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RE: QED & Marshall McLuhan

From: Wayne Myers-Education <wayne.myers@bbc.co.uk>
Date: Thu, 10 Jun 1999 18:53:36 +0100
Message-Id: <41ED4776F432D211ACBD0000F8EF7D7A01287C96@w12wcedxu01.wc.bbc.co.uk>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

> It does not require "literacy" to learn to use computers and 
> the Internet for many everyday tasks people want to use them for ... 

I can't agree with this at all. It does require 'literacy' to learn to use
computers and the Internet as things stand at the moment, and as your post
proved - every single one of your examples was an example of a person who
*must* have had or gained *some* level of literacy in order to achieve the
successful outcomes you describe.

The child with an IQ of 50 using DOS on a 386 must have been making some
kind of set of alphanumeric recognition/response actions at some point in
order to do that - ie they must have had some level of 'literacy' - either
that or they weren't really using DOS but some kind of early GUI sitting on
top of DOS; your 'learning disabled' client whose level of reading/writing
you wish to bring up - and I'm sure you will - is clearly making full use of
her 'literacy' ie that very 'reading/writing level' of which you speak - in
the computer use she is successfully achieving, and the mother who has found
chat rooms - text based surely - with people of 'similar literacy levels'
clearly *has* a literacy level. Or she wouldn't be able to read and respond
to her friends' chat.

But we've been talking about the completely non-literate, the group of
people to whom any text on a page is a distraction and completely
meaningless and who, according to Jonathan, require a wholly graphical,
icon-based interface system with built in anti-attention-deficit-disorder
features, and the extent to which the whole or some of the web might be made
more accessible/comprehensible/useful to them. Haven't we?

Or have I really lost this thread completely, as it were?

Cheers etc.,

Received on Thursday, 10 June 1999 13:53:42 UTC

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