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Re: aside and figure elements

From: Leif Halvard Silli <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no>
Date: Tue, 8 Jun 2010 11:13:00 +0200
To: Laura Carlson <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>
Cc: Bruce Lawson <brucel@opera.com>, Shelley Powers <shelleyp@burningbird.net>, HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>, HTML Accessibility Task Force <public-html-a11y@w3.org>
Message-ID: <20100608111300920682.3a625a7c@xn--mlform-iua.no>
Laura Carlson, Tue, 8 Jun 2010 03:39:49 -0500:
> Hi Bruce,
> 
>> My gut feeling is that the difference is
>> 
>> 1) illustrative and 2) "typically referred to in the main article/ 
>> section".
>> Aside is tangential,
>> figure is integral.
> 
> The spec currently says that figure,
> 
> "could, without affecting the flow of the document, be moved away from
> that primary content, e.g. to the side of the page, to dedicated
> pages, or to an appendix."
> 
> If figure can be moved away from primary content, it sure doesn’t seem
> to be integral/essential.

I interpret that sentence to express that the <figure> has a certain 
autonomy and/or internal unity.  Kind of like when things are moved out 
of HTML5 proper and into a separate spec ... ;-) It can still be linked 
to from the HTML5 proper spec. And, to some, it continues to be 
integral/essential ...

> Is that bit of text really needed? Perhaps
> it should be removed or adjusted? Maybe emphasize that figure is
> integral and is meant to strengthen meaning?

No, this doesn't sound like a good idea. It is not, for instance, 
forbidden to create a page which merely contains a collection of more 
or less unrelated <figure> elements.

However, I agree that it is probably possible to use other words. The 
point that should be emphasized is that a <figure>, regardless of its 
close or distant relationship to the rest of the page, is an entity of 
its own.

> Talking about "the side
> of the page" in the figure element definition confuses it with the
> aside element.

May be.

> The spec currently says that the aside  element,
> 
> "represents a section of a page that consists of content that is
> tangentially related to the content around the aside element, and
> which could be considered separate from that content."
> 
> Thoughts?

Having a page filled with <aside> elements only, does not generally 
seem very meaningful - may be unless the page is a collection of 
aphorisms. In contrast, a page filled with <figure> elements only seems 
meaningful. It is also possible to do

	<aside>
		<figure>
			<summary>…</summary>
			Another point.
		</figure>
	</aside>

But this does not seem so meaningful:

	<figure>
		<summary>…</summary>
		<aside>
			Another point.
		</aside>
	</figure>

(Even if authors could end up doing this, if they need the <aside> to 
have a caption... )
-- 
leif halvard
Received on Tuesday, 8 June 2010 09:14:06 GMT

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