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Re: usage of abbreviation tag


From: Jukka K. Korpela
Date: Sep 18, 2013 2:20AM

2013-09-18 10:44, Olaf Drümmer wrote:

> Am 18 Sep 2013 um 08:46 schrieb "Jukka K. Korpela" < <EMAIL REMOVED> >:
>> That's a good general principle, and the only really accessible way -
>> though the question still arises how to handle that problem that many
>> people keep forgetting things. They read an explanation, but they have
>> forgotten when they see the abbreviation used a few pages later. And
>> there's also the problem of non-linear reading: people can jump into any
>> point in the text. You can use links to deal with this, but caution is
>> needed. There is such a thing as over-linking. Too many links confuse
>> people, especially since there is often no quick way of seeing or
>> hearing what the link is really about.
>> Specifically, I would rarely spell out an abbreviation like "BBC". It is
>> probably better known than its expansion. And if the text is not in
>> English, then it is probably better to explain, in the language of the
>> text, what BBC is, rather than show the English expansion.
> all this has nothing to do with accessibility!

Oh, it does.

> Disability or not - a user may have to use the same extra effort
> to find out what something means if he / she doesn't understand it
right away,
> whether that's an abbreviation, a technical term, the name of a person or city,

Surely not the same extra effort.

I would normally expect people to know "BBC" without explanations. On
the other hand, some people would not immediately understand it even if
I gave both the expansion and an explanation in their native language.
The concept of a broadcasting corporation is at a high level of
abstraction. If an explanation is needed and given, then some people
will remember it well, others have to search back and may get frustrated
especially if the text contains many abbreviations.

So there is a challenge: how to present things so that they are
accessible to all (including people who easily forget what you just told
them), yet natural and smooth reading to people know the abbreviations
well and would find it odd to see very common abbreviations explained.

> or … - the slight exception being cognitive disabilities

Which constitute a significant part of disabilities.