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Re: Proposal: ALT attibute for text

From: Martín Szyszlican <martinsz@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 2011 14:25:24 -0300
Message-ID: <CAKTxXVXG9g7YAodCw8pGbhZa+e1K4ON2Or5ysDi1p26jGUjJXg@mail.gmail.com>
To: "T.J. Crowder" <tj@crowdersoftware.com>
Cc: Clint Goss <clint@goss.com>, public-html-comments@w3.org
I say this is very similar to ASCII-art or leetspeek.
And there's a techinique for that in WCAG:

Specifically, this example: <abbr title="Austin Rocks">Au5t1N r0xx0rz</abbr>

¿What do you think?


2011/8/24 T.J. Crowder <tj@crowdersoftware.com>

> Hi,
> Rather than expanding the `alt` attribute, which is not just related to
> assistive technologies and has various shortcomings, I think this is covered
> by ARIA <http://www.w3.org/WAI/PF/aria/>, isn't it? (A genuine question, I
> don't know enough about ARIA and need to learn more). Probably by assigning
> a `role` <http://www.w3.org/WAI/PF/aria/roles#role_definitions> and an
> `aria-describedby`<http://www.w3.org/WAI/PF/aria/states_and_properties#aria-describedby>attribute.
> Your example might be ARIA-enabled something like this:
> <span role="img" aria-describedby="flutexxxIooo">&lt;xxx|ooo</span>
> ...where somewhere in the document there is a master set of elements for
> each of the flute diagrams (or just the ones used in the text, to save
> space):
> <span id="flutexxxIooo">Finger diagram holes 1 closed 2 closed 3 closed,
> holes 4 open 5 open 6 open</span>
> (I presume that these would be in a display: none container or something,
> again my ARIA-fu is weak so I don't know how you include content that's
> solely for assistive tech use.)
> --
> T.J. Crowder
> Independent Software Engineer
> tj / crowder software / com
> www / crowder software / com
> On 23 August 2011 13:45, Clint Goss <clint@goss.com> wrote:
>> Hello -
>> I have stumbled across what I believe to be a shortcoming of HTML with
>> respect to blind and limited-sight users. I am not a regular
>> member of W3C (just a "public member"), so I am using this channel to
>> provide this comment / feedback.
>> The Issue:
>> The ALT attribute is provided for a small set of tags to specify alternate
>> text for screen readers or other assistive technologies.
>> The tags for which the ALT attribute is specified are those portions of an
>> HTML that cannot be easily rendered as speech, such as
>> <img>, <area>, and <input>.
>> However, there is no way to specify alternate text for text itself.
>> In working on an resource site relating to music, I have had numerous
>> interactions with blind musicians who use JAWS to render text
>> to speech. There are portions of text that can easily be specified in text
>> that render well visually, but which no screen reader can
>> reasonably be expected to render clearly as speech. This significantly
>> hampers the understanding of the text for blind users.
>> For example, many web sites specify fingerings for Native American Flutes
>> using a text based system commonly known as SNAFT. I have
>> a page which describes SNAFT here:
>>  http://www.Flutopedia.com/snaft.htm
>> As an example, a finger position with the top three holes closed and the
>> bottom three open would be written in SNAFT text as:
>> <xxx|ooo. This is rendered poorly by all screen readers I have tried.
>> I would propose that the <span> tag be expanded to allow the ALT
>> attribute. The above SNAFT example could be authored as:
>>  <span alt="Finger diagram holes 1 closed 2 closed 3 closed, holes 4 open
>> 5 open 6 open">&lt;xxx|ooo</span>
>> I have not looked into other compelling uses for this proposal, but I
>> would be willing to participate in an effort to improve the
>> HTML spec in this direction.
>> -- Clint Goss, Ph. D.
>> Web: www.goss.com
>> Email: clint@goss.com
Received on Wednesday, 24 August 2011 17:26:17 UTC

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