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Re: About ABBR

From: <thatch@us.ibm.com>
Date: Fri, 18 Feb 2000 08:39:01 -0600
To: "Gregory J. Rosmaita" <unagi69@concentric.net>
cc: pjenkins@us.ibm.com, WAI Interest Group Emailing List <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <85256889.00507017.00@d54mta08.raleigh.ibm.com>

Gregory, your position, though understandable is untenable. Web site
accessibility does cost something. When we go to content developers to ask
that they include accessibility features we are asking that they learn
more, that they do more, that their product cost more. We have to explain
and demonstrate what they get for additional effort and cost. Providing
stimulous for future user agent design will not make the cut.

Jim Thatcher
IBM Accessibility Center
HPR Quick Help: http://www.austin.ibm.com/sns/quickreplace.html

"Gregory J. Rosmaita" <unagi69@concentric.net> on 02/17/2000 05:19:12 PM

To:   Phill Jenkins/Austin/IBM@IBMUS
cc:   WAI Interest Group Emailing List <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Subject:  Re: About ABBR

aloha, phil!

while i appreciate your quote taking the developer's practical view on
this.unquote, determining whether or not to use ABBR (or recommend its use)
based solely on current UA implementation is the wrong approach...  new
features of HTML 4.0/4.01 need to be stressed by authoring tools and in
authoring forums precisely in order to force the hand of UA developers to
implement them..  it's a classic chicken and egg conundrum -- or, to put it
even more obliquely, if an ABBR is defined on a page and no UA supports
it's expansion, does it make a noise?

yes, passing the validation test is but the first step, but when do we stop
saying quote wait until user agents support x, y, and z before you add x,
y, and z to your pages unquote, and begin to build the momentum that will
force developers into supporting the accessibility features which the PF
working group has worked long and hard to get included into W3C-generated
markup languages?

no, i don't know if it will work, since no user agents or screen-readers
currently support switching languages in mid-stream, but unless those of us
who are page authors begin to implement accessibility-oriented features
such as ABBR, ACRONYM, and SUMMARY (for tables), what impetus do developers
have to support these features?

moreover, it isn't just a case of switching language in mid-stream -- the
use of CSS pseudo-elements (as outlined in the UAAG techniques document) to
demarcate an inline natural language change will benefit a wide range of
users, and not merely users with disabilities...


Phil wrote:
>How do you know if either will work if no user agents support it?  I
>understand passing a validator is helpful to determine the approach, but
>until someone implements it, who knows if it will work?
>I don't know of any product that supports either changing languages
>mid-stream nor picking up the title attribute on the ABBR element.  And,
>this simple case it doesn't make a difference anyway does it?  LEADER
>pronounced in English or Spanish is about the same. I hope somewhere else
>on the page it is explained in plain Spanish that LEADER is the
>abbreviation for "Programa Europeo de Desarrollo Rural"
>Phill Jenkins

He that lives on Hope, dies farting
      -- Benjamin Franklin, Poor Richard's Almanack, 1763
Gregory J. Rosmaita <unagi69@concentric.net>
    WebMaster and Minister of Propaganda, VICUG NYC
Received on Friday, 18 February 2000 09:38:52 UTC

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