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SVNBugCommentTime (UTC)
2866[Authors] [Conformance Checkers] [Tools] Make it clear that layout tables are wrong. Suggest that tools use heuristics to detect them anyway. Allows browsers to use the summary='' attribute.2009-02-24 02:49
@@ -25184,26 +25184,48 @@ function AddCloud(data, x, y) { ... }</pre>
   <span>HTMLElement</span> <span title="dom-table-insertRow">insertRow</span>([Optional] in long index);
   void <span title="dom-table-deleteRow">deleteRow</span>(in long index);
   <p>The <code>table</code> element <span>represents</span> data with
   more than one dimension, in the form of a <span
-  <p class="XXX">we need some editorial text on how layout
-  tables are bad practice and non-conforming</p>
   <p>The <code>table</code> element takes part in the <span>table
+  <p>Tables must not be used as layout aids. Historically, some Web
+  authors have misused tables in HTML as a way to control their page
+  layout. This usage is non-conforming, because tools attempting to
+  extract tabular data from such documents would obtain very confusing
+  results. In particular, users of accessibility tools like screen
+  readers are likely to find it very difficult to navigate pages with
+  tables used for layout.</p>
+  <p class="note">There are a variety of alternatives to using HTML
+  tables for layout, primarily using CSS positioning and CSS
+  tables.</p>
+  <p>User agents that do table analysis on arbitrary content are
+  encouraged to find heuristics to determine which tables actually
+  contain data and which are merely being used for layout. This
+  specification does not define a precise heuristic.</p>
+  <p>If a <code>table</code> element has a <code
+  title="attr-table-summary">summary</code> attribute, the user agent
+  may report the contents of that attribute to the user.</p>
+  <p class="note">Authors are encouraged to use the
+  <code>caption</code> element instead of the <code
+  title="attr-table-summary">summary</code> attribute.</p>
   <p>The <dfn title="dom-table-caption"><code>caption</code></dfn> DOM
   attribute must return, on getting, the first <code>caption</code>
   element child of the <code>table</code> element, if any, or null
   otherwise. On setting, if the new value is a <code>caption</code>
   element, the first <code>caption</code> element child of the
   <code>table</code> element, if any, must be removed, and the new
   value must be inserted as the first node of the <code>table</code>
   element. If the new value is not a <code>caption</code> element,
   then a <code>HIERARCHY_REQUEST_ERR</code> DOM exception must be
   raised instead.</p>