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Re: Rethinking the necessities of ARIA landmark role "main" and HTML5 <main> element

From: Charles McCathie Nevile <chaals@yandex-team.ru>
Date: Wed, 27 Mar 2013 15:42:09 +0100
To: "Steve Green" <steve.green@testpartners.co.uk>, "Ian Hickson" <ian@hixie.ch>
Cc: "w3c-wai-ig@w3.org" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <op.wul0gja3y3oazb@chaals.local>
On Wed, 27 Mar 2013 03:07:19 +0100, Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch> wrote:

> On Tue, 26 Mar 2013, Steve Green wrote:
>> If there are multiple sections of uninteresting content it is necessary
>> to perform multiple 'skip' actions in order to get to the interesting
>> content.
> Not necessarily. That's up to the user agent / accessibility tool
> implementors. I'm saying that the interface that user agents /
> accessibility tools should offer is specifically one that skips sequences
> of uninteresting content, so that you only have to instruct the software
> to skip uninteresting content once to get to the interesting content.
> Note that this kind of solution is necessary in any case when interesting
> content _contains_ sequences of uninteresting content.
>> This is a poor user experience compared with performing a single 'skip'
>> action to get to the main content.
> I agree, but this is orthogonal to how the content is marked up. You  
> don't need role="" or <main> to achieve this.

In theory, that is true. In practice, getting authors to reliably mark up  
all the "uninteresting" sections properly, in order to enable the  
exclusion to come up with exactly what you want, is more like an  
interesting thought experiment.

The observable behaviour of authors who actually care about getting this  
right suggests that a single positive label is far more intuitive, and  
likely to result in success, than an algorithm which relies on doing  
everything else right in order to produce the desired result as a natural  

Which is why we think the HTML-WG version of the main element is actually  
sensible and useful.


Charles McCathie Nevile - Consultant (web standards) CTO Office, Yandex
       chaals@yandex-team.ru         Find more at http://yandex.com
Received on Wednesday, 27 March 2013 14:42:39 UTC

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