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Re: tables in html? (separating content bla bla)

From: David Woolley <forums@david-woolley.me.uk>
Date: Sat, 22 Sep 2007 14:01:20 +0100
Message-ID: <46F51220.4030800@david-woolley.me.uk>
To: "www-html@w3.org" <www-html@w3.org>

Philip TAYLOR wrote:

>> HTML 3.2 includes a widely deployed subset of the 
>  > specification given in RFC 1942 and can be used to
>  > markup tabular material or for layout purposes.
> The last four words make it absolutely clear that
> layout was one of the intended uses of tables,

I think you are forgetting that 3.2 was documenting a fait accompli by 
the vendors.  The vendors have always tended towards wants rather than 
needs.  The market wanted a presentational language.  3.2 also 
introduced font elements, if I remember correctly.

> abuse.  All that aside, I suspect we all agree
> that achieving tabular layouts with tables is
> far easier than using CSS, and that what we need

But that is not fundamental.  It's a limitation in current CSS.  This 
list should be considering futures, and the solution to CSS weaknesses 
is not to build on the workarounds, but to fix, or replace, CSS.

(I still think that Adobe have got the better approach to writing 
commercial documents with structural information, but they haven't 
captured the imagination of the market, in the same way that HTML 
captured its  imagination when it started to be a poor imitation of PDF.

The PDF approach is to make the primary document be unashamedly 
presentation, mark up structure inline when it aligns with presentation 
and provide an alternative view of the document that shows the higher 
level structure and indicates how the relevant low level structure plus 
presentation components fit into the overall structure.  This is tagged 
PDF, used properly.)

David Woolley
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Received on Saturday, 22 September 2007 13:01:48 UTC

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