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Re: UA Guideline review, rev. 1

From: jon gunderson <jongund@ux1.cso.uiuc.edu>
Date: Tue, 30 Nov 1999 17:44:49 -0600 (CST)
To: Lakespur Roca <lake@netscape.com>
cc: w3c-wai-ua@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.GSO.4.10.9911301743140.28070-100000@staff2.cso.uiuc.edu>
Lakespur,
It would help us if you could identify checkpoints you think are unclear
and ones you think are clear.

Jon


On Tue, 30 Nov 1999, Lakespur Roca wrote:

> Your Point C was wonderful. I have been going over the document but I really have
> to jump back and forth all over the place to understand A. What component things
> refer to ( the UI or the technology used or other), B. If the item refers to a
> reader like Jaws, A player like Spinner or a browser like IE. And then I have to
> go to the techniques to figure out what they really mean. Sounds a bit rough on a
> developer who just wants to do the right thing for the product. WE are requiring
> them to do extra work.
> 
> I would like to suggest a reorganization or allowing the developer to just
> address those parts of the document they need rather than requiring them to wade
> through every thing.  I know that you could just make a supplement specific to
> those areas but do you really think in every day development that any of the
> implimenters want to read this entire document?
> 
> For example. If I were developing a UI for a browser I don't need the information
> on the back end technology (My buddy down the hall working on the back end needs
> that) Additionally I don't need any thing that applies to Speech renderers only.
> 
> Technical writing techniques for business are different from those in academia.
> They are based on the knowledge that most people are under a dead line and will
> read the minimal necessary to get the job done. They don't go back and
> reinterpret. If they misunderstand the first time you don't get a second chance.
> One of the principles of technical writing we should employ here is front
> loading. Essentially this is giving the most important information up front. This
> is not like an abstract in that it gives the conclusions not an out line of  the
> topic. Another is "talk to you audience". I hope in this case it is developers
> since they are the ones who will have to implement it. And let me tell you if you
> don't already know they may work 80+ hours a week and don't have time, interest,
> or attention span for verbose or unclear specifications. (Not that the entire
> document is verbose or unclear.)
> It would be best to state a specification in a clear concise manner and give a
> 90% example, note or organize what component(s), and type of agent this refers to
> then link to a detailed explanation and detailed examples (pictures would be nice
> as well for those items that refer to visual interfaces).
> 
> Still wadding through...
> Lake
> 
> "earl.johnson" wrote:
> 
> > Must have been to much turkey this weekend... I re-read General Comments C.
> > and D. and they didn't make sense so I've updated them below in hopes they'll
> > be clearer. Sorry for any confusion my written confusion caused. Please toss
> > out the 11/29 review and  use this one.
> >
> > Thanks, Earl
> >
> > ==========
> >
> > UA Guidelines review, rev. 1
> >
> > GENERAL COMMENTS
> >
> > A. While content display capabilities are important it is also
> >    important to ensure that the feature control portions of the UA UI
> >    are also accessible. The later means things like adjusting
> >    properties, getting to a menubar and it's entries, getting to and
> >    navigating secondary windows, choosing a location, etc. The
> >    guidelines explicitly address the content aspect but only implicitly
> >    address the features control aspect. With all the focus on content
> >    display there's a real risk that important aspecdts of the rest of
> >    the UA will be overlooked. It'd be nice to see the features aspect
> >    addressed or called out specifically in applicable guidelines. The
> >    guidelines this comment applies to are #2, #5, #7, #10 and perhaps
> >    #4. #4 provides a nice example for how this clearness can be
> >    achieved.
> >
> > B. Out of curiosity: Has someone sat down with the Web Content,
> >    Authoring Tools, and UA guidelines to verify that the UA guidelines
> >    cover all the UA dependencies covered in the Web Content and
> >    Authoring Tools guidelines? It would be bad if the Web Content and
> >    Authoring Tools guidelines called for things the UA guidelines
> >    doesn't touch on.
> >
> > Adding the forgotten words...
> >
> > C. The guidelines and checkpoints in the document should stand alone so
> >    the reader has a pretty good idea of what they mean without having
> >    to rely on the Techniques document to explain what is meant.
> >
> > Translating what was said originally into English...
> >
> > D. Sometimes the same basic checkpoint is found in more than one guideline.
> >    For example, checkpoints 1.3 and 10.3 seem like they could just as
> >    easily be merged into a single checkpoint under guideline #1 or #10.
> >    Taken as a whole, the checkpoints can be thought of as a long lists
> >    of requirements which, from a development perspective, can be
> >    overwhelming. While the checkpoints themselves say nothing about the
> >    engineering effort required, I think reducing their number if
> >    possible will make the accessibility effort seem like a less
> >    daunting one to the developer. So the suggestion is look for
> >    opportunities to remove checkpoints whose removal won't effect the
> >    guideline's completeness. My review contains a couple candidates for
> >    consideration.
> >
> > SPECIFIC COMMENTS
> >
> > Section 1.5
> >
> > A. It's probably beyond the scope of this document and to early but it
> >    would be nice if a statement could be made about 508 and what
> >    minimum priority level is needed to enable compliance. Since access
> >    novices will (hopefully) be using this guideline when they design or
> >    redesign their UA, it might be good to add in another short section
> >    that gives highlights of or makes general statements about 508, the
> >    ADA, and the Telecom Act.
> >
> > Section 2 - UA Guidelines
> >
> > Guideline #1
> >
> > Checkpoint 1.1 - The second sentence should be removed because it feels
> > like a design decision. It's a good point though so move it to the note
> > or Techniques document.
> >
> > Guideline #2
> >
> > A. In the description paragraphs, are there formats from other areas that
> >    should be called out? SMIL is mentioned, is there anything from TV
> >    or other areas? I'm just wondering because th UA enables all sorts
> >    of technology convergence.
> >
> > Checkpoint 2.3 - I think of speech recognition when I see the term
> > natural language. Is that what is meant here? If no, perhaps a better
> > description can be provided so the reader doesn't need to leave the
> > guidelines to verify what natural language means in the checkpoint.
> >
> > Checkpoint 2.7 - What if the object isn't video or audio? Is this
> > checkpoint just for timed media or does it cover things like graphics
> > or interactive objects that say nothing about themselves?
> >
> > Checkpoint 2.9 - Natural language again. The Techniques document
> > suggests this applies to the language that content gets displayed as or
> > was written in. Given the speech recognition conotations mentioned in
> > 2.3 do you think something besides natural language might be a better
> > descriptor?
> >
> > Guideline #3
> >
> > A. A number of the checkpoints mention rendering. Should they be under
> >    Guideline #10 since it's sub-guideline calls out rendering or should
> >    rendering be moved from #10 to this guideline?
> >
> > Guideline #4
> >
> > A. Mentioning speech rate and pitch suggests to me the UA is the one
> >    providing the audio service.
> >    1. Does this aspect of the guideline still hold true if the platform
> >       the UA is running on provides the service?
> >
> >    2. Isn't it the audio service that should provide the control?
> >
> >    3. Does this mean the UA will need to provide a controller UI for
> >       all the audio services the user might have (e.g. different TTS
> >       devices)?
> >
> > Checkpoints for the UI - a major design access problem we run across is
> > windows that don't give an object input focus when they're made
> > activate. I'm not sure if it should be here or under guideline #7, #8,
> > or #9 but a checkpoint should say that a component needs to be assigned
> > input focus for the content -and- feature control portions of the UA
> > UI. This goes back to my general comment saying the feature control
> > aspect of the UA UI needs to be explicitly covered.
> >
> > Guideline #5
> >
> > A. From the Authoring Tools Guidelines: "Guideline 7. Ensure that the
> >    authoring tool is accessible to authors with disabilities." The
> >    first descriptive paragraph for it states: "The authoring tool is a
> >    software program with standard user interface elements and as such
> >    must be designed according to relevant user interface accessibility
> >    guidelines."
> >
> >    1. While this excerpt doesn't yet specifically cover custom
> >       components it does basically say use the platform's UI toolkit
> >       when buuilding the authoring tool. I don't see the same clarity
> >       in this document. It's important that this document say something
> >       similar to: a) use the platform's standard UI components whenever
> >       possible and ensure that custom components provide equivalent
> >       accessibility information as standard UI components in the same
> >       programmatic way or b) ensure UI components not based on a
> >       platform's standard UI toolkit provide information and events
> >       equivalent to that found in currently available accessibility
> >       APIs (i.e. JAAPI and MSAA). My recommendation is this be a new
> >       checkpoint(s).
> >
> >    2. Is this a guideline #4 point instead since it talks about the UI?
> >
> > B. As noted in the Techniques document Java Accessibility API and MSAA
> >    are public APIs. They enable the designer to easily make the feature
> >    control aspects of the UA's UI accessible and can be extended to
> >    cover many accessibility aspects of the content display. For
> >    example, JAAPI directly supports not only buttons and comboboxes but
> >    editable text also. But unlike DOM, SMIL, and other W3C specs they
> >    aren't mentioned in the main guidelines. Since they are relevant,
> >    why aren't the JAAPI and MSAA standards specifically mentioned as
> >    examples in this document also?
> >
> > Checkpoint 5.1 - What API(s) is it refering to?
> >
> > Checkpoint 5.4 - Should this be moved to guideline #8 since it has to
> > do with orienting the user?
> >
> > Checkpoint 5.5 - How about rewording it to something like "Provide
> > programmatic support that enables access to notification of changes..."
> > This checkpoint appears to be aimed at situations where an assistive
> > technology (AT) is utilized. For performance reasons I think the AT (or
> > other UA talking to, the prime UA for that matter) should ask for the
> > notification first before the UA starts providing it. The important
> > point is to provide programmatic facilities in the UA so an AT or other
> > technology has a clear place to go in the UA to let it know that they
> > want notification of various events.
> >    1. Since it's change oriented shouldn't this one be in guideline #9
> >       instead?
> >
> > Checkpoint 5.6 - This feels like a guideline #6 checkpoint because it's
> > aimed at content.
> >
> > Checkpoint 5.7 - What does this mean from a UA perspective when things
> > beyond it's control (e.g. the network) impact the performance? How does
> > a developer know what this means as it applies to the UA? How will they
> > know when they've successfully achieved this checkpoint? This
> > checkpoint should be reworded or a better example cited so what is
> > meant is clearer or the checkpoint should be removed.
> >    1. General related document comment: the guidelines contain both
> >       specific and general guidelines all mixed together. The
> >       Techniques document provides clarity on some of the general ones
> >       but not all.
> >         a. How will the developer know when they have successfully met
> >            those guidelines like the above?
> >         b. What meaning does the Conformance seal of approval being
> >            designed have in situations like this where the determination
> >            of successful achievement depends so heavily on how well the
> >            developer thinks they've done?
> >
> > Guideline #6
> >
> > A. Guidelines #5 & #6 without the checkpoints say the same thing to me.
> >    But as I read the descriptions and checkpoints associated with each
> >    guideline #5 seems to be oriented towards the feature control aspect
> >    of the UA UI and #6 seems to be content display oriented.
> >
> >    1. The wording of the 2 guidelines should be worked on so it's clear
> >       what they cover without the need of looking at the checkpoints to
> >       ascertain what they're covering.
> >
> >    2. If my impressions of #5 & #6 are right then #6 should only contain
> >       content oriented checkpoints and #5 should only contain feature
> >       control oriented checkpoints.
> >
> > Guideline #7
> >
> > A. Comments on guideline wording and descriptive paragraphs
> >
> >    1. Regarding the sub-guideline: "Provide navigation mechanisms that
> >       meet the needs of different users: serial navigation for context,
> >       direct navigation for speed, search functions, structured
> >       navigation, etc."
> >         a. This starts off talking about the user but after the : symbol
> >            it talks about techniques in a way that doesn't connect it
> >            to the user. What does serial navigation for context and
> >            direct navigation for speed mean?
> >
> >         b. I think everything after the : should be removed (especially
> >            since they're better covered in the descriptive paragraphs)
> >            or tied better to the user or reworded.
> >
> >    2. The descriptive paragraphs seem to only talk about content display
> >       navigation. Navigating the feature control aspects of the UA's UI
> >       should also be specifically covered (see general comment A at the
> >       top).  In case the guideline's Note was meant to do this - the
> >       Note doesn't make this point clearly.
> >
> >    3. The Note covers search, navigation, and location of input focus.
> >       The input focus shouldn't be mentioned here since it's covered in
> >       guideline #8 or the connection between input focus and
> >       search/navigation should be made clearer in the Note or
> >       descriptive paragraphs.
> >
> > Guideline #8
> >
> > A. Regarding the sub-guideline: "Provide information about resource
> >    structure, viewport structure, element summaries, etc. that will
> >    assist the user understand their browsing context."
> >    1. The wording as I read it says it's aimed at the content author not
> >       UA. How about the following as a possible clarification
> >       alternative: "Enable user to get at content meta data to assist
> >       in understanding of browsing context (e.g. resource structure,
> >       viewport structure, element summaries, etc.)"
> >
> >    2. I don't know what is meant by "element summaries." It would be nice
> >       to see it touched on explicitly in the descriptive paragraphs or
> >       pointed to as a glossary term.
> >
> >    3. There should be more information on resource structure, viewport
> >       structure, and element summaries in the Techniques document as
> >       well as what other related structure etc. need to be exposed so
> >       that it's clearer to the developer what all they need to do.
> >
> > B. Keeping with general comment A, it should be stated that both the
> >    content display -and- feature control of (rest of) the UI need to
> >    clearly show focus.
> >    1. For developers using a platform's UI toolkit, it's for them easy
> >       to think that the toolkit covers the focus issue however this
> >       isn't necessarily so, especially when custom components are
> >       utilized, and is something that the developer needs to explicitly
> >       verify.
> >
> > Guideline #9
> >
> > Checkpoint 9.1 - The "to the user and through APIs" part isn't clear.
> > This isn't right either (because not all UAs will have a visual
> > display) but "visually and programmatically" seems closer to the point
> > it appears to me the checkpoint making.
> >    1. I'm confused about the user part because the user gets the
> >       information regardless of how the information is made available.
> >
> >    2. Specifically stating API sounds like the document is prescribing
> >       what is necessary to successfully acheive this checkpoint. As
> >       nice as it would be to do this, I don't think that's the
> >       intention of the document. Stating programmatic allows the
> >       developer to choose whether or not an API is the way tthey'll
> >       achieve this checkpoint.
> >
> > Checkpoint 9.2 - I don't understand what this one is telling the
> > developer to do. Adding a clarification example and/or working over the
> > wording would be helpful.
> >
> > Guideline #10
> >
> > A. How about making the descriptive, one sentence paragraph the the
> >    sub-guideline? i.e. Replace "Allow users... the software." with "Web
> >    users..."
> >
> >    1. The mention of rendering, mouse, keyboard, the user interface in
> >       the guideline makes this guideline feel redundant to others
> >       already covered under separate guidelines.
> >
> > B. General guideline comment: What exactly does input configuration mean?
> >    Perhaps this should be defined in the guideline's descriptive
> >    paragraph so developers are better able to translate it's meaning
> >    into the design of their UA.
> >
> > Checkpoint 10.3 - I have a problem with this checkpoint because it
> > really covers 2 things - what the UA should provide and what it should
> > enable - but it doesn't present it that way. Single-key capabilities,
> > for example, are directly achievable by a UA however single voice
> > command is only possible if the UA provides it's own speech recognition
> > engine that the user can configure. Staying with the speech recognition
> > example, it may very well be a service provided by the platform which
> > the UA knows nothing about (and shouldn't have to). This needs to be
> > made clearer in the checkpoint as does what the developer needs to do
> > to meet it (they can do single-key but they can only be expected to
> > provide programmatic support that lets any input device control it).
> >    1. What is the difference between this one and checkpoint 1.3?
> >
> >    2. If the plan is still to keep this checkpoint basically as it
> >       stands then how about:
> >         a. Move the second sentence should be moved into the
> >            checkpoint's descriptive paragraph because the main point is
> >            the change and control part.
> >
> >         b. Reword the checkpoint to something like "Allow the user to
> >            change and control how they interact with the user agent."
> >
> > Checkpoint 10.4 - What's this checkpoint saying? It's descriptive
> > paragraph doesn't add enough clariuty for me. The example is mnemonics
> > oriented but what should happen if, for example, speech input is used?
> > Confounding this, input configuration suggests to me the method the
> > user employs to do input but the example at least is more guideline #8
> > or #9 oriented.
> >
> > Checkpoint 10.5 - How about rewording to something like "Avoid default
> > input configurations that conflict with operating system navigation,
> > control, and access conventions."
> >    1. The access addition pertains to things like using 5 taps of the
> >       shift key to do something other than invoke StickyKeys.
> >
> >    2. The Techniques document should include a mention of the StickyKey,
> >       etc. keyboard invocation key sequences also since most desktop
> >       platforms provide them these days.
> >
> > Checkpoint 10.8 - Does this mean reconfigure where components in the
> > content display and feature control parts of the UA are?
> >    1. This highlights the general difficulty I have with this
> >       document - it's not clear when it's talking about the content
> >       part and when it's talking about the rest of the UI part. The
> >       Techniques document does happen to add partial clarity (it's the
> >       feature control part) in this case but the guidelines be clear so
> >       they shouldn't have to. Additionally, it's not clear if this
> >       means the user should be able to control the actual component
> >       layout of the UA.
> 
Received on Tuesday, 30 November 1999 18:44:53 GMT

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