Re[2]: Why style sheets

Eric Holstege (
Mon, 20 Jan 1997 10:33:27 -0800

Date: Mon, 20 Jan 1997 10:33:27 -0800
Message-ID: <>
From: (Eric Holstege)
Subject: Re[2]: Why style sheets

I think the main cost in downloading a (textual) page is generally the TCP 
connection setup and the round-trip GET request for the HTTP transaction, not 
the downloading time. Unless it is cached, an external style sheet requires a 
second HTTP transaction, and hence a second TCP connection setup, whereas 
putting style info into the documents just results in a few hundred extra bytes 
download in an otherwise already-established TCP connection. I think that winds 
up being generally faster.

______________________________ Reply Separator _________________________________
Subject: Re: Why style sheets
Author: at Internet
Date:    1/19/97 11:39 PM

> I understand all the arguments in favor of style sheets in terms of being able

> to change the global look of an entire site in one place, but it seems to me 
> that I can do this with some intellignece about my markup conventions, and a 
> global search and replace. 
> Why should I pay the penalty of two HTTP accesses per page (one for the text, 
> another for the style sheet file) on *every page access*, when I can pay a 
> penalty for global search and replace only for every *style update*, which 
> happens much more infrequently. In the latter case I have to be a bit 
> intelligent about how I mark up my pages. In the former case I am in some 
> doubling the load on the network, my server, and my filesystem.

Actually, you will have more load if you put all the style info in 
the HTML documents. You would have to repeat it over and over again. 
If you have something which applies to paragraphs, you need to repeat 
that style info for each paragraph.

With a style sheet, you send out the style sheets once; any further 
documents using the same style sheet won't need to get the style 
sheet again, it will (usually) be cached by the client or a proxy.

Furthermore, the size of a style sheets is often much, much less 
smaller than a graphic.