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learning HTML

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Sun, 9 Apr 2000 07:29:14 -0400 (EDT)
To: WAI IG <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.20.0004090716530.7849-100000@tux.w3.org>
Just some personal thoughts at the moment. Comments are invited (obviously).

I have been teaching HTML almost since i started learning it, and I have
always taught people how to write HTML code as the way to make sure that the
results suppor accessibility. But I have come to believe that most people
writing HTML should not bother with source code.

It is important to know how to use the language (as it is ith english, or
italian, or C++), but there are tools which mean it is not important to know
the underlying code. THis is similar to most modern wod-processors - it is
imortant to know how to use them, but it doesn't really matter how they
represent the information about what is a heading or a presentation
style. This is kind of unsurprising really - it was designed to be editied
with WYSIWYG tools (or audio equivalents - What You Hear Is What You might
Get, or whatever).

So I am thinking about how to update the tutorial stuff I wrote a coupleof
years ago to take account of this.

There will always be a role for people who understand the underlying code
inside out - it is one way to make sure you are writing things correctly, and
it is essential if you are going to develop software. But that is a very
small minority of people using it. It seems to me that the effort would be
better spent in finding better Authoring Tools.

I wrote a couple of pages for Amaya (the W3C authoring tool, which is a
test-bed rather than a product, but the tool I have used for almost
everything I create on the web over the last year) on how to write HTML
well. They are part of the help files, but are also on the Web -
http://www.w3.org/Amaya/User/HTML-elements/infotypes is a general
introduction to writing HTML (that doesn't mention angle brackets at all) and
there is a page on Accessibiltiy in Amaya at


Charles McCN

Charles McCathieNevile    mailto:charles@w3.org    phone: +61 (0) 409 134 136
W3C Web Accessibility Initiative                      http://www.w3.org/WAI
Location: I-cubed, 110 Victoria Street, Carlton VIC 3053
Postal: GPO Box 2476V, Melbourne 3001,  Australia 
Received on Sunday, 9 April 2000 07:29:15 UTC

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