[whatwg] Suggestion: Implementation of Tabbed Forms

Matthew Raymond mattraymond at earthlink.net
Tue Jul 13 05:17:29 PDT 2004

martijnw wrote:
> You probably know already this, but Daniel Glazman made some time ago a 
> css tab demo:
> http://daniel.glazman.free.fr/weblog/targetExample.html#general

    We've seen similar demos. You will note that this specific one 
doesn't display properly in IE6. This is one of several problems that 
are encountered by webmasters. Here's a list of problems with the 
current system regarding tabs:

1) Inconsistent Standards Support

    This wouldn't be such a problem if we were talking about a single 
standard, but a tabbed control that performs in the same way as the 
equivalent OS widgets requires HTML, CSS and Javascript. This makes it 
very easy to write a tabbed control that breaks on a specific browser or 
in a specific configuration.

2) High Learning Curve

    The creation of tabbed controls requires specific use of multiple 
web standards that some may not be able to cope with or may not find it 
worth the effort. This places the use of tabs out of reach for amateur 
or hobbiest webmasters.

3) Lack of Encapsulation

    Current solutions do not take the form of objects. Therefore, one 
typically has to edit the source files used to create a widget in order 
to style it. For those who may be using source they didn't write, this 
could be disastrous for obvious reasons.

    As a result of the above, I believe that a pure HTML solution should 
be created. Such a solution would be easier for people to understand and 
use, and would making styling concerns less of a problem.

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