W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > public-html@w3.org > April 2007

Re: Proposing <indent> vs. <blockquote>

From: Mike Schinkel <w3c-lists@mikeschinkel.com>
Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2007 04:21:45 -0400
Message-ID: <46233219.1030502@mikeschinkel.com>
To: public-html@w3.org

Benjamin Hawkes-Lewis wrote:
> Other than in Mike's own work, I can't recall ever seeing <blockquote>
> misused for indentation in social media. Can anyone point to some 
> recent (say past 6 months) examples of this in the wild?
http://mindblogging.typepad.com/my_weblog/2007/04/i_just_might_ne.html
http://www.radicalgeorgiamoderate.org/2007/04/10/the-vernon-jones-circus/
http://spaceygreview.blogspot.com/2007/03/atlanta-woman-refused-emergency.html
http://www.useit.com/alertbox/20030210.html

Need I continue?
> HTML is for meaning, 
It is not clear to me this is fact.

Anyway, for the rest I'll be arguing how I would do things as the common 
person, not as the learned person.

> So why not use <em>? Or if you need an emphasizing element that can take
> block content, propose <em><p></p><p></p></em> be allowed or suggest a
> new <blockem> element.
>
> Helpfully, Mike provided three example URLs. I want to assess the
> appropriateness of <indent> for each.
>
> 1. http://www.mikeschinkel.com/blog/thesirensongofssi/
>
> The first, second, and fifteenth instances of <blockquote> are properly
> used for block quotation. The third to the fourteenth uses are all for
> code examples, where <pre> and <code> could be used instead:
>
> http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/section-phrase.html#the-code 
>
I didn't use <pre> and <code> because it didn't give me the default 
formatting I was looking for and because it required two elements.
> Using <code> has advantages for theoretical screen readers and voice
> browsers that could be configured to switch from not reading most
> punctuation in ordinary text to reading all punctuation in code, and for
> theoretical visual browsers that could perform syntax highlighting. Note
> that code examples are hardly typical content for the sort of
> non-technical users <indent> is supposed to benefit!
The <code> should provide reasonable default formatting, and it does not.
> 2. http://www.mikeschinkel.com/blog/businesscardsphotosandpersonalurls/
>
> <blockquote> is used twice where an example class would do better:
>
> http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/section-global.html#class1 
>
The spec as is says: "It must only be used on the following elements: 
|aside 
<http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/section-sections.html#aside>|, 
|figure 
<http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/section-embedded.html#figure>|, 
|p 
<http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/section-prose.html#p>|, 
|span 
<http://www.whatwg.org/specs/web-apps/current-work/multipage/section-phrase.html#span>."
None of those would provide me the same formatting and as such I'd 
probably still use blockquote.
If div was supported and the example class gave a default indention, 
then I'd probably use it instead.
|
> 3. http://www.mikeschinkel.com/blog/gtfk/
>
> The first use of <blockquote> is in error for <q>. The second and third
> uses are heavily disguised direct speech, as "I christen" and "tell
> them" confirm. In other words, they could less confusingly be rewritten
> as follows:
>
> <snip>
>
> I doubt Mike's idiosyncratic indented rendering of direct speech
> constitutes a common use case for <indent>. 
Your approach might be better but I can guarantee you when I'm in a 
hurry it's too much work and I wouldn't have used it. Besides, it didn't 
provide the default visuals.
> In summary, while Mike's misuse of <blockquote> does confirm the utility
> of example and suggest a possible use for <speech>, it does not suggest
> any use-case for a semantics-free <indent>.
The key point that you are ignoring is there is a need for a catch-all 
for things that just don't quite fit in with the existing set of 
semantics provided by HTML5.

-- 
-Mike Schinkel
http://www.mikeschinkel.com/blogs/
http://www.welldesignedurls.org
http://atlanta-web.org - http://t.oolicio.us
Received on Monday, 16 April 2007 08:22:20 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Monday, 29 September 2014 09:38:42 UTC