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[Bug 21987] New: Consider adding a sister attribute to act as a toggle to trigger longdesc discoverability.

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Thu, 09 May 2013 16:47:23 +0000
To: public-html-admin@w3.org
Message-ID: <bug-21987-2495@http.www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/>
https://www.w3.org/Bugs/Public/show_bug.cgi?id=21987

            Bug ID: 21987
           Summary: Consider adding a sister attribute to act as a toggle
                    to trigger longdesc discoverability.
    Classification: Unclassified
           Product: HTML WG
           Version: unspecified
          Hardware: All
                OS: All
            Status: NEW
          Severity: normal
          Priority: P2
         Component: HTML Image Description Extension
          Assignee: chaals@yandex-team.ru
          Reporter: laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com
        QA Contact: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
                CC: public-html-admin@w3.org

To trigger longdesc discoverability please consider adding an optional sister
attribute such as "longdesclink" or perhaps a more generically named
"longdescdisplay" or "longdescdiscover" or "longdescsurface" to act in
conjunction with longdesc.

The new attribute could work with discoverability methods such as highlighting,
direct replacement, and especially links. Such an attribute would be valuable
in toggling longdesc links on in visual browsers and in turn make it more
useful to users. 

For example with markup such as:

<img src="linegraph.jpg" 
  alt="Line graph of the number of subscribers" 
  longdesc="longdesc/linegraph.html" 
  longdesclink>

The presence of the longdesclink attribute could trigger a browser to output
the link text:
"Long Description: Line graph of the number of subscribers"
which consists of the string "Long Description: " plus the alt attribute's
value.

Lack of the sister attribute "longdesclink" would mean to not force a visual
encumbrance upon users by not displaying the link.

References:

longdesc extensions that surface the longdesc link to make it discoverable
include: 

* FireFox's Longdesk Extension, which adds a link to the longdesc under images
that have a longdesc attribute
http://www.d.umn.edu/~lcarlson/research/ld-ua.html#longdesk

* A longdesc favelet, which first announces the number of images on the page
that have longdesc attributes. Then it highlights each image on the page that
has a longdesc, and provides on-screen text links to each corresponding
description.
http://www.d.umn.edu/~lcarlson/research/ld-ua.html#favelet

* Opera's TellMeMore extension provides a link in a popup context menu. 
http://www.d.umn.edu/~lcarlson/research/ld-ua.html#pouplist

Please note: 

Chris Mills originated the idea for this attribute in a private longdesc
discussion with me. Thank you Chris!

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