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WCAG 2.0 Comment Submission

From: WCAG 2.0 Comment Form <nobody@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 21:28:38 +0000 (GMT)
To: public-comments-wcag20@w3.org
Message-Id: <20060620212838.9DAFC47BA1@mojo.w3.org>

Name: Terry Thompson
Email: tft@u.washington.edu
Affiliation: University of Washington
Document: W2
Item Number: (none selected)
Part of Item: 
Comment Type: general comment
Comment (Including rationale for any proposed change):
As a person who provides accessibility training to web designers, I\'m afraid that many of the folks I work with, all of whom are strapped for time and want quick-and-dirty recommendations (just tell me what to do!), would not have the patience to deal with the daunting girth of WCAG 2.0. This has grown enormously since I saw it last, and as I\'m trying to wade now through the complete WCAG 2.0 package, including supporting documents, I\'m frankly overwhelmed by the amount of information that\'s presented here. I think this has more to do with presentation than with content, and could be remedied with very few changes to the actual content that\'s being presented.

Here\'s an example: I\'m coding in HTML and I want to find the WCAG 2.0 - recommended technique for marking up alt text on decorative images. Here are the steps required for me to find what I\'m looking for: 

1. Open the WCAG 2.0 normative doc. 

2. 4 principles - I select the most relevant. 

3. 4 guidelines - I select the most relevant. 

4. Four Level 1 success criteria - I read them all and find a relevant success criterion, but still don\'t have a specific solution. 

5. I follow the \"How to meet 1.1.1\" link, expecting to find techniques

6. Instead of techniques, the first thing I find is a repeat of the Level 1 success criteria. Didn\'t I alredy read this? 

7. Not one to give up easily, I read on, past a dozen or so definitions of key terms, a lengthy \"Intent of this success criteria\" section, then finally arrive at a section headed \"Techniques for Addressing Success Criterion 1.1\". 

8. Now I have an introductory paragraph, a paragraph of instructions, and five situations that take a while to read through. My particular situation is Situation E, but after reading it I still don\'t have a technique that I can apply. (I\'m also distracted in this section by the word USING always appearing in caps - is this done to enhance readability? For me it has the opposite effect).   

9. At last I arrive at \"Technology-Specific Techniques\", which is where I find the answer I was looking for. As a sighted user with no known cognitive disabilities and past experience with both WCAG 1.0 and 2.0, the entire exercise took about 20 minutes. 

I suspect that at this late stage in WCAG 2.0\'s development cycle, all of that verbiage between Step 1 and Step 9 is important, and is not going away. However, it was *not* important for my purposes. 

So, the problem: How can all of this information be made available, but be optional to users? I think a more useful WCAG 2.0 would be one that is simple and straightforward, with all information only a click or two away. 

Proposed Change:
I can think of two ways to address this problem. 

1. Provide more links to the various components of the \"How to\" sections in the Understanding document. Instead of showing me the success criteria (again), and the key terms, and the scenarios, and the techniques, link to each of these sections, so I can choose whether or not to see them. 

Personally I would even prefer to have this information linked directly from the normative document, thus I could get to Techniques in only a single click rather than two. However, that may have a tendency to clutter up the normative document.   

2. Develop a WCAG 2.0 Wizard. Present nothing but the four guidelines on the opening page. Each time I select something, I\'m presented with additional options. Without adding intelligence to this application, a wizard wouldn\'t reduce the number of steps, but it would greatly reduce the amount of noise and make the WCAG 2.0 experience less daunting. 

The number of steps could be reduced by adding intelligence to the wizard. Perhaps a keyword search, supplemented with some additional options to help filter the results (e.g., search any of the following: All WCAG 2.0 documents, Success Critera only, HTML Techniques only, CSS Techniques only, etc.)  
Received on Tuesday, 20 June 2006 21:28:48 UTC

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