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Re: HTML Table Markup

From: Andrew Kirkpatrick <andrew_kirkpatrick@wgbh.org>
Date: Fri, 10 Sep 2004 10:02:25 -0400
To: david poehlman <david.poehlman@handsontechnologeyes.com>, Chris Ridpath <chris.ridpath@utoronto.ca>, w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-id: <BD672C31.4719E%andrew_kirkpatrick@wgbh.org>

> Just a thought on this,  It seems that it would make it less confusing to
> require th for all data tables so that authors and tools wouldn't have to
> attempt to determine which was a small data table.

I agree that it would be less confusing, but the basis of this is the HTML
recommendations, so we don't have free reign.

Chris wrote:
> I believe we all agree on:
> - layout tables should not use TH
> - large data tables must use TH

No, I don't think so.  I do think that they should, but the other options
seem valid, irrespective of table size.

I don't see clear indication of whether headers of some sort are required in
the recommendations.  In fact, the recommendation was authored with the idea
that tables were only for data, and the recommendation allows for tables
without headers, so perhaps the implication is that headers aren't
absolutely required of data tables, but add semantic meaning that is
valuable to humans and computer applications alike.

> If we required header markup (TH or other) for small data tables would that
> make them more accessible?

This question is answered differently with different user agents.  It would
never make them less accessible!


Andrew Kirkpatrick
Project Manager, WGBH National Center for Accessible Media
125 Western Ave.
Boston, MA  02134

617-300-4420 (direct voice/FAX)
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Received on Friday, 10 September 2004 14:03:20 UTC

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