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Re: "hidden" explanations

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 13 Sep 2000 07:44:45 -0400 (EDT)
To: William Loughborough <love26@gorge.net>
cc: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.21.0009130742560.24069-100000@tux.w3.org>
Well, this is true for presentation on the web. But for a number of reasons
people have by and large not learned to read hypertext yet, and do print
stuff out to read on paper - especially as reference material. So we need to
cope with that circumstance too. Since printing HTML until recently has not
been particularly well handled by many browsers we have even provided other
formats that might print better.

The use of CSS would enable a lot of this to work in both media...

Charles McCN

On Tue, 12 Sep 2000, William Loughborough wrote:

  One of the major shortcomings of our work is that we are (mostly?) all 
  still hung up on printed stuff.
  
  THIS IS THE WEB - HTML AND ALL THAT!
  
  Our document need not be like something to be printed out in order to read 
  it in the comfort of one's favorite chair. There is a feature on many pages 
  in which one lands on a particular item and a box of explanatory 
  (contextual help) text shows up. If you read:
  
  2.5 Ensure that the logical structure of the content is preserved in the 
  markup or data model, together with any additional semantic
  distinctions that facilitate rendering of the content in the visual, 
  auditory and tactile modalities.
  
  and then push some key and have superimposed on it enclosed in a box:
  
  The logical structure of the content needs to be explicitly
  preserved for two purposes. First, it allows style rules (other
  than those provided by the author) to be applied, thus enabling
  the content to be presented effectively and appropriately in
  different modalities, with a range of output devices. Secondly,
  it provides the basis for structural navigation by the user. In
  order for the content to be rendered in all three modalities,
  it is also necessary to capture such distinctions as emphasis
  and changes in the natural language or notation in which the
  text is written. Note also that if this guideline is followed,
  it will enable more sophisticated analysis of the content by
  search engines and other document processing applications.
  
  you have: 1) saved "real estate" on the screen making for a less daunting 
  reading/viewing/listening experience; 2) saved cognitive loading; 3) 
  avoided a "duh" for those who know what was meant in the first place. It 
  would help both those who see the first rendering and would say "I knew 
  that" when forced to wade through the explanation part and those who "click 
  it up" and say "Oh! now I understand what that means."
  
  We aren't making full use of the medium. It doesn't have to be presented as 
  a whole. It doesn't have to be printed out. It should serve as an exemplar 
  of what hypertext medium is all about. Inline links are so underused as to 
  make one wonder if we really believe in this stuff.
  
  --
  Love.
                   ACCESSIBILITY IS RIGHT - NOT PRIVILEGE

-- 
Charles McCathieNevile    mailto:charles@w3.org    phone: +61 (0) 409 134 136
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative                      http://www.w3.org/WAI
Location: I-cubed, 110 Victoria Street, Carlton VIC 3053, Australia
September - November 2000: 
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Received on Wednesday, 13 September 2000 07:44:47 GMT

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