The following is a copy of a letter we received recently...

I recently had the opportunity to study Internet access for the disabled and boy, did I get a surprise!

Obviously, those without sight will not benefit from graphic images but a text description of the images present is a nice "enhancement" - but it is almost NEVER done. To accommodate speech synths, many sightless surfers use - yes - Lynx. Imagine their complete frustration in discovering the joys of the "fully Netscape enhanced" - "everything is so very pretty", "completely clickable on a single ISMAP graphic" site. I have to get a synth just to appreciate how truly bad it can be.

But, the unsighted aren't the only ones suffering from the proliferation of "graphic Ga-ga." Imagine, if you can, the problems confronted by those who don't possess what we consider "full" motor skills. Try the following:

  1. Set your mouse to full acceleration and at it's fasted vertical and horizontal speeds;
  2. Consume enough alcohol to mildly crash your coordination (please - don't drive...);
  3. Try using Netscape on some of the members of the "hall of shame" and see if you can "hit the mark" with any consistency.

I personally advocate the COMPLETE ELIMINATION of _ALL_ clickable images. There is simply NO _GOOD_ reason to use them when borderless tables can be used to produce similar "sexy" clickable "maps" that CAN be equipped with ALT statements and contain URLs that are downloaded.

ONE alternate: (and then, only under protest) Spyglass's client-side mapping.

Keep give'n them hell,

-- Bill Powell

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