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RE: ALT-attribute usage (fwd)

From: Gregg Vanderheiden <po@trace.wisc.edu>
Date: Mon, 3 Nov 1997 23:13:45 -0600
Message-ID: <01BCE8AE.22BB8740.po@trace.wisc.edu>
To: "'Charles (Chuck) Oppermann'" <chuckop@MICROSOFT.com>, "w3c-wai-ig@w3.org" <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>

I'm missing something here.   The only way currently to use a graphic as a 
bullet is to *not* use the list constructs (tags) and to just have the 
graphic bullets as small graphic images inserted in front a bunch of 
indented one line paragraphs  (or they use line breaks to keep the lines 
closer together).    At least that is what people are doing now.

How does Active Accessibility tell you that that is a list?

(If and when you can specify that an image is used as a bullet image then 
you don't need to put alt text in cause there will be not images to put the 
alt text on.  If graphics are turned off I would presume the regular 
bullets would appear.  Hmmmm   would the alt text appear at the top of the 
list where there image specification for the list was placed? --unless of 
course it is in the style sheet.)

By the way,  an old question that didn't get answered (at least if it did I 
missed it - too much stuff too late at night).   Does HTML 4.0 allow a 
graphic to be specified as the image to be used in a UL ?      Can you do 
it with CSS or CSS2?

You also wrote:
so if I have a picture of a furry dog as my list
item graphic, I as an HTML author need to always use "Item" as the ALT
             attribute?  Isn't this a misuse of the ALT attribute?

I would say the answer is no.  The purpose of ALT is to represent the 
*function* not the look of an item.  If all your bullets are fuzzy dogs and 
that is just because you are a pet shop, then "item" would be the function 
of the Dog bullets.     If you used dog and cat bullets to indicate dog and 
cat related items then "dog item" or "cat item" would be the proper alt 
text.    Unless the fuzzyness of the dog represented some meaning, it would 
not be in the alt tag.

At least that is my reading of the consensus of the list.     Anyone else 
read it differently?

Also,  has anyone tested this on any other screen readers?  If so let me 
know.  I'm going to run some tests here but we don't have all the screen 
reader and browser combinations.

Please just listen to the following lines on your systems and tell me (on 
the list or separately) which ones pause and which do not.

Item. Bananas with period.
Item, Bananas with comma.
Item: Bananas with semicolon.

I have also attached an HTML page with the above items on it.  Please let 
me know if you get a different result with the HTML page.


(Need to know results soonest for guidelines)



-- ------------------------------
Gregg C Vanderheiden Ph.D.
Professor - Human Factors
Dept of Ind. Engr. - U of Wis.
Director - Trace R & D Center
gv@trace.wisc.edu    http://trace.wisc.edu
FAX 608/262-8848
For a list of our listserves send "lists" to listproc@trace.wisc.edu

-----Original Message-----
From:	Charles (Chuck) Oppermann [SMTP:chuckop@MICROSOFT.com]
Sent:	Monday, November 03, 1997 8:39 PM
To:	'po@trace.wisc.edu'; w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Subject:	RE: ALT-attribute usage (fwd)

I disagree with this - so if I have a picture of a furry dog as my list
item graphic, I as an HTML author need to always use "Item" as the ALT
attribute?  Isn't this a misuse of the ALT attribute?

Via the HTML object model and Active Accessibility, screen readers will
know they are talking to a list item already.  This guideline only helps
down level browsers and certain screen readers with the *visual*
presentation of the list item.

I fear that this kind of guideline only makes adoption less likely by
being confusing.

Charles Oppermann
Windows NT User Interface Group, Microsoft Corporation
mailto:chuckop@microsoft.com http://microsoft.com/enable/
"A computer on every desk and in every home, usable by everyone!"

	-----Original Message-----
	From:	Gregg Vanderheiden [SMTP:po@trace.wisc.edu]
	Sent:	Monday, November 03, 1997 1:11 PM
	To:	w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
	Subject:	RE: ALT-attribute usage (fwd)

	Perfect.  Just the feedback we needed.

	Unless I hear otherwise the guidelines will recommend

	1)  that any graphics used as bullets have the alt text  "Item"
With a
	character to cause a pause after the word.

	The two candidates are Comma and Semicolon.   Possibly with a
	afterward to keep the word from running into the next word.

	Couple of questions to close this one off

	 - Is there a consensus that there should be "item"?  (I thought
I got one
	but am not sure)
	- Is comma the proper character for a pause.  It is longer but
longer may
	not be better.  And Semicolon looks better visually and more
natural so it
	might get included more.     Should we use Semicolon or comma?
	- Is the space needed?  Can someone confirm?  Is it needed for
comma?   Is
	it needed for Semicolon?

	Thanks much.

	-- ------------------------------
	Gregg C Vanderheiden Ph.D.
	Guidelines Scribe and Compiler

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Received on Tuesday, 4 November 1997 00:21:15 UTC

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