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Re: Fw: Checkpoint 3.3

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 19 Jul 1999 21:19:01 -0400 (EDT)
cc: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-hwg@idyllmtn.com>, WAI GL <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.10.9907192109110.31236-100000@tux.w3.org>
In fact the practise Adam refers to of promoting the 'correct' use of
technology is not simply provided because it is a nice idea, it is there in
substantial part because without a forward-looking, interoperable design
approach creating accessible web content and tools will be forever a case of
trying to rectify past mistakes, which is often costly and difficult, and
therefore in the real world results in the acceptance of a lower level of
accesssibility than we could achieve simply becuase it is too hard to fix the
mistakes we made in the past. Although we cannot actually predict the future
in general, it is a pretty safe bet that accessibility will be easier, more
widespread and therefore ultimately much more successful if it is part of the
fundamental design philosophy rather than an afterthought retrofitted at
considerable expense in some cases.

This argument has been expressed before on this list, but I think it bears
repeating. After aall, if we don't learn from the mistakes of history we are
doomedto repeat tehm, and given the ability of people to discover new
mistakes it seems senseless to waste extra energy on avoidable ones. (grin)

Charles McCN

On Mon, 19 Jul 1999, ADAM GUASCH-MELENDEZ wrote:
[among other things]
  So, the question becomes - should this be a requirement? Strictly
  speaking, no. But it's a lot easier to tell people to use CSS for control
  of layout and presentation, than it is to say "use CSS, unless HTML can
  be used without compromising accessibility - which you'll have to figure
  out for yourself, on a case-by-case basis." It also helps to promote
  proper use of CSS - use it for the simple stuff and you're more likely to
  use it for more complex work.
  It also means that when future versions of HTML drop certain elements
  entirely - moving FONT from deprecated to obsolete, for example - no
  revisions will be necessary to keep up with the standards.
  If the guidelines are intended as simply a set of rules to promote
  accessibility, then this particular checkpoint, and several others as
  well, can be tossed out or at least significantly revised. But I think
  that part of the value of the guidelines is that they promote not only
  accessibility, but also proper use of HTML, CSS and other standard
  technologies. There seems to be a strong emphasis on
  forward-compatibility, which IMHO is a very good thing. Of course,
  backwards-compatibility is also critical, and in a situation where
  information would be lost by meeting all the checkpoints (e.g., my early
  concern about the Q element), then not implementing a checkpoint would be
  reasonable (and as was pointed out to me, specifically allowed by the
  guidelines themselves). That doesn't appear to be the case in the example
Received on Monday, 19 July 1999 21:19:07 UTC

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