[Date Prev][Date Next] [Thread Prev][Thread Next] [Date Index] [Thread Index]

Re: Debian Wheezy and accessability


Thanks very much for this email. I was very happy to meet you. To
complete the information of Stefano, I would say we talked about gess
also at FOSDEM, but I think today the context has changed and implies a
new thought, in Debian itself, beyond upstream.

Indeed, now it's sure, Debian next stable will be released with
gnome3.4. Gnome3.4 is less accessible than gnome2: not customisable
enough, no shortcuts, a lot of bugs (for example, shift-F10 makes the
desktop crash, etc.). So, I consider today that any people who will want
to use Debian, if he's blind, will not be able to use a GUI. Moreover,
beginners will have more problems I think and will consider Linux as too
complicated for a non-geek. It's a pitty, while I'm saying Debian is a
solution to use Linux easily, as some proprietary OS, with advantages of
the freedem.

Hence 2 issues Debian should discuss I think: shouldn't be choosed
another desktop, by default, such as XFCE? Is Gnome always good as
default in Debian, knowing it's also buggy for a lot of people, but
especially for accessibility-needed people? Alternatively, maybe we
could document to explain that, for people who need accessibility in
GUI, GNOME isn't perfect but they can try XFCE.
Second issue: could we patch XFCE so that it becomes accessible? I do
such proposal because I think the remaining work to make XFCE accessible
is less important than work to make GNOME as accessible as before. And
maybe we could think of this, even if I know it's hard for a distro to
study such development. I can try finding human resources, but Debian
should accept patches, even if they change deeply XFCE to get more a11y.

Finally, but here it's for more long-time thought, I wonder is it'd be a
good idea to package MATE, GNOME fork. It probably would fix the
problem. I'll do more tests with it when I can build it (I will try on
LFS to see the performance). But it's more some idea than a real
proposal, as I know it implies a lot of human resource and maybe GNOME3
will be in progress (even if I'm not sure of that as their current
philosophy isn't oriented-accessibility).

If my 2 1st issues are considered as useless, I've a last proposal:
writing some doc, on the wiki maybe, to explain how to run orca with
metacity and gnome-terminal, then creating some aliases to run
applications and a minimal working GUI. It would imply a
specific .xsession, but at least we could try designing some utilities
to maintain GUI and accessibility for beginners blind people.

I precise that I say all that now things are frozen because I see the
problem is more than real, whereas all my work since January. The
Mario's message announcing he didn't want anymore to work for Orca, GUI,
etc. was, for me, a strong warning which made me worry. Of course,
you'll find that few people speak like me on Debian-a11y list, but it's
because few people use really a GUI as some lambda users. Myself I use a
lot of console. But to promote Debian for public and beginners, to say
it's an accessibility solution for some official structures, a GUI
solution is mandatory.

Now you're informed, I let you decide. Tell me if I'm worry for nothing.
Maybe other users have a better experience with wheezy, but I've not
such feedbacks. Without any solution, I'll try find some ideas with LFS,
to improve future Debian stable releases and to find some alternative
waiting for them if wheezy stays in this state.

Best regards,

Jean-Philippe MENGUAL

accelibreinfo, votre partenaire en informatique adaptée aux déficients visuels


Mail: mengualjeanphi@free.fr

Site Web: http://www.accelibreinfo.eu

Le vendredi 13 juillet 2012 à 10:45 +0200, Gerold Rupprecht a écrit :
> Hello Stefano,
> It has been a while since we met at FOSDEM...
> I was at the Rencontres Mondials des Logiciels Libres (RMLL) here in
> Geneva where I met Jean-Philippe Mengual, who is an avid Debian user. He
> is blind and uses a braille input device. He stated to me that Debian is
> the most accessible distribution of any operating system he has used.
> Jean-Philippe was an exhibitor for traduc.org where he promotes the
> translation of various free software documentation into French, his
> native language.
> The biggest concern he has is the upcoming 'Wheezy' release with Gnome 3
> is seriously lagging in accessibility support. Certain keystroke
> sequences that were supported in Gnome2 are not in Gnome3. If these
> missing short-cuts are typed they actually crash the session.
> I have copied Jean-Philippe on this email so you can contact him for
> more ample details.
> People like Jean-Philippe are a minority in the total population, and an
> even smaller minority in our community. However, we almost all get older
> and eventually need accessibility to access information. It is in
> everyone's interest to promote accessability.
> I would very much appreciate your raising the issue and encouraging all
> Debian developers to work on this goal. It would be really great to see
> 'Wheezy' with the same or better accessability for this release as in
> 'Squeeze'.
> Thanks,
> Gerold

Reply to: