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Re: In support of the "line space" (nee <hr>)

From: fantasai <fantasai@escape.com>
Date: Thu, 22 Aug 2002 15:47:13 -0400
Message-ID: <3D653FC1.D96C3CC0@escape.com>
To: www-html@w3.org

David Woolley wrote:
> 
> Fantasai wrote:
> 
> > This is not always the case. In less formal writing, such as novels
> > and newspaper articles, section breaks exist where the two sections
> > are not always clearly defined. Sometimes the text immediately below
> 
> Typically this is a presentational, rather than a structural device.  The
> headings aren't really there to convey information, but rather to break up
> a long column visually. 

I've seen them on short columns, too. They do convey structure: they show
where there's a break in the flow of the text. And a header also conveys
another piece of information: what the topic is at this point in the article.

Have you ever seen a section break between a spoken question and its answer?
I doubt it, because there's no natural break between a question and its
answer in the flow of dialog text. If a section break was presentational,
it would have no relation to what's happening in the text--and the layout
person, not the author, would put in the breaks.

> (Can you generate block level content?)

display: block;

> I think newspapers almost always use them arbitrarily, although novels
> may use them in a half presentational, hafl structural, manner

You mean section breaks make the page look pretty? I really doubt that.
The author doesn't even know where section breaks fall when s/he sends
in the manuscript--and often not even whether they'll be rendered as
extra space between paragraphs, asterisks, or horizontal rules. The
author only knows what the text is, yet still can point out where
there is a break.

Think about this: A voice is not a visual broadcaster. If the break was
purely presentational, why would it be appropriate for a speaker to pause
at the break--and even awkward in many cases if s/he did not?

~fantasai
Received on Thursday, 22 August 2002 15:43:23 GMT

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