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Re: The description of what is sufficient to pass as a simple table is insufficient

From: Loretta Guarino Reid <lorettaguarino@google.com>
Date: Fri, 2 Nov 2012 20:42:42 -0700
Message-ID: <CAHu5OWbc48uRX43LRDpuYJCvaVGk2pcf99gqFaj-HbYBi5VQYA@mail.gmail.com>
To: charles.belov@sfmta.com
Cc: public-comments-wcag20@w3.org
On Thu, Dec 8, 2011 at 2:06 PM, <noreply@w3.org> wrote:

>
> Name: Charles Belov
> Email: charles.belov@sfmta.com
> Affiliation: San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency
> Document: TD
> Item Number: H51
> Part of Item: Tests
> Comment Type: technical
> Summary of Issue: The description of what is sufficient to pass as a
> simple table is insufficient
> Comment (Including rationale for any proposed change):
> The text only indicates that use of the proper tags will constitute an
> accessible simple table. There is nothing addressing:
>
> 1. What headings are sufficient.
> 2. Where they must go.
> 3. What must be in them.
> 4. What distinguishes the table as simple.
>
> I have seen tables with an occasional blank column 1 in a body row, or
> with the same content repeated for several rows in column 1 where the
> contents of column 2, being unique, would be suitable for the row heading.
>
> Also, I have encountered misunderstanding that the heading for a row is
> the contents of column 1 of that row; that is, the word "heading" in
> English, as opposed to in the specification, is taken to only mean what the
> specification would consider a column heading.
>
> It would be better for the specification to be explicit.
>
> Proposed Change:
> Tests
> Procedure
>
> Add:
>
> 3. Check that row 1 column 1 is either blank or describes the contents of
> the entire column 1.
> 4. Check that row 1 subsequent columns are not blank (i.e. contain "column
> headings"), describe the contents of the entire column, and allow the
> reader to distinguish the difference in meaning between that column and
> immediately preceding and following columns.
> 5. Check that column 1 subsequent rows are not blank (i.e. contain "row
> headings"), describe the contents of the entire row, and allow the reader
> to distinguish the difference in meaning between that row and the
> immediately preceding rows.
>
> Expected results
>
> Add:
>
> If tests 4 and 5 cannot be met, either a complex table may be required or
> this table would need to be broken into multiple simple tables.
>
> ================================
Response from the Working Group
================================
Those are all good practice but are not required by the success
criterion.   So adding them to the text and requiring them for this
technique would make the technique narrower than required.  They are good
points though and should be brought to the readers attention.  We are
therefore incorporating the following text after the last paragraph of the
description for H51:

Simple tables generally have only one level of headers for columns, one
level of headers for rows, or both.

Usually, for simple tables, the cell at row 1, column 1 is either blank or
describes the contents of column 1. Cells in row 1 are usually not blank
(i.e. they contain "column headings"), describe the contents of their
column, and allow the reader to distinguish the difference in meaning
between that column and other columns.

Cells in column 1 are usually not blank; they often contain "row headings"
which describe the contents of their row, and allow the reader to
distinguish the difference in meaning between that row and other rows.


Loretta Guarino Reid, WCAG WG Co-Chair
Gregg Vanderheiden, WCAG WG Co-Chair
Michael Cooper, WCAG WG Staff Contact


On behalf of the WCAG Working Group
Received on Saturday, 3 November 2012 03:43:10 UTC

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