W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > January 2002

Re: conformance (was layout solutions blah blah blah)

From: Tantek Celik <tantek@cs.stanford.edu>
Date: Thu, 24 Jan 2002 20:16:29 -0800
To: Etan Wexler <ewexler@stickdog.com>, web style list <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <SMARTHOST1hbhSpk6bc0000938f@smarthost.redmond.corp.microsoft.com>
From: Etan Wexler <ewexler@stickdog.com>
Subject: layout  solutions)ions of CSS for years to come (was RE: CSS
multicolumn layout  solutions)
Date: Thu, Jan 24, 2002, 7:19 PM

>> IMHO W3C "Recommendations" issued before the
>> CR period was established should have been
>> immediately reverted to CR status in order
>> to pass the updated requirements of two or
>> more interoperable implementations.  In lieu
>> of this, I personally consider those W3C docs
>> to be in CR until such time that strict CR exit
>> criteria have been met.
>
> I sympathize, but, if I may veer off topic, I question the feasibility
> of reverting a final Recommendation to the status of
> Candidate Recommendation.  This is equivalent to stating,
> "Yeah, that specification that we publicized and promoted and
> told you to adopt--well, it might not be such hot stuff after all.
> Give us a while to work out the kinks and *then* we can give
> you something that you should use."

I agree with your equivalent statement - that's about right.

> I am sorry to bear this message, but neither Internet Explorer
> 5 Macintosh Edition nor Internet Explorer 6
> conformantly implements CSS1.

Last time we checked, both fully passed the CSS1 test suite, the only
objective measure of CSS1 conformance that exists.

So, I'd say that leaves the burden of proof in the naysayers' court.

> Not counting the
> CSS1 conformance violations that result from implementing parts
> of CSS2 and CSS3

Uh, no.  Implementing CSS2 and CSS3 does not invalidate CSS1 conformance by
design.

>>> CSS, in particular,

I just noticed this.

Why "in particular"?

Ironically, CSS is an area that vendors have been better able to implement
conformantly than other areas (HTML, DOM) due to the existence of the CSS1
Test Suite and the lack of test suites in those other areas.

>>> is an area that vendors will be slow to
>>> implement conformantly.
>>
>> Again - there is that memory loss of the past
>> two years or so.  I count at least five
>> reasonably solid CSS implementations on a
>> plethora of platforms:
>>  IE5/Mac
>>  IE6/Windows
>>  Opera5,6
>>  NN6.x
>>  Konqueror (haven't verified, but have heard
>> good things about it from folks I respect)
>
> I wrote "conformantly" for a reason.  I readily agree that
> the applications that you listed have "reasonably solid
> CSS implementations".  I would, in fact, go further:
> those applications have truly good CSS implementations.
> Yet neither "reasonably solid" nor "truly good" is synonymous
> with "conformant".  Of all people, we on this list should be able
> to make that distinction.

Well, now that you have managed to broaden your levy at other browser
vendors, I'll let them add their defenses.

> Conformance is not the soul and lifeblood of Web software.

Strongly disagreed. It is exactly that.

> Most people, myself included, value speed, stability,
> and convenience as much as if not more than they
> value conformance to specifications.

This was perhaps true in the old WWW (Wild West Web) of the mid 1990s, but
is no longer true today in the 2000s.

The bar has been raised.  People expect valid pages to appear correct.  New
browsers that fail this criteria have been severely criticized for it.[1]

Tantek

[1]
 http://www.alistapart.com/stories/omniweb/
Received on Thursday, 24 January 2002 23:11:59 GMT

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