W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-ig@w3.org > October to December 2003

Re: alt size can depend on the specific image (was: RE: Alt has to be short ...)

From: Joe Clark <joeclark@joeclark.org>
Date: Wed, 17 Dec 2003 12:00:31 -0500 (EST)
To: WAI-IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.BSO.4.53.0312171156090.3950@mail.veldt.ca>

I recommend no more than 1K for alt text, but there could be cases where
more is justifiable.


(My advice there could stand updating based on recent browser history, as
we shall see.)

The following reasoning, however, does not make sense:

> Opera (and probably other browsers) will try to honor a layout
> (or stylesheet) even when graphics are turned off.

Well, they shouldn't. The Mozilla/Safari method of simply styling the alt
text without bounding box for an image that isn't there in the first place
makes more sense. Hence, in a clear example, <h1><img></h1> will be styled
as an <h1> if <img> is absent. There is no bounding box for the image that
isn't there.

Opera's (and other browsers') method is arguably incorrect. It could be a
selectable preference, though.

And in any event, visual rendering of alt text is a rather extraneous
issue for *most* readers who rely on alt text. A user agent should always
make it possible to read the full alt. IIRC, IE on Windows lets you choose
that very option.


  Joe Clark  |  joeclark@joeclark.org
  Author, _Building Accessible Websites_
  <http://joeclark.org/access/> | <http://joeclark.org/book/>
Received on Wednesday, 17 December 2003 12:03:17 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Tuesday, 13 October 2015 16:21:26 UTC