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Re: Metapackages for accessibility

On Thu, Jul 22, 2010 at 09:01:59AM +0200, Andreas Tille wrote:
[CC to debian-blends because of some general ideas]

On Wed, Jul 21, 2010 at 09:46:29PM +0200, Samuel Thibault wrote:
Mario Lang, le Tue 20 Jul 2010 21:29:34 +0200, a écrit :
>  * "console-screen-reader" has several solutions which
>    the user is not likely to use at once.  More likely is that
>    they pick one and use it.  But installing all of them might
>    lead to conflicts maybe?

We talked a bit more with Mario on IRC. In a lot of cases, it indeed doesn't make sense to run several screen readers at the same time. It would then make sense to not start them by default. But then it's a pain for people who'd just expect apt-get install brltty to be enough to get started.

That's perfectly true. BTW, I'm normally not on IRC but I would happily join an IRC meeting in evening hours.

Now, what such package would be useful for? Mario thinks that a pitfall would be to make people believe that merely installing those will be sufficient to be accessible, which is clearly not the case: making a workstation accessible means starting and configuring a precise set of tools that the user will be able to use and combine, as well as configuring some system parameters, etc. A mere meta-package doesn't help at all here, but might even hurt in that people would think it's sufficient.

I think I understand now a bit better what Mario tried to tell me last year. However, you perhaps might call me stubborn, but don't you see any chance to really make it sufficient? IMHO we have the tools which are needed in Debian to aproach this. If every screen reading package would provide a virtual package screenreader (and perhaps - I can not tell how much sense this makes conflicts to other screenreaders to make sure there will not be conflicting packages installed) and we design a metapackage which

 Recommends: screenreader | <the-most-favourite-screenreader>
 Suggests: other screenreaders

we just need to define what is our most favourite screenreader. You might see a conflict with the freedom of choice here, but IMHO expertise is also making a choice. A newbee will be happy about a reasonable choice somebody has done in advance. The freedom is guaranteed because nobody will prevent you from exchanging the screenreader by some other package which provides this functionality.

Above Samuel says that in a *lot* of cases multiple screen readers do not make sense. But does not go as far as claiming that in *all* cases is that true.

I therefore do not like conflicts here.

Perhaps a mechanism like the XDM/GDM/KDM/NODM one would make sense here?

That is, allow multiple packages to be installed concurrently, but have them coordinate to only by default enable one of them. That way in esoteric cases[1] where it might make sense to use multiple screen readers, it is possible to hack the startup script (and evolutionary convince package maintainers to instead improve that script) instead of being forced to hack the binary packages.

Kind regards,

 - Jonas

[1] One setup I can imagine is a server for diskless clients, where some clients want one screen reader and others want another.

 * Jonas Smedegaard - idealist & Internet-arkitekt
 * Tlf.: +45 40843136  Website: http://dr.jones.dk/

 [x] quote me freely  [ ] ask before reusing  [ ] keep private

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