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RE: How to describe Flowcharts, Schematics, etc

From: Wendy A Chisholm <chisholm@trace.wisc.edu>
Date: Fri, 27 Aug 1999 15:49:08 -0500
Message-Id: <199908272049.PAA26885@trace.wisc.edu>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Hello all,

A few months ago, we were reviewing a Web encyclopedia with an atlas
section.  We were concerned that if someone wanted to answer the question
"what countries border Germany" that they could either use the atlas
section, or find the information in text somewhere.  

Thus, we asked a few organizations that create auditory renditions of books
what they would do.  Converting textbooks which are often full of graphs
and charts is common for these groups.  

I had not followed up on all of the leads I had been given.  Here are some
of the responses as well as where I am in following up on leads.  This
information will be valuable to include in the Techniques document of
WCAG1.0.  Note, that some responses are directed at maps since that was my
main concern at the time.

If a map is used to deliver specific types of information such as major 
cities and population - the information could be in a table.

There has been some work done on these things with tactile models. Some are 
really great. There is the nomad, which as a touch screen and some maps can 
be programmed into it. You lay a tactile on the touch screen and touch 
places and the information is spit back at you from the database. There is 
a project where a machining tool is being created to make 
tactiles from images, but these are specially prepared 3d graphics.
Long descriptions work for maps, but whenever you have a relationship 
between objects, it gets tough. flow charts are like this as well.

I am expecting a call back on monday (8/30/1999) from someone at the
American Printing House for the Blind in Louisville, KY.  They said that
when people become "Certified Braille Transcribers" they are most likely
given some set of guidelines.  I am anxious to find out more about this. 

I spoke with someone at The National Braille Association who said that "The
Tape Recording Manual" available from the National Library Service of the
Library of Congress might have the information.  I have contacted the LoC
to order a copy of the manual.

There is supposedly a "handbook for spoken mathematics" published by
Larry's Speakeasy, that sounds like it has useful information.  Anyone know
anything about this?  The contact information I have is out of date.

I am waiting to hear back from a few people that I sent follow-up e-mails
to.  I will let you know what I find.


wendy chisholm
human factors engineer
trace research and development center
university of wisconsin - madison, USA
Received on Friday, 27 August 1999 16:49:43 UTC

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