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RE: title attributes on <a> and <img> elements


From: Leo Smith
Date: Nov 4, 2002 12:04PM

<snip1> but in the
case of <img> elements, not hearing the ALT text in preference to
the title information may be a real problem.</snip1>

<snip2>Why? Proper and thoughtful development can avoid any
problems here...
at the least repeat the ALT text as the Title text.</snip2>

Taking the example of text as images, this could result in some
fairly long (and somewhat redundant) tooltip text, if both the alt text
and the extra information is provided in the title attribute. However,
there doesn't seem to be any other way around it: it is imperative
that the screen reader announce the alt text, so if this means
duplicating the alt text in the title attribute when a developer is
wanting to provide extra information to the user through title, I
guess so be it.

<snip3> For <input> elements, JAWS will announce the ALT text
> infomation and not any title attribute information when both are
> included in the tag.</snip3>
<snip4>Huh? Use the Label and ID elements/attributes for form
inputs, not title.</snip4>

the title attribute is actually a very clean and efficient way of
labeling form elements of the type <input>: HPR, JAWS and
Windows-Eyes will read it.

In the case above that I was describing, I should have been more
specific, however. I was testing using a title attribute on an <input
type="image"> as a way of providing extra info about the button: if
a submit button image is "Go" and so too is the ALT text, then
adding title="click the GO button to sumbit your entry/go directly to
that page/search on the terms you have provided" might be useful
to some users. In this case JAWS only speaks the ALT text, and
not the title attribute's information. The tooltip does display the title
information though, and so visual users will get the extra cue.


Leo Smith
Web Designer/Developer
USM Office of Publications and Marketing
University of Southern Maine

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