BarCamp on Accessible Media @ Stanford on November 1

Hi all,

some of you may be interested in his BarCamp on Accessible Media that  
will take place at Stanford on 2009-11-01, the day right before TPAC.  
If you plan on attending, please contact Dave Singer or John Foliot  
quickly (Cc'ed).

Begin forwarded message:
> From: Philippe Le Hegaret <>
> Date: September 16, 2009 2:49:00 PM EDT
> Subject: Re: workshop on Accessible Media
> We plan to hold an informal workshop or two on the subject of
> Accessibility of Media Elements in HTML 5.  The media elements are  
> audio
> and video, and their supporting elements such as source.
> This will be an informal workshop, as we wish to hold it before the
> November 2009 TPAC and there is not sufficient time to announce a  
> formal
> workshop (six weeks' notice is required
> <>).
> The current specification of Timed Media elements HTML5 takes a fairly
> hard-nosed approach to what is presented as timed media:  it is  
> inside the
> timed media files that are selected from the sources.
> There is currently no provision for linking or synchronizing other
> material, and there is no discussion of how to manage the media so  
> it's
> accessible.  This needs addressing.
> We would like to understand the 'landscape' and put in place good
> architectural support in general, as well as making sure that specific
> solutions exist to the more pressing problems.  We anticipate  
> working, in
> public, to develop proposals for any changes to specifications that  
> might
> be suggested by the work, and also to develop a cohesive 'best  
> practices'
> document that shows how those provisions can be used, by authors, by  
> user
> agents (browsers), and users, to address the issues we identify.
> We are aware that good accessibility rests on four legs (at least):
>  1. Proper provision in the specifications and documentation of those
> provisions and how to use them;
>  2. Willingness and ability to use those provisions effectively on the
> part of authors;
>  3. Provision of the right preferences, tools, and user interfaces in
> user agents to enable access to the provisions, perhaps  
> automatically; and
>  4. The ability of those who need the provisions to find, enable or
> access them, and understand what they get.
> It's easy to fail on one of these, and good accessibility is not then
> achieved.
> Accessibility provisions for Timed Media might themselves be timed  
> (e.g.
> captions) or un-timed (e.g. a readable screen-play or transcript).  We
> wish to consider both categories.
> The questions we would like to address include, but are not limited  
> to the
> following:
> # What accessibility issues, and what are the 'classic' provisions for
> them, in timed media?
> We are all aware of captioning for those who cannot hear the audio;  
> less
> common is audio description of video, for those who cannot see.
> The BBC recently had some content that had optional sign-language
> overlays.  Issues can also arise with susceptibility (e.g. flashing  
> videos
> and epilepsy, color vision issues, and so on).
> # What solution frameworks already exist that would be relevant?
> We are all aware of the existence, for example, of screen readers and
> perhaps even Braille output devices.  We've seen tags in other parts  
> of
> HTML that are there to support accessibility, and frameworks such as  
> Are there existing good practices that naturally extend to Timed  
> Media?
> # Are there solutions that will benefit, be tested and seen by, and  
> more
> likely authored by, the wider community?
> There have been ongoing debates about whether 'unique' provision for
> accessibility (functions with no other purpose) are desirable.  We  
> do not
> intend to have this philosophical debate, but it would be useful to  
> hear
> of related problems and opportunities that help make the debate
> irrelevant.  For example, the provision of a transcript or separately
> accessible captions, in text form, makes indexing and searching  
> content
> much easier.  Are there problems like this that we can address that  
> will
> make it more likely that authors build accessible timed media?
> # What new problems and new opportunities arise when we use digital  
> media
> embedded in the world-wide-web?
> Much of the work and research in this area has been done for isolated,
> analog, systems (classic television). Instead, we have a digital  
> content
> presented in a rich context (web content).  What new opportunities and
> solutions are opened up by this?
> # What technologies and solutions exist that we should notice?
> The work of the W3C on a common Timed Text format, and the existence  
> of
> general frameworks such as ARIA (Accessible Rich Internet  
> Applications),
> suggest that there are pieces of the solution space we should  
> consider.
> What are they?
> # What can be done today, given the structures we have? What  
> experiments
> and proof-of-concept work should we notice?
> We are aware that there are a number of pioneering organizations in  
> this
> area.  The BBC's work with sign-language has already been noted;  
> workflows
> for captioning content have been developed in a number of places.   
> There
> have been script-based experiments on captioning.
> What are some of these systems and experiments, and what can we  
> learn from
> them?
> This informal workshop will last one day, and the first one will be  
> held
> in the Bay Area on November 1st at Stanford University.  To attend the
> workshop, you must come prepared to present on one of the questions  
> above,
> or a suitable other question, drawing from your experience or  
> expertise to
> help inform the discussion and make progress on proposing solutions.
> We expect the workshop to spend perhaps two-thirds of the time on  
> these
> presentations, with short Q&A for each.  Then we may have a panel  
> session
> or two, or moderated discussion, to address focused questions.  As  
> stated
> in the introduction, we are looking for a framework and solutions with
> good 'longevity', simplicity, and efficacy, that will be embraced by  
> the
> standards community, content authors, user agent developers, and end
> users.  This is ambitious but achievable, we believe, and  
> opportunities
> such as this to 'get it right from the start' come up all too rarely.
> We think that at least the following communities and groups might be
> affected:
> * HTML 5, the place where the Timed Media tags are specified, and the
> integration therefore must occur;
> * PFWG, where much thought has gone into this general problem space;
> * Media Annotations, who are concerned with metadata for Timed Media;
> * Timed Text, owners of DFXP, one of the likely text formats;
> * CSS, who define the styling of text, and also the nature of  
> 'rendering
> surfaces' (and a presentation where a provision is needed, such as
> captions, might be seen as a rendering surface of a specific kind).
> If you feel prepared to attend, present, and work cooperatively on  
> this
> problem, please contact the workshop organizers as soon as possible.
> --
> David Singer
> Multimedia Standards, Apple Inc.
> John Foliot
> Stanford University Online Accessibility Program

Received on Friday, 18 September 2009 10:38:19 UTC