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Re: How to make complex data tables more accessible to screen-reader users

From: Lachlan Hunt <lachlan.hunt@lachy.id.au>
Date: Mon, 06 Jul 2009 15:44:30 +0200
Message-ID: <4A51FFBE.9010407@lachy.id.au>
To: Sam Ruby <rubys@intertwingly.net>
Cc: public-html@w3.org
Sam Ruby wrote:
> But I'm quite willing that put my opinions aside. If the consensus of
> the working group is to have a vote on either a set of short essays or
> on a comprehensive wiki page, then I'm willing to both facilitate the
> vote and to attempt to evaluate consensus on the results.

My personal opinion on this issue is that I would rather not have a 
purely technical issue be resolved through a working group vote.  If we 
were to proceed with this vote to decide whether or not to include the 
summary attribute, it would be the first time such a vote has been used 
to resolve a purely technical issue in this working group, and, IMHO, 
would set an unfortunate precedent, subverting the process that has been 
used for all prior decisions based on logical and technical reasoning.

While I'm confident in the ability of this group as a whole to 
collectively reach the right conclusion, if, as a result of the vote, 
the summary attribute was included, it would be a clear symptom of a 
design by committee process — a process I think we should try to avoid — 
simply to appease some particularly vocal group members, despite the 
almost total lack of any empirical evidence in support of their position.

I think the best way to proceed with this issue is for the chairs to 
accept that all evidence submitted so far has been fairly analysed, and 
that based on the available evidence, the correct decision has been 
made. Then the issue should be closed, and remain closed until such time 
as additional evidence, preferably in the form of scientifc studies, is 
presented that overturns the result of all previous observational data 
seen, and contradicts the current outcome.

Lachlan Hunt - Opera Software
Received on Monday, 6 July 2009 13:45:11 UTC

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