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Re: AXIS vs. CLASS

From: Dave Raggett <dsr@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 16 Oct 1997 10:55:44 -0400 ()
To: Al Gilman <asgilman@access.digex.net>
cc: HC team <w3c-wai-hc@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.WNT.3.95.971016104031.-233665K-100000@hazel.hpl.hp.com>
On Thu, 16 Oct 1997, Al Gilman wrote:

> If the truth be known, what I really think about AXIS is that
> it is just CLASS under another name and can be dropped.

There is indeed a similarity, but I am concerned that not all
class names are appropriate for grouping headers into categories
for the purpose of rendering tables as hierarchies etc. This
would also screw up the simple application of style sheets for
indicating how headers are to be spoken as you move from cell
to cell.

This ties into another issue I would like to address, which is to
provide an explicit way for authors to rank axes. This is important
for rendering the table as a hierarchy as it determines which level
of the hierarchy given header groups occur.

One solution is to add an attribute to the table element for listing
the axes in decreasing order of importance. Lets call this "axes". 
We now can safely use the class attribute on cells to say which axis
or axes a given header belongs as we can use the axes list to tell
which of the classes are axes names and which are not.

At this point we could even choose to rename the attribute on cells
that lists the headers that are relevant to that cell, for instance
"headers" might be a more natural name for this.

Any comments?

Regards,

-- Dave Raggett <dsr@w3.org> http://www.w3.org/People/Raggett
phone: +44 122 578 2984 (or 2521) +44 385 320 444 (gsm mobile)
World Wide Web Consortium (on assignment from HP Labs)
Received on Thursday, 16 October 1997 10:58:08 UTC

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