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

CSS1.0 Cleanup - line breaks

From: David Perrell <davidp@earthlink.net>
Date: Sun, 24 Aug 1997 16:18:54 -0700
Message-Id: <199708242319.QAA11902@sweden.it.earthlink.net>
To: "Style" <www-style@w3.org>
Re the W3C Note: <http://www.w3.org/TR/NOTE-css-potential>
- Line Breaks

Since block elements by their definition have breaks before and after,
and inline elements do not, I find a general property that includes
block- and line- breaks to be incoherent with the spec.

There is no need for separate block- and line- break values in a break
property that applies to all elements. The rendering of the break can
be context-driven, based on existing properties of the element itself.
BR, for example, has no intrinsic dimensions, margins, padding or
border, but it does inherit the line-height of its parent. So the
behavior of BR is easily defined in terms of a more general break
property with a value of 'after'. Block elements would have a default
value of 'both', inline elements would have a default value of 'none',
and there would be no initial value for the property.

Is a break property necessary to describe BR? Initial width of elements
is 'auto'. Since BR has no implicit horizontal dimension, shouldn't it
then fill all remaining horizontal space, forcing the start of a new

Obviously, this won't do for text that is not aligned on the beginnings
of lines. Nevertheless, I think the formatting model should consider
character boxes (glyphs) in terms of replaced inline elements that come
with intrinsic dimensions. Conceptually, character kerning can then be
considered as intrinsic horizontal margins (typically negative).

David Perrell
Received on Sunday, 24 August 1997 19:19:49 UTC

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