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Request for clarification about text/color control resolution (4.1, 4.2, 4.3, 4.4)

From: Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 25 Jul 2000 12:24:02 -0400
Message-ID: <397DBF22.9209B518@w3.org>
To: w3c-wai-ua@w3.org
Jon,

Can you confirm a resolution from the 20 July teleconference:

  > 1. expand font family size and color requirement to be 
  > on an element basis not just a global setting

Specifically, I interpret this resolution to mean that 
clarifications are required for four checkpoints 
4.1, 4.2, 4.3, and 4.4  (refer to 7 July draft [2]). 
I'm not sure what these clarifications should be.

I want to retract my proposal for a priority 1 requirement
for element-level configuration of colors and fonts because
this requires a selector mechanism (like CSS selectors) to 
identify elements). I don't want to require a selector
mechanism because there's no standard way to do this
outside of a particular specification (CSS, XPath).

Configuration on a global level makes sense (more or
less the 7 July 2000 draft of the checkpoints), but
there needs to be clarification about how those global
style preferences should (or must) cascade with
other style preferences (e.g., author styles). For
example, in Netscape Navigator, I can specify
the default text background color, the default 
text foreground color, the default link style, and whether 
my preferences should override all others. We need
to clarify that this type of override is required by
the four checkpoints.

Interactive control of fonts and colors seems like 
a reasonable request (though I don't know if anyone
implements this, unless you consider changing the
user style sheet to be control, and I don't). 
Note also the proposal related to issue 296 [3], which 
suggests adding control for 4.2-4.4. However, I'm not sure
that this should be a P1 requirement.

PROPOSAL:

This discussion got started in the context of link (8.2, 8.3),
selection, and focus highlighting (4.13 and 4.14). 
The proposal was to have the link, selection, and focus 
highlight checkpoints point to the font and color requirements 
of checkpoints 4.1-4.4 and to expand 4.1-4.4 to element-level
control and configuration. Even though I proposed expanding 
the requirements of 4.1-4.4, I am scared off by the issues
this would raise.

Instead, I would like to return to my original proposal
(one mechanism in addition to color) [4]. I could also
live with one mechanism in addition to color and font
control (as discussed on 20 July).

Finally, I propose clarifying 4.1-4.4 as follows
(originals are quoted below my signature):

4.1 Allow the user to configure and control
    the size of paragraph text. Make available the 
    range of system font sizes.
    
 Note on 4.1: I have chosen "paragraph" text (which is 
 very HTML-centric) consciously. Otherwise, what would be
 the set of elements for which configuration is required?

4.2 Allow the user to configure the font family for
    all text. Allow the user to specify whether this
    preference overrides author-specified font families.
    Allow the user to select from among
    the range of system font families.

4.3 Allow the user to configure the foreground color
    for all text. Allow the user to specify whether this
    preference overrides author-specified text foreground
    colors. Allow the user to select from among
    the range of system colors.

4.4 Allow the user to configure the default text 
    background color. Allow the user to specify whether this
    preference overrides the author-specified text
    background colors. Allow the user to select from among
    the range of system colors.

These four checkpoints should be analyzed (in terms of
minimal requirements) along the following axes:

1) Are we talking about configuration or control of a global
   resource (such as "the default background color")
   or an element-level resource? If element-level config/control
   is required what is the range of elements? 

2) Must the user's preference always override competing
   font and color settings?

3) What is the range of values for the colors and fonts?
   [We've already answered: use system values.]

I am not proposing to add additional requirements for 
control of fonts and colors at the element level at this time.

 -  Ian

[1] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-wai-ua/2000JulSep/0097.html
[2] http://www.w3.org/WAI/UA/WD-UAAG10-20000707/
[3] http://cmos-eng.rehab.uiuc.edu/ua-issues/issues-linear.html#296
[4] http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/w3c-wai-ua/2000AprJun/0448.html
The four checkpoints in question:

4.1 Allow the user to configure and control the size of text.
    If this is done by allowing the user to configure font 
    size, make available the range of system font sizes

4.2 Allow the user to configure font family. Allowing the
    user to select from among the range of system font families.

4.3 Allow the user to configure foreground color. 
    Make available the range of system colors.

4.4 Allow the user to configure background color.
    Make available the range of system colors.

-- 
Ian Jacobs (jacobs@w3.org)   http://www.w3.org/People/Jacobs
Tel:                         +1 831 457-2842
Cell:                        +1 917 450-8783
Received on Tuesday, 25 July 2000 12:24:06 GMT

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