WebAIM - Web Accessibility In Mind

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RE: WebAIM course


From: Paul Bohman
Date: Aug 21, 2000 5:07PM

quote from previous message:
> As for frames... as you know, w3c/wai doesn't consider that an
> accessibilty problem if the frames have good names and preferably
> I take it you're more conservative on that one?
My response:
Actually, I have generally been able to access sites with frames with
adaptive software without too much trouble. I have used the latest versions
of JAWS and IBM Home Page Reader, and both seem to be able to handle frames,
although they handle them quite differently.
I consider frames to be mostly accessible by the standard of the current
adaptive technologies. However, I am aware that older adaptive software
doesn't always handle frames well. Not everyone with a disability has access
the the latest and greatest software. Even those who have the latest version
may not be "power users" who know how to use the software well. I think that
I fit that category. I do not have a disability which requires me to use
adaptive software, so I have not spent a great deal of time getting to know
the ins and outs of the programs--just enough to get me by. Even many users
with disabilities learn only the basics, and don't realize what they are
missing out on.
Web designers can't control the users. We probably shouldn't be designing
sites for the lowest common denominator, but we shouldn't purposely shut
them out either.
There are other issues with frames besides disability access. When frames
are used poorly--for example, when the frames layout and navigation is
inconsistent or confusing--then they become less accessible to everyone.
They cause other inconveniences that I'm not going to get into here, but I
try to avoid them when possible. By the way, this is an opinion that has
grown on me over time. I used to use them quite a bit, but experience has
persuaded me otherwise.