W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-html@w3.org > June 2008

Re: XHTML Basic 1.1 and setting input field to numeric mode

From: David Woolley <forums@david-woolley.me.uk>
Date: Thu, 26 Jun 2008 23:20:48 +0100
Message-ID: <48641640.70907@david-woolley.me.uk>
To: www-html@w3.org

Luca Passani wrote:
> So, you are requested to inject a red sentence into a page you know 
> nothing about in advance. Injection may happen through innerHTML(), 
> server-side include or similar. How do you do it without style@ ?

You ask the specifier why it supposed to be red.  Hopefully they will 
tell you what red signifies, and, hopefully the house style will have 
been properly encapsulated in the style sheet, so you will simply select 
the class that represents that meaning.

If that meaning actually has a different style, you respectively point 
out that they are violating the house style and ask them how their usage 
differs from the usage in the house style, and get them to have the 
house style modified to account for the new variation in usage.

If the meaning really is new, you will need to get the house style rules 
enhanced to cover it.

Of course the use of red may be totally gratuitous.  That's a rather bad 
thing if you are producing a user interface, as users will try to make a 
mental model which reverse engineers the style sheet that should have 
existed, and fail, because there isn't a consistent one; but another 
possibility arises:

As you said, in real development projects there are all sorts of 
non-ideal constraint and one of the most common of those constraints is 
management who specify a particular technology because it is fashionable 
and gets them marketing buzzword points.  If you are getting gratuitous 
requests to use particular style properties, it is possible that what 
you are producing is a piece of visual art, for which the words are not 
really important - often true of advertising copy.

W3C have two technologies for mobile devices.  The other one is SVG. 
Leaving aside the accessibility issues (which are often incompatible 
with the visual concept of a design, anyway), SVG is the more 
appropriate technology where form is more important than content.

Although, particularly on the style lists, there is continuous pressure 
to blur the distinction between CSS/HTML and SVG, trying to make one 
technology support all uses typically results in standards bloat and the 
eventual death of the standard, in favour of a newer, tightly focussed 

It's certainly not the job of W3C to make standards cope with 
inappropriate uses.
David Woolley
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Received on Thursday, 26 June 2008 22:19:20 UTC

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