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Re: summary attribute compromise proposal

From: Joe D Williams <joedwil@earthlink.net>
Date: Tue, 4 Aug 2009 14:43:30 -0700
Message-ID: <405B84F9C60C42899F1F0CA4862102F4@joe1446a4150a8>
To: "Leif Halvard Silli" <lhs@malform.no>, "John Foliot" <jfoliot@stanford.edu>
Cc: "'Maciej Stachowiak'" <mjs@apple.com>, "'HTML WG'" <public-html@w3.org>, <po@trace.wisc.edu>, <lorettaguarino@google.com>
> I wonder whether, according to you - as soon as the summary is 
> visible to all - sighted and unsighted, it isn't necessary to 
> identify it as a summary anymore?

Hi Leif,
Sorry if I am not the actual you being addressed in the above.
A big point of this is that the author must see @summary as holding 
something that is specifically aimed at some assistive or 
accessibility functionality that is not defined or at this time even 
definable by the W3C HTML 5 web browser all by itself. That is, at 
this time, the W3C HTML browser has no way of knowing what will be 
done with that @summary content; all browser knows is that it is 
probably text that may be grabbed by an essentially external context. 
Hopefully the @summary content adds to the usefullness of the table in 
that context, All browser needs to know is that the author wanted to 
provide some kind of alternative content for an interface probably 
known in detail only to the author, tool producer, and end user of the 
add-on technology.

but the point about identity is just that there are two somewhat 
parallel authoring paths. Of course it is expected that the visible 
page rendering would have enough supporting information in the 
surrounding content to get users to understand and use the table for 
its designed purpose. The old @summary is not intended to replace that 
support. Instead @summary is a different authoring path. It provides a 
container for alternative content that is only provided upon request 
of the assistive agent. This is one reason why @summary may not be 
sufficient by itself.

In order to keep it challenging for authors, I think it should be 
highly recommended that the same stuff does not appear both in the 
related describing/using the table info aimed at the typical user in 
the mainline, and also in @summary aimed at some possibly unknown 
alternative interface.

Thanks Again and Best Regards,
Joe'
Received on Tuesday, 4 August 2009 21:44:22 UTC

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