[whatwg] Question: rel="help"

Jukka K. Korpela jkorpela at cs.tut.fi
Thu Sep 29 11:12:55 PDT 2011

29.9.2011 20:50, Tantek Çelik wrote:

> Javascript-only help text (tooltip or otherwise) or any other content
 > intended for human consumption is a really bad idea for all the usual 
 > (#a11y, mobile, search etc.)

Except in cases where the information is relevant only when JavaScript 
is enabled. But the original question did not imply, as far as I can 
see, any JavaScript-only idea. On the contrary, using the title="..." 
attribute implies that the text will be available to many people graphic 
browsers (though perhaps just by accident) and to many people using 
speech-based browsing.

> Consider adjusting your content design to incorporate the help text instead
> (perhaps with either the respective element's "title" attribute or with
 > a nearby/adjacent element)

I think that idea was implied in the question:

>>> Question, would an element with rel="help" and a title="Help text"
>>> make sense and be valid as a JavaScript hook for tooltips?

I stll think it's best, for all users, to give instructions in normal 
text before the fields to be filled out. But there are situations where 
you expect 80% of people do well without any instructions. I'm not sure 
of what we are expected to do, as authors, in order to give instructions 
that might be needed by 20% of users but would mostly be a distraction 
for the majority.

Yucca, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

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