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Re: Extensive forms

From: gregory j. rosmaita <oedipus@hicom.net>
Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 12:50:26 -0400
Message-ID: <000801c0c9ba$009ad120$9eb6f5d0@igor>
To: <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
Cc: <ESlaydon@beacontec.com>
aloha, eugenia!

it would be much easier to answer your question if you provided some sample
code so that the logical relationships between form controls and labels can
be relfected in the structural markup used to encode the page...  is there
an URI to which you can point us, or can you please send a sample of code to
the list w3c-wai-gl@w3.org

as for asserting in the markup that all of the objects in a row are related,
have you considered using any/all of the following?
a) the "scope" attribute for the TH and TD elements?
b) the "headers"/"id" relational construct?
c) the "axis" attribute for TD and TH elements?

more information available at:

but as i indicated earlier, if you send a URI or an attachment containing
the markup you are currently using to control the layout of the FORM encased
in a TABLE, we can provide you with more concrete assistance...

by the way, the one-on-one relationship between input fields and labels is
one of my pet peeves, as is the inability of any AT of which i am aware, to
allow the user to automatically (or on explicit request) expose the text
encoded as a LEGEND in a FIELDSET...

one last note--using the markup added to HTML4 in order to make the content
encoded as a table semantically sensible when the table's content is
rendered in a non-visual modality may make the form accessible/508-compliant
from a purely code-based perspective, but may not have a very wide impact in
the quote real world unquote due to lack of support/implementation on the
part of both adaptive technology vendors and mainstream user agent
developers, but that's an argument for a separate thread, as is the topic of
whether a table, even when used as a data-table, is a structural or
presentational construct, as data tables rely upon the perceiver's ability
to discern relationships between pieces of data visually in order to
communicate the nature of the relationships between the components of a


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Gregory J. Rosmaita:                             oedipus@hicom.net
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Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2001 10:01:14 -0400
To: w3c-wai-gl@w3.org
From: "Slaydon, Eugenia" <ESlaydon@beacontec.com> (by way of Wendy A
Chisholm <wendy@w3.org>)
Subject: Extensive forms & tables accessibility question


I'm trying to make my pages that are very heavy in forms accessible and
understandable by screen readers. I've used label where I can but I have
text fields that are associated with multiple labels. For example I have a
question in the first column and they have to enter a answer in the next 4
columns. The 4 columns have a header row of titles. Currently, I have
assigned id and headers to the td's. But since the label is missing the page
will fail on a compliance check. Any suggestions on how to handle complex
forms that are inside of tables so that it meets section 508 compliance?

Received on Friday, 20 April 2001 12:49:13 UTC

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