[Bug 8404] Refocus the figure element back to being a figure


--- Comment #30 from Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>  2009-12-01 00:31:04 ---
(In reply to comment #28)
> (In reply to comment #24)
> > (In reply to comment #19)
> > 
> > > 
> > > Gavin, those are images of tables, pulled into the book as either TIFs or PNGs. 
> > > 
> > > The data is not accessible as a table.
> > > 
> > > If you all want to include JPEGs of tables in img elements, that's cool. You
> > > can put anything you want into an image file.
> > 
> > I think it would be a terrible message to send if we tell HTML authors that the
> > only way to include text or tabular data in a figure is to turn it into an
> > image. Text on the Web should be marked up as text whenever possible, even if
> > it is serving a largely graphical purpose. Ditto for tabular data. Turning text
> > or tables into images is bad for accessibility, indexability, find-in-page
> > features, copy/paste. It's an anti-pattern. If restricting <figure> would have
> > this effect on HTML authoring then we absolutely should not do it.
> > 
> Another option is to add one more element:
> iframe

That introduces some serious downsides:

1) Extra network request to load the contents of the <iframe>
2) Extra memory/performance overhead per <iframe> (likely to become very
expensive if a document has many figures using this trick.
3) Requires the embedder to determine a fixed size, rather than allowing
natural sizing of the figure. (This will go away when/if browsers implement
seamless iframes; so far none has).
4) <iframe>s do not work as well as smoothly as in-flow content in many
existing assistive technologies.

> Then we could define whatever HTML in a separate HTML file, and include it in
> figure using iframe.
> This would allow svg, mathml, img, iframe, object, and video as figure
> contents. 

I would ask: what semantic benefit is there if <figure> can't contain a table
or a code sample, but it can contain an <iframe> containing a table or a code
sample? It seems like this doesn't really restrict what <figure> can contain,
just restricts the mechanism in an arbitrary and inconvenient way.

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Received on Tuesday, 1 December 2009 00:31:14 UTC