W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > April 2009

Re: text-align property for columns (once again)

From: Reg Me Please <regmeplease@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 08 Apr 2009 20:35:35 +0200
To: "Tab Atkins Jr." <jackalmage@gmail.com>
Cc: Brad Kemper <brad.kemper@gmail.com>, "L. David Baron" <dbaron@dbaron.org>, "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
Message-Id: <1239215735.4205.25.camel@g1s>
On Wed, 2009-04-08 at 09:59 -0500, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
> On Wed, Apr 8, 2009 at 2:05 AM, regme please <regmeplease@gmail.com> wrote:
> > 2009/4/7 Tab Atkins Jr. <jackalmage@gmail.com>
> >> Well, the implementers already know the problems with it, but what
> >> would you like to see for authors?
> >>
> >> ~TJ
> >
> > First of all, what'd be your interpretation for chapter 17.5.4?
> I'd interpret it exactly as it sounds.  The text-align property
> determines the horizontal alignment of the contents of a cell.  The
> issue at hand, though, is where a cell can *inherit* a text-align
> value from.  Normally elements inherit from their parents, and the
> tree-based model of an HTML document allows an element to have only a
> single parent.  Because of how the HTML table model works (which CSS
> copied), the row is the natural parent of the cell.

If the chapter title was "Horizontal alignment in a cell" your
interpretation would be true.
But the title reads instead "Horizontal alignment in a column".
It's that last word ("column") that makes me think those last words as
if they were "the 'text-align' property OF THE COLUMN".
And this is why I would call for more details in that chapter.

> It's certainly possible to define some form of conflict resolution
> that allows you to 'inherit' values from multiple places, and that's
> precisely what is done with the four properties that can be applied to
> a <col> element - the drawing of cell borders, frex, depends on the
> border-* values of potentially *many* elements.  But this is a
> well-defined algorithm.

This extension would make the column very useful for tabular data
defined by column. And I still don't see why cannot use the same
algorithm used for the width.
I think I understand the core concepts that animate the CSS and I can
appreciate the structure of everything.
Nonetheless I feel the pain as they badly fail to help in solving a
problem that I'm pretty sure has kicked any author at least once in the

> The issue is deciding what makes sense for arbitrary properties.
Not really arbitrary. I mean the ones I find in the mark up language
(aka HTML) for the very same element. Columns in my case.
But no browser seems interested in rendering <COL> properties in the
proper way.


> Believe me, I understand your pain.  ^_^  I'm a site author, not an
> implementor; I contribute to this working group because I enjoy it and
> want to push the future of CSS in a direction that helps me do my
> work.  Styling table columns has caused me pain many times.  Luckily
> there are some good ideas in the pipeline that will help out
> tremendously in this regard.

Thanks again for the patience.
As we use to say here, "I don't fully understand, but I'm to comply".

> ~TJ
<VR42 />
Received on Wednesday, 8 April 2009 18:36:29 UTC

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