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Re: ALT tag preferences

From: Tyler Kendall <tyler_kendall@ncsu.edu>
Date: Thu, 28 Jun 2001 16:00:55 -0400
Message-ID: <3B3B8CF7.CE8EC0FE@ncsu.edu>
To: Mike Scott <mscott@msfw.com>
CC: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Come to mention it, I too get the same results using JAWS 3.70.87 (the newest
non-beta version, I think).  Only I have the verbosity set to read all images -
so mine reads the file names in these cases.  I also thought that JAWS read
ALT="*" as "star", but it doesn't seem to be doing so.


Mike Scott wrote:

> I ran a quick test with JAWS 3.71.36 (beta) and IBM Home Page Reader 3.0
> (both set to their default verbosity settings). I was a little surprized at
> the results:
> (1) no alt - neither read anything
> (2) alt="" (null) - neither read anything
> (3) alt=" " (space) - neither read anything
> (4) alt="*" - JAWS read nothing, HPR read "asterisk"
> (5) alt="--" - JAWS read nothing, HPR read "dot" while its Text View showed
> "[--.]"
> (6) alt="bullet" - both read "bullet"
> I am very surprized at JAWS' behavior. I'm almost certain that in earlier
> versions, alt="*" produced "asterisk" or "star". With this version I
> couldn't get it to read "*", even with punctuation verbosity set to "all".
> I'm not sure if this is intended behavior or a bug in this beta version.
> Anybody else getting different results? Does the height/width of the image
> make any difference?
> One fairly minor issue with alt=" " (space) is that visual browsers will
> show the space character as a "tool tip" (small yellow box with nothing in
> it) when te mouse is hovered over the image, which is not a big deal, but
> slightly annoying. It would seem like alt="" (null) would be the most
> appropriate to represent null content.
> Mike
> -----Original Message-----
> From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org]On
> Behalf Of David Poehlman
> Sent: Thursday, June 28, 2001 10:35 AM
> To: Tyler Kendall; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
> Subject: Re: ALT tag preferences
> Hi Tyler and welcome to the fray.
> On your first question, this is a bug in jaws and we hope it will be
> addressed soon.  you could use alt=" " that's a space in quotes for
> those who didn't catch it but I would dis recommend any characters to
> indicate "spacers".
> On the second question, here again, we have a problem with jfw so you
> may have to use "--" that's two dashes for those who need it described,
> because for some reason, jfw doesn't like one character alt tags.  The
> rule of thumb here is the alt should provide the function not a
> description.
> Thanks and again welcome!
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Tyler Kendall" <tyler_kendall@ncsu.edu>
> To: <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
> Sent: Thursday, June 28, 2001 10:32 AM
> Subject: ALT tag preferences
> Hello all,
>     First, as I'm new to the list, a brief introduction: My name is
> Tyler Kendall and I'm in charge of providing accessible web design
> education, consulting, and review at NC State University.  "Hello!"
>     I'm hoping to get a consensus of what people feel is the 'best
> practice' regarding the use of ALT tags for spacer images.  I have been
> recommending using ALT=' ' and giving the file a meaningful name (like
> 'spacer.gif').  The new access board guide to Section 508
> (http://www.access-board.gov/sec508/guide/1194.22.htm) is the first
> place I've seen this officially recommended - though I recall seeing it
> used once or twice in examples in other guides.
>     While this approach seems the best I've come across, I'm not
> entirely pleased with it.  JAWS, the screen reader with which I have the
> most experience, treats these images the same as images with no ALT tag
> what-so-ever, and in many ways this seems to be a trick to get Bobby
> approval.  Is there a better way to provide users of screen readers a
> solution here?
>     On a similar note, I've been recommending the use of ALT='bullet'
> for graphic list bullets (when people seem unwilling to use the HTML
> list markup), but I'm wondering, does ALT='*' has much support?
> Thanks,
>     tyler.
> --
> Tyler Kendall
> Web Accessibility Specialist
> North Carolina State University
> Voice: 919-513-4087
> Fax: 919-513-1893
> Email: tyler_kendall@ncsu.edu

Tyler Kendall
Web Accessibility Specialist
North Carolina State University
Voice: 919-513-4087
Fax: 919-513-1893
Email: tyler_kendall@ncsu.edu
Received on Thursday, 28 June 2001 16:01:38 UTC

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