[rfc-i] draft-iab-rfcformatreq-01

Brian E Carpenter brian.e.carpenter at gmail.com
Fri Jan 18 08:54:25 PST 2013


Wes,

On 18/01/2013 16:03, George, Wes wrote:
>> From: rfc-interest-bounces at rfc-editor.org [mailto:rfc-interest-
>> bounces at rfc-editor.org] On Behalf Of Brian E Carpenter
>> Sent: Thursday, January 17, 2013 3:52 AM
>> To: John Levine
>> Cc: rfc-interest at rfc-editor.org; rse at rfc-editor.org
>> Subject: Re: [rfc-i] draft-iab-rfcformatreq-01
>>
>>> Also when you say monochrome, do you mean greyscale?  It's hard to
>>> think of a printer or display these days that can't do grey.
>> Nevertheless, I think the insistence on black and white is correct.
>> We should not *depend* on greyscale for readability, IMHO. In other
>> words, colour and greyscale are allowed, but a black and white version
>> must provide complete information.
>>
> 
> [WEG] If we're going to retain this restriction for technical reasons, then this stance requires more/better technical justification, especially when it comes to avoiding greyscale in favor of black and white. It's 2013. You need existence proofs of devices *in wide use* that can do *only* single bit (black and white) display and cannot support even rudimentary (a few bits' worth) greyscale (or greenscale or whatever) tones before saying that we can't support greyscale "because of reasons"[1]. A general hand-wavey desire for backward/least common denominator compatibility isn't enough unless you also define how you arrived at that minimum, whether support for a given type of display device, accessibility (with details about why this is a problem for accessibility) or something else.

I think this was mentioned some weeks ago: if there is useful information in
greyscale, you are relying on both devices and readers to make the necessary
distinctions. That would apply particularly if using black and two shades of
grey to convey information (e.g. which curve on a graph is which). I'm not
an expert on accessibility, but I do know that in poor light or with aging
eyes, two shades of grey are problematic. Example attached.

> Heather's (non-technical) justification of this being an added drag on RS staff productivity and therefore wanting to punt for now is far more rational.

Yes. I don't think we can ask them to figure which uses of colour or
greyscale are problematic.

    Brian

> Thanks
> Wes George
> 
> [1] http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=because%20reasons
> 
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