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Re: PRI - 9 LANG Attribute

From: Nir Dagan <nir@nirdagan.com>
Date: Tue, 27 Apr 1999 01:25:44 -0400 (EDT)
To: thatch@us.ibm.com
cc: Jason White <jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au>, Web Content Accessibility Guidelines <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.BSF.4.02A.9904270119210.10208-100000@dhaame.pair.com>
A language of a phrase is an accessibility issue since a speaking browser 
can't read French correctly knowing that it is iso-8859-1 and assuming
that it is English.
This is a difference between visual and speech medium.
That is, if a user speaks both English and French and so does his speaking
browser but the browser is not informed which is which, we have an
accessibility problem. One can claim that a browser can guess the language
in all kinds of ways. But then it could also guess MIME types too.

Nir Dagan


"There is nothing quite so practical as a good theory." 
-- A. Einstein

On Mon, 26 Apr 1999 thatch@us.ibm.com wrote:

> Jason said: "a priority 2 rating should be retained in respect of
> multilingual material."
> Priority 2 says: A Web content developer should satisfy this checkpoint.
> Otherwise, one or more groups will find it difficult to access information
> in the document. Satisfying this checkpoint will remove significant
> barriers to accessing Web documents.
> 1) I believe that satisfying this requirement will remove no barriers, let
> alone remove significant barriers.
> 2) It is inconceivable to me why the lang attribute internal to the page
> should be priority 2, while the lang attribute on the html element is
> priority 3. As Phill has already indicated, IBM's Home Page Reader will be
> supporting the lang attribute on the HTML element but not within the page.
> I don't think the lang element at the top should be priority 2 either.
> 3) I don't see why the language of a phrase is an accessibility issue for
> person's with disabilities -- even if either this or 6.3 were yielding
> significant benefits.
> Jim Thatcher
> IBM Special Needs Systems
> www.ibm.com/sns
> thatch@us.ibm.com
> (512)838-0432
> Jason White <jasonw@ariel.ucs.unimelb.edu.au> on 04/26/99 06:25:20 PM
> To:   Web Content Accessibility Guidelines <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
> cc:    (bcc: James Thatcher/Austin/IBM)
> Subject:  Re: PRI - 9  LANG Attribute
> In anticipation of user agent support for the LANG attribute, in
> recognition of the language-dependent nature of text to speech and braille
> conversion processes, and taking into account the difficulties raised by
> multilingual documents, I propose that no change be made to the priority
> of this checkpoint.
> If it were only a priority 3 requirement today, then it would be rarely
> implemented, even in multilingual documents. Then, when user agents start
> supporting the LANG attribute, it will not be of benefit due to the
> absence of this important linguistic distinction in marked up documents.
> Therefore, a priority 2 rating should be retained in respect of
> multilingual material. Also, this requirement needs to be considered in
> relation to the WAI user agent guidelines, which ought to recommend
> implementation of the LANG attribute by user agents and assistive
> technologies.
Received on Tuesday, 27 April 1999 01:26:04 UTC

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