Definition Windows

THOMAS HIGGINS (higgins@teleport.com)
Fri, 27 Feb 1998 22:40:21 -0800


From: THOMAS HIGGINS <higgins@teleport.com>
To: <www-html@w3.org>
Date: Fri, 27 Feb 1998 22:40:21 -0800
Message-ID: <01bd4413$bdc7d7a0$ac806ac6@user>
Subject: Definition Windows

    The <def> tag provides a way for small "definition windows" to pop up,
similar to the window that pops up when you place your mouse over an image
(if the <img> tag has the "alt" attribute defined).  Definition windows, as
I call them, are certainly not a new idea.  In (Windows 95) help files, you
can click on a word that has a dashed underline and it will bring up a small
yellow window giving further explanation.  An example of the usefulness of
the <def> tag would be if the author wanted to provide further reference
without having including the information in plain view or having to include
an anchor to a whole new site.


Example:

The Internet is an oversized ad.

-- Pretend "The Internet" is underlined.

 When the user clicks on "The Internet" is will bring up a yellow
 box that says "A new medium for exchanging information."

SYNTAX:

<p>

<def
    underline="dashed"
    bgcolor="yellow"
    action="click"
    content="A new medium for exchanging information">
 The Internet
</def>
 is an oversized ad.
</p>


ATTRIBUTES:

underline
     (default is dashed)
     dashed
     solid
     none

bgcolor
     (default is yellow)
     color (hex or name)
     img:[filename]

action (how the user initiates the definition window)
     (default is click)
     click
     mouseover (delay default is 1 second)
     mouseover:[seconds]

content (no default)
     My name:is Fred.
     (the ":" could be the equivilant of a <br>
      in the definition window.)

font
     (default is inherited)
     [name of font]

style
     (default is normal)
     italic
     bold
     underline
     strike
     blink (maybe not)
     normal

size
     (default is 10)
     [integer above 0]


OTHER NOTES:

The position of the Definition Window would be relative to the position
of the mouse.  Printing may have to be worked out.


So what do you think?  I think that this would be a good improvement to
the HTML standard and very useful, but tell me what you think.

Ben Higgins
Site Developer
higgins@teleport.com