[whatwg] Localized error messages
dolphinling at myrealbox.com
Thu Nov 25 08:20:07 PST 2004
> Concerning validation error messages, the spec says:
> > The default action is UA-specific, but is expected to consist of
> > focusing the element (possibly firing focus events if appropriate),
> > and alerting the user (ideally using a non-modal mechanism such as a
> > help balloon) that the entered value is unacceptable in the user's
> > native language along with explanatory text saying why the value is
> > currently invalid.
> At first glance it seems reasonable to display errors in the users
> default locale, the same way that date formats etc. follow the users
> However, it has some ugly consequences when combined with custom
> validation and hints like the title hint to patterns, since these
> messages typically will be in the same language as the page.
> Therefore I think the best UI would be to display the messages in the
> same language as the page, rather that in the users default language.
> (We may assume that the the user understands the language of the page
> since the user is in the process of filling out a form on that page)
I disagree. I haven't really looked at this much, but an error message,
especially one that explains why the value is invalid, would be much
more helpful in a language the user understands well. And I don't think
we can assume that the user understands the language of the form
well--they may have only a basic understanding, or have a guide to
filling out the form, or not understand for plenty of other reasons.
WRT the "ugly consequences", if this is aesthetic remember that the
error is coming from the UA, so it's not expected to mesh well with the
page. If it's not aesthetic I'm not sure what you mean.
Finally, if the page never says what language it is, how is the UA
supposed to know? That would be a large problem on the majority of the web.
More information about the whatwg