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Re: alt attribute comments?

From: Steven Faulkner <faulkner.steve@gmail.com>
Date: Sun, 23 Sep 2007 18:23:47 +0100
Message-ID: <55687cf80709231023w735fb3d6xcc72f8b8289d21ba@mail.gmail.com>
To: "Anne van Kesteren" <annevk@opera.com>
Cc: www-archive@w3.org
Hi Anne,
>I suppose I could have, though my site does fit in that category. (It's
>automated and does not support insertion of replacement text at the
>moment.)

So in the process od building the tool you decided not to provide a facility
to add alt, so while conforming to the draft html 5 spec you both failed to
conform with ATAG and WCAG 1.0 for the tools output. I suppose one will go
to great lengths to prove a point :-)

>It's also not really clear to me what description would be
>adequate enough, but that's a separate issue.

i think this is  somewhat spurious as people with half the skills that you
possess could provide a few words that would be a halfway decent
alt text, definitely better than none at all.

>Correct. Note that this would be true for <img alt=""> as well except that
>there the end user does not know there's an image at all on the site and
>therefore can't ask software or maybe a real person to describe the image
>for him.

For the most part the user won't know there is an image on the site with no
alt attribute as the AT dosn't inform the user of the images presence when
it has no alt  attribute (unless the image is the sole content of a link).
so won't be able to ask software or a person to describe the image for them.


See Ya!


On 23/09/2007, Anne van Kesteren <annevk@opera.com> wrote:
>
> On Sun, 23 Sep 2007 17:00:11 +0200, Steven Faulkner
> <faulkner.steve@gmail.com> wrote:
> >> The HTML5 draft does not allow no alt attribute for any image. It's
> >> actually a MUST level requirement to provide it for most and a SHOULD
> >> for images with critical content.
> >
> > from the draft spec the reason you give for not providing an alt text
> > does not appear to fit
> >
> > "the alt attribute should only be omitted when no alternative text is
> > available and none can be made available, e.g. on automated image
> gallery
> > sites."
> >
> http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/section-embedded.html#the-img
> >
> > You could have provided alts for the images, but chose not to.
>
> I suppose I could have, though my site does fit in that category. (It's
> automated and does not support insertion of replacement text at the
> moment.) It's also not really clear to me what description would be
> adequate enough, but that's a separate issue.
>
>
> > This would take too much time for little benefit" then their pages will
> > be  be
> > both valid and conformant.
>
> Correct. Note that this would be true for <img alt=""> as well except that
> there the end user does not know there's an image at all on the site and
> therefore can't ask software or maybe a real person to describe the image
> for him.
>
>
> > BTW Don't you think it a little odd that the draft
> > tells authors that they MUST have the alt attribute  on meaningless
> > images but makes it optional on those with meaning that is critical
> > content?
>
> This seems to fit with the way <img> has been designed and is implemented.
> I'm not really sure if anything else is possible unless there's an
> algorithm that can tell you whether an image is meaningless or not and I
> don't think that's possible.
>
> >Hopefully image interpretation software gets better soon.


until then we will have to rely on authors to do the right thing.

>> Regarding no alt= attribute, that indeed seems to be case. Which is why
> >> we might want to try something else instead. On the other hand, going
> >> out
> >> from the current state of the art of screen readers doesn't really help
> >> solving this problem I think. Dunno really.
> >
> > yes i think something else is definitley needed. something to explicitly
> > flag images that have the alt attribute omitted for those reasons that
> > are cited in the spec.
>
> Hopefully image interpretation software gets better soon. That will
> hopefully solve the real problem here which is that a lot of authors don't
> really have an incentive other than "search engine optimization" to
> provide replacement text for images. (I'm not a big believer in requiring
> such things by law, etc.)
>
>
> --
> Anne van Kesteren
> <http://annevankesteren.nl/>
> <http://www.opera.com/>
>



-- 
with regards

Steve Faulkner
Technical Director - TPG Europe
Director - Web Accessibility Tools Consortium

www.paciellogroup.com | www.wat-c.org
Web Accessibility Toolbar -
http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html
Received on Sunday, 23 September 2007 17:24:01 UTC

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