Re: HTML 3.2: PRE, IMG, and tabbing

Michal Young (young@cs.purdue.edu)
Fri, 31 May 1996 15:04:10 -0500


Message-Id: <v02140b01add4efddd777@[128.10.9.72]>
Date: Fri, 31 May 1996 15:04:10 -0500
To: www-html@w3.org
From: young@cs.purdue.edu (Michal Young)
Subject: Re: HTML 3.2: PRE, IMG, and tabbing

Benjamin Franz wrote:
>The whole issue is rapidly becoming irrelevant anyway since the use of
>images in PRE is a hack to work around the lack of deployed tables

PRE is also used as a workaround for the lack of tabbing.  Tabbing is not
the same as tables --- for example, I use PRE to pretty-print source code,
with IMG in comments, larger font for procedure names, comments in italics,
etc etc.  PRE is definitely a work-around --- I would use tabbing (real
tabbing, not tab characters which are frowned upon for good reason) to
indent the code properly if I could, and I am annoyed that I must live with
an ugly monospace font just to achieve indentation.  But TABLE does not
provide any help for printing source code, and the CODE tag really means
verbatim which is certainly not what I'm after.

Soon, I hope, wide deployment of CSS1 style sheets will provide adequate
control of left margins and other formatting attributes, and I will very
happily abandon PRE for printing source code.  But to the extent that 3.2
describes current practice, it should reflect the fact that in current
practice people put all sorts of things in PRE for lack of more appropriate
typographic controls (and not just for lack of TABLE support).

----------------------
Michal Young
http://www.cs.purdue.edu/people/young
Purdue University                        young@cs.purdue.edu
Software Engineering Research Center     voice: 317-494-6023
Department of Computer Sciences          fax:   317-494-0739
1398 Computer Science Building
West Lafayette, IN  47907-1398  USA