[whatwg] Enhanced data tables

Matthew Thomas mpt at myrealbox.com
Sat Dec 4 00:10:05 PST 2004

On 4 Dec, 2004, at 6:32 AM, Afternoon wrote:
> ...
> On 3 Dec 2004, at 17:18, Ian Hickson wrote:
> ...
>> From a practical standpoint the difference between a <table> and a 
>> data grid is that the table's data is all in a DOM content model, 
>> whereas the data grid can be dynamically populated from script, one 
>> row at a time, so that only the displayed portion need be in memory 
>> at any one time.

Could functions be devised to make populating (and depopulating) 
<table> rows and columns easier than it is now, without inventing a new 
element for such tables?

> ...
>> Another difference is that tables have a legacy of rendering 
>> semantics which we can't do much about, whereas for the data grid we 
>> want to be able to use GUI-specific native controls (or 
>> native-looking controls) which have features such as clickable column 
>> headers, draggable column separators, etc. Also, datagrids are 
>> limited to text in each cell (with one icon per row), rows can be 
>> selected, data can be marked as editable, etc.
> ...
> Indeed, a browser that assumed every <table> was data-bearing and 
> should have controls displayed would be all but useless.
> ...

That's why I suggested those controls be displayed only for <th> 
elements, not for every <table>.

Matthew Thomas

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