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Re: [CSS2.1] Yet another white-space issue with anonymous table objects

From: Boris Zbarsky <bzbarsky@MIT.EDU>
Date: Tue, 10 Mar 2009 11:23:39 -0400
Message-ID: <49B685FB.3070101@mit.edu>
To: Bert Bos <bert@w3.org>
CC: www-style list <www-style@w3.org>
Bert Bos wrote:
> I don't know what HTML5 will say, but in HTML4 and XHTML there is no 
> white space between the two DIVs. (More precisely: the white space 
> isn't significant white space; it just avoids having to write 
> impossibly long lines with no spaces.)

Note that there _is_ white space in the DOM there; anything else is 
either not compatible with the web or not compatible with CSS (e.g. 
there are cases in which IE7/Windows doesn't have those whitespace nodes 
in the DOM, but in those cases changing the "white-space" CSS styling 
actually changes the DOM, which is not quite correct per CSS).

> So one way to solve Boris's case is to say to authors to stick with 
> HTML4, because it typically behaves the way you expect...

This doesn't solve my problem at all, since I'm not having an authoring 
problem.  I'm having an implementation problem.  To whit, the spec being 
underspecified, such that implementing it in a reasonable manner by 
reading the spec text and then writing code is impossible.

> The simple solution is to say that all white space is significant and an 
> author has to make sure he doesn't put spaces unless he really wants 
> them. Or we have to introduce a property that lets the author specify 
> which (anonymous) elements have an implicit 'display: none'.

That solution is incompatible with existing content that relies on table 
anonymous objects.

-Boris
Received on Tuesday, 10 March 2009 15:24:24 GMT

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