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Re: <span> within a word any issue for screen readers?

From: Orion Adrian <orion.adrian@gmail.com>
Date: Mon, 9 Jan 2006 22:10:53 -0500
Message-ID: <abd6c8010601091910rcf6549dvd3fe197163318aee@mail.gmail.com>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

> > But what if the <span> is bolded or underlined or whatever for some
> > other true valid presentational purpose, what should the screen reader
> > say?
> I can't think of a true valid presentational purpose other than "design"
> (in the pejorative, whimsical, "just because it looks good to me" sense
> of the word - not "designed with a reason in mind"). "Valid
> presentational purpose", to me, implies a semantic intent - again, I
> can't think of a case in which this would be necessary in real world
> examples. So, this leaves the "purely visual, no meaning" design, in
> which case I'd say it's clear that it should lie purely in the domain of
> CSS. If there were a very real need for styling individual sub-strings
> of a single "functional unit" (probably not the right definition...i
> mean "a word"), then we should advocate for the addition of a substring
> selector in CSS. There should be *no need* to do anything at all in the

XPointer has syntax for this kind of thing. Perhaps we could borrow it for CSS.

> > Please add your own examples and specify how you think the screen reader
> > should read the string of text.
> > 9. How should LiveHelp be read? as live help, or live capital H elp, or
> > live help capital H, or what?
> I'd be tempted to say it should be read out as "Live Help" and that the
> AT should look for the change in case to identify word boundaries, but
> then it would run afoul of "misuses" of mixed case (which could,
> however, come from the above case of "purely visual design" and should,
> to be consistent with what I said above, not be in the markup but in CSS
> or SVG etc)

Though why outside of a system that requires no spaces would one write
Live Help as LiveHelp?


Orion Adrian
Received on Tuesday, 10 January 2006 03:11:03 UTC

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