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[Bug 12325] Conformance requirements for <table role=presentation> (layout tables)

From: <bugzilla@jessica.w3.org>
Date: Sun, 20 Mar 2011 16:02:04 +0000
To: public-html-bugzilla@w3.org
Message-Id: <E1Q1L4u-0001to-DR@jessica.w3.org>

--- Comment #8 from Leif Halvard Silli <xn--mlform-iua@xn--mlform-iua.no> 2011-03-20 16:02:02 UTC ---
(In reply to comment #7)

> If an AT support HTML 5 it needs to support ARIA. An AT that does not
> support HTML 5 is going to have a lot more problems than just processing ARIA. 
> So, why are we making a special provision for ARIA unaware AT? 
> I am having difficulty understanding the concern.

This understanding difficulty that you claim, appears artificial. 

It is true that one must draw the line somewhere. But HTML5 does take into
account that many user agents only support a subset of HTML5. (E.g. HTML5
offers authors to use <embed> or <object> as fallback for <video>.) 

I repeat: layout tables is a concept that was known to AT even before ARIA. 
Thus, the claim I've made in this bug report, is that it makes sense to make 
<table role=presentation> covers roughly that subset that legacy ATs (and, btw,
probably not only legacy AT) treat as presentation tables. I believe that this
is also what most perceive as "layout tables".

Why do you want to widen that subset? Any use cases?

Also, the author perspective, which you so far haven't touched: You once said
that we don't want to punish those that added an attribute in order to be
accessible. But I don't think HTML5 validity should be a matter of virtue
ethics only. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtue_ethics). We need to consider
the consequences and not only the virtue of the author. Otherwise we won't be
able to help the author.

Fact is: both <table role=presentation> and <td headers="idref"> are features
that an author can use to be accessible. As such we could just say that, dear
author, your intentions were the best, an hence - even if we don't have a
slightest clue about about what you tried to do (because the one a11y attribute
bangs the  the other in the head), we don't punish you, because your intentions
were the best.

I'm also interested in your comment on the <tfoot> problem. Should the author's
intension beat both conformance usability even in that case?

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Received on Sunday, 20 March 2011 16:02:06 UTC

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