W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > November 2004

Re: hr, fieldset, legend, sub, sup not to be removed XHTML Basic

From: Jukka K. Korpela <jkorpela@cs.tut.fi>
Date: Thu, 4 Nov 2004 13:01:19 +0200 (EET)
To: HTML List <www-html@w3.org>
Message-ID: <Pine.GSO.4.58.0411041251470.3996@korppi.cs.tut.fi>

On Wed, 3 Nov 2004, Asbjørn Ulsberg wrote:

> I agree that by design, <hr> is presentational. But it needn't be.

By original design, <hr> is structural, though with a misleading name:
"The HR element is a divider between sections of text"
(and admittedly the designers added: "typically a full
width horizontal rule or equivalent graphic"; but they also described
typical rendering of headings, and yet nobody claims they designed
h1, h2 etc. to be presentational).

> I don't think <hr> is very useful in XHTML 2.0, but in XHTML 1.x and HTML
> it certainly was, to some respect. Not just as a visual horisontal ruler,
> but also as a content separator or divider.

Just dropping <hr> is a mistake. It can be omitted, if equivalent or
better markup is available. But sectioning is a different issue.

Consider a page that currently ends with some notes about the history
of the page, author, last update, etc., preceded by
<hr title="About this page">
which helps the user note that there's a change of topic even though there
is no heading. What would you do in XHTML 2.0? It's really not a
<section>, is it? Besides, even if you use <section> markup, so what? Are
browsers expected to indicate start of section in a particular way? Will
that be useful in general? Of course you can use CSS to draw a line or
something, just as you can do now (a top border for a <div> element,
for example). But then you would rely on CSS in separating parts of the

Jukka "Yucca" Korpela, http://www.cs.tut.fi/~jkorpela/
Received on Thursday, 4 November 2004 11:01:52 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Wednesday, 7 January 2015 15:06:09 UTC