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RE: User Stylesheets are Assistive Technology

From: Sean Murphy (seanmmur) <seanmmur@cisco.com>
Date: Wed, 18 Jul 2018 07:51:22 +0000
To: Wayne Dick <wayneedick@gmail.com>, Katie Haritos-Shea GMAIL <ryladog@gmail.com>
CC: W3C WAI ig <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <a4f93fc31d554a7ba66d08e8138277c8@XCH-RCD-001.cisco.com>

How many programs are available now an average user who knows nothing about style sheets can build their own style sheet and utilise in a browser?
Does the community who benefit from this technology know about it and are using it?
What part of the disability community would benefit from this other than low vision and dyslexia?
If the community does not know how to leverage this technology to make their lives easier. Then I see this as a bigger issue. If the community does know about style sheets and can easily build them to their specifications. Then isn’t it up to the community to make the vendors aware of the importance of the feature?

Just some top of mind thoughts. As awareness might be a bigger issue. Possibley why vendors of OS and browsers are discontinuing the feature. There is more than likely other reasons that I am not aware of.

From: Wayne Dick <wayneedick@gmail.com>
Sent: Wednesday, 18 July 2018 11:22 AM
To: Katie Haritos-Shea GMAIL <ryladog@gmail.com>
Cc: W3C WAI ig <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Subject: Re: User Stylesheets are Assistive Technology


Brilliant observation. Actually I am working on a JSON protocol to pass to programs to forward a user's typographic needs. That could be easily taken up by browsers. Until then user style sheets fill a gap. I use them to work. Like reading Safaribooksonline. I use the stylesheet given in this list so I can read technology. The sample code comes out terrible, but I copy it and read it in Sublime where it word wraps.

The problem is that the actual tools people use to live and work are recognized as necessary AT by the Accessibility Group. So, browsers and operating systems just throw them away and people who need them are shut out of basic acts like reading. It happens to me once a year.

The latest was when Windows discontinued adjustable user interfaces. It was important AT. I had to move to the Mac. To use stylesheets for accessibility on Chrome we used to use Stylish, but they scrape personal data and sell it. There is a program called Stylus but I'm sticking with Safari until they break stylesheets. They probably will eventually, because stylesheets are not recognized as a technology that people with disabilities depend on to maintain literacy.

Best all, Wayne

On Tue, Jul 17, 2018 at 5:27 PM Wayne Dick <wayneedick@gmail.com<mailto:wayneedick@gmail.com>> wrote:
Joe first,
Here is a modest stylesheet.

/* Simple Style Sheet to Reset Color and Font Size for Safari
html, iframe, body, p, ol, li, dt, dd, dl, div, span, section, article, header, h1, h2, h3, h4, h5, h6, footer, aside, a {
  background-color: #c0b098 !important;
  color: #000000 !important;
  font-size: 20px !important;
  line-height: 1.35em !important;
  letter-spacing: 0.06em !important;
  word-spacing: 0.09em !important;

a {
  font-size: 20px !important;
  color: brown !important;

In the modern context it is best intervene only a little.

Here I just change font-size up by 25%, spacing and

background color. This works on most responsive pages.

Most pages can take this amount of change.

Sometimes changing color disables a page for no obvious reason.

Change my colors as you need.

Lastly, sometimes non-responsive pages do well with very large

fonts. On gitHub I use 32px font and then zoom to 125%.


My pages are assistive technology. They are

technology that enable me to read. It is only prejudice that

does not recognize this as legitimate AT.

Best to all, Wayne

On Tue, Jul 17, 2018 at 5:02 PM Katie Haritos-Shea <ryladog@gmail.com<mailto:ryladog@gmail.com>> wrote:

I get what you are saying.

I personally refer to two things related to user needs in relation to technology, Assitive Technologies and Adaptive Techniques.

User style sheets seem to fall somewhere in between those two for me.

On Tue, Jul 17, 2018, 7:57 PM Wayne Dick <wayneedick@gmail.com<mailto:wayneedick@gmail.com>> wrote:
There are lots of people who claim to be accessibility experts who disregard the value of user stylesheets as a significant technology to mitigate problems of visual interface. Actually they work quite well.

This technology is used primarily be people who are left out of the mainstream ATs. They are a way to change colors, ensure a personalized contrast ration, control column width and many other things.

I use Safari because the browser will host user stylesheets. It is too bad that other browsers decided to stop supporting this important assistive technology.

I think the AG should at least recognize that this is a form of assistive technology that is available in a technology landscape that offers almost nothing useful for most people with low vision and cognitive disabilities.

For those who want to tell me how wonderful screen magnifiers are if I just used them correctly, don't bother. I probably know how to use them better than you. For my needs, screen magnification scores zero.

Wayne Dick
Received on Wednesday, 18 July 2018 07:51:48 UTC

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