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Re: Seeking addresses for various W3 documents as plain text

From: Jason White <jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.EDU.AU>
Date: Sun, 6 Dec 1998 09:58:11 +1100 (AEDT)
To: WAI Interest Group <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.SUN.3.95.981206095056.6710A-100000@ariel.ucs.unimelb.EDU.AU>
ASCII text versions of the HTML and CSS specifications (and presumably
others) are available from their respective pages, as compressed tar or
zip files.

The main disadvantage of ASCII text (with no markup) is that all of the
structural and semantic distinctions conveyed by the HTML are lost. It is
therefore important to emphasize that plain text is only minimally
accessible. For instance, if one wished to produce a properly formatted
braille copy, it would be necessary to re-introduce the markup codes.
Similarly, audio formatting software such as AsteR and Emacspeak/W3
require markup in order to produce an efficient rendering of the document
that conveys the necessary conceptual distinctions and allows for
structured navigation.

While I agree that some ASCII text documents can be read easily by a
traditional screen reader, it is important to be careful in ensuring that
document distributors do not start conceiving of ASCII text files as
inherently appropriate for non-visual presentation.
Received on Saturday, 5 December 1998 17:59:35 UTC

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