W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > January 2000

Re: CSS and HTML head elements

From: Jonny Axelsson <jonny@metastasis.net>
Date: Sat, 29 Jan 2000 17:36:49 +0100
Message-Id: <>
To: "www-style" <www-style@w3.org>
Cc: "www-style" <www-style@w3.org>
At 06:43 29.01.00 -0800, gordon wrote:
>Isn't the traditional 'other mechanism' the view [page] source option?  It
>might be convenient to have view head or view body available, however, most
>users aren't too interested in the contents of the head section of a

That part I meant as a strictly legalistic argument, it is not forbidden in
HTML or CSS, thus it is legal. Appendix A of CSS2 ("informative, not
normative") implicitly support this with the property

HEAD  { display: none }

So if we pretend Appendix A was normative, you could show HEAD elements by
overriding it:

HTML  HEAD  { display: none }

The second question is it reasonable? It certainly is surprising from the
vantage point of "Metadata is not data. Data is visible, metadata is not."
(analogous to "The physical world is tangible, the metaphysical is not"??).

In the case of the TITLE element, it can actually be useful. Either for
lazy typists to avoid writing the same title twice (one for TITLE, one for
H1). This should be discouraged as a non-CSS UA would lose that H1. But it
would be practical in cases like these:

|+------+ +-----------+|
|| page | | The body  ||
||title | | element   ||
|+------+ | goes here ||
|         | ...       ||
|         | ...       ||

The consequence for the other elements are minor, BASE, META and LINK are
empty, and SCRIPT and STYLE are traditionally hidden inside comments (XHTML
may change that).

I'm not an implementator, but my guess is that not making a special case of
HEAD (HEAD is just by default display:none) is slightly simpler.

Received on Saturday, 29 January 2000 11:37:37 UTC

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