GNOME 2 Accessibility Guide

To all,

I have no problem with removing my version from the Web site because my
goal of having a generic version of the GNOME2 Accessibility Guide has been
accomplished. Originally I was advised by Pat on 9/3/2003 that Sun did not
plan on creating a generic guide and that their version would be  Sun
specific (see email #1). However, I would like to contextualize a couple of
comments in Pat's note to provide a clearer picture of how my GNOME2
Accessibility Guide was developed.

   The GNOME 1.4 Accessibility, completed on 2/18/2002,  was my original
   work and the majority of the GNOME2 Accessibility Guide content and
   format was taken from the original guide.
   The GNOME2 Accessibility Guide was written before any other Sun drafts
   were published to CVS or the community.
   The keyboard accessibility features taken from the engineering documents
   available in GNOME CVS had no name or copyright. I discussed attributing
   credit  for the information on the list and with Irene. On 11/26/2003
   Irene and I agreed on the acknowledgement to Sun  for the input on
   keyboard navigation and AccessX. (See acknowledge provided by Irene from
   the original email#2 below).
   It has always been my intention to collaborate on the GNOME
   Accessibility Guide with the GNOME Documentation Project and the Sun
   team. I have been working with the Sun team since 9/10/2001 on this
   guide. After 5 months of work  (and being advisedby Pat that our chapter
   would be included as part of the GNOME Users Guide), they decided not to
   include our GNOME Accessibility content. In addition, they released the
   right to the copyright for their assistance with the GDSG. (See email

Sharon Snider
Linux Accessibility, and Information Development
IBM Linux Technology Services
(512) 838-4127, T/L 678-4127


Original message:
Date: Mon, 17 Feb 2003 18:30:10 +0000 (GMT)
From: Pat Costello <Patrick Costello Sun COM>
Reply-To: Pat Costello <Patrick Costello Sun COM>
Subject: Re: GNOME 2.2 Desktop Accessibility Guide
To: kirillov math sunysb edu
Cc: gnome-doc-list gnome org

On Feb 17 2003, Sasha said:

> Great!
> But now we have tow accessibility guides: one by Sharon Snider of IBM
> (this is the one posted on
>  and another one by Irene Ryan of SUN. The best solution would be if
> these could be merged, or if the authors agreed on joining their
> efforts. Otherwise, we will have to choose which of them to include on
> the web page and gnome-user-docs package, which almost inevitably leads
> to hurt feelings...

Frankly, Sasha, I do not see any reason why the accessibility guide that
has produced should be merged with the document that Sharon produced for

- Irene's document relates to the GNOME 2.2 desktop, not the 2.0 desktop.
- Irene's document covers both Linux and Solaris.
- Irene's document is original work, produced by original research by Irene
engineers in Sun.
- Irene's document is technically up-to-date.
- Irene is working on her document to include new accessibility
and tools. She will issue regular updates.
- Irene's work complies fully to the GDSG.
- The only material in Sharon's document that we would see as being
suitable for
merging into Irene's document is material that was largely taken from
original work in the first place. There was a string about this topic last
November, see the following:

- That material is in any case now out-of-date in Sharon's manual.

Now, I'm not saying that no-one else cannot submit another book covering
same ground, but with a different slant. For example, there is already the
Introduction to GNOME covering the same ground as the Overview chapter in
user guide. Sun is submitting the accessibility guide under the GFDL and
are  welcome to use the material, with due attribution of source, of

Email #1:

> ----- Forwarded by Sharon D Snider/Austin/IBM on 09/03/2002 01:57 PM
>                       Pat Costello
>                       <Patrick.Costello        To:       Sharon D
Snider/Austin/IBM IBMUS
>                       @Sun.COM>                cc:
john sheehan dub-mail1 Ireland Sun COM
>                                                Subject:  Re: New GNOME
Desktop Accessibility Guide
>                       08/14/2002 11:46
>                       AM
>                       Please respond to
>                       Pat Costello
> Hi Sharon,
> Sorry I didn't get back to you earlier about your attached mail, we are
> just
> emerging from the holiday season. The documentation team at Sun has
> considered
> your mail, and we thought it only fair to let you know what we are doing
> regards an Accessibility Guide.
> We will produce an Accessibility Guide for the GNOME on Solaris desktop,
> but the
> way things look at the moment, the guide will be very Sun-specific. The
> guide
> will talk about Sun-only accessibility applications, Sun hardware, and
> Solaris-specific considerations. Beyond those few topics, we are still
> forming
> our ideas about what we want to put into the manual.
> Therefore, we are not really in a position to collaborate on a generic
> accessibility guide, as such a document would not meet our needs.
> Having said that, when we have our document in a reasonably advanced
> we
> will issue drafts to anyone who is interested in the subject. We would
> appreciate your comments, if you are willing to be a reviewer. Even
> our
> document will have a strong Sun flavor, we aim to publish our
> Guide
> as an open-source manual when the document is completed.
> Regards,
> Pat
Email #2:

As regards copyright and acknowledgement, Sun is satisfied if you put an
acknowledgements section into your manual, that says the following:

Material for the key navigation and AccessX chapters of this manual was
derived in part from documentation by Sun Microsystems Inc.

Email #3:
----- Message from Pat Costello <GolithoLtd netscape net> on Mon, 18 Feb
2002 18:20:03 +0000 -----
      To: sniders us ibm com, "Kristin E Thomas"            
          <kristint us ibm com>                             
 Subject: GNOME Desktop Accessibility Guide - xml files.    

Hi Sharon and Kristin,

As per our discussions last week, I have created xml files that can form
the basis of a  GNOME Desktop Accessibility Guide. Note the following:

- There is only one chapter at the moment which is the accessibility
features chapter that you provided.
- Although the Sun team have done some work in terms of reviewing and
structuring the file for xml, I don't think that we've done enough to
warrant a copyright claim, so at the moment the copyright claim is
attributed to you two.
- I've prepared a starter preface, which you can alter to your own
- You can edit or change the features chapter, you now effectively have
the source files. As we are not including this book in the submission of
the user guide to the community, you will need to contact John Fleck and
Dan Mueth about finding a place for the accessibility in the community
cvs tree. You will probably need to request a community cvs account.
- You will notice that I have inserted ids for every section in the
document. The files won't work in the GNOME viewing tools unless you
have meaningful, unique ids for every section. I've put them in for you
this time around, you will need to remember to do them yourselves if you
add any new material.
- The main file is the gag-book.xml file, which contains entities to the
other files, plus a standard title page layout.
- Note that I've given the book a V2.0 revision number. This is in line
with the revision numbering that we have decided on for other GNOME
manuals. The unit part of the part number indicates the GNOME desktop
revision level, and the decimal part indicates the specific release
version of the manual. I know it looks odd that this book is called V2.0
when there was no V1.0, but at least we will always be able to tell at a
glance which desktop revision is associated with a manual.
- You need to keep the legal.xml as it is. This is the latest file, so
you shouldn't need to update it for a while anyway.

That's it for now. We will most likely be coming back to you some time
later in the year with our own  contributions to the accessibility guide.

Good luck with the book,


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