EPUB 3 Working Group FXL A11y Task Force Telco — Minutes

Date: 2021-05-11

See also the Agenda and the IRC Log


Present: Laura Brady, Wendy Reid, George Kerscher, Ken Jones, Matthew Chan, Gregorio Pellegrino, Charles LaPierre, Rachel Osolen, Will Awad



Chair: Wendy Reid

Scribe(s): Matthew Chan


Wendy Reid: in the last week i’ve gotten 2 sections for the document (Ken + Rachel)
… i’ll get these copied in
… we’re trying to have the document in markdown, but we’re having issues with respec right now
… i’ll talk to the author of respec to resolve
… also, please note, it has to be github flavoured markdown

Ken Jones: i’ve been in touch with a publisher who has said I can use their epub as example

Ken Jones: https://paper.dropbox.com/doc/The-worlds-most-pointless-animals.–BKhfwLpoTYvZEF9K0Ud8fLuGAg-Euz0akuxswEt8xW2dSilT

Ken Jones: this is the link ^
… there are visual jokes (e.g. where words are crossed out, with what appears to be handwritten annotations)
… also illustrations with lots of annotations (like a scientific diagram)

Wendy Reid: https://paper.dropbox.com/doc/The-worlds-most-pointless-animals.-Euz0akuxswEt8xW2dSilT

Ken Jones: this link is a spread, but the title is on the left-hand spread
… so would I use an H1 on one half of the spread, but no heading on the other half?

Wendy Reid: this is the kind of content we’re up against, because the way it is currently presented is a PDF

George Kerscher: one of the things we talked about is making an alternative rendering without using multiple renditions
… could we do that here?

Charles LaPierre: looking at these examples, the one with the sloth hanging down can probably be handled using img+alt-text
… for the one with the spread with the pigeon, here alt-text would probably not be sufficient
… would probably have to have two H1s, a list of labelled terms for the annotations, plus the text at the bottom
… ARIA describedby would not work, too much description to fit into alt-text
… and we’d have to hide it too, which is not great for low vision
… perhaps link to a separate HTML document

Ken Jones: regarding the 3rd spread (the platypus) the issue is that the image is across the spread itself
… to George’s suggestion, perhaps we could use the hierarchy of the individual pages (H1, etc.) to link up pages across the section

Gregorio Pellegrino: what I would do is make a single HTML containing both halves of the spread, allowing me to have a single heading for both pages of the spread
… for the annotations, I’d use <aside> to capture this content

Ken Jones: Suggest a “textual presentation of a visual publication”

Wendy Reid: the new way of creating alternative presentations (or whatever we’re going to call it) depends on reading the code on the page, its difficult to use on this example which is just an image

Ken Jones: could we call it a “textual presentation of a visual publication” or “visual to text”

Laura Brady: is there a way to flip back and forth between single page and double page presentation?
… and i love gpellegrino’s suggestion of putting annotations in <aside>
… but flipping back and forth is a good solution, because sometimes forcing a spread view makes the text too small, to the point of illegibility of small screens

George Kerscher: 5q+

Ken Jones: maybe there could be a way of associating a page with a preceding page (e.g. maybe landmarks)

George Kerscher: many current RS show synthetic spreads as a presentation mode that you can toggle on and off

Wendy Reid: https://w3c.github.io/epub-specs/epub33/core/#orientation-overrides

George Kerscher: maybe FXL authors just have to be told that you can’t manually force two page spreads because of the problem laurab raised
… with gpellegrino’s solution, wouldn’t everybody see the aside? Or would there be a way to turn that off?

Gregorio Pellegrino: yes, everyone

George Kerscher: wouldn’t that ruin the presentation for sighted people?

Gregorio Pellegrino: I was thinking the asides would replace the images of the text currently in the annotations

Ken Jones: would the main text also be in the aside then?

Gregorio Pellegrino: no, in a regular <p> tag

Ken Jones: would like to mention that there are features in FXL that allow you to control page orientation

Charles LaPierre: we’re going to discourage having images of text, rather preferring the use of CSS to lay the aside text out in the appropriate place on the page
… now what about the case where the image itself goes over two pages, so that if the book is put into single-page mode, you’ll only be able to see half the image at once

Wendy Reid: i linked to the section about the creation of synthetic spreads above
… authors can declare a spread setting for the book, and then also override that spread setting on a per spine item basis

George Kerscher: the reading order will have the text, the heading, and the asides
… i think the asides are normally read in the order they are encountered
… and they are normally all read, I don’t think they’d ever be skipped

Charles LaPierre: right, and if the aside is calling out something critical, we’d need to make sure it is called out before the main text

George Kerscher: so, i’m not sure why we’d use an aside for this example, instead of a div

Ken Jones: for the platypus one, the positioning of the annotations carries meaning, points to a part of the image
… not sure how we’d convey that

Charles LaPierre: the alt-text of the image itself could be used to contain this information (e.g. venomous spur, near back leg)
… if you had multiple asides, you could use an ARIA label that describes what each aside is referring to

Wendy Reid: maybe we can move on now, but we should use this example in our document

Gregorio Pellegrino: the biggest publisher in ITA is preparing some sample content for us, and in 1 or 2 weeks we should expect to start testing

Wendy Reid: we need to continue working on the document, continue gathering examples from all the contributing publishers
… right now we have a lot of work to do that doesn’t seem to require discussion
… so there’s been a proposal to move meetings of this group to every other week
… we’ll also likely have some time at the F2F to show our work

Laura Brady: +1

Will Awad: +1

George Kerscher: +1

Wendy Reid: okay, so I’ll create a new calendar invite for the bi-weekly meetings
… when you accept, just delete the old series of meetings
… F2F will be on 27/28th this month, similar to how we did TPAC, with an evening meeting, followed by a meeting next day AM
… okay, does everyone know what they’re working on?

Ken Jones: i’ve written an article about reading order, so that’s coming soon
… could you share the screenshot of the various sections again?

Wendy Reid: https://github.com/w3c/epub-specs/blob/main/epub33/fxl-a11y/index.html

Wendy Reid: i’ve created the structure of the document there

Ken Jones: so i’ll be doing navigation, toc, landmarks, hierarchy of headings

George Kerscher: when I navigate by headings, i’ve got choices, and I can just choose to go directly to the next heading
… this is probably the most common way of navigating by heading, rather than by expanding and collapsing hierarchies

Charles LaPierre: in this, it looks like it started out in HTML and then we went to markdown part way through?
… the structure is a little unclear right now

Wendy Reid: yes, markdown is just an easier drafting language than raw HTML
… if i can’t get respec to do conversion to HTML automatically, I’ll just take care of it
… okay, if you have questions between meetings you can always reach out to me via email
… so we won’t have a meeting next week, but will have one the week after