There are so many disabilities, and their needs contradict. Getting them onto the same technology page may be impossible.
So Mike Davies, a leader in trying to build accessibility technology into open source through Isolani, has come to believe. (The ad, on behalf of Joe Clark's Accessibility Research Project, is from Mike's site.)
Recently Davies called out some of the groups he feels haven't met user needs:
Naturally, a spirited discussion followed. Mike was quoted, writing "we need a community of people working on the Web
(as a content producer, as a browser - or plugin - vendor, as an
assistive technology provider), focused on accessibility. And that we
simply don't have." Some users attacked Mike while others, like Mike Cherim, defended the efforts he derided.
The truth is something common to open source. Money. Money is needed to get work done, to have that work incorporated into Web standards, and to turn that work into Web sites that are accessible to all.
The money's failure to materialize in the free market is a chicken-and-egg problem. We want something to invest in. I need money to create that. You need protection for the resulting IP to get the money. Which takes you out of the Web standards game entirely, because imposing a fee for using Web standards is just impractical.