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

Re: Backwards compatibility of new selectors (was: Color

From: Douglas Rand <drand@sgi.com>
Date: Wed, 03 Dec 1997 11:46:04 -0500
Message-ID: <34858CCC.1ACFA78E@sgi.com>
To: neil@bigpic.com
CC: www-style@w3.org
Neil St.Laurent wrote:
> consistent and functional coherent then it wouldn't be a problem to
> implement, unfortunately many extensions and "special" features of
> the two major browsers are so badly malformed that there is no
> capacity for them to fit into the standard at all.

It is reasonable, IMHO, for tools to disallow some features.  You're
also straying from the topic.  I'm hardly talking about spacer or
multicol here,  nor am I advocating the standard weakening the official
DTD to resemble users' actual use of HTML.  I'm objecting to a non-bc
change to the CSS standard,  which is unnecessary and which will not
work.  The protestations to the contrary - that somewhere in the CSS1
standard there was some wording about ignoring rules which have bad
syntax isn't enough to make this right.

> As long as nothing significant is changed there is never a problem,
> losing sections and making minor rewrites is fine, or at least making
> a significant document noting all of the changes.

As David mentioned,  this isn't even a draft standard yet.  This is a
proposal.  I'll surely make whatever comments about changes I please, 
and I expect the comments to be addressed.  I would never tell our w3c
rep to vote in favor of a spec. if I thought it had serious flaws.  This
is clearly a serious flaw - the inability to work with existing

> Consider what happened with HTML 3.0, many small vendors, priovate
> individuals even, produced hundreds of tools for this draft.  When it
> was entirely discarded by the W3C many of those authors simply

Nonsense.  If a bunch of companies and individuals saw fit to start
producing tools for a non-standard then I'll not cry for them.  That is
the risk that you take.  If you're implementing for CSS2,  then you're
taking the same risk,  and you need to be ready to rework what changes.

> The one thing we're fortunate for is that when we try to implement
> DSSSL we'll have a better chance we can follow the standard closer,
> since none of the major vendors have really had a chance to corrupt
> it yet...

More to the point,  DSSSL isn't likely to change.  It is already an ISO
standard.  That is why it is essential that CSS be compatible with

Doug Rand				drand@sgi.com
Silicon Graphics/SSO			http://reality.sgi.com/drand
Disclaimer: These are my views,  SGI's views are in 3D
Received on Wednesday, 3 December 1997 11:52:30 UTC

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