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[whatwg] <select> with tabular data

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Wed, 22 Oct 2008 06:47:00 +0000 (UTC)
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.62.0810220639260.1237@hixie.dreamhostps.com>
On Fri, 17 Dec 2004, Anne van Kesteren wrote:
> >
> > I don't really follow what you are proposing here. Could you give
> > more details?
> 
> Think of a SELECT element which has a table formatted dropdown list. This
> enables you to do thinks like:
> 
>   Name             Tel
>   A. van Kesteren  000434
>   I. Hickson       213432
> 
> I believe I proposed something similar before based on a proposal from 1996 in
> www-html[1].
> [1]<http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-html/1996Aug/0446.html>

On Sat, 18 Dec 2004, Matthew Raymond wrote:
> 
>    Matthew Thomas had a similar idea:
> 
> http://listserver.dreamhost.com/pipermail/whatwg-whatwg.org/2004-December/002600.html
> 
>    It has a few problems, though. In legacy browsers the column headers aren't
> visible and the content of other fields isn't visible. Here's an improved
> version that works better with legacy user agents:
> 
> | <label for="result1">Results of Query 1</label><br>
> | <shead for="result1">
> |   <sh sort="asc">Number <sh>Name <sh>Department<br>
> | </shead>
> | <select table id="result1" name="results1" size="4">
> |  <option value="234"><sd>234 <sd>Adams, John <sd>Human Resources
> |  <option value="33"><sd>33 <sd>Franklin, Ben <sd>Finance
> |  <option value="199"><sd>199 <sd>Harrison, W. H. <sd>Marketing
> |  <option value="1022"><sd>1022 <sd>Lincoln, Abe <sd>IS
> |  <option value="599"><sd>599 <sd>Washington, Marsha <sd>IS
> | </select>
> 
>    This is what it would look like in XHTML:
> 
> | <label for="result1">Results of Query 1</label><br>
> | <shead for="result1">
> |   <sh sort="asc">Number</sh> <sh>Name</sh> <sh>Department</sh><br>
> | </shead>
> | <select table id="result1" name="results1" size="4">
> |  <option value="234">
> |   <sd>234</sd> <sd>Adams, John</sd> <sd>Human Resources</sd>
> |  </option>
> |  <option value="33">
> |   <sd>33</sd> <sd>Franklin, Ben</sd> <sd>Finance</sd>
> |  </option>
> |  <option value="199" selected>
> |   <sd>199</sd> <sd>Harrison, W. H.</sd> <sd>Marketing</sd>
> |  </option>
> |  <option value="1022">
> |   <sd>1022</sd> <sd>Lincoln, Abe</sd> <sd>IS</sd>
> |  </option>
> |  <option value="599">
> |   <sd>599</sd> <sd>Washington, Marsha</sd> <sd>IS</sd>
> |  </option>
> | </select>
> 
>    For a number of existing user agents, the above markup could be 
> styled with CSS to give it the appearance of a listview control. In this 
> manner, we can support true listview-style controls for HTML5 user 
> agents and simulated ones for legacy user agents using the same markup.
> 
>    (Note that I wanted to create a system that just reused the table 
> elements that webmasters are already accustom to using, but making such 
> a system work in Internet Explorer is problematic.)

We have <datagrid> now for this use case. For <select>-like behavior we 
don't have a good solution, but it's unclear that this is a particularly 
common problem -- most drop downs and select boxes i see in my day to day 
interaction with my OS aren't tabular.

-- 
Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Tuesday, 21 October 2008 23:47:00 UTC

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