Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-10 Thread Stuart Foulstone

On Mon, September 10, 2007 1:44 am, Nick Gleitzman wrote:
 Hassan Schroeder wrote:

 Absolutely. But this whole thread started with the issue of whether alt
 text should be optional in HTML5.



Well, that's simple enough.

The only reason the alt-text is being proposed to be optional is because
Microsoft are involved with defining HTML5.

Microsoft have always been against standards; they chose not to be
involved with XHTML and (having seen the threat that represented to them)
have joined with HTML5 in order to water down the standards.

Microsoft have millions of legacy Websites built with their own
proprietary, non-standards HTML using their deficient WYSIWYG software. 
If those sites fall down in Standards compliant browsers, Microsoft has
egg on it's face for going against standards in the first place and
millions of complaining customers.

This also the reason they have never produced a Standards compliant
browser - they have to cater for backwards compatibility with all those
sites written in their proprietary versions of HTML.

This is why alt-text is proposed being optional - its nothing to do with
it's effectiveness as an aid to accessibility or anything to do with
improving standards.





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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-10 Thread Stuart Foulstone

On Mon, September 10, 2007 2:24 am, Hassan Schroeder wrote:
 Nick Gleitzman wrote:

 A photocopy may be a poor, 2-dimensional representation of the real
 thing, but a blank piece of paper isn't anything at all... Which is more
 useful?

 Depends on whether you're just curious what a sandwich looks like
 or you're starving, I guess -- if the latter, the answer is neither :-)


Or if you're really starving - the blank piece of paper (less chemical
additives) ;-)


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-10 Thread David Dorward

On 9 Sep 2007, at 16:33, Michael Yeaney wrote:
I find it interesting that everyone responding to this thread has  
failed to
mention one very important aspect of any design-for-accessibility  
debate:
Until you actually test it with a target audience/persona (i.e.,  
someone who

actually **is** blind),


People seem to be rather hung up on the idea that alt text is for  
blind people. Some sighted people do use text browsers. Some sighted  
people do disable images in their browsers (I'm one of them and my  
last cellphone bill still had £20 of data charges on it). Then there  
are search engine indexing bots, and probably a host of other use cases.



--
David Dorward
http://dorward.me.uk/
http://blog.dorward.me.uk/




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-10 Thread lisa herrod
Hi Stuart

On 10/09/2007, Stuart Foulstone [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:


 On Mon, September 10, 2007 1:44 am, Nick Gleitzman wrote:
  Hassan Schroeder wrote:
 
  Absolutely. But this whole thread started with the issue of whether alt
  text should be optional in HTML5.
 


 Well, that's simple enough.

 The only reason the alt-text is being proposed to be optional is because
 Microsoft are involved with defining HTML5.




OK I have *no intention* of stirring the pot on this one, but I do need to
know how much of your  statement is Fact and how much is Opinion?

I know that there are members of the HTML 5 WG that don't support inclusion
of the alt attribute in the proposed specs - that's how this thread started-
but if you're going to throught comments like that around, can you reference
them for readers of the thread?



Microsoft have always been against standards; they chose not to be
 involved with XHTML and (having seen the threat that represented to them)
 have joined with HTML5 in order to water down the standards.



The HTML 5 WG actually has both MS and Opera staff working on it. Lachlan
Hunt who commented on this thread earlier is on the HTML 5 WG and is going
to work for opera in a month or so.

...



-- 
Lisa Herrod

Scenarioseven.com.au
Scenariogirl.com


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RE: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-10 Thread John Foliot
Lachlan Hunt wrote:
 
 What should an authoring tool (like Dreamweaver) insert by default
 when a user adds an image and immediately dismisses the alt text
 prompt?  (It currently omits the attribute unless the user explicitly
 selects empty or types in some text.)

Currently, most screen technology would prefer alt=, as this signals that
the value string for ALT is... Nothing.  Not great, to be sure, but better
than DC10567.jpg or echoing back information provided elsewhere (through
@caption or @title or similar)

 
 What should wikipedia use by default for images used in articles?  (It
 currently redundantly repeats the image caption in both the alt and
 title attributes)

Wikipedia should allow users to specify alt text (it currently does not).
By design, when uploading an image, there should be a default table in the
DB for alternative text.  Given the many times that images in tools such as
wikipedia re-use images, content authors should be prompted to use the
default alternative text, or supply 'new' alt text.  Currently wikipedia's
answer is to not allow content contributors to provide *any* alt text.

 
 What should sites like Flickr, Photobucket, Facebook, MySpace, etc.
 generate and insert?

Same as above

 
 What should forums (e.g. phpBB) or blogs (e.g. Blogger) use?


Same as above

 
 What should an email application insert when a user emails an image
 to a friend?

This one is trickier, and makes presumptions that are not in evidence.  For
example, this presumes that everyone is using HTML rich email, a bad
presumption.  It secondly presumes that personal one-to-one correspondence
might be shared, a bit of a stretch.  However, assuming that a user is
creating HTML rich email in an authoring environment like Outlook, the tool
should prompt for alt text similar to what tools such as Dreamweaver should
do, and provide the same fallback: alt=.  In online environments
(Yahoo!Mail or Gmail or what-ever) then they should handle this question
like Flickr and Photobucket would.

Nothing in the world will be able to force a content creator to do the right
thing, however entrenching the option to do the wrong thing should never be
considered as part of an emergent spec.  If currently the tools don't get it
right, fix the tools, don't change the rules.

JF




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Designer

Gunlaug Sørtun wrote:

Designer wrote:


http://www.nga.gov/feature/rothko/classic1.shtm.



Using this arbitrary example, I still maintain that a site of  images
 such as any of these will be of no more value to a blind user for 
having alt tags, other than to point out  that 'there is a picture 
there'. Of what, the blind user has no idea because they are 
impossible to describe.


You're arguing as if a site, or the web as a whole for that matter,
exists in isolation. The 'label' you mention in the part I've left out,
may indeed be just the cue a visitor need. More information can then
either be found on the page/site, somewhere else on the web, or in the
real world.

By providing cues - meaningful alt text and/or otherwise - about the
original, a suitable translation can often be found elsewhere by those
who want one.
By not providing cues, we do indeed leave visitors in the dark.

( The site you use as example, contains more than enough information
alongside the image. A reference - alt attribute - to tell _which_ image
that information belongs to is missing though.
Several other weaknesses on that example-site btw - all regarding images. )

There are art galleries that experiment with techniques to make art -
paintings or other types of art - more accessible to those who can't
fully use the senses the artist aimed at. Some of these techniques are
well suited for the digital world, but I don't think they have spread to
the web, yet.

Will something get lost in translation? Surely it will. However, that
doesn't mean a blind user is necessarily left with no idea.

Blind people's senses may also be developed far beyond what we - the
seeing - may imagine.
I do have a friend who can interpret flat images pretty well by the use
of her hands. She is sensing differences in reflected temperature,
instead of reflected light that most of us are limited too. That she
also tends to get the use of colors more or less right, is even more
surprising. Given a few more cues she gets a pretty good understanding
about most pictures.
This just to say: don't underestimate people's ability to appreciate
something, just based on what senses they do *not* have.

Alt attributes should stay - be required in HTML 5, and they should be
used in a meaningful way. What's meaningful depends on the case, but if
images are important parts of the content then an alt text should be
provided - even if it is just a 'label'.

regards
Georg


Hi Georg,

I think we are just splitting hairs now.  What I said in my conclusion was:

a) I personally do use alt tags, every time :  (In other words, I agree 
with you in principle) and


b) but I am aware of situations where they are pretty useless. (In other 
words I know their limitations in certain cases and can see why it is 
being suggested that they are 'optional'.


--
Bob

www.gwelanmor-internet.co.uk



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Gunlaug Sørtun

Designer wrote:


I think we are just splitting hairs now.


I agree (to a degree), but I wanted to paint it out with a smaller
brush :-)

a) I personally do use alt tags, every time :  (In other words, I 
agree with you in principle)


Principles are good when aiming for best practices, but are worth next
to nothing to the many who don't study (or care about) best practices
if those principles aren't at least (going to be) backed up by a
standard and can (to some degree) be checked automatically.

To (too) many the word optional means not worth bothering about,
even if that's *not* the meaning given in the suggestion regarding alt
attribute for HTML5.

b) but I am aware of situations where they are pretty useless. (In 
other words I know their limitations in certain cases and can see why

 it is being suggested that they are 'optional'.


Personally I can't see any case where the alt attribute is completely
useless, but I definitely can see lots of cases where it in itself falls
short of solving the problems related to alternative description of an
image.

We do have some optional additions to the alt attribute in existing
standards, but their use are not all that well defined, and they are
rarely used - maybe because they are, and have to be, optional.

So, I don't want the alt attribute to become optional just because we
don't have good solutions for its shortcomings, or the way it is used /
misused / not used, at the moment. Instead, we need to look for better
solutions, and they may even be based on progress in any field made
between now and the time HTML5 can be put to use.

regards
Georg
--
http://www.gunlaug.no


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread XStandard
Designer (Bob) wrote:
 Those images just cannot be appreciated by someone who
 cannot see them. No amount of descriptive prose will
 mean anything to to a blind reader.
I've never heard such shit in my life.

Designer (Bob) wrote:
 I personally do use alt tags, every time : but I am
 aware of situations where they are pretty useless.
Bob, I suspect the problem is that you don't know how to use alt text 
correctly. Let me backup my statement with some examples from your Web site.

On your home page:
http://www.rhh.myzen.co.uk/gam/index.php

You've made your company logo, an information image, into a decorative image:

img src=opening/graphics/gaminternet.gif alt=/

On this page:
http://www.rhh.myzen.co.uk/gam/altgam/gwelanmor.php

You've made an images of quote marks, decorative images, into an informative 
images:

img src=graphics/8220.gif alt=leftquote graphic .../
img src=graphics/8221.gif alt=leftquote graphic .../

You also put one of these decorative images with alt text into the middle of a 
sentence so the sentence now reads like this:

We have been involved in professional computing for more leftquote graphic 
than 20 years ...

In another graphic on this page, I don't know what this alt text means:

img src=graphics/marramgrass.gif alt=  ... /

Bob, the following link may help you better understand the difference between 
decorative and non-decorative images:

http://xhtml.com/en/xhtml/reference/img/

Regards,
-Vlad
http://xhtml.com




 Original Message 
From: Designer
Date: 2007-09-08 1:22 PM
 Rahul Gonsalves wrote:
 On 31-Aug-07, at 11:08 PM, Designer wrote:

 Well Vlad,  whether it fits your conception or not, there is such a 
 thing as a site whose prime function is visual. The only 
 'information' in the site I mentioned is what something 'looks 
 like'.  If you can't see it, there is nothing  you can do to help that.
 It's a sad fact of life I'm afraid.

 Bob,

 While not quite in direct response to your statement, I thought I'd 
 share this article from over at A List Apart:

 http://alistapart.com/articles/revivinganorexicwebwriting

 Specifically the 'A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words' bit.

 I admit to having overlooked alt text. Until a year ago I sniffed at 
 the idea of creating useful alt text for images. �If a user is blind,� 
 I reasoned, �what does he care that I have a photograph of the 
 university tower on my website?�

 My fellow designer shrugged. �Well, I guess if you don�t really care 
 about what the image says,� she said slowly, �you really don�t need it 
 in the first place.�

 Best,
  - Rahul.

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 Hi Rahul.,
 
 Whilst interesting and quite valid, I think the article is not about 
 stuff on web sites that are primarily visual art. What I mean is that 
 the sort of stuff which is purely visual poetry cannot have an alt tag 
 which adds anything other than a 'lable'.  Consider (just as an example) 
 a web site to accompany a show by Mark Rothko, with a handful of images 
 from the show displayed on the site. Those images just cannot be 
 appreciated by someone who cannot see them. No amount of descriptive 
 prose will mean anything to to a blind reader. (In fact, the images lose 
 a lot  compared to their actual presence in the gallery, even for 
 sighted viewers).
 
 In case you are unfamiliar with Rothko, you can see stuff at : 
 http://www.nga.gov/feature/rothko/classic1.shtm.
 Using this arbitrary example, I still maintain that a site of  images 
 such as any of these will be of no more value to a blind user for having 
 alt tags, other than to point out  that 'there is a picture there'. Of 
 what, the blind user has no idea because they are impossible to describe.
 
 I personally do use alt tags, every time : but I am aware of situations 
 where they are pretty useless.
 




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Stuart Foulstone
Hi,

There are no situations where use of the alt tag is useless - the null tag
means that the name of the image file is not read out.

What may be useless is inappropriate positioning and the wording of the
alt tag.

Here's aa example of coding where appropriate positioning with meaningful
alt text (or null alt text) should have been used, but wasn't:

 span class=sentence We have been involved in professional computing
 for more img src=graphics/8221.gif alt=leftquote graphic
class=graphic right/ than 20 years and have 11 years experience in web
page design and implementation. /span

(yes, they also didn't code the img end-tag correctly)

This reads:

We have been involved in professional computing for more leftquote
graphic than 20 years ... 


Here the image should be positioned at the end of a quoted paragraphs
(with CSS for visual positioning) and have more meaningful alt-text such
as unquote (with the corresponding quote at the beginning) - they
certainly don't need to be told it's a graphic.

In this case the user does not want to know the content of the graphic,
but rather it's semantic meaning in the document structure - a simple but
all too common mistake.

Stuart


On Sun, September 9, 2007 11:42 am, Designer wrote:


 Hi Georg,

 I think we are just splitting hairs now.  What I said in my conclusion
 was:

 a) I personally do use alt tags, every time :  (In other words, I agree
 with you in principle) and

 b) but I am aware of situations where they are pretty useless. (In other
 words I know their limitations in certain cases and can see why it is
 being suggested that they are 'optional'.

 --
 Bob

 www.gwelanmor-internet.co.uk



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Nick Gleitzman

Bob:

No amount of descriptive prose will
mean anything to to a blind reader.


Vlad:

I've never heard such sh*t in my life.


I've been following this thread with interest, and I have to agree with 
Vlad (if not with his exact choice of words...). I was waiting to see 
what kind of response Bob's assertion would generate, but I thought I'd 
let those already involved in the discussion have first say...


Language is what we have as our primary tool of communication. There 
are others, of course - Rothko's paintings speak volumes (even if the 
man himself lets them speak, choosing enigmatic reservation about their 
meaning) - but to presume that because someone is blind, they can't 
understand the content of a visual image via a word-based description 
is incredibly (ahem) short-sighted. They're blind, not brain-dead. I'd 
suggest the shortcoming is not in their ability to understand an 'alt' 
description, but in your ability, Bob, to write one.


To bring this back on-topic: it's not feasible, of course, to include a 
thousand-word essay as an 'alt' parameter of an img tag, if that's 
what's necessary to communicate the image's meaning (although there are 
other methods of supplying such meta-info). But including succinct, 
meaningful 'alt' descriptions of visual and/or graphic content can make 
blind people's experience of the web immeasurably richer. The skill of 
writing those 'alt's is part of writing for the web in general - a 
tricky and quite specific discipline. Being a web designer doesn't 
automatically include qualification as a web *writer*. If you can't do 
it, give the job to someone who can.


N
___
omnivision. websight.
http://www.omnivision.com.au/



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Stuart Foulstone


On Sun, September 9, 2007 2:56 pm, Vlad Alexander wrote:


 On your home page:
 http://www.rhh.myzen.co.uk/gam/index.php

 You've made your company logo, an information image, into a decorative
 image:

 img src=opening/graphics/gaminternet.gif alt=/


Actually logos are essentially visual branding - if you can't see it there
is no absolutely no point in it.  Hence, to a blind person it's merely
decorative and putting anything other than null alt-text is pointless
(except in the very rare cases where the name of the company does not
appear in text at the beginning of page content or in the title meta tag).

An exception is where the logo image is used as an image-link to the
Homepage.  Then the alt text gets tricky - do you put link to homepsge
explicitly or do you put companyname logo (because this linking of the
logo to the Homepage is common practice).

I'd go for the former rather than the latter.




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RE: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Michael Yeaney
I find it interesting that everyone responding to this thread has failed to
mention one very important aspect of any design-for-accessibility debate:
Until you actually test it with a target audience/persona (i.e., someone who
actually **is** blind), we're all just guessing at the relative importance
of the issue at hand.  Keep in mind, that some may hear the page read aloud
and think 'Sheesh - enough with the graphics descriptions that keep
interrupting the text flow of the page'.

And yes, I've witnessed this, and it is **very** humbling.  We can read the
specifications all day long and apply them in a (seemingly) 100% correct
manner, and yet still totally ruin the experience for some.

Test, test, test.

Mike

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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Hassan Schroeder

Nick Gleitzman wrote:

Language is what we have as our primary tool of communication. There are 
others, of course - Rothko's paintings speak volumes (even if the man 
himself lets them speak, choosing enigmatic reservation about their 
meaning) - but to presume that because someone is blind, they can't 
understand the content of a visual image via a word-based description is 
incredibly (ahem) short-sighted. They're blind, not brain-dead. I'd 
suggest the shortcoming is not in their ability to understand an 'alt' 
description, but in your ability, Bob, to write one.


Perhaps then you (or anyone adhering to this view) can supply, as
an example, a useful description of the cited Rothko? Or maybe one
of Jackson Pollock's works? ('No. 5, 1948' might be good)

And since art is often intended to prompt an emotional reaction on
the part of the audience, write that description so the audience
has an opportunity to connect emotionally with the described work
without putting your own bias into it...

Ready, set, go! :-)

--
Hassan Schroeder - [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Webtuitive Design ===  (+1) 408-938-0567   === http://webtuitive.com

   dream.  code.



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Rahul Gonsalves

On 09-Sep-07, at 8:54 PM, Hassan Schroeder wrote:


Nick Gleitzman wrote:

Language is what we have as our primary tool of communication.  
There are others, of course - Rothko's paintings speak volumes  
(even if the man himself lets them speak, choosing enigmatic  
reservation about their meaning) - but to presume that because  
someone is blind, they can't understand the content of a visual  
image via a word-based description is incredibly (ahem) short- 
sighted. They're blind, not brain-dead. I'd suggest the  
shortcoming is not in their ability to understand an 'alt'  
description, but in your ability, Bob, to write one.


Perhaps then you (or anyone adhering to this view) can supply, as
an example, a useful description of the cited Rothko? Or maybe one
of Jackson Pollock's works? ('No. 5, 1948' might be good)

And since art is often intended to prompt an emotional reaction on
the part of the audience, write that description so the audience
has an opportunity to connect emotionally with the described work
without putting your own bias into it...


I undertook a small experiment. I went to wikipedia [1], and I looked  
at the description of the painting that you mentioned, with my hand  
covering the image.


I then looked at the image.

Now, I will be the first to admit that I have absolutely no clue,  
when it comes to 'interpreting art'. I don't 'understand' the  
painting (perhaps I'm not meant to seek understanding), I don't  
'emotionally connect' with it...but at the end of my two-minute long  
experiment, this description:


'No. 5, 1948 is an abstract painting by Jackson Pollock (January 28,  
1912 – August 11, 1956), an American painter known for his  
contributions to the abstract expressionist movement. The painting  
was done on a 8 x 4 feet sheet of fiberboard, with thick amounts of  
brown and yellow paint drizzled on top of it, forming a nest-like  
appearance',


helped me...not connect, not relate, but understand, at some, very  
basic, naive, intellectual level, what the nature of the work might be.


I then perhaps read up on 'Abstract Art', and then I'm more clued in?  
Finally, a an attempt to write out alt text on Jackson Pollock's No.  
5, 1948:


'An abstract painting by Jackson Pollock, done on a 8 x 4 feet sheet  
of fiberboard, with thick amounts of brown and yellow paint drizzled  
on top of it, forming a nest-like appearance.'


So, while it _may or may not_ 'evoke an emotional response, I'd argue  
that there is some amount of 'data', that we can convey, even to/for  
users with visual disabilities - and exempting that data on an  
arbitrary assumption seems...premature.


In apologies for posting on a topic that I know nothing of,
Best,
 - Rahul.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/No._5,_1948

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RE: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Stuart Foulstone

On Sun, September 9, 2007 4:33 pm, Michael Yeaney wrote:
 I find it interesting that everyone responding to this thread has failed
 to
 mention one very important aspect of any design-for-accessibility debate:
 Until you actually test it with a target audience/persona (i.e., someone
 who
 actually **is** blind), we're all just guessing at the relative importance
 of the issue at hand.  Keep in mind, that some may hear the page read
 aloud
 and think 'Sheesh - enough with the graphics descriptions that keep
 interrupting the text flow of the page'...

 Mike


Sorry, I thought it had been made pretty clear that you should add images
and their corresponding alt-text appropriately, i.e. they should NEVER
interrupt the flow of the page.

To write inappropriate alt-text is wrong and is against the guidelines -
which is to use alt-text to provide an alternative to essential
information in images which is not provided elsewhere and to use null
alt-text where they don't contain such information (unless being used as a
structural element).




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Hassan Schroeder

Rahul Gonsalves wrote:

'An abstract painting by Jackson Pollock, done on a 8 x 4 feet sheet of 
fiberboard, with thick amounts of brown and yellow paint drizzled on top 
of it, forming a nest-like appearance.'


Interesting -- I'd have never used the term nest in relation to
that piece. And given that nest can be an emotionally evocative
term itself, a good illustration of the problem. :-)

So, while it _may or may not_ 'evoke an emotional response, I'd argue 
that there is some amount of 'data', that we can convey, even to/for 
users with visual disabilities - and exempting that data on an arbitrary 
assumption seems...premature.


I'm not saying we shouldn't provide /some/ data, I'm saying that
some people are trivializing the difficulty of creating *useful* and
*relevant* alt text for complex images, especially those intended to
convey *emotion* rather than simply information.

And that adds nothing to the conversation.

--
Hassan Schroeder - [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Webtuitive Design ===  (+1) 408-938-0567   === http://webtuitive.com

   dream.  code.



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Gunlaug Sørtun

Michael Yeaney wrote:
I find it interesting that everyone responding to this thread has 
failed to mention one very important aspect of any 
design-for-accessibility debate: Until you actually test it with a 
target audience/persona (i.e., someone who actually **is** blind), 
we're all just guessing at the relative importance of the issue at 
hand.


We're not all just guessing - at least I'm not. My base for saying
anything on the issue may be limited to national, and even regional,
target-groups, but the amount of guesswork I apply is also (to the best
of my ability) limited to an absolute minimum.

1: An alt-text should be short (a few words only) and to the point.
Anything in addition to that should be found elsewhere, and whether that
elsewhere is on the page, on the site, or somewhere else on or off the
web, depends on the case at hand.

2: the importance of anything on a web page, depends entirely on the
individual visitor's interests at the time of visit.

Keep in mind, that some may hear the page read aloud and think 
'Sheesh - enough with the graphics descriptions that keep 
interrupting the text flow of the page'.


The speed at which some hear a page read aloud can be (what we would
call) extreme, so we should indeed not interrupt the flow unnecessarily.
That's why it's a good thing to silence graphics that play no role in
the flow, and deliver something useful as part of the natural text flow
when it _does_ play a role.

And yes, I've witnessed this, and it is **very** humbling.  We can 
read the specifications all day long and apply them in a (seemingly) 
100% correct manner, and yet still totally ruin the experience for 
some.


Yes, but the main (original) issue here is about making the 'alt
attribute' itself optional _in_ a future specification.
Reading, and indeed writing, specifications on how to use or not to use
the 'alt attribute', only makes real sense if its existence is
_recommended_, IMO.


Test, test, test.


Testing may run into problems with my point 2 above, as few (if any) can
afford to do testing with a wide-spread enough panel to catch all.
We have to make educated guesses - and choices - no matter how well we
test and tailor our solutions to any group and their recommendations, so
self-education and use of common sense is (at least) as important as
testing.

regards
Georg
--
http://www.gunlaug.no


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Designer

Hassan Schroeder wrote:

Nick Gleitzman wrote:

Language is what we have as our primary tool of communication. There 
are others, of course - Rothko's paintings speak volumes (even if the 
man himself lets them speak, choosing enigmatic reservation about 
their meaning) - but to presume that because someone is blind, they 
can't understand the content of a visual image via a word-based 
description is incredibly (ahem) short-sighted. They're blind, not 
brain-dead. I'd suggest the shortcoming is not in their ability to 
understand an 'alt' description, but in your ability, Bob, to write one.


Perhaps then you (or anyone adhering to this view) can supply, as
an example, a useful description of the cited Rothko? Or maybe one
of Jackson Pollock's works? ('No. 5, 1948' might be good)

And since art is often intended to prompt an emotional reaction on
the part of the audience, write that description so the audience
has an opportunity to connect emotionally with the described work
without putting your own bias into it...

Ready, set, go! :-)



At Last!  Thank you!  :-   )

I refuse to carry this conversation any further, as it has degenerated 
into a nit-picking excercise.  At least,  one person has the 
sense/experience to know what I'm talking about.


I notice that no-one has taken up the challenge of providing an 
emotional alt tag . . .  :-)


--
Bob

www.gwelanmor-internet.co.uk



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Gunlaug Sørtun

Designer wrote:

I notice that no-one has taken up the challenge of providing an 
emotional alt tag . . .  :-)


We have emoticons already, but I think they are optional...  ;-)

Georg
--
http://www.gunlaug.no


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Nick Gleitzman


On 10 Sep 2007, at 1:24 AM, Hassan Schroeder wrote:


Perhaps then you (or anyone adhering to this view) can supply, as
an example, a useful description of the cited Rothko? Or maybe one
of Jackson Pollock's works? ('No. 5, 1948' might be good)

And since art is often intended to prompt an emotional reaction on
the part of the audience, write that description so the audience
has an opportunity to connect emotionally with the described work
without putting your own bias into it...

Ready, set, go! :-)


Thanks to Rahul for looking at the issue; he's saved me some time. Of 
course it's possible to describe even an abstract painting. It may, as 
I said, take a thousand words, or an essay, or even a whole book - but 
it  can be done. We have this thing called language that makes it 
possible. Whether or not the description is useful is subjective. 
Georg: ...the importance of anything on a web page depends entirely on 
the individual visitor's interests at the time of visit.


As for your second paragraph: you miss the point. My job in describing 
a painting, or a photograph, to a blind person is *not* to convey any 
emotional response that I might have to the image. It's actually 
imperative that I *don't* include any bias. Any emotional response 
possible should be the reader's, not the writer's; I would never 
presume to tell a blind person how or what to think. I reiterate: 
they're blind, not brain-dead.


And:

 I'm not saying we shouldn't provide /some/ data, I'm saying that
 some people are trivializing the difficulty of creating *useful* and
 *relevant* alt text for complex images, especially those intended to
 convey *emotion* rather than simply information.

Exactly. Good alt text is not trivial, and it's not easy, when the 
image/s are complex and/or conceptual. But an attitude of 'it's too 
hard, leave it out' is just plain lazy.


To get back to the original topic of this thread; Georg again: ... the 
main (original) issue here is about making the 'alt
attribute' itself optional _in_ a future specification. Sure, make it 
optional. Then those who can't be bothered writing alt text, or lack 
the skill to, don't have to. Their sites won't provide as rich an 
experience for blind visitors as they might, but hey - they conform to 
the spec, so they must be OK, right?


And, Bob - I refuse to carry this conversation any further, as it has 
degenerated into a nit-picking excercise.  At least, one person has the 
sense/experience to know what I'm talking about. I notice that no-one 
has taken up the challenge of providing an emotional alt tag...


Pulling out of a conversation just because people disagree with you is 
a cop-out. As for for 'emotional alt tags' - don't even try. It's not 
your job; see above.


N
___
omnivision. websight.
http://www.omnivision.com.au/



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Re: Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread nroper
Thank you for your email. I shall be away from the office between September 8th 
and September 17th. If your enquiry is urgent, then please call my assistant on 
01749 676798 in my absence.

Kind regards,

Nick Roper




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Re: Re: Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread nroper
Thank you for your email. I shall be away from the office between September 8th 
and September 17th. If your enquiry is urgent, then please call my assistant on 
01749 676798 in my absence.

Kind regards,

Nick Roper




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Hassan Schroeder

Nick Gleitzman wrote:


As for your second paragraph: you miss the point.


No, *you* miss *my* point; I said:


And since art is often intended to prompt an emotional reaction on
the part of the audience, write that description so the audience
has an opportunity to connect emotionally with the described work
without putting your own bias into it... 


Note that last: *without* putting your bias into it.


Of course it's possible to describe even an abstract painting. It

 may, as I said, take a thousand words, or an essay, or even a whole
 book - but it  can be done.

As I said, I'd like to see an example of alt text that enables a
non-sighted person to connect, in *other than* the most factual way,
with a pictured piece of visual art.

You can get a certain amount of information from a photocopy of a
grilled cheese sandwich, but it makes rather a dry meal :-)

--
Hassan Schroeder - [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Webtuitive Design ===  (+1) 408-938-0567   === http://webtuitive.com

   dream.  code.



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Nick Gleitzman

Hassan Schroeder wrote:


You can get a certain amount of information from a photocopy of a
grilled cheese sandwich, but it makes rather a dry meal :-)


Absolutely. But this whole thread started with the issue of whether alt 
text should be optional in HTML5.


A photocopy may be a poor, 2-dimensional representation of the real 
thing, but a blank piece of paper isn't anything at all... Which is 
more useful?


N
___
omnivision. websight.
http://www.omnivision.com.au/



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-09 Thread Hassan Schroeder

Nick Gleitzman wrote:

A photocopy may be a poor, 2-dimensional representation of the real 
thing, but a blank piece of paper isn't anything at all... Which is more 
useful?


Depends on whether you're just curious what a sandwich looks like
or you're starving, I guess -- if the latter, the answer is neither :-)

--
Hassan Schroeder - [EMAIL PROTECTED]
Webtuitive Design ===  (+1) 408-938-0567   === http://webtuitive.com

   dream.  code.



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-08 Thread Rahul Gonsalves

On 31-Aug-07, at 11:08 PM, Designer wrote:

Well Vlad,  whether it fits your conception or not, there is such a  
thing as a site whose prime function is visual. The only  
'information' in the site I mentioned is what something 'looks  
like'.  If you can't see it, there is nothing  you can do to help  
that.

It's a sad fact of life I'm afraid.


Bob,

While not quite in direct response to your statement, I thought I'd  
share this article from over at A List Apart:


http://alistapart.com/articles/revivinganorexicwebwriting

Specifically the 'A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words' bit.

I admit to having overlooked alt text. Until a year ago I sniffed at  
the idea of creating useful alt text for images. “If a user is  
blind,” I reasoned, “what does he care that I have a photograph of  
the university tower on my website?”


My fellow designer shrugged. “Well, I guess if you don’t really care  
about what the image says,” she said slowly, “you really don’t need  
it in the first place.”


Best,
 - Rahul.

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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-08 Thread Designer

Rahul Gonsalves wrote:

On 31-Aug-07, at 11:08 PM, Designer wrote:

Well Vlad,  whether it fits your conception or not, there is such a 
thing as a site whose prime function is visual. The only 'information' 
in the site I mentioned is what something 'looks like'.  If you can't 
see it, there is nothing  you can do to help that.

It's a sad fact of life I'm afraid.


Bob,

While not quite in direct response to your statement, I thought I'd 
share this article from over at A List Apart:


http://alistapart.com/articles/revivinganorexicwebwriting

Specifically the 'A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words' bit.

I admit to having overlooked alt text. Until a year ago I sniffed at 
the idea of creating useful alt text for images. “If a user is blind,” I 
reasoned, “what does he care that I have a photograph of the university 
tower on my website?”


My fellow designer shrugged. “Well, I guess if you don’t really care 
about what the image says,” she said slowly, “you really don’t need it 
in the first place.”


Best,
 - Rahul.

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Hi Rahul.,

Whilst interesting and quite valid, I think the article is not about 
stuff on web sites that are primarily visual art. What I mean is that 
the sort of stuff which is purely visual poetry cannot have an alt tag 
which adds anything other than a 'lable'.  Consider (just as an example) 
a web site to accompany a show by Mark Rothko, with a handful of images 
from the show displayed on the site. Those images just cannot be 
appreciated by someone who cannot see them. No amount of descriptive 
prose will mean anything to to a blind reader. (In fact, the images lose 
a lot  compared to their actual presence in the gallery, even for 
sighted viewers).


In case you are unfamiliar with Rothko, you can see stuff at : 
http://www.nga.gov/feature/rothko/classic1.shtm.
Using this arbitrary example, I still maintain that a site of  images 
such as any of these will be of no more value to a blind user for having 
alt tags, other than to point out  that 'there is a picture there'. Of 
what, the blind user has no idea because they are impossible to describe.


I personally do use alt tags, every time : but I am aware of situations 
where they are pretty useless.


--
Bob

www.gwelanmor-internet.co.uk



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-09-08 Thread Gunlaug Sørtun

Designer wrote:


http://www.nga.gov/feature/rothko/classic1.shtm.



Using this arbitrary example, I still maintain that a site of  images
 such as any of these will be of no more value to a blind user for 
having alt tags, other than to point out  that 'there is a picture 
there'. Of what, the blind user has no idea because they are 
impossible to describe.


You're arguing as if a site, or the web as a whole for that matter,
exists in isolation. The 'label' you mention in the part I've left out,
may indeed be just the cue a visitor need. More information can then
either be found on the page/site, somewhere else on the web, or in the
real world.

By providing cues - meaningful alt text and/or otherwise - about the
original, a suitable translation can often be found elsewhere by those
who want one.
By not providing cues, we do indeed leave visitors in the dark.

( The site you use as example, contains more than enough information
alongside the image. A reference - alt attribute - to tell _which_ image
that information belongs to is missing though.
Several other weaknesses on that example-site btw - all regarding images. )

There are art galleries that experiment with techniques to make art -
paintings or other types of art - more accessible to those who can't
fully use the senses the artist aimed at. Some of these techniques are
well suited for the digital world, but I don't think they have spread to
the web, yet.

Will something get lost in translation? Surely it will. However, that
doesn't mean a blind user is necessarily left with no idea.

Blind people's senses may also be developed far beyond what we - the
seeing - may imagine.
I do have a friend who can interpret flat images pretty well by the use
of her hands. She is sensing differences in reflected temperature,
instead of reflected light that most of us are limited too. That she
also tends to get the use of colors more or less right, is even more
surprising. Given a few more cues she gets a pretty good understanding
about most pictures.
This just to say: don't underestimate people's ability to appreciate
something, just based on what senses they do *not* have.

Alt attributes should stay - be required in HTML 5, and they should be
used in a meaningful way. What's meaningful depends on the case, but if
images are important parts of the content then an alt text should be
provided - even if it is just a 'label'.

regards
Georg
--
http://www.gunlaug.no


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-31 Thread Designer

Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:


I don't know what is a purely visual site. Can you please provide an example?

Regards,
-Vlad


Hi Vlad,

By that term I meant a site which has very little (if any) text.  See 
www.kernowimages.co.uk for a (not perfect :-) example. The content of 
the site is visual as opposed to literal.  There are a lot of such sites 
around.


HTH,

--
Bob

www.gwelanmor-internet.co.uk



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-31 Thread XStandard
Designer wrote:
 By that term [purely visual site] I meant a site which
 has very little (if any) text.
Thank you for the example but I don't understand what is purely visual about 
this site. If the alt text for images was written correctly, a blind person 
using a screen reader or someone who turned image rendering off in the browser, 
would still get information from this site.

The same would apply if 100% of the content on the site were made up of images. 

X/HTML is not a visual technology. So long as Web pages are written in X/HTML 
according to specification, there shouldn't be such a things as a purely 
visual site.

Regards,
-Vlad
http://xhtml.com





 Original Message 
From: Designer
Date: 2007-08-31 6:50 AM
 Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:
 
 I don't know what is a purely visual site. Can you please provide an 
 example?

 Regards,
 -Vlad
 
 Hi Vlad,
 
 By that term I meant a site which has very little (if any) text.  See 
 www.kernowimages.co.uk for a (not perfect :-) example. The content of 
 the site is visual as opposed to literal.  There are a lot of such sites 
 around.
 
 HTH,
 




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-31 Thread Designer

Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:

Designer wrote:

By that term [purely visual site] I meant a site which
has very little (if any) text.

Thank you for the example but I don't understand what is purely visual about 
this site. If the alt text for images was written correctly, a blind person 
using a screen reader or someone who turned image rendering off in the browser, 
would still get information from this site.

The same would apply if 100% of the content on the site were made up of images. 


X/HTML is not a visual technology. So long as Web pages are written in X/HTML according 
to specification, there shouldn't be such a things as a purely visual site.

Regards,
-Vlad
http://xhtml.com



Well Vlad,  whether it fits your conception or not, there is such a 
thing as a site whose prime function is visual. The only 'information' 
in the site I mentioned is what something 'looks like'.  If you can't 
see it, there is nothing  you can do to help that.

It's a sad fact of life I'm afraid.

--
Bob

www.gwelanmor-internet.co.uk



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-31 Thread Gunlaug Sørtun

Designer wrote:


[...] there is such a thing as a site whose prime function is visual.
 The only 'information' in the site I mentioned is what something 
'looks like'.  If you can't see it, there is nothing  you can do to 
help that.


Sure you can.
Being unable to see something doesn't mean unable to visualize.
In fact, it may be the seeing who are less able to visualize - resulting
in missing cues, and missing or non-descriptive alt-attributes, for the
non-seeing to visualize on.

I'm deliberately not focusing on blind people, because they are just
part of the group that for one reason or another is unable to see
what's presented on a web site.
To me it is especially important to provide non-visual cues when a
site's prime function is visual - not necessarily so when the visual
side of a site is less important.

regards
Georg
--
http://www.gunlaug.no


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread Brad Pollard
  If the developers of flickr.com or Photobucket were to implement the 
 recommendations regarding the omission of the alt attribute within the 
 current HTML 5 draft what are the potential effects upon the accessibility of 
 the sites for users of assistive technology such as screen readers? 
  Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5 - 
 http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/articles/altinhtml5.html

Omitting the alt attribute as a requirement may have a level of appropriateness 
for sites like flickr (as it currently stands) but flickr should be doing more 
to encourage their contributors to write a bit more of a story about their 
images - the extra information would be useful to not only the visually 
impaired. 

The inclusion of the alt attribute as a requirement has improved developer 
awareness of accessibility - we all work with images.

The alt attribute as a requirement has played, and should continue to play, an 
important role in accessibility. 

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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread lisa herrod
On 30/08/2007, Brad Pollard [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

   If the developers of flickr.com or Photobucket were to implement the
 recommendations regarding the omission of the alt attribute within the
lines: current HTML 5 draft what are the potential effects upon the
accessibility
 of the sites for users of assistive technology such as screen readers?
   Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5 -
 http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/articles/altinhtml5.html

 Omitting the alt attribute as a requirement may have a level of
 appropriateness for sites like flickr (as it currently stands) but flickr
 should be doing more to encourage their contributors to write a bit more of
 a story about their images - the extra information would be useful to not
 only the visually impaired.



As a default, surely programmes like Flickr and Photobucket can define
a null alt ()  for images?

I'm really disappointed the HTML 5 spec is moving in this direction.
It seems like the only real benefit here is that it might make
validation a little easier on sloppy code.

Lisa


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread Alastair Campbell
Does the HTML working group have to take into account accessibility guidelines?

What I mean is, does it have to make alt mandatory because WCAG (any
version) does?

-Alastair


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RE: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread Patrick Lauke
 Alastair Campbell

 Does the HTML working group have to take into account 
 accessibility guidelines?
 
 What I mean is, does it have to make alt mandatory because WCAG (any
 version) does?

I don't think HTML5 is expected to be rolled out until 5 years or so. In that 
sense, WCAG 1 would probably not apply anymore, and because of WCAG 2's tech 
agnostic approach in the normative document it wouldn't be a problem (it would 
only require a new techniques document for HTML5).

P

Patrick H. Lauke
Web Editor / University of Salford
http://www.salford.ac.uk

Web Standards Project (WaSP) Accessibility Task Force
http://webstandards.org/



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread XStandard
Brad wrote:
 Omitting the alt attribute as a requirement may have a level of
 appropriateness for sites like flickr
Creating content on the Web that is only accessible by one group of people is 
never appropriate.

Sites like flickr have tools that let photo contributors upload photos in 
batches for convenience. As often happens, convenience for one group of people 
causes inconvenience for another group of people.

Regards,
-Vlad
http://xhtml.com

 Original Message 
From: Brad Pollard
Date: 2007-08-30 6:28 AM
  If the developers of flickr.com or Photobucket were to implement the 
 recommendations regarding the omission of the alt attribute within the 
 current HTML 5 draft what are the potential effects upon the accessibility 
 of the sites for users of assistive technology such as screen readers? 
  Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5 - 
 http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/articles/altinhtml5.html
 
 Omitting the alt attribute as a requirement may have a level of 
 appropriateness for sites like flickr (as it currently stands) but flickr 
 should be doing more to encourage their contributors to write a bit more of a 
 story about their images - the extra information would be useful to not only 
 the visually impaired. 
 
 The inclusion of the alt attribute as a requirement has improved developer 
 awareness of accessibility - we all work with images.
 
 The alt attribute as a requirement has played, and should continue to play, 
 an important role in accessibility. 
 
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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread James Jeffery
I can understand what the WG are saying, making it optional isn't going to
dent accessibility
because good coders will use the alt attribute regardless.

In this world there is going to be sloppy coders who dont follow rules and
positive conventions.

Flickr and Photobucket should provide an alternative method to replace the
alt attribute, but
they are sites that are controlled by the users, just like myspace, so
making sure everyone
follows their guidelines is going to be very difficult.

I think the WG made the right move. No alt tag is better then an empty one.

On 8/30/07, Steven Faulkner [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

 From Laura Carlson:
 The HTML WG charter does say:

 The HTML Working Group will cooperate with the Web Accessibility
 Initiative to ensure that the deliverables will satisfy accessibility
 requirements. Coordination with WAI will be primarily conducted
 through the Protocol and Formats Working Group, but direct
 coordination with other WAI groups, such as Web Content Accessibility
 Guidelines Working Group and User Agent Accessibility Guidelines
 Working Group, will also be done when appropriate.
 http://www.w3.org/2007/03/HTML-WG-charter.html#wai



 On 30/08/2007, Alastair Campbell [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
  Does the HTML working group have to take into account accessibility
 guidelines?
 
  What I mean is, does it have to make alt mandatory because WCAG (any
  version) does?
 
  -Alastair
 
 
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 --
 with regards

 Steve Faulkner
 Technical Director - TPG Europe
 Director - Web Accessibility Tools Consortium

 www.paciellogroup.com | www.wat-c.org
 Web Accessibility Toolbar -
 http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html

 --
 with regards

 Steve Faulkner
 Technical Director - TPG Europe
 Director - Web Accessibility Tools Consortium

 www.paciellogroup.com | www.wat-c.org
 Web Accessibility Toolbar -
 http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread James Jeffery
Also to lessen the confusion, whilst sites like Flickr are marking up their
HTML with
HTML 4.01 they should continue to follow the rules and provide alt
attributes.

:)

On 8/30/07, James Jeffery [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

 I can understand what the WG are saying, making it optional isn't going to
 dent accessibility
 because good coders will use the alt attribute regardless.

 In this world there is going to be sloppy coders who dont follow rules and
 positive conventions.

 Flickr and Photobucket should provide an alternative method to replace the
 alt attribute, but
 they are sites that are controlled by the users, just like myspace, so
 making sure everyone
 follows their guidelines is going to be very difficult.

 I think the WG made the right move. No alt tag is better then an empty
 one.

 On 8/30/07, Steven Faulkner  [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:
 
  From Laura Carlson:
  The HTML WG charter does say:
 
  The HTML Working Group will cooperate with the Web Accessibility
  Initiative to ensure that the deliverables will satisfy accessibility
  requirements. Coordination with WAI will be primarily conducted
  through the Protocol and Formats Working Group, but direct
  coordination with other WAI groups, such as Web Content Accessibility
  Guidelines Working Group and User Agent Accessibility Guidelines
  Working Group, will also be done when appropriate.
  http://www.w3.org/2007/03/HTML-WG-charter.html#wai
 
 
 
  On 30/08/2007, Alastair Campbell [EMAIL PROTECTED]  wrote:
   Does the HTML working group have to take into account accessibility
  guidelines?
  
   What I mean is, does it have to make alt mandatory because WCAG (any
   version) does?
  
   -Alastair
  
  
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  --
  with regards
 
  Steve Faulkner
  Technical Director - TPG Europe
  Director - Web Accessibility Tools Consortium
 
  www.paciellogroup.com | www.wat-c.org
  Web Accessibility Toolbar -
  http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html
 
  --
  with regards
 
  Steve Faulkner
  Technical Director - TPG Europe
  Director - Web Accessibility Tools Consortium
 
  www.paciellogroup.com | www.wat-c.org
  Web Accessibility Toolbar -
  http://www.paciellogroup.com/resources/wat-ie-about.html
 
 
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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread Lachlan Hunt

Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:

Brad wrote:
Omitting the alt attribute as a requirement may have a level of 
appropriateness for sites like flickr


Creating content on the Web that is only accessible by one group of
people is never appropriate.


That's technically true and even though sites like Flickr certainly 
should allow users to provide alternate text for their images, the 
question that still remains is that if allowing the alt attribute to be 
omitted when users don't provide any good text isn't the right solution, 
then what is?  What should the spec recommend to use in these cases?


Whatever the solution(s), there are various different scenarios that 
should be addressed.  (Note that in all of these scenarios, the 
authoring tools should allow the author to specify alt text. This is 
just about what to do when the author doesn't.)


What should an authoring tool (like Dreamweaver) insert by default when 
a user adds an image and immediately dismisses the alt text prompt?  (It 
currently omits the attribute unless the user explicitly selects 
empty or types in some text.)


What should wikipedia use by default for images used in articles?  (It 
currently redundantly repeats the image caption in both the alt and 
title attributes)


What should sites like Flickr, Photobucket, Facebook, MySpace, etc. 
generate and insert?


What should forums (e.g. phpBB) or blogs (e.g. Blogger) use?

What should an email application insert when a user emails an image to a 
friend?


--
Lachlan Hunt
http://lachy.id.au/


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread XStandard
Lachlan wrote:
 the question that still remains is that if allowing the
 alt attribute to be omitted when users don't provide any
 good text isn't the right solution, then what is?  What
 should the spec recommend to use in these cases?
It is not the role of the spec to explain how, if you don't do things well, how 
you can do them badly. The role of the spec is to state what is the correct 
behavior - that is all.

Lachlan wrote:
 What should an authoring tool (like Dreamweaver) insert
 by default when a user adds an image and immediately
 dismisses the alt text prompt?
As a WYSIWYG editor vendor, I can tell you what we do. We prompt the user to 
identify if the image is Decorative or not. So the user makes the decision. If 
the user says the image is not decorative, they MUST submit an alt text before 
the image can be saved. Here are the details of what we do:
http://xstandard.com/en/documentation/xstandard-dev-guide/accessibility/#markup-images

Lachlan wrote:
 What should wikipedia use by default for images used in articles?
 What should sites like Flickr, Photobucket, Facebook, MySpace,
 etc. generate and insert?
 What should forums (e.g. phpBB) or blogs (e.g. Blogger) use?
 What should an email application insert when a user emails an
 image to a friend?
They should do what XStandard does, as explained above.

Regards,
-Vlad
http://xstandard.com




 Original Message 
From: Lachlan Hunt
Date: 2007-08-30 10:52 AM
 Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:
 Brad wrote:
 Omitting the alt attribute as a requirement may have a level of 
 appropriateness for sites like flickr

 Creating content on the Web that is only accessible by one group of
 people is never appropriate.
 
 That's technically true and even though sites like Flickr certainly 
 should allow users to provide alternate text for their images, the 
 question that still remains is that if allowing the alt attribute to be 
 omitted when users don't provide any good text isn't the right solution, 
 then what is?  What should the spec recommend to use in these cases?
 
 Whatever the solution(s), there are various different scenarios that 
 should be addressed.  (Note that in all of these scenarios, the 
 authoring tools should allow the author to specify alt text. This is 
 just about what to do when the author doesn't.)
 
 What should an authoring tool (like Dreamweaver) insert by default when 
 a user adds an image and immediately dismisses the alt text prompt?  (It 
 currently omits the attribute unless the user explicitly selects 
 empty or types in some text.)
 
 What should wikipedia use by default for images used in articles?  (It 
 currently redundantly repeats the image caption in both the alt and 
 title attributes)
 
 What should sites like Flickr, Photobucket, Facebook, MySpace, etc. 
 generate and insert?
 
 What should forums (e.g. phpBB) or blogs (e.g. Blogger) use?
 
 What should an email application insert when a user emails an image to a 
 friend?
 




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread James Jeffery
The WG are not going to depreciate it, there going to make it an option to
include
it, so sites like Flickr wont need to include them. In HTML 4.01 if you dont
include the alt attribute, as we all know the document will not validate.

Personally i think by default its usage shouldn't change, so whatever
authoring tools, software and web applications are doing right now, should
continue to do the same in HTML 5. So by default they will be included
unless
the developer choses not to.


On 8/30/07, Lachlan Hunt  [EMAIL PROTECTED] wrote:

 Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:
  Brad wrote:
  Omitting the alt attribute as a requirement may have a level of
  appropriateness for sites like flickr
 
  Creating content on the Web that is only accessible by one group of
  people is never appropriate.

 That's technically true and even though sites like Flickr certainly
 should allow users to provide alternate text for their images, the
 question that still remains is that if allowing the alt attribute to be
 omitted when users don't provide any good text isn't the right solution,
 then what is?  What should the spec recommend to use in these cases?

 Whatever the solution(s), there are various different scenarios that
 should be addressed.  (Note that in all of these scenarios, the
 authoring tools should allow the author to specify alt text. This is
 just about what to do when the author doesn't.)

 What should an authoring tool (like Dreamweaver) insert by default when
 a user adds an image and immediately dismisses the alt text prompt?  (It
 currently omits the attribute unless the user explicitly selects
 empty or types in some text.)

 What should wikipedia use by default for images used in articles?  (It
 currently redundantly repeats the image caption in both the alt and
 title attributes)

 What should sites like Flickr, Photobucket, Facebook, MySpace, etc.
 generate and insert?

 What should forums (e.g . phpBB) or blogs (e.g. Blogger) use?

 What should an email application insert when a user emails an image to a
 friend?

 --
 Lachlan Hunt
 http://lachy.id.au/


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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread Designer

Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:


Creating content on the Web that is only accessible by one group of people is 
never appropriate.

Sites like flickr have tools that let photo contributors upload photos in 
batches for convenience. As often happens, convenience for one group of people 
causes inconvenience for another group of people.

Regards,
-Vlad
http://xhtml.com


Let's just keep things in perspective for a moment.

If a user is unfortunate enough to have eyesight which dictates that 
he/she has to use a screenreader, it is unlikey that he/she will get 
much out of flickr anyway. Even with alt tags, reading that he/she is 
'looking' at a picture of 'my cat' or 'my birthday party' would be 
singularly dull, I'd have thought!


Surely, there ARE cases where a purely visual site can NEVER be 
presented 'accessibly' in any eaningful way?



--
Bob

www.gwelanmor-internet.co.uk



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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread David Dorward

On 30 Aug 2007, at 17:51, Designer wrote:
If a user is unfortunate enough to have eyesight which dictates  
that he/she has to use a screenreader, it is unlikey that he/she  
will get much out of flickr anyway. Even with alt tags, reading  
that he/she is 'looking' at a picture of 'my cat' or 'my birthday  
party' would be singularly dull, I'd have thought!


On the other hand, if I'm looking at Flickr with images turned off  
because (a) my service provider charges me per megabyte of data that  
I use and (b) my connection is very very slow, then its quite useful  
to be able to tell if a picture is of my car or my birthday party  
before telling my browser to load the thumbnail.


Lots of people seem to be hung up on the idea that alt text is for  
blind people, but there are quite a few other use cases for the  
attribute.


--
David Dorward
http://dorward.me.uk/
http://blog.dorward.me.uk/




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread XStandard
Designer wrote:
 Even with alt tags, reading that he/she is 'looking' at a
 picture of 'my cat' or 'my birthday party' would be 
 singularly dull, I'd have thought!
The dullness of the alt text is irrelevant. Some people find photo sites dull 
and that is just as irrelevant to this discussion.

Designer wrote:
Surely, there ARE cases where a purely visual site...
I don't know what is a purely visual site. Can you please provide an example?

Regards,
-Vlad
http://xhtml.com




 Original Message 
From: Designer
Date: 2007-08-30 12:51 PM
 Vlad Alexander (XStandard) wrote:
 
 Creating content on the Web that is only accessible by one group of 
 people is never appropriate.

 Sites like flickr have tools that let photo contributors upload photos 
 in batches for convenience. As often happens, convenience for one 
 group of people causes inconvenience for another group of people.

 Regards,
 -Vlad
 http://xhtml.com
 
 Let's just keep things in perspective for a moment.
 
 If a user is unfortunate enough to have eyesight which dictates that 
 he/she has to use a screenreader, it is unlikey that he/she will get 
 much out of flickr anyway. Even with alt tags, reading that he/she is 
 'looking' at a picture of 'my cat' or 'my birthday party' would be 
 singularly dull, I'd have thought!
 
 Surely, there ARE cases where a purely visual site can NEVER be 
 presented 'accessibly' in any eaningful way?
 
 




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Re: [WSG] Investigating the proposed alt attribute recommendations in HTML 5

2007-08-30 Thread Alastair Campbell
Lachlan Huntwrote:
 the question that still remains is that if allowing the alt attribute to be
 omitted when users don't provide any good text isn't the right solution,
 then what is?  What should the spec recommend to use in these cases?

The problem is differentiating between ignorant and intentional lack
of text. At the moment a missing alt is generally an indicator of
ignorance (not knowing or caring to add alternative).
A null alt either means the author knew enough to not want to put an
alternative in (e.g. decorative/spacer image), or it was automatically
put in for them.

 What should an authoring tool (like Dreamweaver) insert by default when
 a user adds an image and immediately dismisses the alt text prompt?  (It
 currently omits the attribute unless the user explicitly selects
 empty or types in some text.)

I think that's been answered from an accessibility point of view:
http://www.w3.org/TR/WAI-AUTOOLS/#check-no-default-alt

-Alastair


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