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Re: Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

From: Leif Halvard Silli <lhs@malform.no>
Date: Fri, 31 Aug 2007 13:39:05 +0200
Message-ID: <<dec7520ae9064ad4a54701bb3962dda0@10013.local>>
To: public-html@w3.org

On 2007-08-31 04:16:01 +0200 Sander Tekelenburg <st@isoc.nl> wrote:
> At 02:49 +0200 UTC, on 2007-08-31, Leif Halvard Silli wrote:
>> On 2007-08-30 18:06:26 +0200 Sander Tekelenburg <st@isoc.nl> wrote:
>>> At 05:43 +0200 UTC, on 2007-08-30, Leif Halvard Silli wrote:
>>> 
>>> [...]
>>> 
>>>> The HTML5 draft says that TITLE and ALT should be showed in
>>>> different ways.
>>>> But perhaps is enough to say that they should be showed in different
>>>> ways only if the element has both a TITLE and an ALT text?
>>> 
>>> I'd think that would result in inconsistent behaviour, which would
>>> hurt usability. [...]
>> 
>> Sander, basically, I agree.
>> 
>> But the draft does seem to convey the meaning that ALT should be
>> _presented_. But is that anything near the situation?
>> 
>> When it is not, then it becomes harder for authors to make the right
>> textual choices for ALT versus TITLE text.
> 
> I'm not sure I understand what you mean.
> 
> Are you talking about whether equivalents are only treated as alternates, or
> side by side?

I was just reading the text of the draft: «User agents must not present the contents of the alt attribute in the same way as content of the title attribute.»

A reformulation could be that UAs must present ALT text, only not so that it confused with the TITLE text. And since the spec is supposed ot be media independent, this goes for screeen readers as well. (Hence, to say that screen readers can just use TITLE with ALT is not available is backwards.)

The «side-by-side» here is valid about TITLE vs. ALT: _they_ must not be presented in such a way that you do not understnad what is TITLE and what is ALT.

I do (of course) not think that ALT and the image should be presented side by side. But I think that it should be about as easy to access the ALT text as it is to access the TITLE.

Btw, I think the proper description of TITLE is to say that it is about (describing the) _context_. A flag can have different meanings. But TITLE can advice us that alt="English" refers to TITLE="Nationality".
-- 
leif halvard silli
Received on Friday, 31 August 2007 11:39:25 UTC

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