Definitions and Abbreviations

For the purposes of the present document, the terms and definitions given in EG 201 013 [i.4] and the following apply:

extent to which products, systems, services, environments and facilities can be used by people from a population with the widest range of characteristics and capabilities, to achieve a specified goal in a specified context of use (from ISO 26800 [i.18])

NOTE 1: Context of use includes direct use or use supported by assistive technologies.

NOTE 2: The context in which the ICT is used may affect its overall accessibility. This context could include other products and services with which the ICT may interact.

assistive technology:
hardware or software added to or connected to a system that increases accessibility for an individual

NOTE 1: Examples are Braille displays, screen readers, screen magnification software and eye tracking devices that are added to the ICT.

NOTE 2: Where ICT does not support directly connected assistive technology, but which can be operated by a system connected over a network or other remote connection, such a separate system (with any included assistive technology) can also be considered assistive technology.

audio description:
additional audible narrative, interleaved with the dialogue, which describes the significant aspects of the visual content of audio-visual media that cannot be understood from the main soundtrack alone

NOTE: This is also variously described using terms such as "video description" or variants such as "descriptive narration".

authoring tool:
software that can be used to create or modify content

NOTE 1: An authoring tool may be used by a single user or multiple users working collaboratively.

NOTE 2: An authoring tool may be a single stand-alone application or be comprised of collections of applications.

NOTE 3: An authoring tool may produce content that is intended for further modification or for use by end-users.

synchronized visual and/or text alternative for both speech and non-speech audio information needed to understand the media content (after WCAG 2.0 [4])

NOTE: This is also variously described using terms such as "subtitles" or variants such as "subtitles for the deaf and hard-of-hearing".

closed functionality:
functionality that is limited by characteristics that prevent a user from attaching, installing or using assistive technology
information and sensory experience to be communicated to the user by means of software, including code or markup that defines the content's structure, presentation, and interactions (after WCAG2ICT [i.26])

NOTE: Content occurs in three places: web pages, documents and software. When content occurs in a web page or a document, a user agent is needed in order to communicate the content's information and sensory experience to the user. When content occurs in software, a separate user agent is not needed in order to communicate the content's information and sensory experience to the user - the software itself performs that function.

context of use:
users, tasks, equipment (hardware, software and materials), and the physical and social environments in which a product is used (from ISO 9241-11 [i.15])
logically distinct assembly of content (such as a file, set of files, or streamed media) that functions as a single entity rather than a collection, that is not part of software and that does not include its own user agent. (after WCAG2ICT [i.26])

NOTE 1: A document always requires a user agent to present its content to the user.

NOTE 2: Letters, e-mail messages, spreadsheets, books, pictures, presentations, and movies are examples of documents.

NOTE 3: Software configuration and storage files such as databases and virus definitions, as well as computer instruction files such as source code, batch/script files, and firmware, are examples of files that function as part of software and thus are not examples of documents. If and where software retrieves "information and sensory experience to be communicated to the user" from such files, it is just another part of the content that occurs in software and is covered by WCAG2ICT like any other parts of the software. Where such files contain one or more embedded documents, the embedded documents remain documents under this definition.

NOTE 4: A collection of files zipped together into an archive, stored within a single virtual hard drive file, or stored in a single encrypted file system file, do not constitute a single document when so collected together. The software that archives/encrypts those files or manages the contents of the virtual hard drive does not function as a user agent for the individually collected files in that collection because that software is not providing a non-fully functioning presentation of that content.

NOTE 5: Anything that can present its own content without involving a user agent, such as a self-playing book, is not a document but is software.

NOTE 6: A single document may be composed of multiple files such as the video content, closed caption text etc. This fact is not usually apparent to the end-user consuming the document/content.

NOTE 7: An assembly of files that represented the video, audio, captions and timing files for a movie is an example of a document.

NOTE 8: A binder file used to bind together the various exhibits for a legal case would not be a document.

ICT network:
technology and resources supporting the connection and operation of interconnected ICT
Information and Communication Technology (ICT)
technology, equipment, or interconnected system or subsystem of equipment for which the principal function is the creation, conversion, duplication, automatic acquisition, storage, analysis, evaluation, manipulation, management, movement, control, display, switching, interchange, transmission, reception, or broadcast of data or information

NOTE: Examples of ICT are electronic content, telecommunications products, computers and ancillary equipment, software, information kiosks and transaction machines, videos, IT services, and multifunction office machines which copy, scan, and fax documents.

mechanically operable part:
operable part that has a mechanical interface to activate, deactivate, or adjust the ICT

NOTE: Examples of mechanically operable parts include scanner covers, notebook docking stations and lids as well as physical switches and latches.

mechanism for private listening:
auditory output designed so that only the current user can receive the sound

NOTE: Personal headsets, directional speakers and audio hoods are examples of mechanisms for private listening.

non-text content:
content that is not a sequence of characters that can be programmatically determined or where the sequence is not expressing something in human language (after WCAG 2.0 [4])
non-web document:
document that is not a web page, not embedded in web pages nor used in the rendering or functioning of the page
non-web software:
software that is not a web page, not embedded in web pages nor used in the rendering or functioning of the page
operable part:
component of ICT used to activate, deactivate, or adjust the ICT
platform software:
collection of software components that runs on an underlying software or hardware layer, and that provides a set of software services to other software components that allows those applications to be isolated from the underlying software or hardware layer (after ISO/IEC 13066-1 [i.19])

NOTE: A particular software component might play the role of a platform in some situations and a client in others.

programmatically determinable:
able to be read by software from developer-supplied data in a way that other software, including assistive technologies, can extract and present this information to users in different modalities

NOTE: WCAG 2.0 uses "determined" where this definition uses "able to be read" (to avoid ambiguity with the word "determined").

real-time text:
form of a text conversation in point to point situations or in multipoint conferencing where the text being entered is sent in such a way that the communication is perceived by the user as being continuous
satisfies a success criterion:
the success criterion does not evaluate to "false" when applied to the ICT (after WCAG 2.0 [4])
combination of hardware and/or software with which the end user directly interacts and that provides the user interface

NOTE 1: The hardware may consist of more than one device working together e.g. a mobile device and a computer.

NOTE 2: For some systems, the software that provides the user interface may reside on more than one device such as a telephone and a server.

user agent:
software that retrieves and presents content for users (after WCAG 2.0 [4])

NOTE 1: Software that only displays the content contained within it is treated as software and not considered to be a user agent.

NOTE 2: An example of software that is not a user agent is a calculator application that does not retrieve the calculations from outside the software to present it to a user. In this case, the calculator software is not a user agent, it is simply software with a user interface.

NOTE 3: Software that only shows a preview of content such as a thumbnail or other non-fully functioning presentation is not providing user agent functionality.

user interface:
all components of an interactive system (software or hardware) that provide information and/or controls for the user to accomplish specific tasks with the interactive system (from ISO 9241-110 [i.16])
user interface element:
entity of the user interface that is presented to the user by the software (after ISO 9241-171 [i.17])

NOTE 1: This term is also known as "user interface component".

NOTE 2: User-interface elements can be interactive or not.

web content:
content that belongs to a web page, and that is used in the rendering or that is intended to be used in the rendering of the web page
web page:
non-embedded resource obtained from a single URI using HTTP plus any other resources that are used in the rendering or intended to be rendered together with it by a user agent (after WCAG 2.0 [4])


For the purposes of the present document, the following abbreviations apply:

Americans with Disabilities Act
American National Standards Institute
Assistive Technology
Common Intermediate Format
Document Object Model
European Research Consortium for Informatics and Mathematics
Frequently Asked Questions
Frames Per Second
HyperText Markup Language
HyperText Transfer Protocol
Information and Communication Technology
Internet Engineering Task Force
IP Multimedia System
Internet Protocol
Joint Working Group (of CEN/CENELEC/ETSI)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Open Document Format
Office Open eXtensible Markup Language
Public Switched Telephone Network
Quarter Common Intermediate Format
Request For Comment
Real-Time Text
Session Initiation Protocol
Uniform Resource Identifier
Universal Serial Bus
Voice over IP
World Wide Web Consortium
Web Accessibility Initiative
Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (of W3C)
eXtensible Markup Language
XML User interface Language