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Open A11y Working Group Conference Call (5 February 2008)


  • Janina Sajka (JS/chair)
    • Stew Benedict (SB)
    • Pete Brunet (PB)
    • Vladmir Bulatov (VB/View Plus)
    • Calvin Gainsford (CG/Novell)
    • Gregory J. Rosmaita (GJR/scribe)
    • Niel Soiffer (NS/chair, Expert Handlers SIG)
      • regrets: Willie Walker

For Reference

Preliminary Items

Summary of Action Items Assigned at the 2008-01-29 Open A11y Conference Call

ACTION GJR: investigate date:FOO syntax in RDFa and Dublin Core

status: continued -- will create wiki page for issue

Review of Resoulutions from the 2008-01-29 Open A11y Conference Call

  1. the minutes from the 22 January 2008 Open A11y Call were approved without objection
  2. ATK/AT-SPI SIG's "Mission Statement" approved
  3. ATK/AT-SPI SIG Overview page text approved

Approval of Past Minutes

Meeting Minutes for 5 February 2008

Note: These minutes have not yet been finalized.

Topic 1: Unified Use Cases for Expert Handlers, version 1.0

Introduction to Expert Handlers: Neil Soiffer, chair Expert Handlers SIG

JS: background of Expert Handlers concept; Neil Soiffer (NS) from Design Science approached the IAccessible2 workgroup to address specialized knowledge domain markup; seeking standard way to reference knowledge-specific domain markup -- decided in IAccessible2 that this is a problem across all OSs and ATs and that Open A11y should move on this legitimate request to call for a subgroup to form in order to draft a set of unified use cases to define the problem and point towards where the solution might lie

NS: Design Science has designed interfaces to make math accessible but there remain 2 problems:

  1. the need for a private agreement with Design Science and individual AT developers each of which have to be approached individually;
  2. AT vendors want assurance that there is a standardized, and not proprietary interface;

NS: approached IAccessible2 workgroup first, because IA2 provides access to material, but that material is not necessarily useful to an AT because specialized material is incomprehensible and unmanageable to AT; the question then arose: where does such a standard belong? between document and expert handler or between an AT and an expert handler; developed use cases and areas that need to be addressed in math and other areas: music, chemistry, biology, genomics, etc.; hopefully at end will come up with standards that Open A11y can endorse

NS: have people had a chance to read the document? -- i could guide those on the call through the document

JS: useful to review at high level -- trying to ascertain if covered obvious use cases -- want objective opinions and where next steps may be; we will approach AT vendors individually to find what they need

Scribe's Note: NS provides guided tour of Unified Use Cases for Expert Handlers, version 1.0 (UUC1)

GJR: please note that there is also a wiki page which serves as a catch-all for ideas and issues which were brought to light by the Expert Handlers SIG's investigation of expert handlers use cases

NS: the reality of the situation is that while the overall AT market may be a niche market, its customers need to use math on a daily basis; every day there is a math class or science class, for which the materials need to be accessible to all students, but the AT developers stance has always been -- "tell us what we need to do to plug into a standard interface for specialized content" so that they don't need to provide support for all possible custom XML dialects and specialized markup languages

Discussion of UUC1

JS: procedural side -- any objections to publishing document?

Scribe's Note: none logged.

JS: any objection to the SIG moving forward to requirements and specifications? in past haven't delved into developing new technology in the way that expert handlers provides

Scribe's Note: none logged

NS: trying to produce platform-agnostic standard modular interface for expert handler and its interaction with AT

JS: hearing no objections -- thank you to the authors: Pete Brunet, Vladmir Bulatov, Gregory Rosmaita, and Neil Soiffer {scribe's internal note: Janina was too modest -- she played a major role in the authorship and editing of UUC1} -- you did quite well to outline the use cases

NS: so-called edge cases not likely to be picked up natively by users; but the point is it is not just for scientists and mathematicians, but for kindergarten-through-twelfth grade education (primary education), secondary education, and higher education

JS: specificity in APIs capable of exposing, need stable mechanism to communicate specificity to AT in way that AT can usefully present to end user

GJR: in addition to minutes announcement will send finalized draft as seperate post to the main accessibility list

JS: CSUN will be a key place for us to obtain feedback on UUC1-- there is an expert handlers panel session at CSUN2008

Topic 2: Website Update

GJR: minor updates to the:

  1. Open Accessibility Documents and Specifications index and
  2. the Accessible Document (ADoc) Index

GJR: new, more accessible, public working draft of the Table of AT-SPI Events; awaiting review and possible update from original author, Pete Parente (IBM);

GJR: Accessible Document Interfaces and Navigation drafts still need revision and an owner -- please assist in the updating and double-checking by using the following resources:

  1. Accessible Document Interfaces Using ATK wiki page
  2. Accessible Document Navigation Using AT-SPI wiki page

GJR: still working on templates and guidelines for Open A11y documents

New Business

JS: other items?

Identify Topics for the 12 February 2008 Teleconference

The next Open Accessibility conference call is 12 February 2008, which will be dedicated to the discussion of AT-SPI on D-Bus and the Collection Interface; there will probably not be a meeting on 19 February 2008 and definitely no meeting 26 February 2008

Wrap Up

Summary of New Action Items

Summary of Continued Action Items

Summary of Resolutions

  1. The Open A11y Workgroup officially approved Unified Use Cases for Expert Handlers, version 1.0 as a finalized document.
  2. The Open A11y Workgroup authorized the Expert Handlers SIG to move forward with drafting requirements and specifications.