Learning about SALT

So the other day, on one of my jobs, I get a sales pitch from a company telling me that they’ve built some development tools that work with stuff called SALT.

I am skeptical, so I do some research and learn:

  • SALT is not yet a W3C standard. It has only been proposed as such since last summer and it is not clear as to what the W3C will finally propose.
  • I learn that SALT does work with MSAA and Flash MX to support Web accessibility.
  • I also learn that there is a group working on an open version of SALT that will work in Mozilla and other browsers but work isn’t finished.
  • One thing that irritates me about these newly proposed standards, VoiceXML and SALT, is that they don’t really bother to improve browser support for the accessibility features that already exist in current W3C standards, like all the speech properties of CSS2.

Conclusion: I want to wait until the industry standardizes. I don’t want to be an early adopter, even if Microsoft is behind all this stuff. If everybody starts doing it and supporting it, I’ll do it.

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