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Components of Web Accessibility

Version: Early Concept Draft 2004.08.27- chain
Note: This document is an unapproved draft and should not be distributed, referenced, or quoted under any circumstances. This document is under development by the Education and Outreach Working Group (EOWG), and will be offered to other W3C groups and the public for review. A change log lists revisions in progress and links to previous versions.

Several different components of Web development and interaction must work together in order for the Web to be accessible to people with disabilities:

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chain with first link labelled 'developers' with an image of a person at a computer, second link labelled 'authoring tools & evaluation tools' with an image of a computer. third link in the middle labelled 'content' with an image of documents, numbers, and misc stuff.

Web developers usually use authoring tools and evaluation tools to create Web content.

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chain with  third link in the middle labelled 'content' with an image of documents, numbers, and misc stuff. fourth link labelled 'browsers, media players, assistive technologies' with an image of a computer. the fifth and last chain lebelled 'users' with an impage of a person at a computer. (the labels and images on the first two links are very light: first link labelled 'developers' with an image of a person at a computer, second link labelled 'authoring tools & evaluation tools' with an image of a computer.

People ("users") use Web browsers, media players, assistive technologies, or other "user agents" to access the content.

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chain with broken link

If one component is weak, sometimes other components can compensate; however, compensation usually involves much more effort and work arounds/kludges that are not good for accessibility overall. For example,

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When accessibility features are effectively implemented in one component, the other components are more likely to implement them.

chain with first link labelled 'developers' with an image of a person at a computer, second link labelled 'authoring tools & evaluation tools' with an image of a computer. third link in the middle labelled 'content' with an image of documents, numbers, and misc stuff. fourth link labelled 'browsers, media players, assistive technologies' with an image of a computer. the fifth and last chain lebelled 'users' with an impage of a person at a computer.

However, if one component does not implement an accessibility feature, there is little motivation for the other components to implement it when it does not result in an accessible user experience.

Understanding ...

Related Pages

Introduction to Web Accessibility provides additional information about Web Accessibility.


Document Information

Editor: Shawn Lawton Henry. This Web page is is under development by the EOWG.

Last updated $Date: 2004/08/29 03:09:45 $ by $Author: shawn $

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