RE: UA ISSUE OF THE WEEK: Table element access

In response to chuck,
With the discussions at the F2F meeting (you may have missed part of that
discussion since you arrived late on saturday morning), the e-mail list and
in last two telecons we discussed this issue.   The issues were related to
user agent types and conformance.   It was felt in the discussions that
having a list of features that could have 4 types of responses was the best
the group could come up with.  The W3C will have no conformance statement,
but people can use the list to create feature subsets for their own
puposes.  These feature subsets would be informative from the W3C
perspective.  If your user agent does not support a certain rendering type
then you can say for checkpoints (new term for techniques across all
guidelines) based on that rendering type that it does not apply to your
user agent.  

Tables issue
The guidelines want to state what solutions are needed.  For people who can
see and process the visual rendering of tables, tables are not a problem.
But for people who cannot see the visual rendering of tables and are using
enlargment, speech or Braille we want to state the features that should be
available.  Whether this exists naively in a user agent or in conjunction
with assistive technology is up to individual developers to decide.  But I
think in terms of W3C technologies I would like to encourage what are
typically called "assistive technology" companies to start thinkin that
they are user agents.  Therefore in the case of speech based screen readers
they are doing more than just reading a visual rendering of the
information.  I am working with E&O to help develop some workshops to
highlight the DOM and other technologies that assistive technology vendors
can use to be more like user agents.     

There will also be "main stream" user agents that will be using non-visual
rendering of HTML information.  Richard Premack attended one of the
telecons last month and was part of a company deeloping an auditory browser
for telephone and portable user agent technologies.  He was interested in
how to make their product more accessible.  

I hope this clarifies the situation to you.  We want to try to define
features that will allow all people to access the WWW based on user needs.
 Some users will need screen enlargement/enhancement,  speech and/or
Braille.  I would like the guidelines to address their needs.  

You are probably specifically concerned about Internet Explorer.  In the
case enlargement, speech or Braille renderings IE could say it does not
apply or preferably that they provide an interface for other technologies
to provide these features.   



Main stream user agents 

At 03:00 PM 1/11/99 -0800, Charles (Chuck) Oppermann wrote:
>I simply don't understand the proposal.  It appears that all the
>Checkpoints, from 1 through 8 only apply to specialized browsers and not
>mainstream browsers such as Internet Explorer.  Am I understanding this
>If so, why are we telling folks like pwWebSpeak how to implement their
>product?  Isn't it assumed that specialized browsers will take care of their
>specialized audience?  I'm my impression that the problem of access to the
>web is with the mainstream browsers that are often times forced on students
>and employees.
>Am I on the right track here, or have I been gone too long and missed too
>much discussion.  Feel free to email me privately if you choose, or publicly
>on the list.
>Charles Oppermann
>Program Manager, Accessibility and Disabilities Group, Microsoft Corporation
>"A computer on every desk and in every home, usable by everyone!"
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Jon Gunderson []
>Sent: Monday, January 11, 1999 10:28 AM
>Subject: Re: UA ISSUE OF THE WEEK: Table element access
>I would like to see more discussion about table issues.  This has been a
>BIG issue for the group.  Please see the issues list for background
>information and a list of recent e-mails on the topic.
>There is a proposal for discussion at:
>Jon Gunderson, Ph.D., ATP
>Coordinator of Assistive Communication and Information Technology
>Division of Rehabilitation - Education Services
>University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign
>1207 S. Oak Street
>Champaign, IL 61820
>Voice: 217-244-5870
>Fax: 217-333-0248
Jon Gunderson, Ph.D., ATP
Coordinator of Assistive Communication and Information Technology
Division of Rehabilitation - Education Services
University of Illinois at Urbana/Champaign
1207 S. Oak Street
Champaign, IL 61820

Voice: 217-244-5870
Fax: 217-333-0248

Received on Wednesday, 13 January 1999 10:35:53 UTC