W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > January 2005

Re: Collapsing 0 width margin; CSS version system

From: Ian Hickson <ian@hixie.ch>
Date: Tue, 11 Jan 2005 17:46:40 +0000 (UTC)
To: Larry Israel <lisrael@cruzio.com>
Cc: www-style@w3.org
Message-ID: <Pine.LNX.4.61.0501111737200.19740@dhalsim.dreamhost.com>

On Sat, 8 Jan 2005, Larry Israel wrote:
> > 
> > Sadly, when we are talking about billions of existing pages, making 
> > changes that would break existing content is an idea that Web browser 
> > vendors really can't seriously entertain. We have enough trouble with 
> > people saying pages don't work right in our browsers (i.e. not working 
> > like in the browser with most market share) without making it worse.
> That is only the case because CSS lacks a standard method of version 
> control (for lack of the proper term) -- the CSS equivalent of a doctype 
> declaration. Isn't that the case?

Not really. Changing behaviour based on the version is very confusing to 
authors -- just look at the confusion people have over why their pages 
change rendering when viewed in quirks mode vs standards mode, or for 
pages sent as text/html vs pages sent as applicaiton/xhtml+xml.

> Until such versioning becomes part of the standard, knowledgable web 
> authors will continue to devise and use a wide variety of CSS hacks 
> [1][2][3][4]. Of course these hacks are a major pain in the butt, but 
> they are considered a necessary evil, much like table layout, spacer 
> gifs, and many other workarounds used to be.

These hacks work around bugs in browsers, not lack of versioning in the 

Ian Hickson               U+1047E                )\._.,--....,'``.    fL
http://ln.hixie.ch/       U+263A                /,   _.. \   _\  ;`._ ,.
Things that are impossible just take longer.   `._.-(,_..'--(,_..'`-.;.'
Received on Tuesday, 11 January 2005 17:46:43 UTC

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