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RE: Noscript equivalent for clearing default text input values

From: Colin Lieberman <clieberman@dralegal.org>
Date: Wed, 7 Dec 2005 09:29:51 -0800
To: <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: 20051207122955.GA84628@mail26d.sbc-webhosting.com>

>Maybe I *should* just change the <label> to 'Search - type your stuff in
>this box' but lengthy label text doesn't always work in site designs
>especially when it's a little 'quick search' box in the top corner of every
>page.

I would take a step back and question the necessity of default text at all.
If the label for the form control is clear (e.g. "Type your name in the
box") then default text is not required full stop.

The WCAG that requires default text "until user agents..." can handle
default text correctly is (a) set to be deprecated in 2.0, and (b) a
non-issue these days.

The only users agents that have problems with default-text-less form
controls are extremely old Braille displays (please correct me if I'm
wrong), and it will be the rare day you'll encounter a user with one of
these.

Colin Lieberman
IT Manager
Disability Rights Advocates
2001 Center Street, Third Floor
Berkeley, California  94704-1204

510 665 8644 x.134 (Tel)
510 665 8716 (TTY)
510 665 8511 (Fax)

-----Original Message-----
From: w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org [mailto:w3c-wai-ig-request@w3.org] On Behalf
Of Julian Scarlett
Sent: Wednesday, December 07, 2005 7:39 AM
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject: RE: Noscript equivalent for clearing default text input values


David

Thanks for making me laugh - nice sense of humour and I'll try and catch you
on bad days more often ;-)

Anyway, really, I don't think default text is redundant - there are lots of
people out there who really don't know how to use websites and clear
instructions on what to do e.g. 'Enter search terms here' are pretty much
the only way to get round this. Of course if you do that then some people
don't delete the default values and the search goes pear-shaped. Maybe I
*should* just change the <label> to 'Search - type your stuff in this box'
but lengthy label text doesn't always work in site designs especially when
it's a little 'quick search' box in the top corner of every page.

My question should have been where should the <noscript> content be placed
but now that I've thought about it a bit more I'm thinking just below the
input. 

BUT

Isn't this sort of javascript the scripting equvalent of an image that is
purely decorative and can justify having an empty alt tag. Shouldn't there
be some recognition of the fact that not all javascript is carrying page
functionality and sometimes it's just a nice cosmetic add-on. I'm not saying
that an empty <noscript> would be a good idea but there must be some
common-sense in this and surely not all scripting needs a noscript
equivalent. Does it? Does the type of scripting I'm talking about *need* a
noscript? What happens if I don't provide one? No-one misses out on anything
important!

J.

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Received on Wednesday, 7 December 2005 17:56:48 GMT

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