Re: HTML 4.0 draft available

Scott Matthewman (
Tue, 8 Jul 1997 17:31:39 +0100

From: (Scott Matthewman)
To: <>
Subject: Re: HTML 4.0 draft available
Date: Tue, 8 Jul 1997 17:31:39 +0100
Message-ID: <>

> From: Jordan Reiter <>
> To: Dave Raggett <>;
> Subject: Re: HTML 4.0 draft available
> Date: 8 July 1997 16:23
> [snip]
> I am somwhat bewildered by the sudden surge of "deprecated" attributes
> tags.  I recognize that the existence of style sheets does make it
> to indicate the appearance of the web page, but I question the assumption
> that everyone has access to a browser that supports them; especially a
> browser that supports them correctly.  Assuming that most users will not
> using the latest versions of software (heck, I still use Netscape 3.0),
> then it is foolish to assume that style sheets can cover your problems.
> Only the newer browsers from Netscape and Explorer support style sheets,
> and they do so in an unconsistent and incomplete form.
> I have attempted using the BIG and SMALL tags in my documents to avoid
> use of FONT SIZE= and have found it to be limiting and unpredictable. 
> pages where informational content is key, I could certainly use simple
> formatting in conjunction with style sheets, but for pages that depend on
> visual appearance, especially for businesses, I will probably continue
> using these tags.

Quote from

"Deprecated - A deprecated element or attribute is one that has been
outdated by newer HTML constructs. Deprecated elements are defined in the
reference manual in appropriate locations, but are clearly marked as
deprecated. Deprecated elements may become obsolete in future versions of

In other words, deprecated elements have been superceded, but are still
part of the spec. Just because the big two don't support style sheets
properly yet doesn't mean they shouldn't be part of the spec. We just may
have to wait until version 5.0 of both until we get mass-market
HTML4-compliant UAs.

The overall emphasis is on separating *content* from *style* - and
therefore, IMHO, deprecating as many attributes in this way is a good

Scott A. Matthewman, Danielson Limited <>
Tel: +44 (0)1296 24478. Fax: +44 (0)1296 392141
"I don't envy you the headache you'll have in the morning. In the meantime,
sleep well and dream of large women." -- The Princess Bride