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re: anchors and Bobby

From: Jon Dodd <jon@bunnyfoot.com>
Date: Wed, 21 Jan 2004 12:54:32 -0000
Message-Id: <200401211257.i0LCvJEY044546@bunnyfoot.co.uk>
To: <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

Hi everyone,

Been following this thread and similar ones like it recently and noticed
that people tend to be (or this is what I have picked up) focussed on the
technology rather than the behaviour - which I find a shame.

Who cares if bobby flags a thing that is stupid? Why waste efforts fixing a
thing that is not broken just to satisfy a technology? (I do strongly
advocate standards - but that is because it affects people).

I do a lot of user testing, and a lot of that user testing is with people
using screen readers, screen magnification etc. In an ideal world every
single link would be totally diagnostic (i.e. make sense of where it links
to) out of context (like when you list all the links) - in the real world
this isn't always possible, and in the real world it is also not always
necessary. I have countless clips of screen reader users quite happily
coping with 'find out more' or 'more' links because they realise that these
signify that they should investigate the context. Adding the title attribute
is great and should be done - but in my experience with countless users it
is reasonably rarely accessed.

So what I am really saying is:
1. Try your best to make unique meaningful links - remember this is good for
usability not just accessibility - you can quite often change a more link
into something meaningful.
2. If you can't then use links that imply previous contextual explanation
'more' 'find out more' etc. (don't use click here for god sake) 3. Use the
title attribute liberally - especially when you need to disambiguate (also
to inform of offsite links, registration needed, pdf's loading etc.) - try
to do this stuff explicitly if you can though.
4. When evaluating accessibility concentrate on what things mean to real
people, your real audience. NOT the random thoughts of the teccy bloke that
programed some code checking tool. Use these as helpers but not the focus of
your efforts - spend time on fixing stuff that matters not fixing
conformance to bobby, accverify, lift, insite, pagescreamer, etc. they are
all imperfect at checking even the things that they should be able to handle
(it is interesting to compare and contrast the performance of these across
different sites - you would assume that there would be a high degree of
correlation of result - Nope!) 5. Test what you do with the people that
matter - in the end this is the bottom line of accessibility - not ticking
the boxes of conformance to technical standards.

Rant over - thanks for listening



-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] On Behalf
Of Charles McCathieNevile
Sent: 21 January 2004 11:13
To: R.S.V.
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: Re: anchors and Bobby

Hi Ricardo,

it looks like Bobby has a badly defined test here - i.e. a bug. I don't
understand what it is picking up, but I don't see any reasonable argument
that the error exists.

If I were a Bobby user I would file a bug report...



On 21 Jan 2004, at 08:53, R.S.V. wrote:

> Hello:
> Recently, I have got problems with Bobby. I get errors in anchors
> (http://www.timon.com/bobby1.html):
> "1.	Create link phrases that make sense when read out of
> context."
> If I use “id” (http://www.timon.com/bobby2.html) instead of “name” 
> Bobby doesn’t report errors.
> Another example: the page http://www.w3.org/wai/ reports five errors 
> Priority 2 in lines 32, 49, 80, 97, 118
> Any idea about this problem? Thanks in advance.
> Regards,
> Ricardo Sánchez
Charles McCathieNevile                          Fundación Sidar
charles@sidar.org                                http://www.sidar.org
Received on Wednesday, 21 January 2004 08:00:38 UTC

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