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Re: User Agent Teleconference for May 10 2007

From: Jan Richards <jan.richards@utoronto.ca>
Date: Wed, 09 May 2007 17:04:37 -0400
Message-ID: <46423765.9070407@utoronto.ca>
To: Al Gilman <Alfred.S.Gilman@IEEE.org>
CC: WAU-ua <w3c-wai-ua@w3.org>, WAI-AUWG List <w3c-wai-au@w3.org>

Hi Al,

Thanks for the further explanation and the link to your WCAG comment. 
There's lots to consider in your message, so I'll just share some 
initial thoughts...

1. I notice you prefer "recognizable" to "perceivable" in the WCAG 
context. I see what you're getting at, although I wonder if that might 
not get overly subjective. That said, I wouldn't mind being part of a 
wider conversation about this with some of the WCAG folks.

2. You mention that "rendered content is the UI of the website, not of 
the UA" but then later talk about UA's as the being responsible for the 
"provision of variability". I like that phrase "provision of 
variability", but I think there is a tension in the two statements since 
the provision of variability would seem to require some UI role. (maybe 
this what you mean by "the rendering is managed by the UA")

3. User agents and authoring tools are different in that some types of 
authoring tool editing views (e.g. code level views, form-based, etc.) 
are not actually rendered as user agent displays generally are. In fact, 
it would be nice if ATAG could point to UAAG for most of the 
accessibility guidelines for rendered editing views (although for 
several reasons that's probably not realistic at the moment).

4. I'm still not sure why "perceivable" is any more of a problem for 
UAAG and ATAG than it would be for WCAG (especially given that you say 
"rendered content is the UI of the website, not of the UA")


Al Gilman wrote:
> At 11:22 AM -0400 9 05 2007, Jan Richards wrote:
>> Hi Al,
>> (I've cc'd the AUWG list as this discussion is relevant to them)
>> I may not understand exactly what you mean, but here's my thinking...
>> It's not the "content" that needs to be perceivable, it's the user 
>> interface of the software (sometimes augmented by an AT), some of 
>> which is independent of the "encoded content" (i.e. the software 
>> "chrome") and some of which is built from the "encoded content" (i.e. 
>> the "content display").
> The rendered content is the UI of the website, not of the UA.
> This is becoming even more clear with the rapid move toward
> web-hosted applications.  The rendering is managed by the UA
> but it's not the I/F of the UA.
>> In either case, the concept of "perceivable" seems ok to me.
> My actual WCAG2 comment is at
> http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/public-comments-wcag20/2006Jun/att-0192/WCAG2commentsOrgAndExposit.html 
> There is a problem with the fact that it doesn't distinguish
> comprehension from perception. This lets the cognitive issues slide
> off the table unnoticed.
> There is a problem that it doesn't distinguish between the user
> experience and the standards for the content that the authoring
> segment of the system places on the server, waiting for web-hits from
> the user. The user experience has to be variable to afford perception
> success. Not all content has to be perceivable, all the ideas have to
> be comprehensible. Where the perception fails (bit-mapped images in
> screen reading) we retreat to "equivalent facilitation" approaches
> (html:img.alt) that target comprehension as the ultimate pass/fail
> criterion. This logic should be more evident.
> Because, by and large, the provision of variability in the user
> experience (font size, color, etc.) is a function allocated to the
> user-side software, the content guidelines can get by with
> over-abstraction where the user agent guidelines cannot. The user
> agent has to come to grips with what has to be *different* for
> different users. The content guidelines focus on what one can say on
> behalf of "all users." The User Agent requirements have to deal with
> *each* user, and the range of variability to get to each individual.
> The place to start is the 'components' sketch -- the last (expanded)
> view; not the 'four principles' as stated in WCAG.
> http://www.w3.org/WAI/intro/components
> User Agents and Authoring Tools mediate a dialog between Code and Man.
> WCAG2 hides this divide, that these tools fill.  UAAG and ATAG should
> be taking a fresh, closer look at the end-to-end system, not parroting the
> mumbles in WCAG.
> Al
>> Cheers,
>> Jan
>> Al Gilman wrote:
>>> At 8:42 AM -0500 9 05 2007, Jim Allan wrote:
>>>> David,
>>>> I would put the fuzzy ones in all appropriate categories. I am not 
>>>> sure what
>>>> you mean by "conforming to wcag 2.0."  One of our requirements is to 
>>>> align
>>>> UAAG with the broad concepts, set out by WCAG and ATAG, of perceivable,
>>>> operable, understandable, and AT friendly.
>>> I suggest that the group consider the following issue with the 
>>> 'perceivable' notion.
>>> The problem is that saying the 'content' must be 'perceivable'
>>> conflates two forms or representations of the content: the user
>>> experience or 'rendered content' and the wire format or 'encoded
>>> content.' The user agent requirements are all about managing the
>>> transformation between these two interfaces and the representations
>>> in each. So the 4-way split used by WCAG doesn't fit either ATAG or
>>> UAAG in this area. It hides the distinction from which UAAG and ATAG
>>> start.
>>> Al
>>>> Jim
>>>>>  -----Original Message-----
>>>>>  From: w3c-wai-ua-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ua-request@w3.org]On
>>>>>  Behalf Of David Poehlman
>>>>>  Sent: Tuesday, May 08, 2007 10:31 AM
>>>>>  To: jimallan@tsbvi.edu; WAU-ua
>>>>>  Subject: Re: User Agent Teleconference for May 10 2007
>>>>>  Jim,
>>>>>  How we deal with the fuzzy ones?  some may cover more than one 
>>>>> catagory?
>>>>>  I guess the idea here is to confirm to wcag 2.0?  This makes sense 
>>>>> from a
>>>>>  pragmatic standpoint by may not work well in practical terms.
>>>>>  ----- Original Message -----
>>>>>  From: "Jim Allan" <allanj@tsbvi.edu>
>>>>>  To: "WAU-ua" <w3c-wai-ua@w3.org>
>>>>>  Sent: Monday, May 07, 2007 5:08 PM
>>>>>  Subject: User Agent Teleconference for May 10 2007
>>>>>  W3C User Agent Teleconference for May 10 2007
>>>>>  -------------------------------------------------------------
>>>>>  Chair: Jim Allan
>>>>>  Date: Thursday, May 10 2007
>>>>>  Time: 2:00-3:00 pm Boston Local Time, USA (19:00-20:00 UTC/GMT)
>>>>>  Call-in: Zakim bridge at: +1-617-761-6200, code 8294#
>>>>>  for UK use 44-117.270-6152
>>>>>  IRC: sever: irc.w3.org, port: 6665, channel: #ua.
>>>>>  -------------------------------------------------------------
>>>>>  1. Restructure current guidelines and provisions to fit new model
>>>>>  - Perceivable: able to be noticed by a user through one or more 
>>>>> renderings
>>>>>  provided by the base user agent, its extensions, or assistive 
>>>>> technologies
>>>>>  - Operable: able to be manipulated by a user through one or more 
>>>>> input
>>>>>  devices recognized by the base user agent, its extensions, or 
>>>>> assistive
>>>>>  technologies
>>>>>  - Understandable: able to be comprehended by a user through one or 
>>>>> more
>>>>>  intelligible renderings provided by the base user agent, its
>>>>>  extensions, or
>>>>>  assistive technologies
>>>>>  - Access system friendly: able to be viewed and controlled
>>>>>  programmatically
>>>>>  by extensions to the base user agent and assistive technologies using
>>>>>  standard APIs (e.g. DOM, MSAA, Assistive Technology-Service Provider
>>>>>  Interface, UA, UIA)
>>>>>  2. Review ISO/IEC JTC 1 Special Working Group on Accessibility
>>>>>  (SWG-A) "User
>>>>>  Needs Summary (UNS)"
>>>>>  that lists different accessibility needs for people with 
>>>>> disabilities.
>>>>>  - www.tsbvi.edu/technology/uawg/userneeds-mapping_UAAG.zip
>>>>>  This file already has a preliminary mapping and comments (Thanks 
>>>>> Shadi)
>>>>>  - map UAAG checkpoints and guidelines to User Needs Summary
>>>>>  - use review and mapping to ensure UAAG Requirements document is 
>>>>> complete.
>>>>>  Please send RSVP or additional agenda items to the list.
>>>>>  Jim Allan, Webmaster & Statewide Technical Support Specialist
>>>>>  Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired
>>>>>  1100 W. 45th St., Austin, Texas 78756
>>>>>  voice 512.206.9315    fax: 512.206.9264  http://www.tsbvi.edu/
>>>>>  "We shape our tools and thereafter our tools shape us." McLuhan, 1964

Jan Richards, M.Sc.
User Interface Design Specialist
Adaptive Technology Resource Centre (ATRC)
Faculty of Information Studies
University of Toronto

   Email: jan.richards@utoronto.ca
   Web:   http://jan.atrc.utoronto.ca
   Phone: 416-946-7060
   Fax:   416-971-2896
Received on Wednesday, 9 May 2007 21:04:52 UTC

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