W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > October 2000

RE: Redefine <br>

From: Dave J Woolley <david.woolley@bts.co.uk>
Date: Fri, 27 Oct 2000 11:52:26 +0100
Message-ID: <81E4A2BC03CED111845100104B62AFB5824B47@stagecoach.bts.co.uk>
To: "'www-html@w3.org'" <www-html@w3.org>
> From:	fantasai [SMTP:fantasai@escape.com]
> BR {
> 	pause-after: 35%;
> }
[DJW:]  That's doesn't reflect the generally 
understood semantics of the element, and it those
semantics that can't be specified in CSS; i.e. you
cannot fully specify the typical formatting of 
HTML by visual browsers using CSS because of BR.

BR always was strictly presentational; I've never seen
it used in the sense of the morse code break symbol.
Nowadays it is often misused for paragraphs or vertical
spacing (the official HTML for UK legislation does this).

Trying to read it as though it were a punctuation stop
is wrong.  If there is a need for a stop intermediate
between the character "." and the end of a <p> element,
it ought to be achieved using a new element.  I think that
element ought to be a bracketing element, like <p>.

If you want something below the sentence, conventional
punctuation should do, although a weakness of audible style
sheets is that CSS ones don't allow you to specify behaviour
for sentences, etc.

What you are doing is trying to overload a presentational 
element with a structural meaning it never had.

From HTML 4.01

   The BR element forcibly breaks (ends) the current line of text.
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Received on Friday, 27 October 2000 06:55:12 UTC

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