W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > w3c-wai-ig@w3.org > January to March 2002

Re: WA - background-image in CSS

From: Access Systems <accessys@smart.net>
Date: Fri, 18 Jan 2002 15:24:56 -0500 (EST)
To: "Charles F. Munat" <chas@munat.com>
cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.21.0201181510090.24542-100000@smarty.smart.net>
On Fri, 18 Jan 2002, Charles F. Munat wrote:

> Jim Ley wrote:
> > There's has to be no information available in a purely decorative
> > background image other than the url to the image itself, this is already
> > provided by the page developer, and is fully available to all users if
> > they want it given appopriate UA's.  The page developer has done all that
> > is reasonable it seems to me.
> The line between purely decorative and providing content is not always 
> clear. Ineke's black and gray lined background is there to focus 

and is important to be "Translated" to a non visual format. ??something
else that focuses the attention such as "THIS IS IMPORTANT" or an alt tag
that says.   "Black and grey pattern to focus attention to this important

????  I'm not sure, but I think anyone who needs/wants to do this should
spend some time listening to an audio discription of a movie or
show.  maybe try it with the screen turned off and see if it is
understandable, especially what effect some of the little nuances that
aren't even noticed can have on the context.

> attention on the text, so it is not purely decorative. In fact, it is 
> hard to imagine what "purely decorative" could mean, or why one would 
> want such items on a well-designed page.

good question?? now we need some good answers.  back to my sign language
interpeter illustration.. in the middle of a session a fire engine goes by
outside, everyone turns, shouldn't the hearing impaired person know the
reason for the sudden lack of attention??  or if a baby is crying and
people are getting distracted and finally getting up and leaving, does the
hearing impaired person get the impresion that they are the only ones'
getting this or finding it interesting, they might if they did not know
the baby was crying in the background.
  in neither case would the speaker consider either of these "Sounds" as
adding anything to the speech.

> On my Vallarta real estate site, one might call the images of 
> bikini-clad women "purely decorative," but believe me, the site would 
> not convey the same information without them. They are very functional. 

oh oh where is the alt tag for that???????

of course just for demonstration I have shown people what an XXX rated
site looks like with Lynx....

"oh look at this"



"and then it was on to"




now personally I can't get all excited about [inline] and I have yet to
find one of these sites with descriptions

> The difficult part is deciding how that functionality can be conveyed 
> using other media for other users.


> I don't think it needs to be a one-to-one correspondence for such
> fuzzy issues, but the overall effect should be the same.

right, some eye candy can be very important too.

for example a site that is talking about lunar exploration, the background
may be the "big blue marble" photo taken by NASA (this is a photo taken by
one of the first Apollo missions of the Earth in the middle of the black
sea of space)

the photo may not have any relationship to the material being presented
but it sure is important "eye candy" in this context


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Received on Friday, 18 January 2002 15:21:49 UTC

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