Re: aria-describedat

Silvia Pfeiffer <> wrote on 03/21/2012 06:18:35

> From: Silvia Pfeiffer <>
> To: Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis <>,
> Cc: Richard Schwerdtfeger/Austin/IBM@IBMUS, W3C WAI-XTECH <wai-
>, George Kerscher <>,
> Date: 03/21/2012 06:19 PM
> Subject: Re: aria-describedat
> On Thu, Mar 22, 2012 at 9:20 AM, Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis
> <> wrote:
> > On Wed, Mar 21, 2012 at 2:32 PM, Richard Schwerdtfeger
> > <> wrote:
> >> This is an unofficial draft of aria-describedat that Steve and I
> are working
> >> on for ARIA 1.1. Mike, thanks for putting setting us up with a work
> >>
> >>
> >
> > Thanks for sharing.
> >
> > Some feedback.
> >
> > - One of the problems with longdesc has been that its data type is not
> > obvious. The name should reflect the fact that it is a URL. e.g.
> > "aria-descriptionurl" or "aria-describeaturl" would be better.
> > "aria-descriptionurl" has the advantage of being a little harder to
> > confuse with "aria-describedby". It surprises me that after all the
> > problems with the naming of "longdesc" people are proposing adding a
> > similarly ambiguous name.
> Interesting point. How would descriptionhref or descriptionref work?
We could call it aria-descriptionhref or aria-descriptionurl? I don't think
anyone is hung up on the name.
> > - What's the rationale for adding yet more attributes with the
> "aria-" prefix?
> It's part of the aria set of technologies and developed as part of
> these technologies in WAI, so logically added with the same custom
> prefix as the other aria technologies. I think that's fair enough.
> We could, instead, propose it as a HTML attribute, drop the "aria-"
> part and make sure it gets into HTML5 and developed by the HTML WG. Is
> that what you're suggesting?
While that could be done we would have to create one for SVG too and the
author would have to learn something new. This was the problem with HTML4.
We had a longdesc,  a summary on table, an alt on img, a title on ... .
Then we go to SVG and start  over again. Let's make accessibility semantics
consistent across technologies.

To further illustrate my point one of the biggest frustrations we have is
that each platform has a different accessibility API. UIA is different from
MSAA/IA2 which is different from the MacOSX accessibility protocol. We
should have consistency across technologies. I have had to deploy ARIA
across hundreds of IBM product teams and the fact that we have a single
declarative API that works independent of platform and independent of the
elements has had a huge impact on productivity as the developers can talk a
common accessibility language.

If it is in ARIA it will get into HTML5. We have a whole section on ARIA.
ARIA 1.1 is meant to address additional features we need for HTML5.

Besides, HTML5 already is huge.

> Silvia.

Received on Thursday, 22 March 2012 14:08:01 UTC