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Re: Browser guidelines in authoring guidelines

From: Wendy A Chisholm <chisholm@trace.wisc.edu>
Date: Wed, 15 Apr 1998 13:54:19 -0500
Message-Id: <199804151853.NAA03157@trace.wisc.edu>
To: jkrieger@cast.org
Cc: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org

The current definition of Interim is, "This strategy is necessary to make
pages accessible for today's browsers and assistive technologies."  We want
this definition to convey that Interim strategies will disappear once user
agents and ATs support the mechanisms to solve the accessibility issues.
In other words, to put it bluntly, they are kludges.  Does this definition
convey the appropriate message?

It is unfortunate that until user agents and ATs provide effective
solutions the authors are stuck with extra work.  However, what constraints
need to be met so that these will disappear?  When do we stop writing
guidelines that take into account browsers that don't support TABLEs,
OBJECTs, etc.?

In your list, items 7.8 and 8.2 are already listed as "Interim."  (Note:
these item numbers refer to items in the Feb 3 release).  

3.2 should probably be interim since user agents should be able to freeze
blink and marquee.  However, is this true of animated gifs, scripts, or

4.4 is not a user agent or AT issue, the synchronization of captions and
descriptions with the video track is something an author needs to do, i.e.,
creating SMIL/SAMI files.  PLAYING it syncrhonized is the job of the user
agent (either through plug-in, application, or itself).  perhaps this idea
should be highlighted in the guideline?

7.2 is *currently* an AT issue.  Once CSS2 is issued as a recommendation
and widely supported by UAs, it becomes an issue of good design that
increases the flexibility of the presentation of the document for everyone
(and especially helps people with disabilities).  So, I'm not sure that it
will go away.


At 07:43 AM 4/15/98 , Josh Krieger wrote:
>We seem to have mixed browser/AT issues with authoring issues
>in the current guidelines (I haven't looked at the most recent
>draft just posted). While the browser/AT issues should be mentioned, 
>I might suggest placing them in a separate section that is
>maybe somehow different from REQUIRED and RECOMMENDED and
>expresses the overlap of HTML authoring/browser/AT. Just
>looking over the guidelines, I find:
>3.2. The user can freeze moving or blinking text
>4.4. Transcriptions and audio descriptions are synchronized
>7.2. Tables are not used to arrange text documents in columns
>7.8. Alt-text doesn't wrap in tables used to position graphics
>8.2. Lists of links have non-link printable chars between them
>Josh Krieger
wendy chisholm
human factors engineer
trace research and development center
university of wisconsin - madison, USA
Received on Wednesday, 15 April 1998 14:54:01 UTC

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