W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > October 2003

Re: CSS 4?

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Thu, 30 Oct 2003 13:18:30 +0000 (UTC)
To: Tantek Çelik <tantek@cs.stanford.edu>
Cc: Daniel Glazman <daniel@glazman.org>, www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.58.0310301240440.11866@dhalsim.dreamhost.com>

On Thu, 30 Oct 2003, Tantek [ISO-8859-1] «elik wrote:
> 'content' is still just appearance.

So is 'binding'. I don't think anyone is suggesting that CSS should be
used for the semantic side of things; if a binding is needed for that,
it would of course be done from the document itself (e.g. addBinding).
It would to be, otherwise alternate stylesheets would break the
semantics, for instance, as would disabling author styles, etc.

Of course, it is possible to abuse 'content' -- e.g.:

    <div id="a"/>
    <div id="b"/>


   #a { font-size: 2em; content: "ABC Company" }
   #b { margin: 1em; content "The company is a big company that has lots of..."; }

Similarly, it is possible to abuse 'binding'. And 'background'. And
the class selector, and the ID selector, and so forth.

Like I said in an earlier post on this thread, the key thing is not
making abuse impossible, it's just making sure that abuse isn't easier
than correct use. I believe that the current XBL-based BECSS proposal
does indeed meet that requirement.

See also:

> Why bother writing more than one HTML page on a site? Why not put
> all your HTML into one file?

Theoretically: Because they are distinct resources.

Practically: Because it's easier to manage files in logical chunks,
it's easier to have files under different editorial control be
separate, it's easier to organise files in directories than data in a
file, people are more used to it, etc.

None of these reasons apply to the question of why the 'binding'
styling property shouldn't be with the other styling properties. If
anything, some of them are reasons why the properties _should_ be

> I no longer believe that. It is worth it for safety and for user
> choice to separate the programs from the data. This is what years of
> experience has taught us.

I totally agree. The data -- the content, the markup, the semantics --
should be separate from the programs -- the styles, the presentation,
the look and feel. And the data -- the stylesheet, the linking
mechanisms, the cascade -- should be separate from the programs -- the
event handlers, the scripts, the methods.

*This is exactly how BECSS works.*

In the case of the most recent, XBL-based BECSS proposal, the program
is in its own XML file with its own URI, separate from the linking
mechanism (which is in CSS) and the content (which is in HTML).

Ian Hickson                                      )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
U+1047E                                         /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
http://index.hixie.ch/                         `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Thursday, 30 October 2003 08:18:31 UTC

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Monday, 2 May 2016 14:27:09 UTC