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Re: clarification please -> PDF/UA

for

From: Jon Metz
Date: Feb 26, 2015 2:32PM


Andrew,

I apologize if I'm not making sense, because you seem really caught up on
the the "easiest method" to achieve something. I don't have a problem with
suggesting that the way to do something correctly is to use the original
authoring tool according to manufacture's directions. I also don't have any
concern for recommending methods for the only tool currently available to
remediate a document.

My issue stems from how a standards organization makes a statement that the
only thing a user needs to do is rely on the authoring document according
to the manual. If this were the way to do things, other techniques would
include similar examples as well. Instead they rely on the specifications
developed by the W3C for HTML, CSS, etc.

PDF accessibility as explained by WCAG relies too much on the authoring
software's judgement when it comes to generating an accessible PDF. As I
mentioned in my original email, the problem with relying on authoring
software to do this for you is that relies too heavily on how it's
interpretation of which rules ultimately affect their bottom line.

In late 2011 when the PDF techniques were being reviewed PDF/UA wasn't
> published, so while you can ask why wasn't this guidance updated it is
> pretty clear why PDF/UA wasn't referenced in the technique to begin with.


For what it's worth, in my original bug request in 2013, I never mentioned
PDF/UA. The Working Group did. Since you brought this up, if the techniques
were used in 2011, the published specification ISO 32000 was published 3
years earlier in 2008. PDF 1.7 specification clearly states:

"If present, the ListNumbering attribute, described in Table 347, shall
> appear in an L (List) element. It controls the interpretation of the Lbl
> (Label) elements within the list’s LI (List item) elements (see “List
> Elements” in 14.8.4.3, “Block-Level Structure Elements”)."


(Source: ISO 32000:2008 14.8.5.5, List Attribute)

The usage of "Shall" implies a requirement which isn't mentioned from the
WCAG technique page. After suggesting an example along with the correction,
they responded that it isn't up to them to make those changes, so there
isn't a need to address it. The only reason it's important for WCAG to
change it is because of how people view them as the defacto standard to use.

WCAG 2.0 wants structures contained within documents to be utilized by
> assistive technology correctly...


Assistive Technology does a lot of things to fix bad programming. In fact,
a lot of organizations tend to avoid designing solely for AT, since how it
cheats doesn't really address the needs of people using a different kind of
AT. I would argue that designing for AT doesn't do much more than up
promote bad software development practices.

... Since the assistive technologies do support the structure both ways an
> author can make a reasonable claim that they meet WCAG with their lists
> either way.


This sounds a lot like you are saying that the primary accessibility
objective everyone should strive for should be basically be compliance
(Interestingly, this kinda explains the rationale behind AAA
specifications), since technically passing the bare minimum requirements
would justify allowing AT to figure out the rest.

if you would like to offer language that provides a preferential direction
> for authors to follow, we'd be happy to review that.


I thought I did, but it looks like I keep getting shot down. So I'll do one
better. If someone wants a demonstration using Acrobat Pro on how to
implement PDF/UA, shoot me an email offline and I'll walk you through it.
Since people hate various screen sharing software, I'll use whichever free
one you prefer in order to demonstrate how it's done.

Eventually advances in technology will most likely address how to make
PDF/UA documents, but until then, we can help each other out.

— Jon

On Thu, Feb 26, 2015 at 12:36 PM, Andrew Kirkpatrick < <EMAIL REMOVED> >
wrote:

> Hmm. Suppose you were trying to understand what components are needed to
> build a car radio, and the FCC explained that the "easiest way to use the
> radio would be follow along with photos of the Ford F-150, making special
> note of the controls on the Steering wheel as well as the proximity of the
> radio to the right."
>
> The problem with this approach is that, while the Ford F-Series is the
> most popular car sold in America (
> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_automobiles#National_bestsellers
> ),
> it doesn't provide an overview of the requirements that every radio has to
> include, but it sure looks like the FCC is making the statement that the
> standard is based on this model car, not a specification defined from an
> International Standard.
>
> Jon, I think that your analogy is a bit off. The technique (
> http://www.w3.org/TR/WCAG20-TECHS/PDF21.html ) says the following:
>
> In the Description:
> "The easiest way to create lists in PDF content is to format them properly
> using list markup in the authoring tool, for example, Microsoft Word or
> OpenOffice.org Writer. However, if you do not have access to the source
> file and authoring tool, you can use Acrobat Pro's TouchUp Reading Order
> tool and the Tags panel. "
>
> In the Word example:
> On the Home ribbon, use the lists tools to create or repair lists in Word
> documents. This is the easiest way to ensure that lists are formatted
> correctly when they are converted to PDF.
>
> In the Open Office example:
> Use the Bullets and Numbering tool to create or repair lists in
> OpenOffice.org Writer documents. This is the easiest way to ensure that
> lists are formatted correctly when they are converted to PDF.
>
> I think that if you are explaining how to use a car radio, then saying
> "the easiest way to turn the radio on is to follow the manufacturer's
> instructions" and for example, "if you are using a Honda accord do this..."
> and "if you are using a F-150 do this..." is closer to what is being
> written in the technique. The technique provides the "easiest" guidance in
> three different locations, so the intent was to scope the term "easiest" to
> the applicable section. Perhaps we can make that more clear by saying " On
> the Home ribbon, use the lists tools to create or repair lists in Word
> documents. This is the easiest way to ensure that lists are formatted
> correctly in Word documents before they are converted to PDF." (and do the
> same for the OO example). Would that help? Do you agree with the
> statement as is in the description section?
>
> ISO 14289 requires that if you have a numbered list, you MUST use a label
> tag and identify the numbering attribute. The Working Group basically said
> that since current authoring software don't do that, they weren't going to
> require it, even though there was a specification for it. That sure seemed
> like an endorsement to me.
>
> In late 2011 when the PDF techniques were being reviewed PDF/UA wasn't
> published, so while you can ask why wasn't this guidance updated it is
> pretty clear why PDF/UA wasn't referenced in the technique to begin with.
> WCAG 2.0 wants structures contained within documents to be utilized by
> assistive technology correctly, and since the assistive technologies do
> support the structure both ways an author can make a reasonable claim that
> they meet WCAG with their lists either way. That may change at some point,
> and we will certainly update the advice if that happens. In the meantime,
> if you would like to offer language that provides a preferential direction
> for authors to follow, we'd be happy to review that.
>
> Thanks,
> AWK
> > > >