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Re: solutions)ntations of CSS for years to come (was RE: CSS multicolumn layout solutions)

From: Christian Wolfgang Hujer <Christian.Hujer@itcqis.com>
Date: Tue, 29 Jan 2002 16:25:38 +0100
To: "Tantek Celik" <tantek@cs.stanford.edu>, Etan Wexler <ewexler@stickdog.com>
Cc: www-html@w3.org, www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <16VaVp-0QtUZcC@fmrl09.sul.t-online.com>
Hello,

Am Donnerstag, 24. Januar 2002 21:23 schrieb Tantek Celik:
> > Christian Hujer wrote:
> >> So why should I already use CSS3 features that only work in
> >> [the dominant
> >> browser], if even HTML4 and CSS2, Recommendations from
> >> *1998*, do not work
> >> in [the latest version of the dominant browser, circa 2001]?
> >
> > HTML 4 published as Recommendation prior to 1998 (1997-12-18).
> >  But, hey, what's a difference of a few months at this point?
>
> Neither HTML4 nor CSS2 would have exited "CR" had there been a CR period at
> the time they were made "recommendations".
Don't know. Maybe, maybe not, that's not the point and no excuse for not 
implementing HTML 4.

> 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.
>
> > To answer the question, though, one should use CSS3 features,
> > like the 'inline-block' value of 'display', because the features
> > are useful.  What's more, CSS is constructed with attention
> > to graceful degradation.  Combining declarations for
> > CSS3-capable user agents with declarations for downlevel
> > user agents, one can satisfy everybody.
> Agreed.
I disagree. Just the usefulness of a feature is not a reason for using it, at 
least not without an alternative.
SVG via <object/> from HTML and SMIL also allows graceful degradation. And 
SVG is extremenly useful. But would you really actually use it without 
alternative?

display:flow works great, though it doesn't look good in the source from an 
aesthetic point of view.

I am not against CSS3. I like the development of new standards and the 
improvement of existing ones. And I like browsers that implement them. But I 
also like surfing the web with stable software. And IE6/Win98 crashes very 
often. So I prefer Konqueror or Mozilla. And as long as they do not support 
CSS3 I will continue using CSS1 and CSS2.

> > Nevertheless, it is irritating that certain resource-rich
> > companies can't muster the development power to implement
> > four-year-old specifications.  (Or five-year-old specifications; has
> > *anybody* produced a CSS1-conformant user agent?)
>
> It is interesting that you refer to four or five year old specifications
> but apparently have a memory gap of the past two or three years.  IE5/Mac
> was released almost two years ago with fully conformant HTML4 and CSS1[1],
> and IE6/Windows was released in the past year as well with fully conformant
> CSS1 and DOM1.
Okay. try <abbr/> and <acronym/> in IE5/Mac and IE6/Win. Maybe they work on 
the Mac, I don't know. But I know they do not work in IE6/Win.

> I know it may be far more enjoyable to stay "irritated" as you say, but
> pick something else to be irritated about rather than four year old
> specifications that have been implemented by two year old implementations.
See above. They are not implemented, at least HTML 4 isn't implemented by 
IE6/Win and prior versions.

> >> It is always the same with [this monopolistic software giant]:
> >> New features everywhere, but no bug fixing,
> >> no or no proper implementation of standards, no security and
> >> no stability.
> >
> > Get used to it.  Robust software engineering often fails to deliver
> > the payoff for the vendor.
As a fan of eXtreme Programming I must say: That's untrue!

> Not true.  For example, IE/Mac marketshare (on the Mac) was about 20%
> before the release of IE5/Mac.  Within six months, IE5/Mac (the first
> browser to fully comply with HTML4+CSS1+DOM1HTML+PNG1) share on the Mac had
> reached nearly 70% (on the Mac) - and this was through _downloads_alone_
> (i.e. _not_ through bundling).  This example alone blows a big hole in all
> the ridiculous bundling arguments.
I agree. And there's another point about bundling, to defend Microsoft (oh, 
no, I really do it!).
Who else than the software vendor decides what is part of his product (OS 
etc.)?
Today, a web browser needs to be shipped with an OS. If we do not allow 
Microsoft to ship IE with Windows, then there will come someone who won't 
allow MS to ship Wordpad with Win, and after a few court sessions we'd have 
reached the point to disallow MS to ship a Kernel with their OS.

-- 
Christian Wolfgang Hujer
Geschäftsführender Gesellschafter
ITCQIS GmbH
Telefon: +49 (089) 27 37 04 37
Telefax: +49 (089) 27 37 04 39
E-Mail: mailto:Christian.Hujer@itcqis.com
WWW: http://www.itcqis.com/
Received on Tuesday, 29 January 2002 10:50:35 GMT

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