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[emacspeak The Complete Audio Desktop] Web Accessibility And Usability: Comin...
The Nielsen Norman Group has made available a detailed report on
accessibility, which includes the results of several usability
--- see Going Beyond
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
- 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
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
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
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
- 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
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