W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > December 1995

Re: comments on CSS1

From: Scott E. Preece <preece@predator.urbana.mcd.mot.com>
Date: Tue, 5 Dec 1995 09:08:53 -0600
Message-Id: <199512051508.JAA09724@predator.urbana.mcd.mot.com>
To: seibert@hep.physics.mcgill.ca
Cc: www-style@w3.org
   From: David Seibert <seibert@hep.physics.mcgill.ca>

|   <h3>Tables</h3>
|
|   When conflicts arise while a UA is rendering a table, the most
|   important thing is that the information present be displayed in a clear
|   manner, so that it is useful to the reader.  For this reason, frame 
|   conflicts within tables should be resolved in favor of the 
|   choice which is likely to make the information clearest (e.g., leaves 
|   the most space around the element, or provides a line separating it 
|   from adjacent elements).  This is similar in spirit to the policy of 
|   using the larger of the two frames when joining two adjacent table 
|   elements.
---

I don't object to the rule (I think it's good to say what should happen
when conflicts occur), but I strongly disagree with the statement of the
rule: "frame conflicts within tables should be resolved in favor of the
choice which is likely to make the information clearest".  The author
presumably intended to make the data as clear as possible; if she has,
in doing so, created a conflicct, there is no way for the browser to
know which choice leads to more clarity.  In particular, extra space or
extra frames may obscure relationships that the author meant to express
(by, for instance, putting related data physically closer together and
without separating lines).

So don't editorialize, just present the decision:

   When the styling information for a table is ambiguous, the browser
   should resolve the ambiguity towards the default form for a
   table: all cells separated by same-width rules, all data separated
   from cell edges by the same amount of space, all data cells in the same
   typographic style, etc.

Actually, I think you argue about as cogently that either towards or
away from the default makes sense.  I don't think I care, so long as
you say one or the other, to make it predictable.

scott

--
scott preece
motorola/mcg urbana design center	1101 e. university, urbana, il   61801
phone:	217-384-8589			  fax:	217-384-8550
internet mail:	preece@urbana.mcd.mot.com
Received on Tuesday, 5 December 1995 10:07:51 GMT

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