W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-ua@w3.org > January to March 2010

I'm Worried...

From: Simon Harper <simon.harper@manchester.ac.uk>
Date: Fri, 05 Feb 2010 10:32:07 +0000
Message-ID: <4B6BF3A7.6040902@manchester.ac.uk>
To: UAWG list <w3c-wai-ua@w3.org>
Hi there guys,

Sorry for not being very talkative on the Telecon yesterday, and for 
confining myself to listening to the discussion. However, as the 
discussion unfolded, and this is not in relation to action item 263, I 
started to become a little worried about what we are actually expecting 
user agent manufacturers to do with regard to the accessibility of their 
technology. From a brief analysis of guidelines as they stand in draft 
at present we seem to be reasonably focused on specific key disability 
such as blindness and hearing loss. I became more concerned with regard 
to how these guidelines would be implemented with regard to cognitive 
disability and learning impairments as in some cases it seems to me that 
the guidelines have an implicit idea about, and address, a specific 

That said I may be completely wrong on this point, so to allay my fears 
I wonder if somebody from the group could answer me a couple of 
questions. I think if we can't answer these questions we need to think 
again about some of the guidelines and indeed our ideas about user agent 

1) How does principle three 'PRINCIPLE 3: Perceivable - The user 
interface and rendered content must be presented to users in ways they 
can perceive.' and the guidelines that are within it relate to cognitive 
disability and learning impairments, 'content must be presented to users 
in ways they can perceive' suggests to me that the content must be 
translated into pictograms for this particular user group. Are we really 
expecting this to occur?

2) In the case of guideline 4.9 'Guideline 4.9 Provide control of 
content that may reduce accessibility.' Content that may reduce 
accessibility is text with regard to cognitive disability learning 
impairment. How can this be addressed in such a case?

3) Finally, 'Principle 5: Ensure that user interface is understandable', 
How will this understandability be ensured with regard to cognitive 
disability and learning impairment? Are we expecting user agent 
manufacturers to provide pictorial representations of the textual aspects.

Based on responses from the working group I have some additional 
questions, but I don't want to labour the point here, and indeed your 
answers may negate some of those questions I already have.



Simon Harper
University of Manchester (UK)

Human Centred Web Lab: http://hcw.cs.manchester.ac.uk

My Site: http://hcw.cs.manchester.ac.uk/people/harper/

My Diary (Web): 
My Diary (Subscribe): 
Received on Friday, 5 February 2010 10:32:36 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.4.0 : Friday, 17 January 2020 20:38:40 UTC