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Re: Document conformance: Integrating ARIA into HTML5

From: Henri Sivonen <hsivonen@iki.fi>
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 10:33:05 +0200
Cc: public-pfwg-comments@w3.org, "HTML WG" <public-html@w3.org>
Message-Id: <A2D40A3C-99E1-41F6-BDDB-843B05D8FCE9@iki.fi>
To: "Ben Boyle" <benjamins.boyle@gmail.com>

On Mar 25, 2008, at 05:34, Ben Boyle wrote:
> I wonder if where "ajax libraries" are mentioned, that may refer more
> generally to authoring tools? There are a number of tools -- content
> management systems and application frameworks spring to mind -- that I
> would also place in the same category: using classes to reinvent
> semantics that exist readily in HTML.

For the most part, ARIA doesn't make sense as something static, so  
CMSs and application frameworks would have to generate JavaScript or  
include a canned JS ("Ajax") library. That is, I don't expect  
authoring tools to edit ARIA stuff directly but to insert canned  
script-based widgets hand-developed in a text editor.

The part of ARIA that works as static, and thus could be relevant to  
document editor-type authoring tools, are landmarks. I don't like  
introducing landmarks at this stage. They are mostly redundant with  
new HTML5 container elements like <header>, <footer>, <nav>, <aside>  
and <article>. Implementing the new elements in a Web browser so that  
they 1) parse as containers, 2) have display:block; in the UA style  
sheet and 3) are reported as landmarks to AT should be about as low- 
hanging fruit as reporting landmark role attributes to AT.

Just about the only good reason for having <div role=navigation>  
instead of <nav> is that <nav> doesn't parse nicely in pre-Firefox 3  
Gecko based browsers. But if significant styling isn't tied to that  
element, the resulting behavior shouldn't be a disaster in Firefox 2.  
Is this really reason enough to introduce an attribute-based way of  
expressing document landmarks?

Henri Sivonen
Received on Tuesday, 25 March 2008 08:33:48 UTC

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