[Accessibleweb] April 20 AccessibleWeb meeting notes

Dan Comden danc at u.washington.edu
Fri May 11 11:20:37 PDT 2007

Sorry for the delay on this -- got stuck in my "drafts" folder!

Wendy Chisolm - WCAG 2.0 Progress Report

1. Background of WCAG
a. WCAG 1 - May 1999
b. WCAG 2 Last Call Working Draft
c. Feb/March 2007 - Editor's Draft
d. May or June this year WCAG 2.0 Last Call Working Draft. Still
not sure on timeline

2. WCAG 2.0 Editor's Draft
a. Terminology
b. Conformance
c. Support Materials
d. Cognitive, Language and Learning Disabilities
3. Terminology
a. "Web page" - the "evolved sense of the concept" includes
applications, multimedia.
i. "page" is outdated, but choosing another term was tough.
b. Success criteria vs. Checkpoints.
c. "Programmatically determined" - "the content is delivered in such
as way that user agents, including assistive technologies, can access it."
i. Program can figure it out.
d. "Accessibility-supported Content Technologies" - "will work with
user agents, including assistive technologies, that are available to the
users of their content who have disabilities."
i. Technologies that will work with user agents. "ASCT" will
appear in latest draft.
4. Conformance
a. A, AA, AAA is still there
b. 3 levels vs. 3 priorities
i. Readability stuff shows up on 3rd level now. What can
industry live with.
ii. "Must do, Should do, may do " is now gone.
iii. What about captioning? Still at level 1, even though
industry is not happy with that position. Audio
description is still there as well.
There is a distinction between recorded and live content. Some of the live
stuff is pushed to level 2 or 3.
c. Partial conformance - additional content unknown at publication
(e.g. comment on blog)
i. Can only claim it on the content you have control over --
some content isn't easily controlled by originator
5. Conformance cont.
a. Technology independence - use any technology enabled for
b. Accessibility-supported Content Technologies
c. Non-AsCT are ok if not relied upon.
i. Scripting is a problem, perhaps. How do we determine what's
ii. What is list of technologies? Doesn't exist yet.
iii. Quick reference may be helpful - hasn't been updated since last
6. Conformance Criteria
a. Conformance level, Minimum conformance
i. Can't claim accessibility on part of the product/process.
Can't have accessible catalog w/o accessible checkout
process to accompany it.
ii. What about legacy content?
b. Only AsCT are relied upon.
c. Alternate Version available from same URI.
i. If original content isn't accessible. Note same URI. Could
be link to separate URI.
d. Full pages and complete processes
e. Non-interference from non-AsCT
7. Support Materials
a. Quick Reference vs. Checklist
b. Understanding WCAG 2.0
c. Techniques
d. Mapping
e. FAQ, Overview, other docs (e.g. 1.0 to 2.0 change) planned
8. Cognitive, Learning, Language Disabilities
a. Statement" Although some of the accessibility issues of people
with cognitive, language and learning disabilities are addressed by WCAG
2.0, either directly or through assistive technologies, the WCAG 2.0
guidelines do not address many areas of need for people with these
disabilities. There is a need for more research and development in this
important area."
i. This is a compromise
9. WCAG 2.0 Guideline 3.1
a. Guideline 3.1 - Make text content readable and understandable.
i. In contrast to "write clearly and
b. Identify the human language of the page - level 1
c. Human language of each passage or phrase In the content can be
programmatically determined.
10. Lower Secondary Education Level
a. 3.1.5 When text requires reading ability more advanced than the
lower secondary education level, supplemental content or an alternate
version is available that doesn not require reading ability more advanced
than the lower secondary education level"
b. Defined as "the two or three year period of education that begins
after completion of six years of school and ends nine years after the
beginning of primary education"
c. Based on UNESCO's International Standard Classification of
Education, 1997
11. "Determining" reading level
a. Juicy studio explains and has a tool:
12. Pros and Cons
a. Can serve as an early warning system
b. Quantifiable measure of changes over time/edits.
c. Does not measure:
i. Complexity of ideas
ii. If content is in a logical order
iii. If the vocab is appropriate for the audience * (Plain
language movement from Voice of America. Exists in
other languages as well)
iv. If biases are present (are idioms there?)
d. Everything you ever wanted to know about readability tests but
were afraid to ask: www.gopdg.com/plainlanguage/readability.html
13. Quick Reference -- provides "Sufficient Techniques". Demonstrated
for 3.1.1 unique meaning of word or phrase
14. <having fun>
a. WCAG 2.0 isn't done
b. Readability isn't black and white. </having-fun>
15. Discussion
a. Readability issues are going to continue to be a challenge
b. AT doesn't really address cognitive/readability issues. Not yet.
There's a summary tool being developed at UW that may some day assist.

-*- Dan Comden danc at u.washington.edu
Access Technology Lab www.washington.edu/computing/atl/
University of Washington

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