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FW: Using em or percent for properties that need to change

From: John Foliot - WATS.ca <foliot@wats.ca>
Date: Tue, 17 Aug 2004 12:23:26 -0400
To: "W3c-Wai-Ig" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <009801c48476$87ed4de0$6601a8c0@bosshog>

Andy Budd wrote:

> CSS Techniques.
> Can I assume that this is then a recommendation
> and that the 
> setting of absolute widths on text say, is permissible to gain AAA 
> compliance?

Andy, there are 2 issues here: 1) all of the Guidelines are just that,
guidelines.  As such they are subject to interpretation; they were never
written in the language of Standards, which leave no room for discussion
or debate.  2) how/what you are defining as absolute widths in your
design.  If you are using the CSS attribute of "maxwidth" then be aware
that it is not fully supported in the current crop of browsers (thank
you Mr. Gates).  If you set a fixed with to your CSS selector then, what
happens if the user has a screen which is less than the specified width?
Horizontal scrolling?  So, no, I would not use a fixed width and claim
AAA compliance, but, that is my opinion.  The guideline does not
specify... It's open to interpretation.  Thus AAA "compliance" will
always be circumspect, as the true answer will always be "It depends..."
(on who is doing the assessing, and how they interpret the
guidelines...)  (We've thought about this some -

> 1.2 Using px for properties that do not need to be changed
> The old guidelines said that you were only supposed to use relative
> units, however pixels are defined as relative units.

Ongoing debate.  See our article at: http://www.wats.ca/articles/pixels
(Again, this is opinion)

> Is it acceptable from an accessibility standpoint, to have a fixed
> width layout specified in pixels and text specified in em's?

IMHO, no. Period.

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) 

> Andy Budd
Received on Tuesday, 17 August 2004 16:23:33 UTC

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