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XHTML: Invalid form tag placement

From: Emlyn Addison <emlyn@neinetwork.com>
Date: Wed, 5 Nov 2003 16:26:27 -0500
Message-ID: <061b01c3a3e3$7afcaff0$fe04a8c0@s0024872641>
To: <www-validator@w3.org>
Hi folks,

Yet another XHTML validation snafu on the road to spiritual creaminess...

I'm sure that I'm not the only designer out there who has discovered that opening <form> and closing </form> tags have a nasty habit of adding vertical space. This is especially difficult to deal with when the form has been carefully constructed within a table for layout purposes (CSS2 pie-in-the-sky capabilities notwithstanding...).

My trusty workaround to this predictable HTML snafu has been to open <form> and </form> tags *outside* of a table's structure (or at least far away from the delicate layout elements), either between </td><form></td> or between </tr><form><tr>. This has worked like a charm in the past, but unsurprisingly the XHTML validator will have none of it.

However, to my dismay I discovered that even if the opening <form> and closing </form> tags appear "properly" in cells above or below the form fields, the validator will *still* identify these as invalid:

  1.. Line 38, column 66: start tag was here (explain...). 
  ..." valign="middle" class="normalbold"><form name="search" id="search
  2.. Line 49, column 130: end tag for element "form" which is not open (explain...). 
  ...submit" name="go" value="go" /></form></td>

ie: The opening and closing form tags from lines 1 and 2 are in different cells, which it finds unacceptable.

Does the XHTML validator honestly expect an entire block-level form to appear within a single table cell, or none at all to be considered valid? Or am I just missing something horribly obvious?

Thanks in advance.


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Emlyn Addison
Director of Creative Services
www.RI.gov -  Rhode Island Government Online
401.831.8099 x24
Received on Wednesday, 5 November 2003 16:27:05 UTC

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