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ISSUE-97 (meter): Remove/Discard the Meter Element [HTML 5 spec]

From: HTML Weekly Issue Tracker <sysbot+tracker@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 11 Jan 2010 15:48:00 +0000 (GMT)
To: public-html-wg-issue-tracking@w3.org
Message-Id: <20100111154800.C3F137F408@otto.w3.org>

ISSUE-97 (meter): Remove/Discard the Meter Element [HTML 5 spec]

http://www.w3.org/html/wg/tracker/issues/97

Raised by: Shelley Powers
On product: HTML 5 spec

Evidently, the meter element came about primarily so that people don't use the
Progress element incorrectly[1]. This seems a poor reason to create a new
element. Either the Progress element needs to have a better definition in the
spec, to prevent incorrect use, or the progress element is so confusing or is
so capable of being misunderstood, it should be pulled from the spec,
altogether.

Regardless of what happens with Progress, there seems little use case,
interest, or need for the meter element.

The meter element is supposedly acting as some form of static gauge, but
there's no way to associate exactly what it is that's being gauged, with the
gauge value. There is no way to specifically tie the value contained in the
meter element with the object, in such a way that the information can be useful
for web bots or other user agents. In addition, it's not particularly useful
for accessibility reasons, when text within a span element would be just as
useful, and just as viable. 

As for a graphical display, it's just as simple to provide an image, or use
CSS, SVG, or Canvas, with the associated fall back defined for each.
Regardless, there is little instruction about how the element is displayed,
which adds to the general confusion about what the element is, and how it
should be supported. 

Even the graphical example about half way through the section, showing Usenet
subscriptions, doesn't really add much information. One can see that 618
subscribers is significantly more than 22, just by reading the numbers--one
doesn't to see a picture to comprehend the difference. On the contrary, without
understanding why there seems to be an upper range, the gauge doesn't mean a
lot. Is the upper range a Usenet limit? The largest Usenet membership? Some
arbitrary number picked so one can have a cool picture? 

In addition, the section mixes instructions for authors and user agents, HTML
editing and parsing in a confusing mish-mash of instructions, compounded by a
list of confusing rules about the interaction of the element's attributes and
values. One can almost guarantee that this element will be used incorrectly,
and most likely implemented incorrectly. 

[1] http://lists.whatwg.org/htdig.cgi/whatwg-whatwg.org/2009-August/021931.html
Received on Monday, 11 January 2010 15:48:03 UTC

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