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RE: descriptive titles

From: Gregg Vanderheiden <gv@trace.wisc.edu>
Date: Mon, 28 Aug 2006 00:07:27 -0500
To: "'Bailey, Bruce'" <Bruce.Bailey@ed.gov>, <public-wcag-teamb@w3.org>
Message-ID: <007e01c6ca5f$dd9262e0$4553d046@NC6000BAK>
A few notes from my memory. 

Marked  GV:   



 -- ------------------------------ 
Gregg C Vanderheiden Ph.D. 
Professor - Ind. Engr. & BioMed Engr.
Director - Trace R & D Center 
University of Wisconsin-Madison 
The Player for my DSS sound file is at http://tinyurl.com/dho6b




From: public-wcag-teamb-request@w3.org
[mailto:public-wcag-teamb-request@w3.org] On Behalf Of Bailey, Bruce
Sent: Saturday, August 26, 2006 1:11 PM
To: public-wcag-teamb@w3.org
Subject: RE: descriptive titles

I have a few questions and observations.  I am delightfully unsurprised to
note that John has a better handle on this exercise than I!

1)  Am I correct to recall that we gave up on "meaningful" since that was
too hard to objectively test for?

GV:  That is what I remember. 

2)  IF Level 2 SC 2.4.3 changes from "Web units have titles" to "Web Units
have descriptive titles" does Level 3 SC 2.4.5 change from "Titles,
headings, and labels are descriptive" to "Headings, and labels are

GV:  Yes.  Per discussion on the last telecon.  

3)  It is a given that features be used correctly.  I believe the html
specification is well understood to require that title attributes be
meaningful to humans.  We can create failure examples of values that are not
descriptive, but I think it will be close to impossible to define standards
that objectively discriminate between acceptable and unacceptable levels of
detail to qualify values as "descriptive" or "not descriptive enough."  Is
such a goal part of this exercise?

GV:  No.  If the title is broadly descriptive - it would pass.   We do not
define "how" descriptive and do not require that it be good.  Just

4)  I do not believe we a choice about being comfortable with the term
"descriptive."  Among other terms of art we have Audio Description and
longdesc.  I don't anyone is suggesting that the word be deleted from WCAG
2.0, I just thought I would mention it.

GV:  Correct.   It is also used in 1.1.1  

Follows are excerpts with definitions for AD, longdesc, and title.  I am not
so thrilled to note that our AD definition does not capitalize the term and
could be considered circular since it relies upon the word "describe."
Perhaps it is hypocritical, but the same recursive flaw seems okay with me
for longdesc.

GV:  not sure about capitalizing it.  It isn't a proper name.  And there
isn't just one.   So I don't think it should be capitalized.  Will leave
that to the English majors though.   And it is ok to use "describe" in audio
description.  You can in fact even use "description".   You can't use
describe to define description.     

audio description:  narration added to the soundtrack to describe important
visual details that cannot be understood from the main soundtrack alone.

longdesc:  This attribute specifies a link to a long description of the
image.  This description should supplement the short description provided
using the alt attribute.  When the image has an associated image map, this
attribute should provide information about the image map's contents.  [2]

title:  This attribute offers advisory information about the element for
which it is set.  [snip, vs tag]  Values of the title attribute may be
rendered by user agents in a variety of ways.  For instance, visual browsers
frequently display the title as a "tool tip" (a short message that appears
when the pointing device pauses over an object).  Audio user agents may
speak the title information in a similar context.  For example, setting the
attribute on a link allows user agents (visual and non-visual) to tell users
about the nature of the linked resource:  [3]

GV:  Hmmmm We use title to mean more than just what is described here.   I
don't think we can use this definition of title in our guidelines.  In
software guidelines we use "name" as a generic term - but it doesn't work as
well here I don't think. 

[1] http://www.w3.org/WAI/GL/WCAG20/appendixA.html#audiodescdef
[2] http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/struct/objects.html#adef-longdesc-IMG
[3] http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/struct/global.html#adef-title
Received on Monday, 28 August 2006 05:07:47 UTC

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