8.1070604@verizon.net>
To: 'WAI Interest Group' <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
The following description of low vision is seriously inadequate and does 
a disservice to those with low vision, especially those who still read 
with their eyes but not well, and whom I suspect are not well served by 
the guidelines:

"Another category of visual disability, low vision, is a common 
condition among the elderly, but younger individuals may also have this 
disability, whether due to genetics, traumatic injuries, or illnesses."

Low vision is not a single disability with a single fix or accommodation.
(1) Most everybody knows about poor acuity, sharpness of focus, and that 
magnification is the usual fix, but many are not aware that it also 
calls for word wrap to keep the copy on the screen when magnified.
(2) Fewer people know about poor contrast sensitivity, the ability to 
distinguish between shades of gray or colors and that the fix is heavier 
lines and bold fonts.  Magnification helps to see the print, but a 
larger skinny character is still skinny and hard to read.  The viewer 
needs choice of font.
(3) Limited visual field is usually caused by retinal damage, but also 
by poor acuity requiring a short eye to screen distance.  The fix here 
is minimizing the screen width and pulling in the margins to give a 
narrow column of copy. which in turn calls for word wrap to keep the 
copy in the column.  Many IT professionals are unaware of the limited 
field problem.

 >>> If these things are covered in the guidelines, please let me know 
about it so I can quote them when I tell websites about where they 
offend.  I don't want just to complain, but to be helpful.
===gm===
Received on Sunday, 16 September 2012 12:37:36 UTC

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