[Accessibility] minutes: Open A11y Workgroup Call (2010-02-02)

Gregory J. Rosmaita oedipus at hicom.net
Tue Feb 2 09:25:45 PST 2010

aloha, all!

minutes from the 2 February 2010 Open Accessibility Workgroup telecon
can be accessed as hypertext at:


and as plain text following my signature...  as usual, please log any 
corrections, clarifications, mis=attributions, omissions, and the like
by replying-to this announcement on list...

the next Open A11y Workgroup Conference Call will be held on 9 February 
2009 -- a preliminary agenda for the 9 February 2010 call can be located


thanks to all participants and to those who conscientiously review 
minutes, gregory.


Open A11y Workgroup Conference Call (2 February 2010)

   NOTE: These minutes have not yet been finalized.


        * 1 Open A11y Workgroup Conference Call (2 February 2010)
             + 1.1 Preliminary Items
                  o 1.1.1 Participants
                  o 1.1.2 For Reference
                  o 1.1.3 Open Action Items
                  o 1.1.4 Announcements & News
                       # Oracle's Acquisition of Sun
             + 1.2 Meeting Minutes
                  o 1.2.1 Topic 1: AT-SPI on D-Bus Port: Progress and Issues
                       # Discussion of Topic 1: D-Bus Port Update
                            @ Open A11y Deliverables - A
                            @ Mid-Term Work: March to September
                            @ Long Term Work: post September 2010
             + 1.3 New Business
                  o 1.3.1 Identify Topics for 9 February 2010 Teleconference
             + 1.4 Wrap Up
                  o 1.4.1 Summary of New Action Items

Preliminary Items


     * Janina Sajka (JS/chair)
          + Pete Brunet (PB)
          + Mark Doffman (MD)
          + Mike Gorse (MG)
          + Gregory J. Rosmaita (GJR/scribe)
          + Brad Taylor (BT)
          + Willie Walker (WW)
          + Jeremy Whiting (JW)
               o regrets: none yet logged

For Reference

     * Agenda for the 2 February 2010 Open A11y Call

Open Action Items

     * ACTION - GJR: work with Linux Foundation IT team to fix problems
       with new content management system
          + status: in progress; all links off of http://a11y.org/ should
            now lead to the correct destination, and the information
            should be current; systemic problems still being addressed
            with Linux Foundation staff


Announcements & News

Oracle's Acquisition of Sun

   JS: since Oracle bought Sun there have been cutbacks on Sun employees
   working on accessibility;

   WW: can't speak for Oracle as to what their plans are, as i don't know

Meeting Minutes

   NOTE: These minutes have not yet been finalized.

Topic 1: AT-SPI on D-Bus Port: Progress and Issues

     * AT-SPI on D-Bus Port wiki page last updated 30 October 2009 by
       Mike Gorse
          + MikeG is maintaining the AT-SPI on D-Bus Port wiki page, and
            will add info about AT-SPI2 development releases to the D-Bus
            wiki page

Discussion of Topic 1: D-Bus Port Update

Open A11y Deliverables - A Re-Examination

   JS: 1 intrinsic difference between open source and other licensing;
   linux an open kernal, unlike MS, Mac, Solaris; right mode for
   stragetically valuable deliverables -- LF taken on the Linux kernal;
   LinusT is member of LF preceisely for this reason

   JS: what else should be under LF umbrella; what is reasonable? plow
   full-steam ahead on D-Bus? should we be slowing down?

   WW: deadline to worry about is GNOME release; need to solicit from
   community what 2.30 will look like -- posted to GNOME A11y list
   yesterday (GNOME 2.30: go stable or go cutting edge? (2010-02-01) -

   WW: if can focus on GNOME 2.30 release (15 March 2010) can make
   decisions there and then recommend future work; sustaining
   accessibility in GNOME architecture

   MD: how is work on 2.30?

   WW: leave funding alone for now; pragmatic thing is 2.30

   JS: short-term (15 march 2010) versus long term

   JS: start with short term

   MD: replied to email on GNOME a11y list; pretty happy with this week's
   progress; when i check in what i have fixed, performance will be
   better, especially re-entry performance; if need to go to D-Bus for
   2.30 have a chance to make usable in that timeframe;

   MD: not adding functionality; replacing existing working system with
   another working system; serious structures need to be introduced now;
   makes sense for users to give more time for testing over the next 6
   months so as to improve user experience;

   WW: biggest pressure in D-Bus port is deprecation of CORBA; had chat
   with Andre last friday - CORBA will be in 2.30, so pressure to go to
   D-Bus immediately is alleviated

   BT: user perspective: want users to be happy - don't want to crash
   2.30; delivering at end of February; if AT-SPI2 still unstable, need
   to put more resources into it; noticed instability lately

   MD: AT-SPI2 0.1.5 very unstable; introduced 2 regressions last week; a
   lot of changes which is why is such a risk to go into GNOME 2.30

   MD: 2010-02-09 release will be infinitely better than last release

   WW: milestone - Orca regression tests run successfully; FF and OOo

   MD: got 3 weeks to run regression tests and bug-fix; performance in
   Orca could be better, although better overall; could rush for GNOME
   2.3, but wouldn't be perfect

   WW: 2.30 is end of GNOME2 work -- all CORBA based; make 2.30 last
   batch with CORBA; introduce D-Bus in GNOME 3.0

   MD: resourced to end of February to make D-Bus as good as possible;
   less resources after February; need to ensure still improving over 6

   WW: if do now, would have to hammer away heavily; risks outweigh

   MD: agree; six months more of work and testing would be best

   WW: if corporations are funding this work, ok

   WW: 1 concern is user experience, the other concern is advancing
   accessibility in GNOME and beyond

   WW: BT and MD going out before 2.30?

   BT: yes

   BT: just releasing packages and calling feature complete by end of
   february 2010

   WW: shift back to CORBA for default; still want release where CORBA
   turned on by default - 2.91 or 2.92

   MD: what for 2.29?

   WW: sounds as if you've made significant progress; have to test what
   you have with Orca regression tests and evaluation for next week

   WW: MD work on performance issues, so i will test with Orca FF, and
   Open Office; stability of performance concern

   MD: ok by me

   BT: ok by me

   MG: ok

   JS: test are explicit and specific to applications that are most
   important to users

   MD: don't want to stop this work now and leave incomplete at end of
   February; try to get as much done as can before end of February 2010

   WW: we want this work to continue; do we target 2.34 as goalpost?
   don't think have enough info now

   WW: need to pass Orca regression tests with FF and OOo first

   WW: MD, how to proceede this week? had to return all my powerful
   hardware to Sun; only have netbook for testing right now

   MD: will spend all week and some of weekend on this

   WW: great

   MD: can run regression tests - maybe can hook up and run regression
   tests together

   WW: let's definitely do that; will be available in GNOME a11y chat
   room or on skype

   MD: accessibility bus issues leave to side for moment; address after
   this week

   WW: we're hearing what the GNOME Accessibility community has to say;
   want to give them a listen; interested in current packages

   WW: LukeY says using CORBUS

   WW: some distributions being more conservative; let discussion play
   out while working on deliverables

   WW: have a path to reach an answer

   WW: i will make myself available to MD when he needs me this week

   MD: apart from D-Bus, what else will change in 2.30?

   WW: GNOMESpeak still there; SpeechDispatcher still in latent mode;
   very late in cycle for new additions

   WW: caribou still on target; if stay with CORBA, simply delays release
   of D-Bus

   JS: what about GBM?

   WW: new GBM introduced a while ago, so no change slated for 2.30

   WW: worked with Mike Cameron on caribou a11y -- think fixed problems

   JS: Ubuntu going to support SpeechDispatcher?

   WW: works fine with GNOMESpeech; SpeechDispatcher needs work on
   integrating with everything (terminals, hand-offs, etc.)

   MG: SpeechDispatcher should work fine; if run as service any app can
   connect to it;

   WW: may need to run SpeechDispatcher as a daemon

   JS: may be an authentification issue

   WW: yes, and managing server more appropriately

   JS: tighter management of audio devices


Mid-Term Work: March to September 2010

   JS: midterm? fluid environment; assuming get everything planned into
   2.30; what happens in next 5 to 6 months

   JS: do we need to get interim funding to keep development active?

   WW: sure

   WW: can't comment one way or the other on Oracle's commitments to
   a11y; will have to contact oracle directly to ascertain attitude and
   willingness to work in Open A11y

   WW: personally, not going to be funded by Oracle to work in Open A11y;
   want to see GNOME 2.30 go out the door as accessible as possible;
   success: stable, accessible release, help set GNOME up for future a11y

   WW: post 2.30, i'm not sure; would like to continue in this area


Long Term Work: post September 2010

   WW: long term stuff

   MG: my team has funding for next 2 years; majority of team will be
   moving off; still retain some people to maintain and keep updated with
   latest changes from MS; hope to contribute to GNOME, but that remains
   to be seen

   MD: we have tried to get funding from those who funded us before, but
   that is unlikely; will contribute what i can of sparce time after
   February 2010

   JS: situation: Open Source Accessibility in this environment is now
   going to be based almost exclusively on volunteerism?

   WW: need to hear from desktop team at Oracle; decisions being made at
   very high levels;

   JS: 1 thing we can do in short-term since oracle on LF board, perhaps
   can get more official announcement regarding Oracle's participation in
   Open A11y

   WW: funding will end for current GNOME team; don't know Oracle's plans

   JS: know that Oracle has people working in a11y for some time; haven't
   been at this layer, but active in W3C's PF

   ACTION: JS - contact Oracle's LF Board Member to ask for statement on
   contributing work to Open Accessibility Workgroup

   WW: hardest part will be funding, not ownership of deliverables

   WW: GreggV looking for more public funding from federal government and
   individual states

   JW: makes sense because all government agencies requiring
   accessibility for desktop, so makes sense for them to fund it

   WW: argument: if want to sell, make sure successful; burden back on
   people developing apps;

   JS: enforcement model weak -- after deployment, if complaint, then

   WW: shell accessibility and cost of access will always be issues

   WW: will talk to GreggV to get his pulse on funding sources

   JS: massive thanks to Willie for making Orca viable and leading the
   way and spreading light instead of heat; wasn't all Willie, but it
   wouldn't have happened without him

   [general applause for WW]

New Business

Identify Topics for 9 February 2010 Teleconference

   WW: proposed topic: "Status Report/Comfort Check with D-Bus Port"


Wrap Up

Summary of New Action Items

     * ACTION: JS - contact Oracle's LF Board Member to ask for statement
       on contributing work to Open Accessibility Workgroup

     * meeting adjourned 1647h UTC
     * next Open A11y conference call: 2010-02-09

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