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

Re: [CSS3-tables] proposal for table-row-start display value

From: Tab Atkins Jr. <jackalmage@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 20 Feb 2009 11:32:27 -0600
Message-ID: <dd0fbad0902200932g5a4a42a2tec1432a9006d204c@mail.gmail.com>
To: Giovanni Campagna <scampa.giovanni@gmail.com>
Cc: www-style@w3.org
On Fri, Feb 20, 2009 at 11:13 AM, Giovanni Campagna
<scampa.giovanni@gmail.com> wrote:
> Mmm... why should you turn everything into tables?

Displaying a definition list as a table is actually really useful.
For a live example, I've produced an automatic text->image replacer
for jQuery that uses this.  Page is http://www.xanthir.com/pir/.  Note
the list of configuration options partway down the page.  Displaying
them as a table like that is ideal because it presents the data in a
compact, easily skimmable way.  I think having the left-hand area
dedicated to presenting the names of the options makes it easier to
grasp the data.

Originally I produced this as a <dl>, because that seemed the most
appropriate construct.  I've since had to change it to a <ul> with
<h3>s and <span>s, specifically so I can get the presentation I want
(an actual <table> may be appropriate here, but shrug).  Now, this is
honestly necessary only because html has never had a <di> element, but
we work with what we have.

> If what you need is a table-like layout (but not a real table, with
> captions, row-groups, columns and column-groups), what you probably
> need is Template Layout:
> Very simply:
> dl {
> display-model: "a b";
> }
> dt {
> position: a; /* or slot(a); or move-to: a; or float: slot(a); if you
> rember that discussion about css3-gcpm */
> }
> dd {
> position: b;
> }
> This works for definition lists, dialogues, the header - list example
> you provided, and avoids additional table processing rules and display
> values, allowing also additional exstensibility (why if you deemed the
> content more important than the header and wanted the latter after the
> former in non-styled content?)

Doesn't work as intended.  Specifically, all the <dt>s will pile into
one column, while all the <dd>s pile into another, with no regard for
what is associated with what.  The point of the table display type is
that you can maintain these associations visually.

Received on Friday, 20 February 2009 17:33:09 UTC

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