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Thread: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute

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Number of posts in this thread: 19 (In chronological order)

From: Angela French
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 11:24AM
Subject: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
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The new app we are working on has to do with GED (read as individual letters) exams. The logo is a graphic that reads "GED Verify". NVDA pronounces it as rhyming with "head" . Are there techniques that can be used to change the pronunciation? I thought putting periods between the letters like G.E.D. would work, but NVDA read that as " g dot e dot d dot" which is worse.

Perhaps the issue is that I cannot actually use the <abbr> or <acronym> tag in an alt attribute?

Any ideas?

Thank you,


Angela French
Internet Specialist
State Board for Community and Technical Colleges
360-704-4316
= EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
http://www.checkoutacollege.com/
http://www.sbctc.edu

From: David Farough
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 11:39AM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
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G.E.D works for me.

From: Angela French
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 11:42AM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
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Do you mean it reads it as separate letters, or that it inserts the "dots" and you are okay with that? Is the behavior different between reading an email and reading in a web browser?

From: Bryan Garaventa
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 11:49AM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
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The . is read as dot.

If you absolutely need to break it out, you can simply use offscreen text
like so:

G<span class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>E<span
class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>D

Visually it will look the same, but will be announced as individual letters
for screen reader users.

From: Olaf Drümmer
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:00PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
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Once you get into social media, jargon, crowd created content, txtng etc. - it's becoming pointless altogether to ask for semantically suitable coding/tagging of text. Admittedly some folks SHOUT all the time. It's up2u how you handle it but I recommend rather invest in more relevant accessibility aspects.

These details can more easily be handled by Text to speech algorithms that take into account dictionaries etc. - and such smarter TTS stuff is coming... So it's becoming less and less of an issue to do dances around this kind of stuff. For now, make AT use better heuristics and user configurable settings, and then over time software will become smarter and know the difference between "AT" and "@" and "at" also make it understandable...


Olaf

From: Angela French
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:12PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an altattribute
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>A sequence of uppercase characters (especially a short sequence) hardly ever is
>to be spoken out as a word (though this does also happen) but as a sequence of
>separately pronounced characters.
>
>Whether GED or USA or GB or UN or HTML or NVDA ...
>
>
>Olaf

I think I'll quit worrying about this one. I guess NVDA is just going to pronounce it as a word and not as individual letters.

So how does a screen reader read smiley face notation? :-)

Angela French

From: Sailesh Panchang
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:13PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
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I usually recommend just inserting a space between the letters like
alt="G E D Verify"
Or you might try alt="G. E. D. Verify"
In other places on the page you might get to use the abbr markup and
the user will surely be informed that it is "GED"
This is based on punctuation settings under user's control and really
does not require a whole lot ofcontent author's attention.
Sailesh Panchang


On 5/8/13, Angela French < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
> The new app we are working on has to do with GED (read as individual
> letters) exams. The logo is a graphic that reads "GED Verify". NVDA
> pronounces it as rhyming with "head" . Are there techniques that can be
> used to change the pronunciation? I thought putting periods between the
> letters like G.E.D. would work, but NVDA read that as " g dot e dot d dot"
> which is worse.
>
> Perhaps the issue is that I cannot actually use the <abbr> or <acronym> tag
> in an alt attribute?
>
> Any ideas?
>
> Thank you,
>
>
> Angela French
> Internet Specialist
> State Board for Community and Technical Colleges
> 360-704-4316
> = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED =
> http://www.checkoutacollege.com/
> http://www.sbctc.edu
>
> > > >

From: Jared Smith
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:23PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
← Previous message | Next message →

> G<span class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>E<span
> class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>D

No, no, no!

> alt="G E D Verify"
> Or you might try alt="G. E. D. Verify"

For the love of all that's good and holy... please no!

> I believe this is a problem that should be solved by text-to-speech
> features in screen readers and other such tools, not by doing
> dances in markup or tagging.

Yes! This! A million times this!

That's all I have to say about this.

Jared

From: Olaf Drümmer
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:32PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an altattribute
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Regarding emoticons - they can be easily recognized by a software and pronounced accordingly, cf. the following two emoticon related articles on Wikipedia:

- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emoticons

- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_emoticons

If you want to go one step further you could turn the punctuation sequence into a Unicode codepoint (or software could do it for you), and then a screenreader could read it out accordingly.

Of course, once done with smileys, you could look at ASCII (not A S C I I ! ;-) ) art at large....


Olaf


Am 8 May 2013 um 20:12 schrieb Angela French:

>
>> A sequence of uppercase characters (especially a short sequence) hardly ever is
>> to be spoken out as a word (though this does also happen) but as a sequence of
>> separately pronounced characters.
>>
>> Whether GED or USA or GB or UN or HTML or NVDA ...
>>
>>
>> Olaf
>
> I think I'll quit worrying about this one. I guess NVDA is just going to pronounce it as a word and not as individual letters.
>
> So how does a screen reader read smiley face notation? :-)
>
> Angela French
>
> > >

From: Angela French
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:35PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an altattribute
← Previous message | Next message →

>This is based on punctuation settings under user's control and really does not
>require a whole lot ofcontent author's attention.
>Sailesh Panchang
>
>

Good to know! Thanks,
Angela French

From: Jennifer Sutton
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:37PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
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Plus another million times "yes" this from me, a screen reader user.

This seems to me yet another example of people worrying *far* too
much about how a screen reader sounds. Users *do* have some
responsibility in the accessibility equation.

And there are *so* many other more important accessibility issues . . .

Jennifer


At 11:23 AM 5/8/2013, you wrote:
> > G<span class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>E<span
> > class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>D
>
>No, no, no!
>
> > alt="G E D Verify"
> > Or you might try alt="G. E. D. Verify"
>
>For the love of all that's good and holy... please no!
>
> > I believe this is a problem that should be solved by text-to-speech
> > features in screen readers and other such tools, not by doing
> > dances in markup or tagging.
>
>Yes! This! A million times this!
>
>That's all I have to say about this.
>
>Jared
>>>

From: Bryan Garaventa
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 12:54PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
← Previous message | Next message →

I do believe I wrote "If you absolutely need to", which I think is quite
clear. The method does work if you 'absolutely need to', but I don't see how
this qualifies as a ringing endorsement.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Jennifer Sutton" < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
To: "WebAIM Discussion List" < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Sent: Wednesday, May 08, 2013 11:37 AM
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt
attribute


> Plus another million times "yes" this from me, a screen reader user.
>
> This seems to me yet another example of people worrying *far* too
> much about how a screen reader sounds. Users *do* have some
> responsibility in the accessibility equation.
>
> And there are *so* many other more important accessibility issues . . .
>
> Jennifer
>
>
> At 11:23 AM 5/8/2013, you wrote:
>> > G<span class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>E<span
>> > class="offscreen">&nbsp;</span>D
>>
>>No, no, no!
>>
>> > alt="G E D Verify"
>> > Or you might try alt="G. E. D. Verify"
>>
>>For the love of all that's good and holy... please no!
>>
>> > I believe this is a problem that should be solved by text-to-speech
>> > features in screen readers and other such tools, not by doing
>> > dances in markup or tagging.
>>
>>Yes! This! A million times this!
>>
>>That's all I have to say about this.
>>
>>Jared
>>>>>>>
> > >

From: deborah.kaplan@suberic.net
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 1:32PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
← Previous message | Next message →

Olaf Drümmer wrote:

> A sequence of uppercase characters (especially a short sequence) hardly ever is to be spoken out as a word (though this does also happen) but as a sequence of separately pronounced characters.

This depends on the type of website. Any social media website,
for example, needs to grapple with dealing with the ways people
write text on social media, which often includes sections in all
caps as a way of providing emphasis or humor. Ultimately, there
is no way accessible technology will always be able to
distinguish between the hypothetical "Ohio Hirsute Agoraphobe
Institute" and somebody who has just greeted you, lolcat style,
with "OH HAI."

We do the best we can and hope people can figure it out from
context.

-Deborah Kaplan
Accessibility Team Co-Lead
Dreamwidth Studios, LLC

From: Olaf Drümmer
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 1:50PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
← Previous message | Next message →

Once you get into social media, jargon, crowd created content, txtng etc. - it's becoming pointless altogether to ask for semantically suitable coding/tagging of text. Admittedly some folks SHOUT all the time. It's up2u how you handle it but I recommend rather invest in more relevant accessibility aspects.

These details can more easily be handled by Text to speech algorithms that take into account dictionaries etc. - and such smarter TTS stuff is coming... So it's becoming less and less of an issue to do dances around this kind of stuff. For now, make AT use better heuristics and user configurable settings, and then over time software will become smarter and know the difference between "AT" and "@" and "at" also make it understandable...


Olaf


Am 8 May 2013 um 21:32 schrieb = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = :

> Olaf Drümmer wrote:
>
>> A sequence of uppercase characters (especially a short sequence) hardly ever is to be spoken out as a word (though this does also happen) but as a sequence of separately pronounced characters.
>
> This depends on the type of website. Any social media website,
> for example, needs to grapple with dealing with the ways people
> write text on social media, which often includes sections in all
> caps as a way of providing emphasis or humor. Ultimately, there
> is no way accessible technology will always be able to
> distinguish between the hypothetical "Ohio Hirsute Agoraphobe
> Institute" and somebody who has just greeted you, lolcat style,
> with "OH HAI."
>
> We do the best we can and hope people can figure it out from
> context.
>
> -Deborah Kaplan
> Accessibility Team Co-Lead
> Dreamwidth Studios, LLC
> > >

From: Greg Gamble
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 2:07PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an alt attribute
← Previous message | Next message →

In regards to acronyms ... In writing a paper I would do something like this: "The General Educational Development (GED) process ... " , I would then use the acronym of GED without any other explanation of what it is, since it has already been defined.

When using an < abbr > tag would it need to be used on all instances of the acronym, or as the example I used for a print type page, just on the first instance? Seems to me it would get a little annoying having to listen to or skip over each description.


Greg Gamble
SBCTC - Olympia | Information Services

From: Bryan Garaventa
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 2:13PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an altattribute
← Previous message | Next message →

Actually in general I don't want something spelled out in all caps to be
broken out into individual letters, since this makes it very difficult to
read sites that include all caps for emphasizing text as mentioned.

However, there are some rare occurrences when it's necessary for absolute
clarity. For example within the last few years, I've had several banking and
and investment companies request this for time sensitive data that had to do
with submitting financial records and investments. They were required by
their legal department to ensure that abbreviated letters for critical
references were explicitly conveyed to all screen reader users to minimize
liability.

In this situation, the method I described earlier, provided a solution for
this problem.

There is nothing wrong with knowing solutions for rare accessibility issues
when applicable.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Olaf Drümmer" < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
To: "WebAIM Discussion List" < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = >
Sent: Wednesday, May 08, 2013 12:50 PM
Subject: Re: [WebAIM] how to get acronyms to not read as words in an
altattribute


Once you get into social media, jargon, crowd created content, txtng etc. -
it's becoming pointless altogether to ask for semantically suitable
coding/tagging of text. Admittedly some folks SHOUT all the time. It's up2u
how you handle it but I recommend rather invest in more relevant
accessibility aspects.

These details can more easily be handled by Text to speech algorithms that
take into account dictionaries etc. - and such smarter TTS stuff is
coming... So it's becoming less and less of an issue to do dances around
this kind of stuff. For now, make AT use better heuristics and user
configurable settings, and then over time software will become smarter and
know the difference between "AT" and "@" and "at" also make it
understandable...


Olaf


Am 8 May 2013 um 21:32 schrieb = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = :

> Olaf Drümmer wrote:
>
>> A sequence of uppercase characters (especially a short sequence) hardly
>> ever is to be spoken out as a word (though this does also happen) but as
>> a sequence of separately pronounced characters.
>
> This depends on the type of website. Any social media website,
> for example, needs to grapple with dealing with the ways people
> write text on social media, which often includes sections in all
> caps as a way of providing emphasis or humor. Ultimately, there
> is no way accessible technology will always be able to
> distinguish between the hypothetical "Ohio Hirsute Agoraphobe
> Institute" and somebody who has just greeted you, lolcat style,
> with "OH HAI."
>
> We do the best we can and hope people can figure it out from
> context.
>
> -Deborah Kaplan
> Accessibility Team Co-Lead
> Dreamwidth Studios, LLC
> > >

From: Olaf Drümmer
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 2:24PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an altattribute
← Previous message | Next message →

Am 8 May 2013 um 22:13 schrieb Bryan Garaventa:

> since this makes it very difficult to
> read sites that include all caps for emphasizing text as mentioned.

and there are folks who express importance by also adding S P A C E S inside words. You can find all of that - and there is no cure for bad material. Garbage in garbage out.

Your example of course is valid - where increased needs for security or liability come into play, extra effort will be absolutely fine to ensure everyone understands the message.

Olaf

From: Tim Harshbarger
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 2:47PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in analtattribute
← Previous message | Next message →

If you are not use to listening to a screen reader all day, how it pronounces some words can be a surprise. However, one thing to remember is that when you do spend all the time listening to a screen reader, you become use to those odd pronunciations. The only time acronyms and abbreviations are a problem is when you don't know what in the world they mean.

An interesting side fact is that, if you listen carefully to someone who uses a screen reader all the time, you can sometimes hear them using the same odd pronunciations that their screen readers do. I've done that a few times. In fact, I've got into the habit of altering the pronunciation of people's names in the screen readers dictionary because I have caught myself pronouncing their name the way the screen reader does without thinking--and of course they have no clue who I am talking about.

From: Birkir R. Gunnarsson
Date: Wed, May 08 2013 8:30PM
Subject: Re: how to get acronyms to not read as words in an altattribute
← Previous message | No next message

Sometimes it is not even up to the screen reader, but the TTS engine
used, how acronyms and pronounciation of non-dictionary words is
handled.
I have been working with a major TTS provider for an Icelandic TTS
engine, and we have run into many a discussion on these points.
They prefer not to expand acronyms or interpret them, they say in
their experience it conuses more users than it helps.
If your license plate number is GE459 you don't want to have your
screen reader babble on about General Electric.
In short, there is basically no way to predict how all the diferent
screen readers with their verbosity settings and TTS engines, even in
multiple languages, read or interpret your acronyms, so keeping and
not getting creative for screen readers is about the best you can do.
Some screen readers recognize emotocons, but only in certain
applications (Jaws recognizes all of these in MSN, or used to, but if
the same appears in an email or text, it is treated as its underlying
symbols or translated into a question mark, at least in IE9 with Jaws
14).
Cheers
-B

On 5/8/13, Tim Harshbarger < = EMAIL ADDRESS REMOVED = > wrote:
> If you are not use to listening to a screen reader all day, how it
> pronounces some words can be a surprise. However, one thing to remember is
> that when you do spend all the time listening to a screen reader, you become
> use to those odd pronunciations. The only time acronyms and abbreviations
> are a problem is when you don't know what in the world they mean.
>
> An interesting side fact is that, if you listen carefully to someone who
> uses a screen reader all the time, you can sometimes hear them using the
> same odd pronunciations that their screen readers do. I've done that a few
> times. In fact, I've got into the habit of altering the pronunciation of
> people's names in the screen readers dictionary because I have caught myself
> pronouncing their name the way the screen reader does without thinking--and
> of course they have no clue who I am talking about.
>
> > > >