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Re: Scope of :hover

From: Ernest Cline <ernestcline@mindspring.com>
Date: Fri, 30 May 2003 13:05:27 -0400
To: www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <3ED75717.25594.3B6E4D2@localhost>

Andy Rossmeissl wrote:

> Matt wrote:
> > It's sensible that only interactive elements can accept the :hover
> > pseudo-class. These are the only elements that can be "clicked on" 
> > to do something, and a change of colour/underline etc almost always 
> > implies a link.
> http://www.zeldman.com/daily/0503c.shtml#ma2303
> links a page at
> http://www.uoguelph.ca/~stuartr/articles/missinglink.shtml
> that I think makes an effective use of the :hover pseudo-class on a
> non-interactive element. Rollever the "Human evolution" paragraph, and
> the links contained in it highlight themselves. IMHO, a widespread
> application of this technique would enhance the readability of certain
> types of content (like encyclopedias) while at the same time emphasizing
> the deep-linking structure of the web.

I'm sorry, but I think this example is a gimicky design that tries to 
solve a real problem with the wrong technique.

The problem: there are times when a user is not interested in whether a 
link is a link. At such times, the link shouldn't look like a link as 
it can interfere with the readability of the text. This problem can be 
solved without making :hover apply to non-interactive elements.  First 
of all, supply rules that apply to non-interactice media (such as 
print) that make links look like normal text.  Second, supply an 
alternative stylesheet for interactive media that makes links not look 
like links and inform the user of its existance and let the user decide 
whether to use the alternate stylesheet. An ambitious approach might 
use scripting and a cookie to set the user preference for a document 
set or have teo sets of pages, one with links displayed by default with 
an alternate stylesheet to hide them, the other with links not 
dispolayed by default with an alternate stylesheet to show them.
Received on Friday, 30 May 2003 13:05:28 UTC

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