Another draft [was Re: [Accessibility] Statement of Intent]

Peter Korn Peter.Korn at Sun.COM
Fri Jul 29 12:33:38 PDT 2005

Hi Bill,

I think this is a great statement.  I think having as many folks as would like 
to sign the statement is good too - strength in numbers.  To that end, please 
add my name to the list.


Bill Haneman wrote:
> Hi everyone:
> Rather than just send this to Olaf I thought I'd post it here for 
> comments.  Olaf, I hope I didn't leave out any of your important 
> points.  Please revise and send the next iteration :-)
> regards
> Bill
> ===
> "We are members of the Gnome and KDE Accessibility Projects, and also 
> the Free Standards Group's Accessibility Workgroup.  We would like to 
> clarify the current plans and intent of our projects with respect to 
> interoperability and standardization where the KDE and Gnome toolkits 
> are concerned, and feel that the following statement represents a 
> consensus among the membership of these groups.
> While some of the accessibility interfaces being discussed as candidates 
> for standardization within the FSG Workgroup, primarily AT-SPI, 
> originated in Gnome, we as a group are committed to the 
> toolkit-neutrality of accessibility interfaces.  To do otherwise would 
> limit end-user choice and harm the cause of accessibility.    A key goal 
> of the ongoing standardization effort, which is inclusive rather than 
> exclusive, is long-term interoperability of accessibility solutions for 
> the free desktop.
> The current KDE4 roadmap calls for KDE interoperability with existing 
> Gnome assistive technologies via bridging to the AT-SPI.  The Gnome team 
> is excited about this committment and the willingness of the KDE 
> developers to integrate Gnome technologies in cases where they offer 
> immediate benefit to the user.  At the same time, we are actively 
> working together to develop a future strategy which minimizes or 
> eliminates dependencies of KDE accessibility on Gnome libraries, or vice 
> versa.  The current plan of action, which was agreed to at a 
> face-to-face meeting of the Free Standards Group Accessibility Workgroup 
> earlier this year, is to standardize on a set of interfaces (most likely 
> as IDL), and allow for the possibility of multiple conformant 
> implementations as long as basic interoperability requirements are met.  
> This will allow for increased technology sharing and help "future-proof" 
> our standardization efforts.
> best regards
> Bill Haneman
> Olaf Schmidt
> [others?]"
> ===============
> Olaf Schmidt wrote:
>> Hi!
>> Some parties have suggested to endorse a particular desktop or toolkit 
>> for accessibility, thereby focusing only on a selected number of 
>> applications and assistive technologies. This would be harmful for 
>> accessibility. It would force a rewrite of all assistive technologies 
>> available in other toolkits, and this time could be better spend on 
>> improving interoperability between the existing solutions. It would 
>> also reduce the number of applications available to the users of 
>> assistive technologies.
>> We will therefore standardize a number of toolkit-neutral interfaces. 
>> An example for this approach is AT-SPI, a service provider interface 
>> for assistive technologies supported by Gtk2, Qt4, GNOME, Java, 
>> OpenOffice and Mozilla, with support coming for KDE4. While the 
>> current implementation relies on a small number of libraries written 
>> by the GNOME project, we will allow for other implementation using 
>> other technologies, using the same IDL. The standardization process 
>> will also include bridges between the various implementations.
>> _______________________________________________
>> Accessibility mailing list
>> Accessibility at
> _______________________________________________
> Accessibility mailing list
> Accessibility at

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