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RE: People with cognitive disabilities as a group

From: Simon White <simon.white@jkd.co.uk>
Date: Thu, 28 Feb 2002 17:08:51 -0000
Message-ID: <D1EFBFDCD178C24DA607A306D6E3A711059D5C@URANUs>
To: "Paul Davis" <paul@ten-20.com>, <goliver@accease.com>, "Charles McCathieNevile" <charles@w3.org>
Cc: "John Parkin" <jbp@globalnet.co.uk>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Dear Paul,
A very very interesting conundrum! However, if images and sounds were used in excess on a site (and I agree that this is best for those suffering from learning difficulties and is used by Mencap here in the UK) then surely it is possible to make those sounds and images accessible to people outside of the target area in the same way in which 'normal' (apologies for writing that, but I cannot think of another way of putting it across) websites are made accessible. In addition, if the website explicitly explained that it was designed for that specific target audience, but that the coding had allowed for other disabilities as much as possible, would this not also meet the criteria?

As someone who does not suffer from a disability it is difficult for me to actually answer the question for you, but I am hoping that my comments might help others to formulate better information than I can.

Kind regards to all

-----Original Message-----
From: Paul Davis [mailto:paul@ten-20.com]
Sent: Thursday, February 28, 2002 16:49
To: goliver@accease.com; Charles McCathieNevile
Cc: John Parkin; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: RE: People with cognitive disabilities as a group

Interesting conundrum here, I have been approached by Wandsworth social
services to produce a website for people with severe learning disabilities
(as opposed to cognitive ones), most of which it seems at first glance
involves the use of images and sounds instead of words, I suppose the
position could be taken that the website would only be of interest to the
targeted group in question and as such, is it then a required need to be
accessible in the normally accepted terms?

Nearly all accessible websites take for granted that:

1. The surfer is naturally English speaking.
2. They can read.

This is often inaccessible to these particular groups.

Suppose it was a requirement that a series of images could be used to convey
a message which could then be cut and pasted onto a server generated and
based email so that individuals could then effectively email each other with
their own messages. It would make life easier if Java applets and rotating
gifs could be used, but this comes with it's own set of difficulties. Where
does the line get drawn accessibility wise, or do you just ignore the line
altogether and go for it?

Any opinions please?

Paul Davis

-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org]On
Behalf Of Charles McCathieNevile
Sent: 26 February 2002 13:17
To: goliver@accease.com
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: Re: People with cognitive disabilities as a group


As a group, people with cognitive disabilities are diverse - more so than
people with Visual disabilities (who are a diverse group) and more like
people with motor disabilities (who are a very diverse group).

I think that trying to find a single solution that suits all of these people
really involves finding multiple solutions that each provide for some
specific problems, and then unifying these solutions (which includes working
out how to deal with cases where there are apparently conflicting
needs - for
example some people need not to rely on images, others need not to rely on
text. HTML provides for this to some extent with its ability to include both
images and text as equivalent forms of the same information).



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Received on Thursday, 28 February 2002 12:08:54 UTC

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