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Question on content relevance

From: Adam Victor Reed <areed2@calstatela.edu>
Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2001 19:01:02 -0800
To: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
Message-ID: <20010329190102.A4264@uranus.calstatela.edu>
I joined this list recently, so please be gentle with me if this is
a topic that was already discussed here.

Non-text illustrations (particularly in instruction manuals, or on web
pages that deliver the user interface of a hardware, software, or
service system) often contain many details that are not relevant to
the task at hand. This irrelevant content will distract or disable
some users, and will slow down, to the point of interfering with
productivity, many more. I remember (from my days at Bell Labs) a
documentation guideline to use line drawings, with relevant
information only, rather than photographs (which tend to include
irrelevant detail) as illustrations in technical manuals.

Two questions:

1. Is minimizing irrelevant detail something that should be explicitly
included in the (upper case G) Guidelines?

2. Is this a valid concern with respect to checkpoint instructions?
For example, should one be concerned that the "all" in "a text
equivalent for _all_ non-text content" will lead developers to include
irrelevant elements of illustrations in the replacement text?
				Adam Reed
Context matters. Seldom does *anything* have only one cause.
Received on Thursday, 29 March 2001 22:01:10 UTC

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