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[Bug 9876] Clarify that a figure can be any content with a caption

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Date: Tue, 08 Jun 2010 12:33:00 +0000
To: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
Message-Id: <E1OLxzI-0002PI-Sj@jessica.w3.org>

--- Comment #2 from Laura Carlson <laura.lee.carlson@gmail.com>  2010-06-08 12:32:59 ---
The current definition of figure is far too easily confused with aside.

Talking about "the side of the page" in the figure element definition confuses
it with the aside element. 

Why does placement need to be mentioned at all?

I suggest deleting:

"that are referred to from the main content of the document, but that could,
without affecting the flow of the document, be moved away from that primary
content, e.g. to the side of the page, to dedicated pages, or to an appendix."

The current definitions of the aside and figure sound almost identical, except
that figure has a caption. They are not only uncomfortably generic but also
dangerously close in meaning, which adds complexity and ambiguity. Bad
complexity leads to frustration, wasted time and wasted money.

Developers will tend to confuse the two elements and use them incorrectly. It
will present a challenge for educators to teach the difference.

Bruce has mentioned that his view is figure is:

> 1) illustrative and 2) "typically referred to in the main article/ section".
> Aside is tangential,
> figure is integral.

If that is true, it would be a way of differentiating the two.

Some developers may want more choices and complex levels of control. But they
don't want the complexity that entails elements that are ambiguous, error
prone, or difficult to learn.

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Received on Tuesday, 8 June 2010 12:33:07 UTC

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