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Re: Tables and the Summary attribute + Nielsen on PDFs

From: David Woolley <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
Date: Fri, 23 Sep 2005 07:35:57 +0100 (BST)
Message-Id: <200509230635.j8N6ZvK03308@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
To: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org

> Well, most of the use of alt="" seems to be from spacer gifs.  Now, with
> the use of CSS, you should be able to completely get rid of those pesky
> spacer gifs.  Also, you can use CSS to insert graphics for bullets and

The problem is that spacer that gif (and table based layouts, for that
matter) work, and given that most authors have never been near a formal
specification, and have no intention of producing a structured document
(longer version of this on www-style, a couple of days ago), they are going
to copy spacer.gif from other web sites (most people code by copying,
not by understanding).

As the www-style thread also points out, with CSS (and a CSS capable browser,
which probably excludes IE6 and earlier IEs) you can use non-table markup
and force a table interpretation in the style sheet.  CSS3 is even better
at this, as it allows the generation of virtual containing blocks.

(I'll accept that, unlike www-css, this list deals with the current state
of browsers, not futures, and that a knowledgable and motivated author
can avoid spacers using margins.)

Incidentally, most spacer.gifs don't have alt=""; more often than not
they don't have alt at all.

> other design images minimizing the need for the images that don't have
> any valuable content.   In some cases, you could have a visually
> pleasing site without ever using the <img> tag; See css zen garden:
> http://csszengarden.com/ 
Received on Friday, 23 September 2005 07:03:07 UTC

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