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Re: Proposal to expand definition of User Agents

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 9 Jun 2000 13:13:44 -0400 (EDT)
To: John Gardner <John.Gardner@orst.edu>
cc: Harvey Bingham <hbingham@ACM.org>, w3c-wai-ua@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.20.0006091312440.23325-100000@tux.w3.org>
I agree with John's idea, but suspect that the word "software" as proposed by
Ian, would look better in a specification.

Cheers

Charles McCN

On Fri, 9 Jun 2000, John Gardner wrote:

  I think you are trying too hard for preciseness that's unnecessary.  Consider:
  
  "A user agent is *anything* that retrieves and renders Web content,
  including text, graphics, sounds, video, images, and other content types."
  
  "anything" is about as broad as you can get.
  
  John
  
  At 10:58 PM 6/8/00 -0400, Harvey Bingham wrote:
  >At 2000-06-07 16:01-0700, Dick Brown wrote:
  >Good idea. Is this broad enough to include special hardware and its
  >software interface?
  >
  >>The User Agent guidelines currently define user agent in this way:
  >>
  >>"A user agent is an application that retrieves and renders Web content,
  >>including text, graphics, sounds, video, images, and other content types."
  >>
  >>I propose we expand that definition to say (new text between asterisks):
  >>
  >>"A user agent is an application *or operating system component* that
  >>retrieves and renders Web content, including text, graphics, sounds, video,
  >>images, and other content types."
  >>
  >>Why the change? There are technologies that Microsoft does not consider
  >>applications, but rather part of the operating system, that wouldn't be
  >>covered by the User Agent guidelines under the current definition.
  >>
  >>Obviously, the OS vs. application issue has received some attention outside
  >>the scope of the WAI, and while I am not prepared to discuss that issue in
  >>detail, I hope we can agree on the broader definition.
  >>
  >>Dick Brown
  >>Program Manager, Web Accessibility
  >>Microsoft Corp.
  >>http://www.microsoft.com/enable/
  >Regards/Harvey Bingham
  >
  John A. Gardner
  Professor and Director, Science Access Project
  Department of Physics
  Oregon State University
  Corvallis, OR 97331
  tel: (541) 737 3278
  FAX: (541) 737 1683
  	SAP URL: http://dots.physics.orst.edu/
  

--
Charles McCathieNevile    mailto:charles@w3.org    phone: +61 (0) 409 134 136
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative                      http://www.w3.org/WAI
Location: I-cubed, 110 Victoria Street, Carlton VIC 3053
Postal: GPO Box 2476V, Melbourne 3001,  Australia 
Received on Friday, 9 June 2000 13:13:49 GMT

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