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RE: "alt" attribute required by XHTML 1.0

From: Peter Foti (PeterF) <PeterF@SystolicNetworks.com>
Date: Wed, 5 Sep 2001 14:22:40 -0400
Message-ID: <A10A983C9DFBD4119F0300104B2EA6B7085F05@ZIPPY>
To: "'Matt Brooks'" <matt@mbjlp.com>
Cc: "'www-html@w3.org'" <www-html@w3.org>
It sounds as though your beef is not with XHTML, but rather with CSS
(and the lack of support by older browsers).  XHTML pages should display
just as nicely as HTML 4 across all browsers, and should not cause
backwards compatibility issues.  However, you will notice differences
between how the browsers handle CSS.

My suggestion is this:

Code your pages as XHTML.  This will get all of your *content* into the
page.  Next you could go back through and add in classes and IDs for the
different elements of your page (once you have identified the different
objects in your page).  This is harmless since you have no CSS to
implement yet.  Next, I would create the CSS that you would like to use.
Sounds like your goal is to control the presentation.  So check how your
pages look in version 4 browsers.  Anything older than that is obsolete.
If your XHTML is structured correctly, then older browsers should still
be able to view the content, even if they don't get the nice
presentational attributes of CSS.  Note that Netscape 4 blows royally,
so a purely CSS approach may not be 100% effective for you.  This does
not prevent you from adding in some presentation HTML tags, like <font>,
<b>, or <i>.  Just make sure you close all of those tags so you can keep
your document well formed.

At the end of the day, your pages should validate as XHTML, without the
need to create a new DTD.

Hope this helps.

Peter

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Matt Brooks [mailto:matt@mbjlp.com]
> Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2001 1:56 PM
> To: Philip TAYLOR; www-html
> Cc: Peter Foti (PeterF)
> Subject: Re: "alt" attribute required by XHTML 1.0
> 
> 
> You are quite right, it does not. I had always thought it did 
> do this. Maybe
> it did in an earlier version, or maybe I had viewed alt=" " 
> by mistake.
> 
> Unfortunately there are other issues about the XHTML 1.0 Transitional
> document structure that do not work well with the type of 
> page designs I
> use.
> 
> I like the XHTML/XML idea of marking up data and then 
> employing stylesheets
> to render a document for viewing. The trouble is, this 
> doesn't work well
> across browsers, and is not very backwards compatible (for 
> example, older
> browsers don't understand stylesheets).
> 
> My primary goal is this:
> Have pages that can be read on the server as XML but 
> displayed to the client
> as HTML.
> 
> The solutions I think I have:
> Use a version of XHTML and comply to that absolutely within 
> my documents
> (idealy).
> 
> Develop my own DTD by removing the aspects of XHTML 1.0 that 
> do not work
> with my page designs.
> 
> Use HTML files that include content from XML 1.0 compliant files.
> 
> Use a version of XHTML (Probably 1.0 Transitional - basically 
> well formed
> HTML) but do not validate the XHTML file when parsing server side.
> 
> I do not currently know which solution to use. Please email 
> me with your
> comments and suggestions.
> 
>  - Matt
> 
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Philip TAYLOR" <P.Taylor@rhul.ac.uk>
> To: "Matt Brooks" <matt@mbjlp.com>
> Cc: "www-html" <www-html@w3.org>
> Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2001 6:10 PM
> Subject: Re: "alt" attribute required by XHTML 1.0
> 
> 
> > It was my understanding that whilst 'ALT=" "' can
> > produce such artifacts, 'ALT=""' does not; is there
> > a counter-example at which you can point me, please ?
> >
> > ** Phil.
> > --------
> > Matt Brooks wrote:
> > >
> > > No, because "" produces an empty (but displayed) tooltip in some
> browsers.
> > > This is unacceptable.
> > > Thank you for your reply.
> > >  - Matt
> > > ----- Original Message -----
> > > From: "Philip TAYLOR" <P.Taylor@rhul.ac.uk>
> > > To: "Matt Brooks" <matt@mbjlp.com>
> > > Cc: "www-html" <www-html@w3.org>
> > > Sent: Wednesday, September 05, 2001 6:06 PM
> > > Subject: Re: "alt" attribute required by XHTML 1.0
> > >
> > > > Surely if ALT is not semantically required (e.g., for a 
> spacer image),
> > > > 'ALT=""' is a perfectly acceptable compromise, is it not?
> > > >
> > > > Philip Taylor, RHBNC
> > > > --------
> > > > Matt Brooks wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > > I was surprised to see that the ALT attribrute is 
> required by the
> XHTML
> > > 1.0 Transitional DTD. I was going to use XHTML 1.0 
> Transitional in a web
> > > development project, but have now changed my mind because the ALT
> attributes
> > > are not needed on every image.
> > > > >
> > > > >  - Matt
> >
> 
> 
Received on Wednesday, 5 September 2001 14:16:01 GMT

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