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I18N review comments on UAAG 1.0

From: Richard Ishida <ishida@w3.org>
Date: Tue, 24 Sep 2002 17:38:12 +0100
To: <w3c-wai-ua@w3.org>, <w3c-i18n-ig@w3.org>
Cc: "Richard Ishida" <ishida@w3.org>
Message-ID: <000a01c263e8$c64fdb80$0d02000a@w3c40upc3ma3j2>

Please find enclosed the last call comments from the Internationalization WG on the User Agent Accessibility Guidelines 1.0
Version reviewed was 21 August 2002

Checkpoint 2.10, checkpoint provision 1
The heading talks about 'language' whereas the checkpoint provision talks about 'scripts (ie. Writing systems)'.  Both the title and text should be changed to 'language or script', to cover both the visual rendering case and the text-to-speech (or -to-braille) case.

Checkpoint 2.10, checkpoint provision 1
Is it clear enough how one would know that text is in an 'unsupported script' or language?  Whether or not something can be rendered would presumably depend on the capabilities of the application in a given modality, eg. font availability in a visual modality (without necessarily a requirement to understand the underlying semantics if this is a visual illustration); recognisability of text (words) in a text-to-speech modality (without necessarily a requirement to be able to display the text).

Detection of an unsupported script or language would presumably be significantly aided by recognition of markup indicating a language, or recognition of a range of Unicode code points (eg. the set of Latin characters used in Welsh or African languages) that are known not to be supported. Perhaps, therefore, it would be worthwhile to add another requirement along the lines of: "Ensure recognition of any cues provided in markup relating to a change of language or script." Examples would include xml:lang in XHTML, :lang in CSS, lang in HTML, etc.

Note that there is no markup at the moment in xml or html that indicates a change of script, and there may never be.  The text 'or script' was included above to cover any possibility of such a thing occurring in a future implementation, given the assumption that the guidelines are also aimed at people developing new technologies.

Checkpoint 2.10, checkpoint provision 2
It may be helpful for the user to append "because it is not in a supported language or script (i.e. writing system)" to the end of this sentence (ie. the UA should indicate the reason that the text was lost) if one can assume that the user agent knows that it is because the text is in an unmanageable language or script.

Checkpoint 4.1, Sufficient technique
Suggest: "render text at 36 points" -> "render Latin text at 36 points".  Reason: rendering Chinese or Arabic fonts at 36 points may not produce the same degree of clarity as rendering Latin text at that size, and different settings may be more appropriate.

Sec 4.2
Since global imposition of a Latin-only font could break text in other scripts, perhaps this should be finessed to say that it should be possible for the user to specify different user preferred fonts by script group (much like eg. the common browsers allow you to set default fonts for Unicode ranges).

Hope that helps,

Richard Ishida

The W3C Internationalization Activity has restructured, and has issued a call for participation.  
See http://www.w3.org/International/about.html

tel: +44 1753 480 292
Received on Tuesday, 24 September 2002 12:41:00 UTC

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