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Re: escape, not skip, tank traps [was: Re: Inaccessibility of older Flash movies]

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 2 Sep 2002 11:04:35 -0400 (EDT)
To: David Poehlman <poehlman1@comcast.net>
cc: Phill Jenkins <pjenkins@us.ibm.com>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.30.0209021058220.11843-100000@tux.w3.org>

There are a couple of points I would make. Dave is right that in general good
structure already identifies the content - not so much by saying "this is the
start of the main content" but by identifying all the things that are not
main content - navigation bars, etc. These can then be skipped over or
escaped from by the user according to their preference. In a lot of cases
"the main content" is what is left.

The first time you encounter a site it can be helpful to find out what is in
the navigation bar.  And when you are navigating a way through a site you
have more or less understood you need to use the navigation bar in the most
useful sized chunks available.

But if you get halfway into a long list of links (say the A-Z list oln the
W3C home page and realise it isn't the particular navigation chunk you were
looking for (perhaps you wanted the "participate" group that is later in the
page) it is helpful to be able to find it.

In HTML almost any element can take a title attribute. Using this, combined
with good page structure, should make it easy to have a map of the page that
corresponds to the map of the site, at a higher level of detail that the
rough map you get from header elements. For most HTML this should be enough.

For something like SVG or SMIL it might be a bit more complicated, but the
same principles (and even the same attribute names) apply. So an XSLT that
builds the tree of elements with a title should be pretty straightforward for
a given language (admittedly in SVG you look for a title element as compared
to an attribute in SMIl or HTML).

Cheers

Chaals

On Wed, 28 Aug 2002, David Poehlman wrote:

>
>while we are on this, I have a couple of observations.
>
>1> user agents are becoming quite effective at presenting structure when
>well marked up even in simple html and assistive technologies and
>platforms are taking advantage of this fact.  Given this, could we not
>just advise in 2.0 that a heading be used to denote main content instead
>of creating a new tag that people need to remember to write in or tools
>will take time to implement?  xml of course will alleviate most if not
>all of this.  I find it quite helpful when a site is well marked up to
>be able to go directly to the content on a page I want when the links
>are grouped correctly and headings are used.  we can now even move by
>paragraph.
>
Received on Monday, 2 September 2002 11:04:36 GMT

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