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RE: Tool Tip behavior

From: Leonard R. Kasday <kasday@acm.org>
Date: Fri, 25 Feb 2000 17:38:15 -0500
Message-Id: <>
To: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-hwg@idyllmtn.com>
Cc: "Gregory J. Rosmaita" <unagi69@concentric.net>, "Bruce Bailey" <bbailey@clark.net>, WAI Interest Group Emailing List <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

What are you saying the purpose of a title other than the circular 
explanation that it's to

 > provide -- ta da -- a "title."

The HTML 4.01 spec http://www.w3.org/TR/html4/struct/global.html#h-7.4.3 
doesn't define it.

I'm saying now matter how titles are rendered, it's frequently poor  style, 
for the title of an image to redundantly express what's in that 
image.  Therefore, it's not enough to make only the title available to a 
blind user.  You've got to make both ALT text and the Title 
available.  Does your definition of Title contradict that?

If  you agree with the bottom line, that both pieces of info need to 
available, then I'd consider that for all practical purposes we're in 

However, you're right. I should have been more careful wording
"My understanding is that Title is what's supposed to pop up for sighted 
folks. "

I should have said

          visual browsers frequently display the title as a "tool tip" (a 
short message that appears when the pointing device pauses over an object).

That's a quote from the HTML 4.01 spec BTW.   <grin>


At 12:58 PM 2/25/00 -0800, Kynn Bartlett wrote:
>At 07:11 AM 2/24/2000 , Leonard R. Kasday wrote:
> >My understanding is that Title is what's supposed to pop up for sighted 
> folks.  Therefore it should add to--not be redundant to the image.
>Let's not think of it that way.  For starters, let's not say "this is
>for <people with particular abilities or disabilities>."
>Also, TITLE is not meant as a "pop-up" any more than it's meant as
>a label to be read by a screenreader.  In truth, it's just a way to
>add meta-information called "title" to an element.
> >For example, if there's a "contact us" button, it would be silly to 
> redundantly pop up "contact us" for a sighted person.  It's more 
> reasonable to pop up something that adds to what they are already 
> reading, e.g.  "and we'll listen".
>That's reasonable -- if you assume it's a pop-up.  However, to
>title a button "and we'll listen" is to ignore the purpose of the
>TITLE element, which is provide -- ta da -- a "title."
>Proper titling should be done despite whatever the user agents
>decide to do.  If there needs to be a specific TOOLTIP attribute,
>that might be the best approach for certain user agents, using
>extensible additions to XHTML.
>Kynn Bartlett                                    mailto:kynn@hwg.org
>President, HTML Writers Guild                    http://www.hwg.org/
>AWARE Center Director                          http://aware.hwg.org/

Leonard R. Kasday, Ph.D.
Institute on Disabilities/UAP, and
Department of Electrical Engineering
Temple University
423 Ritter Annex, Philadelphia, PA 19122


(215) 204-2247 (voice)
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Received on Friday, 25 February 2000 17:36:51 UTC

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