[Accessibility] Linux Accessibility workgroup November 12, 2003 Draft Minutes

John Goldthwaite john.goldthwaite at catea.org
Wed Nov 12 12:31:20 PST 2003

November 12, 2003 Draft Minutes Linux Accessibility workgroup

Doug Beattie
Jonathan Blanford
Sandy Gabrielli
John Goldthwaite
Bill Haneman
Randy Horwitz
Earl Johnson
Peter Korn
Scott McNeil
Janina Sajka
Gunnar Schmidt
Sharon Snider
Matthew Wilcox

Action item:
Janina- ping Gregg Vanderheiden on the legal agreement and to see if he has
someone who could participate in the Keyboard workgroup

Bill- Proposal for set of tasks for the AT-SPI group

Earl will identify to access and UI features in AccessX.

Minutes from the Nov.5 meeting were accepted without further changes.

Earl Johnson from SUN Microsystems Accessibility Program was introduced to
the group.  Earl will be working on the keyboard workgroup.

How much can we do with keyboard?
Earl- Should the keyboard group look at Show sounds, serial keys,
What are the things that might be part of an accessibility dialog box?  Lets
see which of those are within our perview.  Catalog the things that are not
planned on for a while.  Identify all the features that might be looked at;
discuss which should be hand

Peter- decide which features are part of AccessX and which are optional for
the platform developer.
Janina- We need to look at testing for each item since that is a required
part of certification.   The development of the testing systems are probably
beyond the resources of the group unless we find external funding.
Doug- LSB is being certified by the Open Group for the FSG as a third party.
The FSG wanted to get it done quickly so Open group does the certification
with payment from the Linux binary company.  We could provide do something

Earl- look at AccessX, look at it from a keyboard aspect; identify what
features are there and what needs to be done and what settings offered to
the user.  He would like to do this.

Sandy- how has the Open Group testing procedure worked out?
Doug- Has worked well.  FSG set up the criteria but Open Group set the

Randy- General keyboard functionality we would like be present.
Janina- alternative to using the mouse, mostly for mobility impairment.
Earl- some on who is blind also can=92t use a mouse so there may be some
things to think about.
Janina- need to look at =91focus=92 and other things required by W3C and 50=

Doug- how close are the current distributions to supporting xkb?
Earl- Windows and Mac don=92t use xkb.  Solaris supports xkb.  In the keybo=
accessibility the features, all of them support a similar set of features
(Sticky keys, slowkeys, mousekeys, etc.)

Doug- if xdb is already present in all the systems we would just need to
document what has to be in the standard.  If the distributions have to
implement it, then it=92s not a year one item.
Jonathan- it is low lying fruit, most distributions have the features.  Some
need to add a user dialog.
Doug- we need to specify the test components
Earl- what is the scope of FSG?  Is it influence Mac, Microsoft, or is it
just Open systems?
Doug- it can extend to any vendor so long as it=92s offered with the open
source license.  Janina- i.e., open source, binary compatible, unrestricted

Earl will identify to access and UI features in AccessX.
(Bill joins)
Earl- in looking over the xkb spec, to tease out what is offered to the
user, looking at what would be in a access dialog.  What would be in the
system for users with mobility impairments.  Identify what UI feature
offered, including at a high level.  Look at other OS to see what they
Bill- Identify end user features that need to be exposed.  Also identify a
range of values that need to be verified for test purposes. =85 xkb API we
need to test.

Earl- needs to be for technology that need to be used across platform.  You
Bill- this is Linux and linux like platforms, not Windows.
Janina- Microsoft can use it if they want if ..
Bill- LSB spec has ABI verification tests.  These ABI is not platform
specific.  What ever we need that ,
We=92re developing a spec.  It doesn=92t have to be on all systems.  We just
have to demonstrate that multiple implementations are possible.
There are xkb components that are necessary for good keyboard access
function that are not required for AccessX.  For example, the xkb geometry
information or feature that allow the application to determine how the
keyboard function will be interpreted by the X server.

Doug- we=92re looking for best and common practices.  Things that are in at
least 2 implementations.
Bill- the various xkb implementations have some bugs that will have to be
fixed for these features to work.
Scott- how this is handled varies with group.

After last week=92s call Janina contacted Scott McNeil.  He did want to sha=
the press release but contact the companies directly.  He was going to do
that but he hasn=92t put the release out yet.  He though we should do
something short for the community.
Janina will be out of the country for the next three weeks.  Scott will also
be in Singapore for ITC meetings.
Peter- there is no reason SUN needs to get it first.  We just need to get it
early since it will take time to circulate it to executives.  Don=92t
understand why its being delayed.  We just don=92t want to see it delayed. =
need proceed if we=92re going to make the Linux World meeting in January.
Janina- concern about the time to get things through PR groups and get
executive comment

Scott- would have preferred it went out in October.  Could do it at Comdex
but it=92s a dying show.  Would like to release it at Linux world but there=
a lot of noise.  Would like to release it the week before Linux World.  The
text is clean and ready to go to SUN for review and a quote.  Janina has
approval on it from AFB.
Janina- have good quotes from KDE, Gnome, from a couple of IBM people.
Scott =96 will do a short release for community.

Bill- this is Linux World in New York.  We need to see which of the group
will be in New York and available.
Scott- have a PR company to organize the meetings at the conference and make
sure people show up.
Janina- we should have one or people that we can point the press to for a
good story
Scott- the Press want and people win or human interest story.
>Earl volunteered by Janina

Looking toward end of year =96 we have a lot of holidays- should we skip th=
Bill =96 if we have burning issues those weeks, have the meeting at another

Janina- have talked to NSF about a face to face meeting.  We should be able
to get the funding if we can get a compelling reason to get people together.
Should get travel money and hotel for those that need it.  Need to determine
what we want to do and create a two page document for NSF.  If we can all
the projects scoped, that should be a good result from the meeting.  Would
like to do this next week and get it to NSF while it=92s still fresh on the
program manager=92s mind.

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