Accessible HTML documents
Original Publication Date: 2002-Jul-14
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2003-Jun-20
It is not always easy for blind or visually-impaired people to read HTML pages. For example, they are likely to have difficulty with images, diagrams presented as images, diagrams presented using character graphics, and graphical data. For images that appear on HTML pages, alternate text can be provided and this can be read by a screen-reader. Unfortunately the text is limited to a simple text string with no embedded tagging. This makes it difficult to describe a complex diagram. Graphical data would be more easily comprehended if the alternative presentation were tabular. Rather than using the limited facilities provided by the alternate text associated with an image, this disclosure describes how completely different presentation formats can be used under the control of the user. Moreover the disclosure permits the choice of multiple alternative formats. In our method, the user first selects the presentation format that he or she prefers. As the examples below indicate, several choices may be possible, one for each class of objects for which alternatives are provided. These choices are somewhat like the preferences that can be set for the browser, but whereas the browser preferences control relatively small details of the presentation, such as the font size, our preferences affect the whole style of the presentation.