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Re: Summary of Thursday's IRC conversation about @summary

From: Leif Halvard Silli <lhs@malform.no>
Date: Sat, 06 Jun 2009 03:24:32 +0200
Message-ID: <4A29C550.90209@malform.no>
To: Jonas Sicking <jonas@sicking.cc>
CC: David Singer <singer@apple.com>, public-html@w3.org
Jonas Sicking On 09-06-06 01.31:
> On Fri, Jun 5, 2009 at 3:14 PM, David Singer <singer@apple.com> wrote:
>> At 12:22  -0700 5/06/09, John Foliot wrote:
>>> It is also important to note that the PF-WG specifically wrote:
>>>
>>> * We reject the argument that summary should be removed from the HTML
>>> * specification because it is not implemented on most web sites. We 
>>> * note that accessibility is poorly supported on most web sites. The
>>> * wider web is not an example of good practice.

> I do hope that the people advocating @summary has looked into these
> questions and come to the conclusion that @summary can not be
> improved. However they have unfortunately not provided any information
> about which alternatives were looked into and why @summary was deemed
> better.

I don't know where you take it from that @summary has been deemed 
better or that the table summary feature cannot be improved.

However, better than what? Clearly it has been deemed better than 
lumping caption and summary together. But there are options that 
are considered better - at least when we exclude the "backward 
compatibility" issue. For example to have a <summary> element, 
such as in XHTML 2.[1] That page mentions plenty of other 
alternatives as well. Pick and choose!

@summary has many problems, such as bad/wrong advice about how to 
use it. For @alt, HTML 5 has included lots of very specific advice 
about how to use it. May be HTML 5 could do the same for @summary? 
  If so, we would need to describe a few typical usecases for it. 
We would also probably need to point out bad use of @summary.

[1] 
http://esw.w3.org/topic/HTML/SummaryForTABLE?action=show#head-847d2ebafa6828471a3d2777ad3676944007c35d
-- 
leif halvard silli
Received on Saturday, 6 June 2009 01:25:11 GMT

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