Re: Documents now public


New accessibility standards for DHTML approach the same techniques one
would do for GUI applications. These same standards may be applied to SVG.
What is necessary is for authoring tools to make use of reusable accessible
objects and allow the author to assemble web applications from this
content. The tools should prompt the author for missing accessibility

The frustration with authors is they are not accessibility experts and they
are expected to be.

Now I iwll be cynical. I will tell you that if an author is creating a
DHTML application from scratch this is a very complicated task and the
accessibility addtions are incremental at best. If developers want to
create these applications they need to make them compliant - otherwise
don't write them or risk another Sydney Olympics. They no longer have an
excuse for not making them accessible. You will find that if they do make
use of these standards they will have a more usable for all users and not
just those who are considerd to have a disability.


Rich Schwerdtfeger
Distinguished Engineer, SWG Accessibility Architect/Strategist
Emerging Technologies
Chair, IBM Accessibility Architecture Review  Board
blog:, Phone: 512-838-4593,T/L: 678-4593, mobile: 512-876-9689

"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I -
I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.",

             Tom Worthington                                               
   >                                               To 
             Sent by:                  Richard                             
             wai-xtech-request         Schwerdtfeger/Austin/IBM@IBMUS      
                                       Al Gilman                           
                                       <>, DCMI    
             10/12/2005 06:04          Accessibility Group                 
             PM                        <DC-ACCESSIBILITY@JISCMAIL.AC.UK>,  
             Please respond to                                     Subject 
              Tom Worthington          Re: Documents now public            

At 01:20 PM 10/6/2005, Richard Schwerdtfeger wrote:
      ... new text being reviewed for placement on the public PF web site:

      The working group has a focused effort to fix the accessibility of
      Rich Internet web Applications (RIAs). ...

Looks good. I will see if I can build it into next years's ANU web course.

The W3C's Australian office moved to a government research organization, on
the other side of my office wall last week, so some collaboration may be
possible <>.

      The inaccessibility of these applications has often been categorized
      as "JavaScript Accessibility Problem." ...

In the past I have dismissed the idea of accessibility for scripting, SVG
and the like. This is because it was hard enough to get web designers to do
the simplest of accessibility techniques, such as put captions on images.
Given they were not doing the simple things, it seemed unlikely they would
do anything more complex. But this may have been the wrong approach.
Perhaps putting captions on images is too boring, but telling them how to
make their snazzy stuff more snazzy will get their attention more.

This may sound cynical, and not relevant to developing accessibility
standards, but there is no point in developing a standard if it will not be
used. Many years ago it seemed that all we had to do was develop some
metadata standards and documents would be easy to find <>. We got the standards, but almost no one
is bothering to enter the metadata. What was lacking was some reward for
the original authors to enter the data. Making it a rule that they had to
do it and threatening them with legal action doesn't work.

Tom Worthington FACS HLM Ph: 0419 496150
Director, Tomw Communications Pty Ltd            ABN: 17 088 714 309
PO Box 13, Belconnen ACT 2617      
Director, ACS Communications Tech Board
Visiting Fellow, ANU      Blog:

Received on Thursday, 13 October 2005 02:30:56 UTC