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Re: using absolute positioning

From: Jonathan Chetwynd <j.chetwynd@btinternet.com>
Date: Tue, 13 Jan 2004 11:04:03 +0000
Cc: "BAYLISS, Andrew" <andrew.bayliss@oup.com>, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
To: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@sidar.org>
Message-Id: <32C9D2FD-45B8-11D8-878D-0003939B5AD0@btinternet.com>

Absolute positioning offers one very concrete advantage, and that is 
one can change the order of resources on a page.
This means a screen reader and a viewer get resources in a different 
So for the viewer centre and top left have urgent or important content, 
whereas for a screenreader it comes first.
similarly navigation common to every page on a site can be left until 
last for screen readers but placed anywhere on the edge for sighted 
This is different to the tab order, which in any case may not be 
we use this at http://www.peepo.com.

However if presentation is central to your thinking it may be worth 
looking at SVG Scaleable Vector Graphics.
Whilst the accessibility of SVG is currently rather limited, it does 
provide enhanced control over presentation.



On Tuesday, January 13, 2004, at 09:14  am, Charles McCathieNevile 

> Tina mostly explained why to avoid absolute positioning - there are 
> assumptions in it that don't always hold. (This can be reduced if you 
> have sensible media-specific styles, including for small screens.)
> The other reason is that implementation support isn't yet fantastic - 
> you can do simple layout with  margins, float (for columns) much more 
> reliably than you can do absolute positioning, at this stage.
> Unlike in the late 1990s it seems that most tool developers are 
> actually working on implementing standards correctly, so it might not 
> take as long as it did for CSS1 to get reasonably widespread 
> implementation - cause for hope.
> Cheers
> Chaals
> On Monday, Jan 12, 2004, at 12:10 Europe/Rome, BAYLISS, Andrew wrote:
>> Just read the article posted on the BBC web site concerning the 
>> winners of
>> the Visionary Design Award.  The National Library for the Blind has 
>> posted
>> 10 tips, one of which is the says you should avoid the use of absolute
>> positioning when building a web page.  Surely if you are building a 
>> web page
>> using a tableless design, you end up having to use absolute 
>> positioning to
>> ensure that the elements are positioned correctly?
>> Could somebody tell me why the use of absolute positioning should be
>> avoided?
> --
> Charles McCathieNevile                          Fundación Sidar
> charles@sidar.org                                http://www.sidar.org
Jonathan Chetwynd
"A web by people with learning difficulties"
Received on Tuesday, 13 January 2004 05:57:57 UTC

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