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Re: UPDATED: Current state of the summary discussion

From: Gez Lemon <g.lemon@webprofession.com>
Date: Thu, 14 Jan 2010 10:38:45 +0000
Message-ID: <e2a28a921001140238v2c09e540n2477d7af1101d3fb@mail.gmail.com>
To: Cynthia Shelly <cyns@microsoft.com>
Cc: HTML Accessibility Task Force <public-html-a11y@w3.org>
Hi Cynthia,

2010/1/14 Cynthia Shelly <cyns@microsoft.com>:
> The intro to the summary section now reads:
> <blockquote>
> The summary attribute provides a summary of the table's purpose for user
> agents rendering to non-visual media such as speech and Braille.
> Earlier versions of HTML suggested using summary to provide structural
> information about the table. This version adds the orientation attributeto
> allow user agents to derive that information from the table markup.

I don't understand how an orientation attribute could define the
structure in the same way the summary attribute was originally
intended to explain the structure. From what I understand, the
orientation attribute defines the reading order for the table
(horizontal, vertical, or none) but that often depends on what you're
interested in. For example, if you have a bus timetable with
destination stations in the columns, and departure times in the rows,
the summary would probably be something like:

summary="The rows contain departure times from this station; the
columns contain the destinations for that service"

I would read it vertically to find the departure time I need, and then
horizontally to determine the destination time. I can't imagine when
an orientation attribute would actually be helpful. Even if the user
knows the expected way of reading the data table is horizontally, they
still need to investigate a few data cells in order to build up a
picture of the structure, whereas the summary attribute was intended
to provide that information.



Supplement your vitamins
Received on Thursday, 14 January 2010 10:39:18 UTC

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