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Re: user-driven access to site formatting options [was: Re: UAWG comment on the Mobile ...]

From: Charles McCathieNevile <chaals@opera.com>
Date: Fri, 10 Feb 2006 13:05:47 +1200
To: "Al Gilman" <Alfred.S.Gilman@ieee.org>, w3c-wai-ua@w3.org
Message-ID: <op.s4qirxlhwxe0ny@widsith.local>

On Fri, 10 Feb 2006 06:53:42 +1200, Al Gilman <Alfred.S.Gilman@IEEE.org>  

> Should there be a requirement that if a given service has the ability to  
> present itself in
> pages confomring to this best-practice document on the presuption of a  
> vanilla reference
> mobile device, that that flavor of the site should be advertised and  
> accessible to PWD
> on the Internet at large by a) inclusion on a site map for the home  
> page, for instance, and
> b) by allowing as-for HTTP requests to elicit this particular "resource  
> representation" where
> the URLs are overloaded and might be big or little pages.
> [or do they require URL encoding because the negotiation in HTTP  
> metadata is not
> sufficiently supported in mobile device browsers?]

If I understand the heretoforegoing (and I am not at all sure I do),

There is no reliable way to know if you are begin accessed by a mobile  
device. So unless you serve, by default, a mobile-friendly version from a  
given URI, there is no obvious way to be friendly to mobiles.

What may happen is that a detection approach can be used to find a "more  
capable" browser and send adapted content to it, optimised to take  
advantage of its capabilities. So the risk is that if the system thinks  
your browser can handle foobar, it sends it. (This is why WAI should have  
been thinking about describing preferences in CC/PP. But it's probably OK,  
other people are doing that through other fora now.)

The workaround is to change what your system says it is (like Opera does,  
claiming to be less capable in order to get the default presentation, but  
for different reasons).

> "Once upon a time there was a lively trade in blind web users passing  
> around the URLs for
> the web sites cooked to be cell-phone-friendly.  It turned out that  
> these pages were
> pretty blind-friendly in the large.  Is this practice still current?


> Have the big pages gotten better?

Yes, by and large...

> Has the markup in mobile pages gotten away from standard HTML?

Not really. It has moved towards it in general, as more phones have become  
HTML capable. (About 1.1 billion WAP phones. About 700 million of those  
handle the normal web, although this is a relatively new development - a  
year ago the pro)portion of real web phones was a lot lower. On the other  
hand, they get used more than WAP. Firefox and Opera both handle WML on  
the desktop, too)

> Have the networks shut down access to the mobile-targeted pages?

In general, no.

>  Or is this an ongoing practice?

Is this different from the first question?



Charles McCathieNevile                     chaals@opera.com
   hablo español  -  je parle français  -  jeg lærer norsk
      Peek into the kitchen: http://snapshot.opera.com/
Received on Friday, 10 February 2006 02:06:33 UTC

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