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Re: the market hasn't spoken - it hasn't bothered to listened [was Re: fear of "invisible metadata"]

From: Doug Schepers <doug.schepers@vectoreal.com>
Date: Mon, 25 Jun 2007 23:46:02 -0400
Message-ID: <46808BFA.3010604@vectoreal.com>
To: Monika Trebo <mtrebo@stanford.edu>
Cc: "Gregory J.Rosmaita" <oedipus@hicom.net>, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>, wai-xtech@w3.org


Monika Trebo wrote:
> Again, as long as we don''t have something better than longdesc we 
> should keep it in.

...where "as good or better" includes consideration of the time and 
effort it has taken to get vendors to implement @longdesc, such that it 
can be used in the wild.  Decreasing (or even changing) the set of known 
accessibility features seems counterproductive, since the information 
that @longdesc is no longer supported (or whatever term is used) willl 
take some time to trickle out to the general public.

While I doubt there are many sites that use @longdesc correctly, those 
that do are likely to give due consideration to accessibility concerns 
in general and will represent a disproportionate number of users with 
accessibility needs.  Therefore, those sites bear a higher weight of 
importance towards their intended audience, and the HTML 5.0 spec should 
consider that before dropping the feature (or to put it another way, 
should consider that a reason to add it).

That said, if someone comes up with a brilliant notion that is more 
likely to be implemented and authored, that would also be a win.  The 
only thing that comes to my mind is a sort of "rich tooltip" (derived 
from a <title> and <desc> element pair, or a section of hidden HTML 
content) that would act a bit like the quasi-popup I'm seeing 
everywhere... it can be done with CSS/JS anyway, obviously, but an 
easier way of doing it might be an incentive for authors... (or 
something for them to misuse... never mind, bad idea).

Received on Tuesday, 26 June 2007 03:47:13 UTC

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