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RE: Anchor Names -- a P4 item?

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 1 Jun 2000 18:40:33 -0400 (EDT)
To: Bruce Bailey <bbailey@clark.net>
cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.20.0006011827440.25256-100000@tux.w3.org>
If you want to read the architecture documents, in which Tim Berners Lee
describes the design goals behind the web, and how it should work, they are
available on the W3C web site. They are not always easy to understand, but
they are the principles that have guided the development of the web. The
relevant ones to this discussion can be found at
http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues/Axioms, but the Design Issues stuff is
interesting reading - http://www.w3.org/DesignIssues

Basically, the idea in designing the system was taht you need a way of
referring to thinngs. So you give them a URI. Then you need a way of nt
running out of URIs, and you need a way of people using them. So you invent
an interface (links, that are text or something which describes the URI) for
people to find things. THen it doesn't matter what the underlying information
is. THis is important - what is meaningful in chinese, or to a chinese person
writing an english document, or to an english person writing a chinese
document, are different things. Too different to try and read meaning into
the stuff that is there for the machine to understand, unless you are
prepared to process entirely at the level of the machine. (There are cases
where this is not true, but as an axiomatic requirement it tends to
fail. Which is why people have strange names like McCathieNevile)


Charles McCathieNevile

On Thu, 1 Jun 2000, Bruce Bailey wrote:

  Dear Charles,
  Thanks, but title is of no help -- and it's other peoples pages I want to
  see fixed!
  I guess I am thinking about the situation where the anchor is exposed in the
  location window.  Also, I know I am not alone in my habit of browsing the
  source code in many situations.
  This seems like a legitimate P3 item to me, but perhaps I am alone in that
  Or is this a general design issue, and therefore not in the domain of the
  WCAG?  "Use sensible file names for your HTML documents" is not in the WCAG
  either.  Can anyone point me to a reference (with face validity) that
  includes such basics?
  > -----Original Message-----
  > As far as I know, anchor names are not read by anything except
  > machines. If
  > you want a meaningful title for a section anchor you should use the title
  > attribute.
  > Charles McCN
  > On Wed, 31 May 2000, Bruce Bailey wrote:
  >   Did "use meaningful labels for internal document anchors" not
  > make it into
  >   the WCAG?  For example, using <A NAME="terminology"> versus <A
  >   NAME="targ12b">.
  >   If so, where is it?
  >   If not, isn't this a P2 or at least P3 usability issue?
  >   Aren't anchor names vocalized by screen readers?

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 Thursday, 1 June 2000 18:40:39 UTC

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