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Re: [emacspeak The Complete Audio Desktop] Web Accessibility And Usability: Comin...



well, the biggest hole in this space is that the blind user
community has gotten so used to broken tools that they now swear
by them and define accessibility by whether or not things work
with those tools. This is a dead-end that  I predicted 10 years
ago, but I'm still sorry to see that my predictions have proven
correct. For what I mean, see some of the comments / responses
that were raised by a related article I wrote on one of my other
blogs and forwarded to the wai-ig list.

>>>>> "Janina" == Janina Sajka <janina@rednote.net> writes:
    Janina> You raise very valid points, Raman. Perhaps we might
    Janina> consider a challenge to Nielsen. Perhaps we could
    Janina> point out that their presuppositions are unfair and
    Janina> lead to unhelpful conclusions? As you point out, it's
    Janina> the task, not the particular web site for that task,
    Janina> which matters. And, the performance of users with
    Janina> minimal skills and inadequate tools is certainly a
    Janina> questionable measure.
    Janina> 
    Janina> Janina
    Janina> 
    Janina> T. V. Raman writes:
    >> The Nielsen Norman Group has made available a detailed
    >> report on accessibility, which includes the results of
    >> several usability tests --- see Going Beyond Alt
    >> Text. It's a very good read, and though its conclusions
    >> might be depressing to people coming to this area from the
    >> outside --- they should be no surprize to users who have
    >> been trying to use the Web via spoken output over the last
    >> 10 years. From the perspective of the Emacspeak user who
    >> lives in a specialized browsing environment that is
    >> optimized for performing oft-repeated tasks, there are
    >> several interesting take-aways from this report:
    >> 
    >> - Though so-called Web Accessibility Standards have
    >> attempted to focus on the behavior observed when using
    >> screenreaders with mainstream browsers, that thread of
    >> work appears to be achieving little with respect to the
    >> real metric of task completion. As technologists, we would
    >> all do well to remember that users come to the Web, and
    >> Web Access solutions not to use the browser but rather to
    >> complete one or other task.  - As described in Specialized
    >> Browsers and The Web The Way You Want It, task-oriented
    >> access and specialized user-optimized web tools have been
    >> around since the inception of the Web.  - Though the
    >> Nielsen study asked users to carry out each of the given
    >> tasks by going to a given Web site, it would be
    >> interesting to see how such tasks work out in the
    >> Emacspeak environment. It's a given that an emacspeak user
    >> trying to buy a music CD at an online store would run into
    >> a brick wall fairly quickly (see, even online stores are
    >> made of brick and mortar;-)). However, as an Emacspeak
    >> user I'd never do that I'd either go to Amazon's highly
    >> efficient Amazon Accessible Store or faster yet, type an
    >> appropriate query at Google and click on the relevant Ad
    >> that sports a Google Checkout badge.  - And more
    >> interestingly, it would be interesting to carry out a
    >> follow-up user study to compare the rate of task
    >> completion as well as observed efficiencies/inefficiencies
    >> between users of Emacspeak and generic
    >> browser/screenreader combinations for tasks such as: -
    >> Play NPR news from the last hour.  - Play your local NPR
    >> station.  - Play BBC News from the last hour.  - Skim the
    >> top stories from CNN.  - Look up today's stock market
    >> numbers for the major indices.  - And items too numerous
    >> to enumerate in this margin.
    >> 
    >> --
    >> Posted By T. V. Raman to emacspeak The Complete Audio
    >> Desktop at 12/20/2007 02:49:00 PM
    Janina> --
    Janina> 
    Janina> Janina Sajka, Phone: +1.202.595.7777;
    Janina> sip:janina@a11y.org Partner, Capital Accessibility
    Janina> LLC http://CapitalAccessibility.Com
    Janina> 
    Janina> Marketing the Owasys 22C talking screenless cell
    Janina> phone in the U.S. and Canada Learn more at
    Janina> http://ScreenlessPhone.Com
    Janina> 
    Janina> Chair, Open Accessibility janina@a11y.org Linux
    Janina> Foundation http://a11y.org
    Janina> 
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-- 
Best Regards,
--raman

      
Email:  raman@users.sf.net
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