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Re: Question about Headings (Succesion Criteria 1.3.1, 2.4.1, 2.4.6, and 2.4.10)

From: Phill Jenkins <pjenkins@us.ibm.com>
Date: Tue, 11 Aug 2009 18:25:26 -0500
To: W Reagan <wreagan1@yahoo.com>, Chris Reeve <chrisreeve15@yahoo.com>
Cc: w3c-wai-ig@w3.org
Message-ID: <OFEBB79D1B.89646E22-ON8625760F.00795D4D-8625760F.0080ACD6@us.ibm.com>
W. Regan,
how long have you been programming?  If you are just learning HTML, then 
your questions are NOT appropriate for WAI-IG. The HTML techniques you 
reference are for Web developers, are you a developer? The documents you 
reference are NOT introductory or tutorial documents, they are detail 
technical descriptions of coding techniques.

As was posted earlier, the heading tags <h1>, <h2>, etc. are for heading 
levels, not the number of headings on your page - ugh.  All your 'Volume 
1' through 'Volume 8' headings should be all coded at the same heading 
level, using the same <h_> tag - probably something like an <h3> if you 
are referring to the example headings on the left side of the netmechanic 
page you reference, the one under the 'Back Issues' heading. 

You are correct that the netmechanic page you reference does NOT in fact 
code them as headings using any <h_> tags, so they are breaking their own 
advice that is on the page.  They are using an image for the column 
heading 'Back Issues' and tables for layout.  They use two required blank 
spaces to give the illusion of an indented list and break tags all over 
the place.  Here is a snippet of their 'very unstructured" code for 
illustration purposes:

. . . 
<td CLASS="pastissues">
Volume 8 (2005)
&nbsp;&nbsp; <A HREF="/news/vol8/no5.htm">September</A><BR>
&nbsp;&nbsp; <A HREF="/news/vol8/no4.htm">June</A><BR>
&nbsp;&nbsp; <A HREF="/news/vol8/no3.htm">April</A><BR>
&nbsp;&nbsp; <A HREF="/news/vol8/no2.htm">March</A><BR>
&nbsp;&nbsp; <A HREF="/news/vol8/no1.htm">January</A><BR>
Volume 7 (2004)
. . .  

I would recommend coding the headings, Volume 8 (2005), Volume 7 (2004), 
etc.  as <h3>'s, but that will probably break the HTML validator because 
headings, as in <h3>'s, should not be inside tables.  I'm not talking 
about table column headers, <th>'s, here.  I would probably recommend 
removing the layout table, replace them with CSS layout, code "Back 
Issues" as an <h2> and all the Volume headings as <h3>'s, and then code 
the lists of months as an unordered list, <ul>, add some CSS styling, etc.
However, the advice on the netmechanic page is mostly good, its just that 
the page itself doesn't have any good coding example to talk about.  Here 
is a snippet of their advice:
. . . 
HTML codes can be used for multiple purposes. HTML [heading level] tags 
(<h1>, <h2>, <h3>, etc.) are more than a quick way to format text. Use 
them to define your page's organizational structure and simplify page 
navigation. Well-written [headings] . . . 
Use [heading level] tags [and good styling] as a navigational aid on long 
pages to help visitors quickly scan page content. They can easily 
determine where new topics are introduced and find what they're interested 

<h1>Chinese and Thai Cooking Classes: Recipes, foods, and more!</h1>
  <h2>Chinese Cooking Classes</h2>
    <h3>Chinese Recipes: Mandarin and Cantonese</h3>
    <h3>Chinese Food Preparation</h3>
  <h2>Thai Cooking Classes</h2>
    <h3>Thai Recipes</h3>
    <h3>Thai Food Preparation</h3>
. . . 

Note: I replaced 'header' with '[heading level]' and changed all the HTML 
code to lower case.

Phill Jenkins, 

Take a look at the following site 
http://www.netmechanic.com/news/vol4/html_no9.htm. If they used headers 
"Volume 6" and "Volume 5' are a big list. My list is bigger where the text 
information "might have" seven volumes. Each has its own header (h1 for 
volume 1, h2 for volume 2. The question is how do I start with "Volume 7"? 

Note: I recently discovered that 2.4.10 also has an issue with headers.. 
At the moment I have it set up so
Volume 1=h1
Volume 2=h2
Volume 3=h3
Volume 4=h4
Volume 5=h5
Volume 6=h6
Volume 7=h1
Volume 8=h2
Is Volume 7 and 8 set up correctly. Note: Netmechanic is partially 
similary to my site.
In reality the do not use headers.
If they did, what would be the correct set up? 
--- On Tue, 8/11/09, Christophe Strobbe 
<christophe.strobbe@esat.kuleuven.be> wrote:

At 06:26 11/08/2009, W Reagan wrote:
> I have a document that contains a big list. The list has been divided 
into headers (h1 through h6).

Could you explain more clearly what you have in mind?
You can have more than six *headings* (not to be confused with "headers"), 
but HTML provides only six *levels of headings*..
Is your problem with the number of headings or the number of levels?

Best regards,

Christophe Strobbe
Received on Tuesday, 11 August 2009 23:26:10 UTC

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