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RE: Agenda CSS telcon Feb 26, 2008

From: Arron Eicholz <Arron.Eicholz@microsoft.com>
Date: Mon, 10 Mar 2008 19:09:05 -0700
To: "L. David Baron" <dbaron@dbaron.org>
CC: "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
Message-ID: <66D5CB5D6AB0694592FAF5487C50368B1914CB7F4C@NA-EXMSG-C111.redmond.corp.microsoft.com>

On Tuesday, 2008-02-26 09:29 -8:00, L. David Baron wrote:

> I tend to think that 17.3 should just point to 17.5.2 for the actual
> behavior of 'width'. already seems adequate for fixed table
> layout; ought to say more about auto layout.

I don't completely disagree however the 'width' definition in is non-normative. I think this is ok to point to for fixed table layout but for auto table layout maybe we need a better definition.

> What does "initial" mean?  How do other things change it?  (I think
> other things should be able to increase this width, but not decrease
> it.)

I was using 'initial' to mean it may be changed by other contents. You are right that is should only increase. I think the biggest problem with this definition is that it is speaking of 3 elements at one time. Maybe we just should state that other elements can affect the width by increasing the width but not decrease the width.

> However, it's actually not a minimum width; it's a preferred width (what
> CSS 2.1 actually calls "MAX").  The column width can become narrower due
> to other constraints (down to "MIN").

It is preferred width but in using that term we would also have to add more text to the spec to clarify what preferred width is. I'm not against that but I think this is a bigger change that would then change many sections not just chapter 17.

> (Does anything in the spec actually say that the border-box width of the
> cell is the same as the width of the column?)

Not that I know of definitely not in CSS 2.1. All browsers seem to handle it as border-box.

> > when using the automatic table layout algorithm. When using the fixed
> > table layout algorithm, the 'width' property specifies the maximum
> > width for the specific column element (i.e. cell, col, colgroup).

> Why maximum?  Doesn't it just specify the width?  In fact, given that
> already says this, why add duplicate text?

I missed that in Now that I reread that section I see that it is duplicating text, which leads us back to your original point of maybe we should point to sections 17.5.2.

> In both cases, these are describing the behavior of values of 'width'
> other than 'auto'.  We also need to define what 'auto' does; for
> columns, I think it behaves the same as '0'.

Column 'width: auto' should behave the same as '0' and actually it isn't '0' but anything that is cells (border-box) width or less?

> Both of these definitions define the 'min-width' and 'max-width'
> properties as ignored, which I don't think we should do.  It's
> relatively simple to make them not be ignored:  just say that the width
> property is adjusted by max-width and min-width (in that order) before
> being used.  (I'm not sure enough browsers implement them for us to exit
> CR, although Firefox 3 will.)

I don't see any reason why 'min-width' or 'max-width' need to be ignored. Also I cannot find where the spec actually implies that either. Respecting 'max-width' and 'min-width' in that order for width is the right thing to do and that is the current thinking for IE8 so both IE8 and Firefox 3 will be in sync in this scenario.

> This also doesn't specify what happens for column groups (which I think
> should be the same as for columns; i.e., the width applies to each
> column separately, for compatibility with HTML and existing
> implementations).

No browsers seem to agree on a logical solution how colgroups work, to match HTML or CSS. I will be writing up a separate email discussing the issues we discovered here.

Arron Eicholz
Received on Tuesday, 11 March 2008 02:09:23 UTC

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