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Re: Desc and Alt

From: Dave Raggett <dsr@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 10 Oct 1997 08:12:11 -0400 ()
To: Al Gilman <asgilman@access.digex.net>
cc: HC team <w3c-wai-hc@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.WNT.3.95.971010075838.-137189G-100000@hazel.hpl.hp.com>
On Thu, 9 Oct 1997, Al Gilman wrote:

> I don't understand why plain text as content in an OBJECT doesn't
> have the same problem with old browsers as plain text in the
> content of a MAP.  I hope Dave can clarify this point. 

HTML 4.0 formally excludes OBJECT from occurring within PRE.
As a result, text within an OBJECT element would be rendered
as text within the BODY or P elements -- white space sequences
including newlines mapped to a space character etc.

> I believe that for LONGDESC to be a solution, there must be some
> default browser behavior defined.  I believe that there is not
> consensus on this point, nor on what the default behavior is. 
> There is a smaller issue as to whether the HTML spec or a separate
> document is the place to publish the default behavior. 

default for which browsers?

For Netscape and Internet Explorer, I believe we can readily get
them to make this attribute available to scripts and programs in
languages such as Java that walk the parse tree using the features
being exposed via the Document Object Model. It will be practical to
develop tools for people with accessibility problems that leverage
the scripting interfaces to visual browsers. I don't think MS or NS
will want to do much specifically for screen readers, as these are
seen as something of an anachronism. 

For browsers specially designed for non-visual rendering, I would
expect them to render the longdesc attribute appropriately, and
under user control. For instance images could be rendered by a sound
icon plus the alt text. The user would be able to ask for the
longdesc text if he or she so desired, e.g. via a spoken command or
key press. 

-- Dave Raggett <dsr@w3.org> http://www.w3.org/People/Raggett
phone: +44 122 578 2521 (office) +44 385 320 444 (gsm mobile)
World Wide Web Consortium (on assignment from HP Labs)
Received on Friday, 10 October 1997 08:14:23 UTC

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