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Re: [css3-page] examples in 3.3.2 (page size) are 'US-centric'(?)

From: David Woolley <david@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
Date: Fri, 23 Jan 2004 07:55:48 +0000 (GMT)
Message-Id: <200401230755.i0N7tmZ06604@djwhome.demon.co.uk>
To: www-style@w3.org

> I would rather question the importance of page size keywords in general.
> If I would print web pages, they would be printed to A4 no matter what a
> style sheet might specify; with this in mind, I have little reason to

Most commercial web designers seem to want to specify layouts in absolute
units (including pixels, which tend to be treated as being at specific
pitches, more closely related to display values than printer values,
when printing).  This is in spite of accessibility guidelines that
discourage them.

Knowing the author's expectations of paper size can allow the print 
formatter to scale the image so as to not break the layout.

Whilst my impression is that very few authors even consider printing,
I often have problems with layouts that are forced to be wider than, at
least, portrait A4, and get cropped when printed [1].  If, maybe, the more
aware authors could be given the opportunity of specifying a print size,
they could avoid this problem even if the client still insisted on a
layout that was too wide and wasn't prepared to pay for detailed styling
for a printer layout.  One implication of this is that the logical print
size for such documents will typically not be a standard paper size.

PDF is a much better tool for producing predictable printer layouts, but
you are not going to stop HTML authors trying to do so (or at least
to produce predictable, high resolution, screen layouts that, nevertheless,
get printed).

Page descriptions languages have the advantage that there is a well defined
bounding box that can be used to calculate the scaling factor needed to
fit the page, whereas trying to do this on HTML might result in unreaonable
column widths.

[1] Sometimes selecting just the real content can avoid the need to 
switch to landscape or change the scale factor manually.
Received on Friday, 23 January 2004 17:06:26 UTC

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