Example for Checkpoint
11.1 - continued

Slide 85 of 120
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Will using these attributes or elements break my pages as they are displayed today?

User agents are also supposed to render the content (the markup between the start and end tags) of unsupported elements.

In this case, lets pretend that HTML has an element called <SHAKE> that makes an image appear to vibrate quickly. We know this is not supported by any browser. So, browsers are expected to display the content or markup the author puts between the start and end tag of the element. For example:

<SHAKE src="martini.gif" frequency="puree"> This martini should be shaken, not stirred. <SHAKE>

Since <SHAKE> is not supported, then the content is displayed:

This martini should be shaken, not stirred.

Why do we encourage you to use the new features included in W3C Recommendations (like the HTML 4.0 elements and attributes ABBR, OPTGROUP and longdesc) even if they aren't presently supported by common browsers or aren't backwards compatible with older browsers?

The previous example shows that the author can ensure that users of older technology will get the "meat" by including equivalent markup in the content of the element. It will also ensure that users of the "latest and greatest" will benefit from the use of the new element as soon as it is supported.

Please note: SHAKE is not an element of any W3C language specification and therefore this page will not validate. This example is not meant to encourage you to create your own markup.

Up one level To Checkpoints for Guideline 11.
Next slide: Example for Checkpoint 11.1 continues

Introduction: Overview Guidelines: Overview Checkpoints: Overview Examples: Overview

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Chuck Letourneau & Geoff Freed

W3C Web Accessibility Initiative

Copyright © 2000 W3C