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

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Mon, 25 Jun 2007 21:40:48 -0700
Message-Id: <127F0DED-8E33-428D-B312-240887FFE5D1@apple.com>
Cc: Monika Trebo <mtrebo@stanford.edu>, "Gregory J.Rosmaita" <oedipus@hicom.net>, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>, wai-xtech@w3.org
To: Doug Schepers <doug.schepers@vectoreal.com>


On Jun 25, 2007, at 8:46 PM, Doug Schepers wrote:

>
> Hey-
>
> 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).

Out of the suggestions so far, I like <a rel="longdesc"> the best. It  
would do something reasonable in existing UAs, could be applied to  
more than just images (videos or tables might merit a long  
description for instance) and would be accessed even in normal UAs  
without the use of accessibility tools, so would be more likely to be  
maintained. Arguably even today it is a better option than the img  
longdesc attribute.

Regards,
Maciej
Received on Tuesday, 26 June 2007 04:42:03 GMT

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