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RE: Tool Tip behavior

From: Kynn Bartlett <kynn-hwg@idyllmtn.com>
Date: Fri, 25 Feb 2000 14:49:56 -0800
Message-Id: <>
To: "Leonard R. Kasday" <kasday@ACM.org>
Cc: "Gregory J. Rosmaita" <unagi69@concentric.net>, "Bruce Bailey" <bbailey@clark.net>, WAI Interest Group Emailing List <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
At 02:38 PM 2/25/2000 , Leonard R. Kasday wrote:
>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 agree that it's undefined.  Which is why we need to look at the
natural language definition of "title" -- and nearly any appropriate
definition I can think of would -not- include "and we'll get
back to you!" (or whatever it was) as an appropriate "title."

>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?

No, but it does mean that you use title to indicate, well, a title.

The only times _I_ use title are when it's not clear, from the
other content (text and/or ALT text), what the link will do.  
Therefore, I title the link appropriately.

If it -is- clear, then I believe TITLE can (and should) be excluded.

>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 agreement.

If they exist, then clearly they need to be available in some way,

>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>

Fair enough.  Although I think the HTML 4.01 spec is poorly written
at that point; in any case, it's explaining common usage, and is not
necessarily providing this as a formal recommendation in my opinion.

If that's the goal, then I think HTML 4.01 spec needs correction;
TITLE should not be -equated- with TOOLTIP.

(Again, TOOLTIP attribute doesn't exist, but it -could- as part of
an XHTML module.)

Kynn Bartlett                                    mailto:kynn@hwg.org
President, HTML Writers Guild                    http://www.hwg.org/
AWARE Center Director                          http://aware.hwg.org/
Received on Friday, 25 February 2000 18:04:38 UTC

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