RE: CFC - Device Sensors

I am concerned about the overlap with 2.1.1 and with the definition of device sensors. I don’t think problems with the definition can be resolved in the Understanding document, as it’s non-normative, whereas the definition is normative.

From: Kim Patch []
Sent: Thursday, August 24, 2017 3:08 PM
To: Kathy Wahlbin <>; Repsher, Stephen J <>; Joshue O Connor <>; WCAG <>
Subject: Re: CFC - Device Sensors

Hi Steve,

I understand your concern with scope. This SC is supposed to be about device sensors not working as a developer may expect for a person who has a disability because that person may not be able to manipulate a device – at all, precisely enough, or quickly enough.

The device sensor definition defines examples that are based on using sensors to take environmental measurements. These examples are an attempt to make it clear that "physical environment" refers to something apart from communication through an input device, and that environmental measurements include the location, motion and orientation of the device as a whole.
Device sensor: A device sensor is a device component that detects and responds to some type of input from the physical environment. Examples on mobile devices are the measurement of motion, orientation, and various environmental conditions.
If I'm reading your comments correctly, you may also have concerns with the last part of the definition "and various environmental conditions". I think we have work to do in making sure this is scoped to what a person with a disability is or is not able to do versus what is expected, and I think we can do that in the understanding document going forward.

Do you have ideas for understanding language that would better make these distinctions?

I do think that this is an important SC.

Hope this helps.

On 8/24/2017 11:59 AM, Kathy Wahlbin wrote:
Hi Steve –

Would you be ok putting this into the draft and adding an editor’s note that the scope and definition need to be worked on to limit the scope?  This is an important SC and many people feel strongly that this should be included.

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From: Repsher, Stephen J []
Sent: Thursday, August 24, 2017 1:10 AM
To: Joshue O Connor <><>; WCAG <><>
Subject: RE: CFC - Device Sensors

The bulk of my comments from the first CFC [1] and from the survey [2] have gone unaddressed or even discussed.  I’m at a conference this week, so I could not join the meeting to voice this audibly, but the first go-around was nearly 2 months ago and my comments in the current survey have not changed much.  In short, there are 2 interrelated problems here:

  1.  The scope far outreaches any documented user problem, which consists of a very short description and one example of shaking a device.  Many sensors, such as a thermometer, barometer, GPS, or ambient light, cannot possibly disadvantage people with disabilities because they require no physical or cognitive ability to operate other than possessing the device.  This criterion needs to be scoped down to sensors that can actually be used in inaccessible ways for PWDs.
  2.  Sensor is an extremely vague term to be using here, and the definition of a “component that detects and responds to some type of input from the physical environment” includes every input type I can think of including keyboards, mice, touch screens, and various AT to mimic those interfaces.  Just because we don’t normally think of these as “sensors” doesn’t mean they are not… Virtually every electronic device a human can interact with is using sensors of some sort.



From: Joshue O Connor []
Sent: Tuesday, August 22, 2017 1:18 PM
To: WCAG <<>>
Subject: CFC - Device Sensors

Call For Consensus — ends Friday August 25th at 1:00pm Boston time.

The Working Group has reviewed and approved a new Success Criteria 'Device Sensors' for inclusion in the editor’s draft, with the goal of obtaining additional input external to the working group.

Call minutes:<>

The new SC can be reviewed here, in the context of the full draft:<>

If you have concerns about this proposed consensus position that have not been discussed already and feel that those concerns result in you “not being able to live with” this decision, please let the group know before the CfC deadline.

Joshue O Connor
Director |


Kimberly Patch
Redstart Systems
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Received on Thursday, 24 August 2017 19:14:02 UTC