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

Re: Positioning HTML Elements with Cascading Style Sheets

From: Todd Fahrner <fahrner@pobox.com>
Date: Sat, 1 Feb 1997 17:21:11 -0800
Message-Id: <v03010d01af19982a9c53@[]>
To: Taylor <taylor@hotwired.com>, Chris Josephs <cpj1@visi.com>, www-style@www10.w3.org
At 4:53 PM -0800 2/1/97, Taylor wrote:
> At 05:50 PM 2/1/97 -0600, Chris Josephs wrote:
> >Just out of curiosity, is there any noted advantage to the absolute
> >positioning mechanism in this draft compared to the "Frame Based Layout
> >via Style Sheets" draft (http://www.w3.org/pub/WWW/TR/WD-layout.html)
> One could write a program that could deliver true WYSIWYG html authoring
> and actually deliver with valid, properly constructed, syntaxtically
> correct markup.

This is of course crucial. But would such a tool be capable of generating
HTML whose presentation adapts gracefully to varying browser window
resolutions and aspect ratios? If not, then it's WYSIWIM
("what-you-see-is-what-I-might") and therefore not truly portable. Absolute
positioning is possible today with GIFs and tables (cf. NetObjects Fusion),
but this printlike capability is a mixed blessing at best. PDF is at least

I haven't had the bandwidth to answer the question for myself, so would
love to see some discussion of the specification in this regard. Note that
the frames-based proposal could accommodate flows in areas whose height and
width was relative to the total rendering area.

Todd Fahrner

"Such machines will have enormous appetites. One of them will take
instructions and data from a roomful of girls armed with simple keyboard
punches, and will deliver sheets of computed results every few minutes.
There will always be plenty of things to compute in the detailed affairs of
millions of people doing complicated things."

--Vannevar Bush "As We May Think" 1945.
Received on Saturday, 1 February 1997 20:25:44 UTC

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