[oclug] GUI vs cmdline mail (was Top if my head sugestion for
enhancment to GUI mailclients.)
rod at giffinscientific.com
Sat Jun 28 15:16:22 EDT 2003
On Sat, 2003-06-28 at 13:04, Stephen Gregory wrote:
> On Saturday 28 June 2003 08:24, Rod Giffin wrote:
> > The difference between a sighted programmer and a blind
> > person is as cultural as it is anything else. To date, most of the
> > solutions has been screen magnification and voice interaction. I'm not
> > convinced at all this is the whole solution.
> I will spare you all my full rant, but I have much anger towards software
> developers who claim to be writing software for the visiually impaired. I
> have decent vision, but I have tried to setup a computer for someone who is
> visually impaired (but not completely blind).
At least they're trying to do something within the limitations of the
technology we have available. Surely you are not suggesting that they
> Software for the visually impaired has to be written for the visually impaired
> from the onset. It is a cultural difference.
That's what I said. People who can see well have very little reference
to understand the world of people who can't. If you like, blindfold
yourself, and see how uncomfortable the world suddenly becomes. Wrap
your hands so you can't use your fingers and thumbs and see how
difficult even mundane things like tying your shoes become.
These differences in the way people have to live are cultural, because
they define the way they "view" and interact with the world. What has
to happen is that computer systems need to be built that can accomodate
these cultural differnces.
> For what it is worth none of the
> big desktop suites are any better then the other. Mac, Windows, Gnome, and
> KDE all suck. Most of the software I demoed written specifically for the
> visually impaired sucked. As pointed out be M.Soulier the command line is
> used by some visually impaied people. It is a poor second choice but the
> command line is at least usable. Their first choise dosen't exist.
What then would you suggest? Would you suggest that blind people stop
using computers until someone figures out a better paradigm for them?
Would you suggest that everyone who's trying to help stop what they're
doing because everything "sucks"? They have got to start somewhere, and
as far as I'm concerned, now is as good a time as any.
For what it's worth, the "I'm sure [that's](sic) very comforting to the
blind" comment of Mike's was gratuitous. I could very well have said,
"I'm sure that's very comforting to people who don't have any hands."
And also for what it's worth, I did not say that there was anything
wrong with keyboard commands. I said that a GUI made it easier to
bridge the cultural differences between a programmer and his users.
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