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Re: News Release: W3C Issues Web Content Accessibility Guidelines as a Recommendation

From: Francisco Godinho <f.godinho@mail.telepac.pt>
Date: Thu, 6 May 1999 15:00:33 +0100
To: "WAI Interest Group" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <01be97c8$cfae1ba0$e8b541c2@Host.telepac.pt>
Congratulation to all.

PASIG is broadcasting this information in Portuguese.
If you can read portuguese you can already see it on Digito Online News
URL: http://www.digito.pt/tecnologia/noticias/tec1019.html


Francisco Godinho
GUIA/PASIG - Portuguese Accessibility Special Interest Group

-----Original Message-----
From: Judy Brewer <jbrewer@w3.org>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Date: Quarta-feira, 5 de Maio de 1999 23:16
Subject: News Release: W3C Issues Web Content Accessibility Guidelines as a

>W3C Issues Web Content Accessibility Guidelines as a Recommendation
>Endorsements from Vint Cerf, Vice President Albert Gore
>WAI Provides Definitive Guidance for Web Access by People with
>Contact America --
>      Janet Daly, <janet@w3.org>, +1.617.253.5884
>Contact Europe --
>      Ned Mitchell, <ned@ala.com>, +
>      Andrew Lloyd, <allo@ala.com>, +
>Contact Asia --
>      Yuko Watanabe <yuko@w3.org>, +81.466.49.1170
>http://www.w3.org/ -- 5 May 1999 -- The World Wide Web Consortium today
>announced the release of the "Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0"
>specification as a W3C Recommendation. As a W3C Recommendation, the
>specification is stable, contributes to the universality of the Web, and
>has been reviewed by the W3C Membership who recommend it as the means
>for making Web sites accessible. W3C encourages information providers to
>raise their level of accessibility using this
>Clear Expectations for Web Sites
>"The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines explain what to do," said Tim
>Berners-Lee, Director of W3C. "It has always been difficult to know,
>when making a site more accessible, which changes are critical. These
>guidelines answer that question, and set common expectations so that
>providers of Web sites and users can be much more strategic. The bar has
>been set, and technologically it is not a very high bar. Some of the
>items in these guidelines will be unnecessary once authoring tools do
>them automatically. Now it is time to see which sites can live up to
>Stable Guidance for Changing Technologies
>The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines establish stable principles for
>accessible design, such as the need to provide equivalent alternatives
>for auditory and visual information. Each guideline has associated
>"checkpoints" explaining how these accessibility principles apply to
>specific features of sites. For example, providing alternative text for
>images ensures that information is available to a person who cannot see
>images. Providing captions for audio files makes information available
>to someone who cannot hear audio.
>The guidelines are designed to be forward-compatible with evolving Web
>technologies, yet enable sites to degrade gracefully when confronted
>with legacy browsers. Specifics on how to implement the checkpoints with
>the latest versions of mark-up or presentation languages such as HTML,
>CSS (Cascading Style Sheets), or SMIL (Synchronized Multimedia
>Integration Language)
>are described in a parallel "Techniques" document, to be updated
>Prioritized Checklist For Easy Reference
>"An accompanying 'Checklist' provides a handy tool for reviewing Web
>sites and clearly delineates the three priority levels in the
>guidelines," explained Daniel Dardailler, Technical Manager of the Web
>Accessibility Initiative.
>Outcome of a Strong Collaboration
>As with other areas of WAI work, these guidelines are an outcome of a
>collaboration of industry, disability organizations, accessibility
>research centers and governments working together to identify consensus
>solutions for barriers that people with disabilities encounter on the
>"The W3C has provided a unique forum which has allowed us to bring
>together experts from industry, research and practice in a way that has
>not been possible before," explained Gregg Vanderheiden, Director of
>Trace Research & Development Center at the University of Wisconsin,
>Madison, and Co-Chair of the Web Content Guidelines Working Group. "The
>result is a set of guidelines that is more comprehensive, technically
>sound and practical than anything possible before. In addition, because
>the guidelines are built on the work and participation of virtually
>everyone who is active in this area, it provides us for the first time
>with a definitive
>set of guidelines that can serve as a reference for the field."
>Broader Benefits
>Accessible design also benefits other Web users, for instance by
>promoting device-independence for Web content. Checkpoints that support
>Web access for people with visual disabilities also help people
>accessing the Web from mobile phones, hand-held devices, or
>automobile-based PC's; when connection speed is too slow to support
>viewing images or video; or when a person's eyes are "busy" with other
>tasks. Checkpoints such as captions support access for people with
>hearing impairments but also help people who are using the Web in noisy
>or in silent environments; and they make it possible to index and search
>on audio content. Use of CSS for control of presentation not only
>facilitates accessibility, but also speeds download time of pages and
>can reduce
>costs of maintaining or updating the "look and feel" of sites.
>Supporting Resources
>"We have a growing list of resources to support implementation,"
>explained Judy Brewer, Domain Leader for WAI. "We are developing an
>on-line curriculum to take Web authors through the guidelines, giving
>examples of mark-up of tables, frames, animations, multimedia, and other
>features that create barriers when done poorly but are accessible when
>marked up correctly.
>There are technical reference notes; links to browsers with features to
>support accessibility; links to information on policies in different
>countries that relate to accessibility."
>About the Web Accessibility Initiative
>W3C's Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI), in partnership with
>organizations around the world, is pursuing accessibility of the Web
>through five activities: ensuring that core technologies of the Web
>support accessibility; developing guidelines for Web content, user
>agents, and authoring tools; developing evaluation and repair tools for
>accessibility; conducting education and outreach; and
>tracking research and development that can affect future accessibility
>of the Web. The WAI International Program Office is supported in part by
>funding from the U.S. National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of
>Education's National Institute on Disability and Rehabilitation
>Research, European Commission's DG XIII Telematics Applications
>Programme for Disabled and
>Elderly, the Government of Canada, IBM, Lotus Development Corporation,
>Microsoft Corporation, and NCR. For more information see
>About the World Wide Web Consortium [W3C]
>The W3C was created to lead the Web to its full potential by developing
>common protocols that promote its evolution and ensure its
>interoperability. It is an international industry consortium jointly run
>by the MIT Laboratory for Computer Science (MIT LCS) in the USA, the
>National Institute for Research in Computer Science and Control (INRIA)
>in France and Keio University in
>Japan. Services provided by the Consortium include: a repository of
>information about the World Wide Web for developers and users, reference
>code implementations to embody and promote standards, and various
>prototype and sample applications to demonstrate use of new technology.
>To date, over 300 organizations are Members of the Consortium. For more
>information see
>Press Release
>Fact Sheet for "Web Content Accessibility Guidelines 1.0"
>Web Content Accessibility Guidelines
>Web Content Accessibility Guidelines - Checkpoints
Received on Thursday, 6 May 1999 10:03:23 UTC

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