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trip report from the eighth World Wide Web conference in toronto, canada

first day (wed 12-may-1999)

opening ceremony:

according to the list of attendees, there are about 700 pre-registered people present at this conference.

welcome note:

robert cailliau said: 10 years ago, when tim berners lee proposed the World Wide Web for the first time to his boss at CERN in geneva, the closing comment was "vague but exciting".

key note speech by tim berners lee:

tim gave one of his very typical, enthusiastic but yet exciting talks. here are some quotes that i picked up and that i found especially remarkable:

W3C track introduction:

jean-françois abramatic introduced the five sessions of the W3C that we will see during this conference:

  1. World Wide Web access
  2. XML: from markup to meaning
  3. web technologies serving society
  4. multimedia models and management
  5. community contributions and participation

W3C web accessibility initiative & web content accessibility guidelines:

WAI: accessibility of the web for people with disabilities.


businesses may be unaware that they are missing this marketplace.
accessible design may help access with different devices including mobile devices etc.

activities include:

web content accessibility guidelines V1.0:

total of 14 guidelines, see WAI guidelines

W3C internationalization:

internationalization and universal access (accessibility) are related.


W3C mobile devices

3 solutions to show web pages on mobiles:

  1. resize
  2. reformat
  3. reformulate

applications are different:

"people should not think in pages, they should think in objects !"

mobile device and accessibility panel

comparison between access to the web with mobile devices and people with disabilities:


everybody agrees on that mobile devices benefit from improvements for accessibility and vice a versa.

information should be provided consistently regardless of the device being used. people accessing a particular website using a regular browser expect to find the same information in the same place when they use a mobile device.

beside content and presentation, there is a third element: structure ! if the structure and the content are right, presentation will adapt gracefully to any presentation.

additional suggested reading

key note speaker john patrick, IBM

as on many WWW conferences before, john patrick gave one more of his very interesting and entertaining speeches. again a few quotes that i found especially remarkable:

poster reception:

jakob lindenmeyer and i presented our poster about measuring accessibility. we consider this presentation very successful. we did not only display the poster, but we also had a notebook with pwWebSpeak - a voice web browser - running and two Windows CE systems on hand. we had a lot of people who were interested in the subject, including representatives from the W3 consortium.

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production note:

this trip report was written on a Vadem Clio C-1000 running Windows CE with Pocket Word. It was then transferred to a DELL Latitude notebook and modified as needed. this document is supposed to be HTML V4.0 compliant.

[ This page is Bobby V3.1 approved ] this page conforms with the WAG

1st_day.html / 17-may-1999 (ra) / reto ambühler
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