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Important Implications on IE5's CSS

From: Aristeu E B da Silva <aristeu@mandic.com.br>
Date: Thu, 1 Apr 1999 19:03:59 -0500 (EST)
Message-ID: <000a01be7c9c$5be79a80$01d6a8c0@pradesh>
To: <www-html@w3.org>

I've been studying the Internet Explorer's 5.0 implementation of CSS and I
think that a least one point deserves a serious reflection.

That is:

In IE5 the 'width' and 'height' properties of a block level element refers
to the dimensions of the 'border edge', and in CSS2 they refers to the
dimensions of the 'content edge'.
In other words, in IE5 the borders and paddings are drawn 'inside' the
element, and in CSS2 they are defined to be drawn 'outside' .

I believe that there is at least two things to think about.

The first is that, if nothing is done quickly, we will end up having to
write two different style sheets to equivalent user agents (browsers).

The second, and maybe shocking thing, is that IE5's is not only a better
implementation but it is the correct one. The content edge approach besides
being much more difficult to the user does not allow, with the current
technology, to do a simple thing like for instance:
Horizontally align two variable-width boxes that uses fixed (and greater
than zero)  borders and paddings. When the overall width changes, the
necessary percentage width of the boxes would need to change too, if you
wish to maintain the horizontal alignment.

For those involved or interested in CSS I have published a discussion at:


Those documents needs IE5 to a correct rendering, it may be seen with IE4,
but the examples becomes meaningless

Aristeu Escobar B. da Silva
Sao Paulo, Brazil
Received on Thursday, 1 April 1999 19:13:44 UTC

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