[whatwg] repetition model

Ian Hickson ian at hixie.ch
Thu Jun 24 04:55:06 PDT 2004

On Sat, 19 Jun 2004, Malcolm Rowe wrote:
> Personally, I'm not so sure. The logic required to support the
> repetition model is extremely complex, compared to the rest of the
> document, so it should need to provide a significant benefit to us
> (users, authors) for it to be included.

It looks complex because it is new and all described in the spec. But
actually it's not really complex, it's just described in a detailed way.
I'm sure submission is a lot more complicated if you look at the actual
details to the same level.

> It sounds like a good idea in theory. For example, all those order-entry
> applications could use it instead of providing a large input form with
> 'add/delete' buttons. But in reality, where would it be used? I've been
> trying to think of examples, and I'm having trouble.

I've used hacked-up JS versions of it on sites myself. Bugzilla has an
example of functionality of this kind:


It's not used on every site, sure, but there is definitely demand for it.
(Several people have privately told me that it is the most useful part of
the spec, in their opinion.)

> For example, would Amazon use it? Theirs is a site with a
> 'shopping-basket' metaphor, so it seems like it might be natural.

I don't think shopping baskets would really be implemented as a repeated
template form.

> I guess it boils down to this: it's really complex, so show me a
> compelling use case. I'm not against it, just not particularly sure
> whether I should be 'for' it.

Why do you think it is complicated? You have a template, and then you
click "add" to add a new row, and "remove" to remove a row.

I know of several sites that use this kind of structure, but most are in
intranet pages or require user accounts. GMail uses it for when you add an
attachment, for instance.

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'

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