W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > August 2009

Re: summary attribute compromise proposal

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Tue, 04 Aug 2009 12:35:15 -0700
Cc: HTML WG <public-html@w3.org>
Message-id: <53C7B371-343E-4D07-ACB4-81B39DE48523@apple.com>
To: Julian Reschke <julian.reschke@gmx.de>

Hi Julian,

On Aug 4, 2009, at 12:24 PM, Julian Reschke wrote:

> Maciej Stachowiak wrote:
>> ...
>> 3) HTML5 will continue to include a mandatory warning for  
>> summary="". The purpose is not to completely prevent authors from  
>> using summary="", but rather to bring alternatives to their  
>> attention, as described above.
>> ...
> This would compute if HTML5 was proposing something that actually  
> can replace @summary (*); as far as I can tell, this is currently  
> not the case.

To be really clear, the purpose of the warning is to give authors the  
chance to *consider* other approaches, not to outright rule out  
summary. It wouldn't say "don't use summary", it would say something  
like "if you're using summary, you may want to consider these issues  
and these alternate approaches...". So an author could see the warning  
and decide they have good reason to use summary="" anyway.

I think this is appropriate, because HTML4 did not have any other  
recommended techniques for table descriptions, so the warning will  
give authors a good chance to consider other approaches.

It's also similar in spirit to validator.nu's "image report" feature,  
which will help you ensure that your use of images is accessible but  
without commanding one specific way to do it.

Received on Tuesday, 4 August 2009 19:35:56 UTC

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