[whatwg] Checkboxes that control other checkboxes

Markus Ernst derernst at gmx.ch
Thu Nov 22 02:23:19 PST 2012

Am 22.11.2012 01:51 schrieb Ian Hickson:
> On Sun, 14 Aug 2011, Timo Beermann wrote:
>> It should be able to implemet checkboxes, where by only
>> activating/deactivating this single checkbox you can active/deactivate
>> multiple other checkboxes. That is possible with scripting today, but it
>> should be possible without scripting, only with HTML/CSS. Because some
>> users deactivate Scripting (for security or whatever other reason) and
>> on other computers (school, university, work,...) you are not able to
>> change the settings, even if you want to. E.g. I use NoScript and only
>> allow scripting on very few trusted sites, that really need it.
> I haven't added this yet, but it is already logged as a possible future
> extension, so it's possible it may be added in the future.
> What would be helpful though is examples of sites that do this kind of
> thing, so that we can study how necessary it is, and how to implement it.
> For instance, are the dependent fields always in a <fieldset>? Are they
> always other checkboxes? Is there more complex logic than just "check box
> A is checked so those controls are enabled"?
This seems to be a special case of a larger problem to me. In order to 
make forms behave intelligently without scripting, there are more 
similar tasks:
- Check/uncheck check and radio boxes based on the selected value of a 
select element (or even on the values of other input elements)
- Enable/disable or make readonly any kinds of controls based on the 
state or value of an other element
- Or even show/hide a set of elements based on the state or value of an 
other element

Maybe, instead of adding that kind of functionalities to form elements, 
it might be worth thinking of a different way. E.g., define a set of 
scripting actions that are considered as very useful for UIs, and have 
no security issues, and let UAs execute that kind of scripts even if 
scripting is actually disabled, or let UAs offer a user setting such as 
"Allow only useful form actions" or whatever.

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