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RE: Breadcrumbs

From: John Foliot - WATS.ca <foliot@wats.ca>
Date: Wed, 4 Aug 2004 10:10:23 -0400
To: <carl.myhill@ps.ge.com>, <yesilady@cs.man.ac.uk>, <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <003c01c47a2c$ebe61290$6601a8c0@bosshog>

Carl wrote: 

> If your client has expressed the need for breadcrumbs, 
> commercial pressure makes the decision for you, whatever the 
> latest flavour of the month research project shows.

As developers, consultants and to a certain extent
evangelists/educators, would it not make sense to help our clients
decide if breadcrumbs are necessary or not?  And as for the research
itself, better to have statistical data than assumptions and ponderings
based upon the "expert" title.  Yeliz, thanks for the links...
Interesting reading!

> The question is, if you are going to include breadcrumbs, 
> either because you think it a good idea, or because you are 
> being paid to do so, how do you make them accessible?

Hmm... I guess research and testing would come in here, eh?

Perhaps the bigger question *IS* whether breadcrumbs aid in
accessibility/usability.  If (as the research suggests) there may be
little-to-no benefit (my initial understand of the data results), do we
really need breadcrumb trails after all?  Would not better global
navigation and properly titled documents, etc. be of more benefit?  Do
we really need the "clutter" of breadcrumbs?  From a screen-reader
perspective, is/are persistent breadcrumbs useful or bothersome? (Hello
daily users?)  If breadcrumbs are considered navigational elements, does
section 508-(o) "A method shall be provided that permits users to skip
repetitive navigation links" come into play?  Perhaps we, as the
"experts" need to, as Yeliz suggested, answer the bigger questions

Just some random thoughts...

John Foliot  foliot@wats.ca
Web Accessibility Specialist / Co-founder of WATS.ca
Web Accessibility Testing and Services
http://www.wats.ca   1.866.932.4878 (North America) 
Received on Wednesday, 4 August 2004 10:11:45 UTC

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