W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > December 2008

Re: Adjusting float height on paged media

From: Anton Prowse <prowse@moonhenge.net>
Date: Mon, 22 Dec 2008 18:25:08 +0100
Message-ID: <494FCD74.6070005@moonhenge.net>
CC: www-style@w3.org

>>> However, in the case I 
>>> currently have under consideration (case #1 in my previous email; 
>>> cropping) float: left; and careful placement of each image next to a 
>>> given paragraph is a relatively inelastic requirement. That is, 
>>> float: left; is desired even if it causes both the image and text 
>>> move to the next page.
>> Then what you want is not really a float, at least not in the 
>> traditional printed media sense of the word.
> I'm pretty sure I want a float left/right in the CSS sense.

Not quite; you want float:left/right and a requirement that the
subsequent paragraph be dragged down with it.  This is not default CSS
behaviour, and is certainly not traditional printed media behaviour
(where the float may not even be on the same double-page as the 
accompanying paragraph, let alone next to it).

>> In the end, it's very difficult to programatically control page layout 
>> to that level of editorial demand; with even the most sophisticated 
>> typesetting and page layout software the human touch is required at 
>> the end to fix issues (particularly with regard to the positioning of 
>> traditional floats).  Any attempted solution in a non-wysiwyg system 
>> such as CSS is likely to be at least partly unsatisfactory; it's the 
>> nature of the beast.
> Sure, a more interactive view to the output of a print-oriented CSS 
> formatter would be nice for final tweaking. Still, it seems that 
> overall, if you have to choose between wysiwyg and a rule-based 
> typesetter, a rule-based typesetter a better choice. (Making sure the 
> layout parameters of all figures in a WYSIWYG app are consistent is no 
> fun.)

To be sure, I agree with you; but given the complexity, the limited
number of use cases (I imagine it would not make sense to crop many
kinds of float) and unsatisfactory nature of the solution, I suppose my
opinion is that there are more important issues to address in the short

Anton Prowse
Received on Monday, 22 December 2008 17:25:56 UTC

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