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Re: ISSUE-92 cleanuptable - Chairs Solicit Alternate Proposals or Counter-Proposals

From: Shelley Powers <shelley.just@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 21 Apr 2010 10:40:22 -0500
Message-ID: <j2x643cc0271004210840t84b50caevb091ab95bd4096b3@mail.gmail.com>
To: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Cc: "public-html@w3.org WG" <public-html@w3.org>
On Wed, Apr 21, 2010 at 12:00 AM, Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com> wrote:
> The current status for this issue:
> http://dev.w3.org/html5/status/issue-status.html#ISSUE-092
> - We have a Working Group draft that includes a table example with extended
> advice on what to include in surrounding text.
> - We have a Change Proposal submitted that proposes changing the example and
> removing most of the advisory text:
> http://www.w3.org/html/wg/wiki/ChangeProposals/removeidioms
> At this time the Chairs would also like to solicit alternate Change
> Proposals (possibly with "zero edits" as the Proposal Details), in case
> anyone would like to advocate the status quo or a different change than the
> specific one in the existing Change Proposal.
> If no counter-proposals or alternate proposals are received by May 20th,
> 2010, we proceed with a Call for Consensus on Shelley's Change Proposal.

I have to, reluctantly, protest this one, and also point out the
obvious: until there's a determination on table summary, anything
related to the table element description is uncertain. Issue 32 blocks
Issue 92.

My change proposal includes support for @summary. I do so because the
arguments against its use have not effectively demonstrated the "harm"
of having this attribute. The data supposedly proving the harm of the
attribute is flawed: there's no way to differentiate whether the
misuse of the attribute is because it's "invisble", as some claim; or
if people didn't understand how to use the attribute, in which case
the description of the item was the problem, not the item, itself.  In
addition, there's been no study that's taken into account whether poor
uses of the summary attribute were derived from only a few automated
tools (not happening generally). In addition, we have no way of easily
determining if the use of the summary attribute has improved over the
last few years, because of more awareness about accessibility needs.

The effective way to eliminate the variables in the data is to provide
a better description now, and then after HTML5 has had broader use, in
five years or so, measure the data and see if the use of the attribute
has improved. Or not. If the use has not improved, then deprecate the
attribute, in preparation for making it obsolete.

No harm, no foul. After dumping 35+ new elements and what not into
HTML5, is one single attribute really the deal breaker we make it out
to be?

Regardless, this is related to Issue 32, which has to be resolved
before Issue 92. It blocks Issue 92.

When is Issue 32 being resolved? When a decision to be made? I have
read through the history of this group -- table summary was one of the
first issues impacting this group. If we can't figure out what to do
with this attribute _after three years of discussion_ we'll never be
able to figure it out.

I ask that no decision be made on Issue 92 until after resolution on
Issue 32, so I can change the replacement text in my change proposal,

> Regards,
> Maciej

Received on Wednesday, 21 April 2010 16:45:18 UTC

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