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RE: How Much Of A Problem Are Tables Used for Design?

From: Neff, Robert <Robert.Neff@usmint.treas.gov>
Date: Thu, 18 Nov 1999 08:20:28 -0500
Message-ID: <B1E68D292F3CD111A57C0000F67CB3CA010443DF@WDCSRV03.usmint.treas.gov>
To: "'Marti'" <marti47@MEDIAONE.NET>, David Poehlman <poehlman@clark.net>, "Gregory J. Rosmaita" <unagi69@concentric.net>
Cc: webmaster@dors.sailorsite.net, WAI Interest Group Emailing List <w3c-wai-ig@w3.org>
Been following this list and here are my two cents.

While the idea to remove "tables for layout' is noble, it is not
implementable and thus it would not be accepted by the user community.
Currently using Tables for layout is double-A and recommend it stay that
way.  Until the exodus occurs to user agents and web authoring tools and CSS
is stable across all browsers, any effort will meet larger resistance in the
web development community. Tables for layout are an integral part of the way
business is done in the commercial and federal, state and local governments.

This effort remove "tables for layout' would serve to negate any buy-in from
the web development community.  This would possibly force federal, state and
local web developers to invoke the undue burden clause and justify this by
stating people who have problems with the web site, should call this number
for the information to be provided in an alternative format.  

While this a great idea, its needs to be properly implemented which means
education on behalf of the developers, authoring tools, and user agents. 

Fight to educate people on how to properly implement tables for layout -
this is doable and educate everyone on the things we can address and get
buy-in.  Do the soft sale and work this in later.


		-----Original Message-----
		From:	Marti [mailto:marti47@MEDIAONE.NET]
		Sent:	Thursday, November 18, 1999 7:35 AM
		To:	David Poehlman; Gregory J. Rosmaita
		Cc:	webmaster@dors.sailorsite.net; WAI Interest Group
Emailing List
		Subject:	Re: How Much Of A Problem Are Tables Used
for Design?

		I guess it is time to weight in on this one. First, I plead
guilty to using
		tables for layout!
		It is darn hard to resist the flexibility you can achieve
that makes your
		pages look good no matter what size screen or resolution
they are displayed
		in. It seems to me that most of the table related complaints
are because the
		tables turn into gibberish when unstacked.  This usually
seems to be the
		result of a designer not considering this aspect and
layering tables with in
		tables with in tables (makes the code gibberish too).  It is
probably easier
		to say 'don't use tables' than 'don't use tables poorly' but
I really don't
		see the problem with using a simple table to make things
line up nicely for
		something like a list of links that will still make sense no
matter which
		way you 'stack' it. (other than it being a misuse of html of
course - but
		there are lots of cases of that)

		----- Original Message -----
		From: David Poehlman <poehlman@clark.net>
		To: Gregory J. Rosmaita <unagi69@concentric.net>
		Cc: <webmaster@dors.sailorsite.net>; WAI Interest Group
Emailing List
		Sent: Thursday, November 18, 1999 7:15 AM
		Subject: Re: How Much Of A Problem Are Tables Used for

		> just weighing in here.  we've learned from Gregory and it
has been
		> acknowledged by others that improperly marked up tables
are a barrier
		> to some users and there is good evidence for using proper
markup and
		> not using tables for lay out <decoration>.  Although this
may be a
		> hard nut to crack, it is no less so than asking for
captions in video
		> or audio descriptions and yet, we saw from judy that kin
was in error
		> when he said if it comes down to making information
available to some
		> was better than making it available to none according to
the current
		> legal attitude.
		> We could argue back and forth all day for the
justification of a
		> position on either side but it comes down to what our goal
is.  We
		> have two of them as I see it.
		> 1> provide information concerning the how tos and whys of
		> accessability for all.
		> 2> be the poliece that helps inforce this practice.  In
guarding your
		> door Bruce on both counts, you are like the company who is
accused of
		> rong doing and then ttold to clean up its act and make
sure it doesn't
		> happen again.  Like it or not, you are in a prime position
to aid in
		> this but from this thread, it would seem that you are
joining with
		> what we might call the enemy in this senario.  The
guidelines were
		> hard to accept even a year ago and are still hard to
accept but are
		> getting easier.  If you show people that it is possible to
lay out
		> their datta without using tables and still make it look
pretty or if
		> they use tables for lay out then to do certain things that
make it
		> easier for all of us, I think they are just as likely to
accept this
		> as any other guideline.
		> One of our biggest problems is the way all those legacy
editing and
		> creation tools handle markup and that the people using
them in large
		> numbers do not know a lick of html.
		> I know you better than is stated above but thought you'd
like to know
		> that your statements on this thread have cast you in this
		> We are all on the same side right?
		> --
		> Hands-On Technolog(eye)s
		> Touching The Internet:
		> mailto:poehlman@clark.net
		> Voice: 301.949.7599
		> ftp://ftp.clark.net/pub/poehlman
		> http://poehlman.clark.net
		> Dynamic Solutions Inc.
		> Best of service
		> for your small business
		> network needs!
		> http://www.dnsolutions.com
		> ---sig off---
Received on Thursday, 18 November 1999 08:20:45 UTC

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