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Re: CSS Textures (Was: Colour gradient backgrounds.)

From: Wingnut <wingnut@winternet.com>
Date: Tue, 11 May 2004 08:43:06 -0500
Message-ID: <40A0D86A.2080602@winternet.com>
To: www-style@w3.org

Hi gang!

Interesting thought's, Max!  I like it, for the most part!  This isn't 
really an agreement or rebutal of anything you've said, Max.  Your post 
just spurred me to thinkin'... which is illegal in most states. :)

When I first saw css3's allowance of 8 images to define the borders of a 
box model... I thought "how pathetic".  But, when that happened... it 
gave permission for a free-for-all as far as adding ridiculous stuff to 
css.  Not long before, I had proposed the colorsweep style... where the 
color of some paintable on all box models... could be told to sweep 
slowly or quickly from one color to another.  Then the turn-around style 
would be set, such as "loop" or "ping pong" and even a color strip could 
be defined... to define the sequence of color changes.  Advanced BLINK 
if you will.  Post-proposal, you could hear a mosquito fart.

Now, gradient textures, other PROCEDURAL textures, and pattern tiling... 
pops up.  As some may know... I mostly work with a node-serving 
system... not a webserving system.  Thus... I pass around nodes... and I 
pass around style attribute contents IN those nodes.  Can you imagine 
the thought of shoving 8 url's into that style attribute... just to get 
a border on a given box model?  And oh what a scaling nightmare THIS 
boxmodel could present!

One could categorize style levels.  Lets do 3 levels for lack of 
anything better.

1.  Basic css (css1.0 maybe)
2.  Advanced css (anything from 1.0 till now)
3.  You gotta be kidding css.  (dreams of the dreamers)

One might ask right here... CAN PLUGINS DO STYLING?  Certain document 
elements (tags) could be "released" from the built-in css system... and 
allowed to be handled by a plugin styling machine.  See, there is some 
kind of proverbial "wall" in css land right now.  One such "wall" is in 
animated styles.  Fire up your dom2 IE or Mozilla, turn on your 
javascript, and whack this...

http://www.winternet.com/~wingnut/html/test/jackal/jackal56.htm

There, is all 7 of the primary css animation "motors" needed to satisfy 
level 1 of an 'animated css spec'.  But the wall is in the way.  Its the 
same wall that stops gradient backgrounds.  It stops procedurally-grown 
border styles too.  It stops what I call "tracking backgrounds" too... 
where a single large picture can be applied to a container-element's 
backdrop, and the backgrounds of all contained siblings will take on the 
PORTION of the background that is "behind" their current position in the 
flow of the container.  And even the FACES of a font... could be part of 
a picture that's mapped across all the faces of a given box model 
content text.  The text chars themselves could have borders... and we 
could have precedural box model shape growing.  We could allow z-axis 
rotation of box models and ROUND box models.  Most folk try to slough 
these dreams off-onto SVG about this point right here.

Not to single-out Corel Paint here, but lets face it.  If one can "do it 
fine", or "pull it off with a kludge"... in Corel Paint... its going to 
show-up in the list someday as an idea to add to css.  So, does one 
start thinking about a universal-interfaced "add-on-style" motor 
dohickey pretty soon?  I somewhat-proposed awhile back... using the 
object tag for this.  Give object tag the right param elements, and you 
can access "the box model growing machine" and this 
has-to-be-absolutely-positioned box model from heck... can be styled and 
built in very strange and new ways.  In this way, the "box model growing 
machine" could be a plugin... and we could have versioning fun with that.

I don't know what I'm saying here, really.  The "cool ideas" and the 
"are you out-of your minders?" are never going to stop.  Folks dream of 
expressionism.  Where is "the wall" in the current css project?  I think 
the 8-pic border crossed it... so now its a free-for-all for ideas.  In 
my opinion, procedural (done with math formulas) user-made border styles 
should have come before any consideration of an 8-pic border.  The color 
gradient is a procedural texture too.  Give the object tag access to 
powerful math and pixel-by-pixel plotting power... and maybe we will be 
able to honor a TON of future style-up ideas.  Continuing to dump all 
css-can't-do-that's onto SVG is not going to cut it.  SVG is NOT the 
answer to a style language that can't seem to grow, or doesn't want to 
grow... with the future.  Its not SVG's job to cover css's butt.  So if 
nobody minds, lets stop handing-off all css can't-cut-it's... to SVG.

Keep those styling ideas coming, gang!  Just tell 'em "SVG IS FOR DOING 
SVG, NOT FOR DOING NODE STYLING!"  :)

Best regards, everyone!
Wingnut
Received on Tuesday, 11 May 2004 09:50:27 GMT

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