W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > April 1997

Re: CSS multi-column layout

From: Steve Knoblock <knoblock@worldnet.att.net>
Date: Sat, 19 Apr 1997 03:20:48 -0400
Message-Id: <3.0.32.19970419031308.007d1580@postoffice.worldnet.att.net>
To: Todd Fahrner <todd@verso.com>, rstevahn@boi.hp.com, www-style@w3.org
>Yes, I think so. The main thing is to be able to take advantage of the
>typically  'landscape' orientation of the display for textual material,
>without letting the lines run too long (bad ergonomics and ugly to boot),

This was the main reason I implemented a frames view of my pages. To allow
the choice of limiting line length "automatically." I am really tired of
the maintenance headache frames create with all those targets and hard to
bookmark pages. And honestly, I like feel of flipping pages---the frames
are so static and do not feel like navigating. Now I am in the process of
removing frames and placing a toolbar on each page like I had before.

I have started to test the CSS positioning in NN 4.0. What I need is a
left-hand column for an outline and possibly a place to put illustrations
or thumbnails. I'm not sure if I will be able to "flow" images to the left
and text to the right though. My first experiment was successful in flowing
the outline text into the left region and flowing the main text into the
right region. But the links in the outline for some reason failed to target
into the text.

>nor to cut the data density of a "screenful" too precipitously by enforcing
>a narrow single column.
>


I'v heard arguments against multi-column on the web for those same
reasons---why use a paper metaphor where you have to scroll up and down to
read. But multi-columns are reasonable for using up that extra screen real
estate. I don't really mind the scrolling if the columns present a series
of small texts, download choices, etc. You usually only go to one section
then link away.

>whitespace to avoid compelling a reflow. Finally, I am assuming that "image
>size" will eventually be negotiable in the context of a layout, either as a
>vector format, or as a resampled bitmap (e.g., 'inherit width of flow', 'do
>not scale below 50% of actual pixel dimensions' etc.).


Right now, I keep large images to their own page for the same reason that
they usually are too large to fit comfortably on the page with the text.
It's hard to deal with graphics in the context of columns (tables for now)
or when I want to specify the color of the background area and have
standard style for all pages. So I use thumbnails to link to the graphic
page. I'd appreciate greatly having the graphic resampled to fit the column
space, then a link to the full-size version. (Although you would have to
download the full graphic of each image on the page, which might be a burden).

Steve

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   _/ Steve Knoblock
   _/ City Gallery - History of Photography http://www.webcom.com/cityg
   _/ Member NSA http://www.3d-web.com/nsa/sw.html
Received on Saturday, 19 April 1997 03:21:18 GMT

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