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508 Accessibility vs WAI Accessibility.

I see that Firefox offers validation tools for both 508 Accessibility
and WAI Accessibility. Can anyone tell me the difference between
these two or are they basically one and the same?

Thanks.

-Fleemo

Jul 24 '05 #1
5 1969
Gazing into my crystal ball I observed fl******@comcast.net writing in
news:11**********************@g43g2000cwa.googlegr oups.com:
I see that Firefox offers validation tools for both 508 Accessibility
and WAI Accessibility. Can anyone tell me the difference between
these two or are they basically one and the same?

Thanks.

-Fleemo


WAI is more stringent than 508 -
<http://www.jimthatcher.com/sidebyside.htm> provides a detailed list.

--
Adrienne Boswell
http://www.cavalcade-of-coding.info
Please respond to the group so others can share
Jul 24 '05 #2
Adrienne <ar********@sbcglobal.net> wrote:
WAI is more stringent than 508 -
<http://www.jimthatcher.com/sidebyside.htm> provides a detailed list.


As the list shows, the relationship is somewhat more complex.
In effect, 508 is what US legislative bodies regarded as enforceable
by law in the WAI guidelines. This means that it partly demands more
than WAI, since enforceability requires objective checkability.
Moreover, as a whole, 508 is a _legal requirement_ (within its scope of
applicability), whereas WAI is just guidelines, a recommendation by an
industry consortium.

P.S. I don't think Firefox as such has tools for accessibility checking
(or "validation tools" for accessibility). The tools are separately
available from somewhere. Actually, I think the tool referred to is the
"HTML Validator" that is available via Firefox's Tools/Extensions
command. It is in fact _not_ a validator, it contains errors (even in
parsing), and its accessibility checking is a mixture of useful,
useless, and worse than useless features. For example, it reports
alt="" as missing alt text.

--
Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
Pages about Web authoring: http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/www.html

Jul 24 '05 #3
On Tue, 14 Jun 2005, Jukka K. Korpela wrote:
P.S. I don't think Firefox as such has tools for accessibility checking
Chris Pederick's "Web developer toolbar" addon, for FF or Mozilla,
comes pre-configured with links to a number of checkers, including
"validate section 508" and "validate WAI". (Yes, I agree the word
"validate" is unfortunate here). This uses
http://www.contentquality.com , also known as CynthiaSays. The
checker URLs are configurable, and there's a slot for defining one's
own checker URL if one knows a better one.

http://chrispederick.com/work/firefox/webdeveloper/

[...] parsing), and its accessibility checking is a mixture of useful,
useless, and worse than useless features. For example, it reports
alt="" as missing alt text.


Well, CynthiaSays reports this in those circumstances (I tried the
508 report):

Warning - IMG Element found at Line: 19, Column: 28 contains the
'alt' attribute with an empty value. Please verify that this image
is only used for spacing or design and has no meaning.

I suppose that's OK-ish, though it's a bit tedious for those who
basically already know what they're doing. It didn't prevent the
checker from reporting that the page had passed the automatic tests.

Incidentally, I'd recommend anyone - web developer or not - to install
this toolbar. It has all kinds of useful options, quite a number of
which can be useful to an ordinary user of the web.
Jul 24 '05 #4
fl******@comcast.net wrote:
I see that Firefox offers validation tools for both 508 Accessibility
and WAI Accessibility. Can anyone tell me the difference between
these two or are they basically one and the same?


WAI is a recommendation promulgated by the World Wide Web Consortium
(the same people who brought you, and make recommendations concerning,
HTML and CSS). Section 508 is a U.S. law applicable to systems produced
by or for the U.S. government, and to all hardware and software, not
just the web. There is much overlap between WAI and the web-related
parts of 508, and Section 508 states that several of its provisions are
deemed fulfilled if similar provisions of WAI are fulfilled.
Jul 24 '05 #5
Alan J. Flavell said the following on 2005-06-14 14:10:
Incidentally, I'd recommend anyone - web developer or not - to install
this toolbar. It has all kinds of useful options, quite a number of
which can be useful to an ordinary user of the web.


Especially since you can remove the buttons which you don't want to use (View ==> Toolbars ==> Customize).

--
Regards
Harrie
Jul 24 '05 #6

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