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RE: priority of 5.8

From: Gregory J. Rosmaita <unagi69@concentric.net>
Date: Mon, 06 Dec 1999 15:25:13 -0500
Message-Id: <4.1.19991206152112.009e2100@pop3.concentric.net>
Message-Id: <4.1.19991206152112.009e2100@pop3.concentric.net>
To: "Denis Anson" <danson@miseri.edu>, "Dick Brown" <dickb@microsoft.com>
Cc: "User Agent Guidelines Emailing List" <w3c-wai-ua@w3.org>
aloha, denis!

thank you for brining a broader perspective to my blind-centric post...

all of the issues you raised are convincing arguments for provision of ID
codes and such in a cut-and-pastable format (if available to the user) such
as email or on a secure server...

PS: no, i can't really tactilely distinguish raised symbols unless they are
quite large and distinct, which is why the star doesn't necessarily help me
when i'm on an elevator, since i tend to get on elevators on the ground
floor!  seriously, though, i do find the raised numerals more helpful than
the braille, but there is still the problem of to which button does the
label belong!

At 02:49 PM 12/6/99 -0500, Denis Anson wrote: 
A related problem is the length of these id codes.  For a person with even
slight motor impairment, typing a 20 digit alpha-numeric code without
errors is nearly impossible.  I can't believe that all of those digits
really mean anything.
For what it's worth, the ADA guidelines don't require braille in elevators
for exactly the reasons that you mention.  They require raised numbers, and
a star on the main floor.  Are you able to identify large embossed symbols
any better than braille?
Denis Anson
-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-ua-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ua-request@w3.org]On Behalf
Of Gregory J. Rosmaita
Sent: Monday, December 06, 1999 12:40 PM
To: Dick Brown
Cc: User Agent Guidelines Emailing List
Subject: RE: priority of 5.8

Dick Brown wrote:

One thing that's sometimes a problem with installation is entering product
IDs that are printed on the back of CD cases, but unfortunately not in

aloha, dick!

that is an excellent point, dick, and one which is often overlooked...

but even if CD-ROMs were to be distributed with braille on-the-back, that
still wouldn't help the sixty-five to seventy-percent of blind people who
-- for whatever reason -- can't read braille...

which is the Achilles's heel of attempting to do business when you are
blind -- a lot of entities (such as the utilities company that provides gas
for my apartment) don't offer online account management, and even those
that do, do not always make your statement available to you online, or at
least not in a format that is usable if you are blind, and their quote
solution unquote to providing equal access to information is to offer me my
bill in braille...  the only problem with that is that the illness that
caused my vision loss also led to a loss of sensation in my fingertips,
with the consequence that i cannot read braille when it is embossed on
paper because i simply don't have the requisite sensitivity, so an embossed
paper version of my bill is as useless to me as a printed version...

which cuts (in a roundabout and incoherent way) to the heart of the matter
-- all too often, the quote disabled unquote are saddled with
one-size-fits-all solutions that -- while they may meet the letter of the
law, certainly violate its spirit...   braille on elevator panels is great,
but you have to be able to find the panel before you can use it...  and
even when you do find the panel, you need to figure out with which buttons
the braille labels are associated, by which time you're already on a floor
you didn't intend to go to...  unless every such panel were placed in
exactly the same spot on all elevators, and the labels for each button were
uniformly placed so that you would always know which button they were meant
to label, then equal access has NOT been achieved...

all of which is a convoluted way of saying that, in the instance of the
product ID codes, i would not be opposed to a software manufacturer
maintaining a consumer profile, so that when i receive an upgrade in the
mail (such as that which i received for Office2000), i wouldn't have to
wait until i could find someone to read the code to me, but could retrieve
it via email or over the phone or via the web...  of course, i'd want to
make damn sure that the customer profile was being used exclusively to
provide me with this information, and not for any other purposes, but that
is a concern for another list!

He that lives on Hope, dies farting
     -- Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard's Almanack, 1763
Gregory J. Rosmaita <unagi69@concentric.net>
   WebMaster and Minister of Propaganda, VICUG NYC
Received on Tuesday, 7 December 1999 01:02:55 UTC

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