W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > June 2007

Re: Stylings only possible with Tables

From: Spartanicus <mk98762@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 27 Jun 2007 09:39:18 +0100
Message-ID: <n2m-g.rq4483pgcd5ikh723363l7cfoi9oq7v42e@4ax.com>
To: www-style@w3.org

"Andrew Fedoniouk" <news@terrainformatica.com> wrote:

>This site http://www.w3.org/ a good example.
>Load it and try to reduce dimensions of your browser
>to see what I mean.

I'm not a mind reader and due to differences in our browsing setup I am
unlikely to see what you see, better spell it out. I see overflow
problems when reducing viewport width. From the stylesheet:

.navBlock {
   background: #eec;
   color: #000;
   float: left;
   width: 26%;
   border: none;

Need I say more? As I've been saying these problems result from
authoring deficiencies. Personally I'm not in the least bit surprised
to find such at a W3C site. Afaik the people who work on the CSS spec
have nothing to do with the code cited above. And even when they do, all
it would indicate is that they are not particularly good at authoring,
it shouldn't reflect on their real work as spec authors.

>Open http://www.mozilla.org/ and try to increase font size.

Holds up nicely at 26px minimum font size here. Even with the best
authored sites there comes a point where something has to give.

>Layout should follow natural size of the content to be accessible.

"Accessible" is not the word to use here. As I've been saying all along
a layout grid that expands to contain its content is often far
preferable over overflow problems, but this property of a table is also
the cause of one of the major objections against the use of tables for
layout: it can wreck proper incremental rendering with the entire grid
having to be reflowed multiple times to accommodate the delayed loading
of content. Again: you can't have both. Note that many overflow problems
exhibited by so called "CSS layouts" can be avoided.

>Floats and abs. position is not the option for people with disabilities.

You'd have to expand on that blanket statement if it is meant as an

>We can use tables of course but
>what is so special in layout of http://www.google.com that
>it requres two <table> elements?

I haven't checked, but I presume this is another example of poor quality
authoring, or perhaps it is an example of pragmatic authoring. Poor
authoring is widespread, and the size of the company has little to do
with it.

>Many sites that was made after "no-tables" propaganda will
>benifit if tables were used there. At least they can be readable.

See my previous statements on this.

>Here is screensot http://www.terrainformatica.com/w3/w3c-fp.jpg
>made on mobile alike screen.

I haven't checked the screencap, but I'd state that it is an illusion to
believe that you can author a page that works effectively on every
conceivable viewport size unless you specifically code for it. Note the
existence of CSS3 media queries.

>It has to be mechanism that will allow to do modern layouts
>using position:static only elements. This is the only way to keep
>layout scalable. Positioning in CSS should be an exception -
>not a rule.

Whilst positioning has its limitations, it does address many of the
problems that arise from using tables for layout. But as a direct
consequence an author has got to be more skilled to prevent the overflow
problems that can result from using positioning. That doesn't form an
argument against positioning, again you can't have the expand to contain
properties of tables without the drawbacks, they are inherent. In
contrast positioning allows authors to prevent the incremental rendering
and reflow problems without necessarily introducing overflow problems,
but this requires skill and care. If that skill and/or care isn't there
then the user experience can easily be worse compared to if a table was
used to achieve the layout.

>It is just takes too much effort to do design
>of modern but yet accessible sites. Far not all people can afford
>this. So lack of standards effectively prevent Internet to be

You also misassume that a site that uses a table for layout is a bad
thing, in practice it rarely is. And the phrase "accessibility" is again
misused, it seems to be the favourite blanket phrase to suggest bad

Received on Wednesday, 27 June 2007 08:38:10 UTC

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