W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > May 2007

Re: Complex Table Examples

From: Maciej Stachowiak <mjs@apple.com>
Date: Thu, 17 May 2007 15:49:09 -0700
Message-Id: <00E5B52A-F324-4588-9894-6F1D6102EBB6@apple.com>
Cc: Laura Carlson <laura.carlson@gmail.com>, www-html@w3.org, public-html@w3.org, sailesh.panchang@deque.com
To: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>

On May 17, 2007, at 3:08 PM, Ian Hickson wrote:

> To conclude, I must once again give you my thanks for these links.  
> I'm not
> sure, however, that they support the argument in favour of headers=""
> specifically being put in HTML5, given scope="" and the definition  
> it has
> in HTML5.
> Do you agree? If you don't agree, what would be really helpful is an
> explanation of what it is that headers="" does that scope="" does not.
> I can immediately grant you two things:
>  1. headers="" is more widely implemented than scope="",

I think this argument is pretty strong, actually. If someone wanted  
to make table markup that can be understood by screen readers and  
wished to address older screen readers, it seems like headers="" is  
the option that degrades gracefully. This seems like a reason to at  
least specify headers="" as a UA requirement for UAs that associate  
cells and headers, and possibly a reason to make it conforming for  
documents so that authors can write conforming HTML5 without leaving  
out older screen readers. HTML5 goes to some lengths to allow markup  
that degrades gracefully in older browsers, and it seems reasonable  
to do this for screen readers as well.
>  2. headers="" handles some edge cases that scope="" cannot.
> However, in the case of the second of these points, I do not think  
> that we
> should necessarily optimise for such rare cases, and in the case of  
> the
> first, I think it would be more helpful to have input from AT  
> authors to
> explain *why* scope="" hasn't been implemented as widely. Is it simply
> that AT implementors haven't gotten there yet? Is the HTML4  
> definition to
> vague? Does the HTML5 definition help? Is the feature somehow
> fundamentally flawed?
I agree that feedback from AT authors would be very valuable. It  
seems that scope="" is much more author-friendly and its support  
should be advocated since it lowers the bar to making accessible markup.

Received on Thursday, 17 May 2007 22:49:44 UTC

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