[whatwg] Definition of alt= attribute

dolphinling dolphinling at myrealbox.com
Tue Jan 24 03:06:18 PST 2006

Henri Sivonen wrote:
> On Jan 23, 2006, at 18:43, dolphinling wrote:
>> Second, it could force authoring tools to produce invalid documents  
>> if the author did not provide any alt text. However, those  documents 
>> would be non-conformant anyway, so this is not a huge  problem.
> It is. Authoring tools are judged by taking a page authored using the  
> tool and running it through the W3C Validator or, presumably in the  
> future, through an HTML5 conformance checker. Authoring tool makers  who 
> are capable of making their tool produce syntactically conforming  
> documents will want to do so and minimize the chance that the users  of 
> their software tarnish the reputation of the tool in the eyes of  people 
> who use an automated test as a litmus test of authoring tool  bogosity. 
> (People who test tools that way will outnumber the people  who make a 
> more profound analysis due to the "validate, validate,  validate" 
> propaganda.)

File -> Save

"If you save this page as is, it will be non-valid for the following 

     You did not specify alternate text for one or more images.

The page will display properly, but will be less accessible to some 
users and will fail automated validation tests.

[Fix errors]  [Save anyway]"

...The point being that that would only be a problem to authoring tools 
that didn't do something about it--and frankly, I'd expect an authoring 
tool to give a dialog like that anyway, even if they weren't concerned 
about market share.


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