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Re: Why Skip Navigation Links are a Hack

From: Kynn Bartlett <kynn@idyllmtn.com>
Date: Fri, 13 Jun 2003 17:38:13 -0700
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
To: tina@greytower.net
Message-Id: <7B0BE140-9E00-11D7-AEE2-000393D9E692@idyllmtn.com>

On Friday, June 13, 2003, at 04:34 PM, tina@greytower.net wrote:
>   A bold statement. You claim that
>    <a href="#id">Skip to main content</a>
>   is presentational markup ? Could you please refer to the relevant
>   sections of the HTML specification stating that internal links are
>   presentational and only applies for one specific media type ?

It's not structural, and it introduces a link for no reason other
than providing functionality in or more presentations.

In a "pure" form of content-driven structural HTML, rather than one
which makes special exceptions for specific modalities, there's no way
you'd be inserting such a link.

Note that you may very well, in correctly structured HTML, have the
other end -- the anchor

     <a name="id"></a>
     ... [main content here] ...

But the insertion of that _link_ at a particular place is only meant
to force the insertion of an arbitrary link at an arbitrary place.

I suggest a better solution is to suggest well-structured markup, the
use of <link>, and perhaps titled anchors, such as this:

      <a name="main" title="Main Content"></a>

Then assistive technology solutions could scan for those titled
anchors and present them as a list.

But Skip Navigation is still a hack -- because it's pseudo-structural
markup, that functions as presentational markup.


Kynn Bartlett <kynn@idyllmtn.com>                     http://kynn.com
Chief Technologist, Idyll Mountain                http://idyllmtn.com
Author, CSS in 24 Hours                       http://cssin24hours.com
Inland Anti-Empire Blog                      http://blog.kynn.com/iae
Shock & Awe Blog                           http://blog.kynn.com/shock
Received on Friday, 13 June 2003 20:33:03 UTC

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