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Re: Use of <summary> with tables


From: Alan Zaitchik
Date: Dec 3, 2015 4:48PM

Yes, I meant the attribute. Thanks for catching that.
Sometimes we are forced to use content coming from the clients, and in
those instances we don¹t always have the ability to persuade them to break
up tables (or charts and other infographics) into pieces easier to
comprehend. But you¹re right that this generally having to describe table
structure is a sign that the table is poorly designed!
Here¹s another problematic scenario: when we have to make a PDF with an
image of a data table accessible. Dumping tons of data into the ALT text
for the image is horrific. I can only imagine the curses that screen
reader users must utter. How can anyone process data that way?

On 12/2/15, 3:53 PM, "Birkir R. Gunnarsson" < <EMAIL REMOVED> >

>You mean the summary attribute, not a summary tag, correct?
><table summary="this table has x columns, y rows etc. etc.">
>Even if no longer allowed under html5, it is allowed by older coding
>standards and is pretty well supported by assistive technologies.
>The problem I have with using the summary attribute is that if a table
>is so complex that it needs a specific summary of how it is laid out,
>you should rethink the table and see if it couldn't be better
>constructed or split up into multiple tables -- better for everybody).
>If it can't be done, sure, you can stil use the summary attribute to
>describe it to a screen reader user.
>You could also use it to give the table an accessible name (though
><caption> tag is preferred, because it makes the table name visible to
>On 12/2/15, Alan Zaitchik < <EMAIL REMOVED> > wrote:
>> I am somewhat confused. I originally thought that since <summary> is
>> obsoleted in HTML5 I should use an alternative, e.g. any of those
>> at http://www.w3.org/WAI/tutorials/tables/caption-summary/. But then I
>>saw a
>> summary of tests reported at http://www.davidmacd.com/test/details.html
>> it leads me to think that <summary> is still better than the
>>alternatives as
>> far as screen reader users are concerned. (In our application I am
>> with off-screen tables accessed only by screen readers.)
>> Any advice?
>> A
>> >> >> >> >>
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