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Re: One more thought about requiring the alt to add to the pile

From: Steven Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Apr 2008 10:07:09 +0200
Message-ID: <55687cf80804180107k47f9204ata4cec6f54b9fb936@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Henri Sivonen" <hsivonen@iki.fi>
Cc: "public-html@w3.org WG" <public-html@w3.org>, "W3C WAI-XTECH" <wai-xtech@w3.org>, wai-liaison@w3.org

Hey henri,
>No. Now you are being so dogmatic about the alt attribute being there
that you are willing to suggest modal UI to work around it. That's

There is dogma on both sides of the debate, you  appear more dogmatic
about the idea of alt as optional, than I am to it being required, I
have publically stated that I am as yet unconvinced of the
desirability of a required alt. There is obviuosly no doubt in your

dogma anyone?

One thing I am commited to  is exploring all view points, before
making a decision via working group process. My thoights on the issue
have swayed quite considerably over the last few week, in light of
various ideas in the ongoing debate. And if it comes to a vote who
knows which way i will vote on the day.

There already are  "modal UI's" for most aspects of screen readers
content presentation, i think it is the nature of  presenting visual
UI's non visually or non linear content linearly.

a few examples in regards to graphics  i have to hand-
graphics options for JAWS
Tagged: JAWS says "graphic" and then reads alternative text
accompanying graphics, if available, and ignores graphics with no
alternative text.
All: JAWS says "graphic" when a graphic is encountered and reads the
alternate text, if available, or reads the image file name if
alternate text is not specified.
None: JAWS provides no information about graphics.

Window Eyes option:
Include Graphic With No Description  This option will provide the
user with the filename of an image that does not contain a description
(i.e ALT, TITLE, LONGDESC, etc.).

if you want more example give me a yell.

So what I am suggesting is not something new, but a
modification/addition of existing features within AT.


On 18/04/2008, Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi> wrote:
> On Apr 18, 2008, at 08:38, Steven Faulkner wrote:
> >  The spec[1] currently states:
> > "In some cases, the image is a critical part of the content. .... In a rare subset of these cases, there might be no alternative text available. "
> >
> > Given that it is only in  very rare cases (a "rare subset" of "some cases") where it is considered legitimate in the spec to leave out the alt attribute.
> > And these "rare subset" of cases are a clearly defined class of site "a photo upload site".  Would it not be better to require/encourage the relatively small number of AT vendors to provide a feature that exposes images with alt="" (in case the photo site CMS has been designed ot add alt="" automatically), that a user can enable when he/she visits these sites?.
> >
> No. Now you are being so dogmatic about the alt attribute being there that you are willing to suggest modal UI to work around it. That's bad.
> That you find a need for a mode demonstrates that there really is information loss when markup generators put alt='' on images whose presence should not be concealed.
> VoiceOver deals with this reasonably when the author doesn't abuse the empty string alt. Of course, VoiceOver fails to inform the user when the author has used the empty string alt to remove the image from the non-visual presentation altogether. The whole point of not making the presence of alt a *syntactic* requirement is to avoid inducing such abuse that makes the page less understandable than in the case where VO announces the presence of the image even though it says nothing about its content.
> --
> Henri Sivonen
> hsivonen@iki.fi
> http://hsivonen.iki.fi/

with regards

Steve Faulkner
Technical Director - TPG Europe
Director - Web Accessibility Tools Consortium

www.paciellogroup.com | www.wat-c.org
Web Accessibility Toolbar -
Received on Friday, 18 April 2008 08:07:46 UTC

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