[whatwg] Dynamic content accessibility in HTML today

Andrew Fedoniouk news at terrainformatica.com
Mon Aug 14 10:59:52 PDT 2006

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Anne van Kesteren" <fora at annevankesteren.nl>
To: "James Graham" <jg307 at cam.ac.uk>
Cc: "WHATWG" <whatwg at whatwg.org>
Sent: Monday, August 14, 2006 6:48 AM
Subject: Re: [whatwg] Dynamic content accessibility in HTML today

| On Mon, 14 Aug 2006 06:36:40 -0700, James Graham <jg307 at cam.ac.uk> wrote:
| > But XBL works with ~0 assistive technologies and is presumably going to
| > be complex to implement properly. Whilst, in general, I agree that
| > having elements used in the correct way to provide semantic information
| > is desirable, I think that adopting a technology that is already
| > implemented and proven to solve real problems is a better approach than
| > waiting on a complex future specification to be finished and implemented.
| So a while ago I posted
| http://annevankesteren.nl/2006/06/accessibility-ideas some of my thoughts
| regarding role=""... Basically, I don't really see authors taking extra
| steps to make things accessible. Accessibility should just be an integral
| part of the language, otherwise I don't think it will work. For authors it
| will seem that without role="" their custom widgets will work so there's
| no real benefit in adding it unless you work for some big company that
| hires a few "accessibility experts" who tell you to add it.

100% agree.

I would like to remind here one more thing:
the golden principle of good management is to use/create
set of motivations rather than use of enforcements and proclaim of good wishes
of any kind.

Practically in HTML/CSS this should mean following:

Say some  UA will have extended set of "behaviors" implemented.
(behaviors here correspond to word "dynamic" in DHTML)
Behavior is that entity which really gives some meaning to the
'role' attribute. If behaviors (as a mechanism) will be designed to use
role attributes then anyone will use it.

Think about popup menu implementation:
<menu> element and its behavior engine can be designed to
threat as a menu item *only* element
having say [role="menu-item"] attribute defined (or some other predefined 
element like LI).
In this case 1) accessibility layer will be able to interpret it easily and
2) authors will be naturally motivated to use the role.

Andrew Fedoniouk.

More on one possible menu/role implementation:

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