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Re: Is there a way...

From: Bert Bos <bert@w3.org>
Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2001 19:30:21 +0200 (MEST)
To: www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <15060.32418.828207.879369@lanalana.inria.fr>
Sue Sims writes:
> On Wed, 11 Apr 2001 17:04:17 +0200, you wrote:
> 
> >Sue Sims wrote:
> ...
> >> And why was that change made? I don't recall seeing discussion of it
> >> here.
> 
> >http://www.w3.org/Style/css2-updates/REC-CSS2-19980512-errata.html
> 
> Thanks for the URI, but that doesn't address the question: Why was
> that change made? Nor does it address the lack of discussion here.

Here's how I remember the discussion to allow underscores:

The CSS WG discovered, I think early last year, that there were some
browsers that accepted underscores and some that didn't. In fact, the
Mozilla developers had apparently changed from allowing underscores to
not allowing them, after careful reading of the CSS specs.

However, on discussing the matter in the WG, we concluded that the
omission of underscore from the syntax of CSS was probably an error.
Nobody could remember any reason. There had never been any proposals
to use the underscore for anything (as an operator, as a delimiter,
etc.)

On the other hand, there were reasons to believe that the omission was
accidental, simply because underscores didn't occur anywhere when CSS1
was developed: CSS1 didn't use them, HTML didn't use them, and the
"reference concrete syntax" of SGML didn't use them either. (Remember
that we expected CSS to be used for a simple subset of SGML, I even
coined the term "SGML-lite" for it, but this was long before XML.)

But since then XML has been developed, and XML *does* allow the
underscore.

The WG discussed it last summer, and decided to make it an erratum,
since the developers in the WG that didn't allow underscore in their
programs had no objection to changing their code, since it was
unlikely to break any existing style sheets, and since it made styling
XML-based formats easier.

Somehow I then forgot to put the erratum in the online errata
document, until the issue was remembered about two weeks ago.



Bert
-- 
  Bert Bos                                ( W 3 C ) http://www.w3.org/
  http://www.w3.org/people/bos/                              W3C/INRIA
  bert@w3.org                             2004 Rt des Lucioles / BP 93
  +33 (0)4 92 38 76 92            06902 Sophia Antipolis Cedex, France
Received on Wednesday, 11 April 2001 13:30:26 GMT

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