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Re: WAI media Conformance?

From: jonathan chetwynd <jc@signbrowser.org.uk>
Date: Mon, 20 Nov 2000 16:45:56 -0000
Message-ID: <009201c05312$b2241600$85ec93c3@windows>
To: "Harvey Bingham" <hbingham@acm.org>
Cc: <w3c-wai-eo@w3.org>
Thanks for your comments harvey.

its not so much that we need to offer alternatives to graphical and aural media that is accepted, its how we provide the alternatives to textual information. Its not easy or simple

the two ideas I expressed concerned guidelines and user agents:

The selection of Icons was purely those i found immediately on the w3c/wai site, (sorry for the confusion.)
I'd expect others to be suggested and included. Please send me yours, (until WAI provides the space)
They were structured as you discovered, those were that got the highest grading were most accessible, eg home, top...

As you also commented "Not all systems are so smart.", its not just that we need to identify what makes an accessible graphic, but by having an expectation that the user will have 'home' on their hard drive we can if we choose, provide a graphical interface at no delay, if we link to this known file. At the same time we allow the user to 'skin' or select the type of graphics they prefer. sound effects are also significant.
this currently is not implemented by any browser (UA) to my knowledge. though I believe wap phones may exchange similiar known very small gif type images eg 'party'.

To waffle a little as we walk around town most cars are not identified by their individual character, we just label them 'car' and forget them, and hopefully dont walk in front of them. 

jonathan chetwynd

IT teacher (learning difficulty)
& accessibility consultant
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Harvey Bingham 
  To: jonathan chetwynd 
  Cc: w3c-wai-eo@w3.org 
  Sent: Tuesday, November 14, 2000 6:10 AM
  Subject: Re: WAI media Conformance?

  At 2000-11-04 14:53+0000, you wrote:

    Due to popular demand I have created 4 pages to outline a proposal in 2 parts.
  I am gaining understanding of what you want to achieve with an iconic
  means to convey any message. Use needs to make the distinctions among
  the uses for navigation, for disability notice, for visual representation
  of an aural cue, or for concept representation.

  1. You have four icons for navigation of slide 1: home, prior, next, top. 

  Not clear to me the distinction you make between home and top. Is
  top to apply only to the current page? If so, why is it at the top?

  A useful variant for longer structured documents is to include means 
  to get to a table of contents.

  A variant for documents with heavy initial linking is to let the first
  link get to real content.

  2. The disability icons of slide 2: cognitive, hearing, mobility, vision.

  Not sure the purpose for use as links: one or more to indicate subject
  of the link? or accessibility of the link target? or inaccessibility of it?

  3. The sound effect of slide four [a loudspeaker emitting a sound] and
  eventually says "oh-oh".

  That choice is generic. Possibly a family of these with icon suggesting the
  reason the author added this.

  Your assertion that their use will not have a significant impact on load
  time is not borne out from my use, where a File Download pop-up needed
  to occur. First I chose to play from its current location. It eventually
  played. Next I saved it to my temp file. That didn't get found the third
  time I tried to use it. So I still had to go through the pop-up.

  4. Your sample of icons for words seems to require at least as much
  effort to learn as the words. They do have the advantage of some degree
  of independence across natural languages. They fail for concepts that have
  no iconic equivalent. They seem best used to express simple relationships.

  Regards/Harvey Bingham

    To give double-AA ratings to certain links, icons and sound 'labels' 
    Thus helping us to agree on what graphics are accessible, and to what degree.

  Graphics, as you intend them to express concepts, still require alternative 
  descriptions, for those who cannot see the graphics. 

  Similarly aural cues are a redundant means for those who hear. They need
  alternative as well.

    To reference these from the users hard drive.
    Thus allowing users to skin the content of web pages, and speed download, where authors desire this.

  Pages that depend on icons seem to take longer than the comparable words.
  A smart system could avoid reloading those icons when they are already
  available. Not all systems are so smart.

    Please send me your comments, and proposed additions.
    Once again due to my non-professional programming skills, and other committments, this is by no means complete, it barely scratches the surface. The effort to provide a graphical navigation of the icon library will in itself be most educational.
    jonathan chetwynd
    IT teacher (learning difficulty)
    & accessibility consultant

  Regards/Harvey Bingham
Received on Monday, 20 November 2000 11:59:48 UTC

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