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Re: Tables and the Summary attribute

From: Orion Adrian <orion.adrian@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 28 Sep 2005 21:19:50 -0400
Message-ID: <abd6c801050928181923588cec@mail.gmail.com>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

> >> summary:
> >> There are 5 columns. Columns 1 and 2 show forcasted results for 2006.
> Column 1 is the original budget. Column 2 is the estimated actual
> results.
> >
> > This far exceeds the approximately 7 things that people can track in
> short term memory and is pretty much useless as a result.
> If you are a screenreader user, an accountant or have a degree in
> cognitive psychology then I will take this comment seriously.

Even if he's not a cognitive psychologist, he's stating a well-known
fact among HCI people and cognitive psychologists and that is humans
have the ability to retain 5-7 chunks of information in short-term
memory. If a person adds something that would exceed their capacity,
something gets dropped from short-term memory.

> I personally don't have a problem developing a mental model of this table
> by the description, and I think accountant types, having a mathematical
> predisposition, probably won't stuggle with it either. Fortunately there
> is a budget for usability testing with actual screenreader users.

While it's possible that the audience will have better "chunking"
skills, David's comment very much applies. The audience may be able to
abstract better, but there is still a limit.


Orion Adrian
Received on Thursday, 29 September 2005 01:19:57 UTC

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