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Re: Tables

From: Ian Jacobs <ij@w3.org>
Date: Mon, 09 Aug 1999 08:32:25 -0400
Message-ID: <37AECA59.72372E1D@w3.org>
To: "Neff, Robert" <Robert.Neff@usmint.treas.gov>
Cc: "'w3c-wai-gl@w3.org'" <w3c-wai-gl@w3.org>
"Neff, Robert" wrote:
> In tables, I am not sure what the difference is between caption and summary.
> Maybe I did not read the Techniques close enough.  Anyway, what is the
> difference?

In short: detail.

From the HTML 4.0 spec:

> When present, the CAPTION element's text should 
> describe the nature of the table.

>Authors should therefore take care to provide additional 
>information summarizing the purpose and
>structure of the table using the summary attribute of 
>the TABLE element. This is especially important for
>tables without captions.

The HTML spec doesn't say what the "additional information"
should be. I think the caption should be a short title
for the table (and not that since CAPTION is an element
it can take marked up content) while summary should give
more information about what one can conclude from the
table, the headers of the table, etc. Summary
can only take simple text values.

Hope this helps,

 - Ian

Ian Jacobs (jacobs@w3.org)   http://www.w3.org/People/Jacobs
Tel/Fax:                     +1 212 684-1814
Received on Monday, 9 August 1999 08:32:38 UTC

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