Multi columns (was Re: HTML Streaming)

Walter Ian Kaye (
Tue, 26 Aug 1997 19:23:54 -0700

Message-Id: <v0310282fb0293f2afcae@[]>
In-Reply-To: <l03110704b02900866b68@[]>
Date: Tue, 26 Aug 1997 19:23:54 -0700
From: Walter Ian Kaye <>
Subject: Multi columns (was Re: HTML Streaming)

At 9:56p -0400 08/26/97, Jordan Reiter wrote:
 > It would also be great if there could be some way, *any* way, through CSS
 > or a new HTML entity (heck, let's just add another one, why don't we) that
 > permits multi-columns.  Currently, *nothing* is available to do this in
 > actuality except for Netscape's proprietary MULTICOL element, which IMHO
 > does a not-so-good job.  Currently, style sheets offer no way to divide a
 > page into columns.
 > Even CSS-P only really allows you to define columns in the same way we've
 > used TABLEs, and you can't have flowing text that adjusts to the size of
 > the browser window or to the size of the text itself.  Currently, the only
 > way to really control how columns behave on a page is to be completely
 > tyrannical, forcing, through use of style-sheets, specific font-sizes which
 > will coincide with certain block positionings, etc.
 > Ideally, style-sheet attributes should be created that
 >   a) allow a group of block elements (grouped using DIV, perhaps) to be
 > divided into columns
 >   b) defines the width, gutter, spacing, etc. of these columns
 >   c) defines whether or not certain elements can be wrapped across a column

We need to be able to specify minimum/optimum/maximum column widths, like:

  { colwidth-min: 40em; colwidth-max: 80em; colwidth-opt: 60em }

This way, the browser could dynamically reflow based on window width.
Maybe the optimum could just be the mean between min and max...

 > I don't know the address for the CSS mailing list; if someone could forward
 > them this e-mail I'd appreciate it.

  Walter Ian Kaye <boo_at_best*com>    Programmer - Excel, AppleScript,
          Mountain View, CA                         ProTERM, FoxPro, HTML     Musician - Guitarist, Songwriter