W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > wai-xtech@w3.org > February 2007

Re: popups to provide more information

From: Will Pearson <will-pearson@tiscali.co.uk>
Date: Sun, 25 Feb 2007 01:47:15 -0000
Message-ID: <000c01c7587e$e0a546c0$6400a8c0@cs.bris.ac.uk>
To: <wai-xtech@w3.org>

T.V Raman wrote:
"it might be useful to think of role:link as a specialized "button".

Button is actually a "trigger" --- a thing that when activated executes an 

Links on the Web -- including html:a -- the beloved anchor element -- are in 
fact specialized triggers"

I agree with the perspective that both buttons and links trigger something; 
however, I would argue that users maintain a semantic distinction between 
the two.  Users often think of a link as moving to another page, hence the 
term link, whilst they think of a button as performing the action described 
by its label.  If links were to b e semantically represented as buttons then 
I suspect that users would be very confused.  Link text describes the linked 
to content and not an action, and users would likely be looking for an 

Whilst users could adapt their conceptual knowledge of a button over time 
semantically treating links as buttons would likely annoy users in the 
beginning.  Therefore, I would think it sensible to preserve the semantic 
distinction between the two.

Received on Sunday, 25 February 2007 01:43:30 UTC

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