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Re: This week's article: Content Language


From: Karl Dawson
Date: Jan 23, 2006 9:15AM

On 23/01/06, Jukka K. Korpela < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:
> On Mon, 23 Jan 2006, Karl Dawson wrote:
> > The article concisely explains what, why and how to write an
> > accessibility-enhancing <html> tag.
> First, when posting to the list, please use plain text in US-ASCII.
> Using UTF-8 (for English text) and inaccessible pseudo-HTML helps nobody
> and harms some people and E-mail software.

I tried this at WSG and it borked the summary page on the website with
a long URL *shrug*

> Second, don't overestimate the practical impact of language markup (it is
> very small), don't confuse it with the XHTML issue (there is no tangible
> benefit from using XHTML as distribution format on the WWW), and don't
> confuse language issues with the xmlns attribute, which is XHTML issue
> and thus irrelevant.

No it isn't, read comment 3:
"The article is about writing a complete tag. If you are writing a
document in XHTML then you need to include the xml namespace too. I
added it for completeness." I am rapidly finding that these articles
are more trouble than they are worth - at least advertising them on
lists where people form an opinion then read in that context. If I
hadn't mentioned the namespace someone would have opined that omission
too :(

Oh, and don't bother mentioning dir="ltr", which is
> the declared default in HTML.

International audience. Leave nothing to assumption?

> This leaves rather little.


It's a good idea to declare the language
> in the <html> tag, and in any major portion of text in another language in
> the content, but this very little practical impact at present.
> I wouldn't refer to W3C recommendations on this issue, since the WAI
> guidelines require that you indicate _all_ language changes in document
> content - yet the W3C itself fails to do this but visibly claims
> conformance to WAI guidelines. (Language changes include all occurrence of
> proper names in foreign languages. Nobody uses markup for them, so why
> do they set up guidelines that require so and violate this in the
> guidelines themselves?)

This is as daft as ignoring speed limits because the cops do. I try my
best and that's the whole point of aiming for best practice?

> --
> Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/

Karl Dawson
Crusader for Web Standards and Accessibility
Accessites Team Member - http://www.accessites.org/

"The power of the Web is in its universality. Access by everyone
regardless of disability is an essential aspect."
Tim Berners-Lee - W3C Director and inventor of the World Wide Web