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WAI Site Heuristic Evaluation

Version: 2004.02.26
Note: This Web page is a working draft and should not be referenced or quoted under any circumstances.

This document includes an evaluation of the current WAI Web site. Comments and additions can be submitted to wai-site-comments@w3.org (a public archive of comments is also available).

Feature Group Description Source Example (clip, URI) Notes
Design The visual design does not present the information on the site in a polished manner. Michael Lenz    
Design The visual design does little to help facilitate the users' interaction. Michael Lenz    
Design The site lacks visual appeal. It does however feel like one site based on its visual presentation. Michael Lenz    
Design In some cases subheads have more visual weight than their parents. Michael Lenz    
Design The visual design does present the information on the site in a trustworthy manner. Michael Lenz    
Design Credibility is not established through the visual design system of the site. Michael Lenz    
Functionality The site does not articulate it's purpose. The home page looks to be a collection of links. It assumes a base knowledge. The quote from Tim Berners-Lee does not tell the user anything about the Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI). Michael Lenz    
Functionality The site does not use natural human language. It is dependent on a user having a base knowledge that should not be assumed. Michael Lenz    
Functionality There are some indications of possible goals of the site. Unfortunately the user is not given context around the content to enable them to determine what the intended goal of the content is Michael Lenz    
Functionality The 404 page does not recognize a local directory parent. Michael Lenz    
Navigation The site is extremely dependent on the browser back button. Michael Lenz    
Navigation The site does a very good job of labeling and page headings. Unfortunately the user is very frequently linked into the body area of a page via anchor links, which provide no overall context to the user. Michael Lenz    
Navigation With so many in line links the pages can easily become overwhelming Michael Lenz    
Navigation It is quite easy when looking for new content to get in link loop. Michael Lenz    
Navigation It is very hard to tell if you have changed a content area or driven deeper into the content you are in. Michael Lenz    
Navigation The site does not label anchor links as such. Michael Lenz    
Navigation Without an explicit hierarchy this makes the site hard to use at times. Michael Lenz    
Navigation Links at times do not match the term used on the corresponding page. Michael Lenz    
Navigation The site does not follow best practices pertaining to GUI. Michael Lenz    
Navigation The site does not tell the user what content area they are in. It is very easy for a user to transverse sites areas without knowing it. Michael Lenz    
Navigation Generally the error prevention is out of date. Michael Lenz    
Content The site is narrowly focused on the expert user and their goals. It does little in the way of helping users that are looking for guidance. Michael Lenz    
Content Pages make use of very similar content and repeat similar concepts, confusing the user. Michael Lenz    
Content The pages do not group concepts into consumable chunks. They very frequently overload the user with information without giving context. Michael Lenz    
Content Flat content structure doesn't give relational context. Michael Lenz    
Content Content position appears to have no relation to its importance. Though with such a wide user base, it is hard to say if it is narrowly focused or unfocused. Michael Lenz    
Content The content does not allow the user to easily dill deeper. It is very easy for users to find links on a topic, but the site does not tell the user if they are driving deeper or shifting content areas. Michael Lenz    
Content On one end the pace is very fast and cryptic, on the other it is appropriate. The site needs to better modify its style based on its target audience. It appears to write the same (technical) no matter who the intended audience is. Michael Lenz    
Content After going through the site map, it appears to have plenty of information. Unfortunately the site does not facilitate the user who is new to the site. It also fails to accelerate the tasks of the expert users. Michael Lenz    
Content The site does not take into account the technical range of its audience. It relies heavily on a knowledge base that may not be present. Michael Lenz    
Content It speaks WAI language. It is very difficult to determine the differences in content and it does not use natural human language. This is magnified when a novice user visits the site. Michael Lenz    
Content This is one of the biggest failings of the site is that it does not explain unfamiliar concepts in way users will understand. Michael Lenz   For example if a user goes to the User Agent page, it does not tell the user what a User Agent is. Rather it dives into User Agents and again users terms foreign to the general populous.
Content The site does a good job at keeping the web site current. Though it would benefit the user to be able to see what areas of a site area have been updated recently. Michael Lenz    

Document Information

@@ to do: check acronym tags, HTML & access check & validation

Editor: Michael Lenz. This Web page is is under development by the WAI Site Task Force of EOWG. Last updated $Date: 2004/02/27 15:01:40 $ by $Author: shawn $

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