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Announcement: New W3C Homepage layout

From: Janet Daly <janet@w3.org>
Date: Thu, 05 Dec 2002 07:09:14 -0800
Message-ID: <3DEF6C1A.30709@w3.org>
To: site-comments@w3.org


Today W3C launched a new home page design that uses CSS to lay
out three columns rather than an HTML table. It has been a
longstanding goal of W3C that page designers should used style
sheets, not HTML structure markup, to create layout and other
stylistic effects. We are pleased that support for style sheets
in browsers has reached a point where we are now confident in the
portability of this approach.

The new layout is achieved with CSS floats [1]. The W3C
Communications Team has tested this solution (and other
approaches) with a number of user agents in a number of desktop
environments; see the list below. The Comm Team's experiments
suggested that to achieve horizontal layout, there was better
interoperability using floats than using absolute positioning.

The Communications Team welcomes your feedback on the new design,
and in particular whether the CSS layout works or doesn't work in
your environment. What does "works" mean? After the introductory
text, the page is divided into three columns of differing
lengths. The page is designed to be readable even if a user agent
doesn't support floats, though the content will take up more
horizontal space.

Thank you,

   Janet Daly
   Communications Team, W3C

[1] http://www.w3.org/TR/CSS2/visuren#floats


The following user agents render the W3C home page as intended,
with only minor cosmetic differences among them:

Windows 2000
IE 6.0
Mozilla 1.2b
Opera 6.0.5
Opera 7.0b1v2 - text at bottom of page has wrong background color

Mac OS 9
IE 5.0
IE 5.1.6
Netscape 6.2.3
Netscape 7.0
Mozilla 1.2b
MacLynx b1
Opera 5.0.485

Mac OS X
IE 5.2.2
Netscape 7.0
Mozilla 1.2b
OmniWeb 4.1.1 - width problem in right column
Opera 6.0b2

Netscape 4.7
Opera 6.0
Mozilla 1.0
Mozilla 1.2-1
Konqueror 2.2.2 - there are some issues with the
                    middle column flowing to the left margin.

The following user agents do not handle floats:

Windows 2000
Amaya 6.4 - looks like Netscape 4
Amaya 7.0 - looks like Netscape 4

Mac OS 9
IE 4.5 - looks like Netscape 4

Mac OS X
iCab 2.8.2

Amaya 5.3
Amaya 7.0
Lynx 2.8.4rel.1 - Since Lynx doesn't implement tables,
                    this design works better with Lynx
                    than the previous one.

The design does not work on the following user agents:

Mac OS 9
IE 3.01a and IE 4.01
Netscape 4.08
Netscape 4.8
iCab 2.82 - minor linespacing problem in news headings
Received on Thursday, 5 December 2002 10:09:20 UTC

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