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Techniques for 2.4

From: Denis Anson <danson@miseri.edu>
Date: Thu, 10 Feb 2000 13:34:05 -0500
To: "WAI UA Group" <w3c-wai-ua@w3.org>
2.4 When a text equivalent for content is explicitly empty (i.e., an empty
string), render nothing. [Priority 3]
Techniques for checkpoint 2.4

When a UA is rendering a page without graphics active, either because the
agent is non-visual (e.g. auditory) or because the agent is being used over
a slow connection and the user is suppressing graphics for performance, or
for an individual who may be distracted by graphics, graphics may be
responded to in one of three ways.

1. When alt text is provided, the alt text can be rendered in the flow of
the page, so that the person viewing the page gains the information
contained in the alt text, which should contain the same information as the
2. When alt text is not provided, the agent may render such information as
exists about the graphics, such as the location or name of the graphic.
In either of these cases, the agent is attempting to provide the information
that is contained in the graphic.  In the third case, the author has judged
there is not information included in the graphic.  For example, a purely
decorative image of a maple leaf might be included on a page describing
tourism in the New England states.  This is an aesthetic addition to the
page, but does not add information to the page.  In this case, the author of
the page may choose to provide an empty string for alt text. (ALT="")
In this case, the user agent should honor the belief of the author that the
image adds no information to the page by rendering the information of the
graphic when in a non-graphics mode, and render nothing.  The person should
not be exposed to empty tags like [INLINE] or [GRAPHIC].

Denis Anson, MS, OTR
Assistant Professor
College Misericordia
Dallas, PA 18612
Received on Thursday, 10 February 2000 13:32:23 UTC

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