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Re: crystal reports as html

From: Charles McCathieNevile <charles@sidar.org>
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 2003 10:23:13 +1100
Cc: WAI Interest Group <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
To: Matthew Smith <matt@kbc.net.au>
Message-Id: <4FA90D08-2D97-11D7-9EB2-000A95678F24@sidar.org>

The W3C's Authoring Tool Accessibility Guidelines - 
http://www.w3.org/TR/ATAG10 -  are applicable to these kind of tools, 
and you should tell your vendor that since you are buying a product it 
should be fit for the purpose as sold (unfortunately Microsoft managed 
to convince the world to buy software on the specific understanding 
that it not necessarily fit for anything, and the trend has stuck - 
otherwise you would perhaps be able to get a refund under standard 
implied warranty provisions).

There are products that can help - HTML tidy, as Matthew said, can be 
used in a workflow process to pick up errors, and you could add other 
tools like a-prompt or home-grown scripts to get the problems fixed. In 
the commercial world tools like AccRepair are able to check MS Office 
documents as well as HTML, and they have an interface that allows you 
to add the check/repair functionality for any specific needs. I believe 
there is a similar possibility with UsableNet's LIFT tools, but haven't 
seen it documented (HiSoftware went out of their way to show me how 
their stuff works, so I know). Of course it depends on the specifics of 
your situation...

Finally some products allow you to customise the way they produce 
content. Many (i.e. 5 or 6) years ago I worked with HTML transit and 
Word documents for a client - the process of getting well-structured 
HTML instead of tag soup turned out to involve a few Word macros which 
had to be batch-run, followed by some tweaking of the HTML transit 
rules. But retro-fitting tens of thousands of pages turned out to be 
fairly fast and cheap. (The problem was training people to do the right 
thing in the first place, rather than forever afterwards doing things 
the hard way and then  following it by applying the retro-fitting 



On Wednesday, Jan 22, 2003, at 09:26 Australia/Melbourne, Matthew Smith 

> Hi Julian/All
>> we use Crystal Reports to present info on a web site linking to the 
>> rpt file
>> and letting it generate the HTML. Problem is that the mark-up is 
>> shocking;
>> we have several graphs in the reports and afaik there is no way to 
>> add an
>> alt attribute to the image of the graph in the HTML page. Can anyone 
>> help
>> please - pointers, advice etc would be so greatly appreciated.
> This is a common problem; try saving a Microsoft Office document as 
> HTML and you'll see what I mean... (Forgive me if I'm out of date - I 
> haven't worked with Microsoft software for a couple of years - last I 
> saw was Office 97.)
> Although the writers of what are specifically Web authoring tools (as 
> opposed to applications which are just able to write HTML) are 
> hopefully changing their products to produce good, accessible markup, 
> I don't forsee that many of the writers of other applications rushing 
> to do this unless they are already producing accessibility products.
Charles McCathieNevile           charles@sidar.org
Fundación SIDAR                       http://www.sidar.org
Received on Tuesday, 21 January 2003 18:23:41 UTC

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