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RE: longdesc

From: Donna Vignes <vignesdd@ddvdesigns.com>
Date: Sun, 2 Oct 2005 11:17:27 -0400
To: <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <000401c5c764$680a4e10$8814d218@office>

I also agree... accessible design should strive to be inclusive of various
processing mechanisms (device independence) and input methods (user
differences).  The challenge is to find the means to package information in
such a way that we come closer to the goal. Longdesc is a painless and
reasonable way to extend access to more users.

Donna Vignes

PS - as a former teacher,  Derek gets it! 
As per my previous post here - " Designing for the web is not so unlike
designing for instruction."

-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] On Behalf
Of Glenda L Sims
Sent: Sunday, October 02, 2005 8:09 AM
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: RE: longdesc

I second what Patrick advises about longdesc.  It has always frustrated me
that longdesc seems designed just for screenreaders.  I'd much rather let
everyone have access to the longer description through a plain ole link on
that page.  Longer descriptions aren't just for the visually impaired, for
example, they can help people with cognitive disabiliites.
Reminds me of one of my favorite Derek Featherstone quotes.  
" 'A picture is worth a thousand words; some people need the thousand
words.'  Well, I always extend this one more and say, 'Some people actually
want and need both.' So why not give them both? Let's make it so that
everybody can benefit. Why hide something in ... longdesc? "
Isn't Derek just brilliant?
glenda sims | ut austin | 512.232.7738 | gsims@austin.utexas.edu |


From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org on behalf of Patrick H. Lauke
Sent: Thu 9/29/2005 4:17 PM
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: Re: longdesc

Charles McCathieNevile wrote:

> It is generally supported by extensions - there is an Opera script 
> that
> adds a link if you want it, and I believe there is something similar
> for  IE. In Mozilla you can get the link in the properties, and then
> copy/paste  it to follow - I am not sure if the Opera script was written
> to work in  Mozilla too, but it may have been.

Pimping my own wares for Firefox:
(with a more thorough explanation and test page at

But in general, it boils down to: if by "supported" we mean "exposed to the
user in any kind of workable, user friendly way" then the answer looks
rather bleak out of the box. I would not rely on having important
information simply linked to from a longdesc attribute - and I would
certainly not advocate having the "[D]" link either. A discreet link with
meaningful text after the image would be my choice...

Patrick H. Lauke __________________________________________________________
re.dux (adj.): brought back; returned. used postpositively [latin : re-, re-
+ dux, leader; see duke.] www.splintered.co.uk | www.photographia.co.uk
Web Standards Project (WaSP) Accessibility Task Force
Received on Sunday, 2 October 2005 15:17:39 UTC

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