W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-gl@w3.org > July to September 1999

Re: Review of navigation bar issues for thursdays conference call

From: Harvey Bingham <hbingham@acm.org>
Date: Wed, 25 Aug 1999 04:16:34 -0400
Message-Id: <4.2.0.58.19990824223241.00bfbb80@pop.tiac.net>
To: w3c-wai-ua@w3.org, w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
At 1999-08-24 04:43 PM-0700, Jon Gunderson wrote:
>These are three options I am aware of for markup related to navigation bars
>or in general grouping of links.  Please respond with your own ideas or
>comments.  Following the options is a list of some of the archived e-mail
>discussion on the issue.
>
>Option 1:
>Using the DIV element and some type of CLASS or NAME identifier:

I believe you mean TITLE rather than NAME, as attribute on DIV, analogous
to CLASS.

>PROs: Easy to implement and author
>CONs: There is no mechanism to reserve class names in HTML, there could be
>conflicts if specific class names are used

Presumably a document could associate CLASS value with STYLE info.
That association can be context-dependent, as in nested lists.


>Option 2:
>MAP element
>PROs: Currently used for image based navigational bars
>CONs:
>1. More complex than DIV to author
>2. What if authors did not want to use images in their navigation bars
as Nir Dagan pointed out, there is no need to make MAP image-based.

The MAP container is available with ((%block; )+ | AREA+) content.
That %block; content can be a nav bar's worth of <a href="URI">...</A>
Ironic that MAP is only an inline, even though its content can be %block; .

>Option 3: Schema
>Schemas are a potential way to indicate the purpose of content or structure
>PROs: Proclaimed as the right tool for the job
>CONs:
>1. New technology and being developed
>2. Not currently supported by UAs,
>3. Not clear how easy to author
>4. Not clear how easy for AT to decode and use

When a navigation bar is used, a page can assign an unused letter to an
ACCESSKEY to get to the start of that navigation bar for the current page,
so the user needn't depend on navigation bar placement at the start, within,
or end of the current page.

If this technique is used, page content courtesy would indicate that 
assignment should be consistent on all pages:
For example, early in each document, that accesskey binding should be
explained:
     <a href="#foo" name="navbartstart" accesskey="n">
     Use accesskey-n to return to the navigation bar.</a>.

[The WINTEL PC/Windows would use ALT-n to activate an access key.
What is the MAC equivalent?]

Experimented with this, in the attached file. Only Microsoft IE 5.0
seems to work. Failed to get Netscape Navigator 4.61, Opera 3.60,
pwWEBSPEAK 32, or Amaya 2.0a to respond to that attempt to assign
accesskey="n" by the source.

This assignment could be applied consistently across all pages of a site.
Note that the navigation bars needn't have the same set of choices.
For example, a sequence of pages, such as a presentation. The first page
has no "prior" page. The last page has no "next" page.

Is there a way to establish a global accesskey for a set of pages?
To have it assigned at the start of browsing, and have the same
accesskey have (nearly) consistent meaning as appropriate for the
edge effects of some pages?

A user agent could make that assignment and maintain the target for the
accesskey for each page encountered.

An issue: what should that accesskey do if there is no nav bar?

Regards/Harvey Bingham

Received on Wednesday, 25 August 1999 04:15:30 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.2.0+W3C-0.50 : Monday, 7 December 2009 10:47:00 GMT