W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > December 2011

Re: [css3-background] Overly-clever background-position grammar

From: fantasai <fantasai.lists@inkedblade.net>
Date: Mon, 19 Dec 2011 22:54:18 -0500
Message-ID: <4EF006EA.9020105@inkedblade.net>
To: www-style@w3.org
On 05/27/2011 09:12 PM, Tab Atkins Jr. wrote:
> I and some other webdevs were talking about background-position
> yesterday, and were struck by how confusing the grammar for it is.
> For ease of reference, I reproduce it here:
>
> <bg-position>  = [
>    [ top | bottom ]
> |
>    [<percentage>  |<length>  | left | center | right ]
>    [<percentage>  |<length>  | top | center | bottom ]?
> |
>    [ center | [ left | right ] [<percentage>  |<length>  ]? ]&&
>    [ center | [ top | bottom ] [<percentage>  |<length>  ]? ]
> ]
>
> While the grammar is technically correct, it suggests several
> incorrect interpretations due to its structure. [...]
>
> I suggest restating the grammar so that each class of forms is more
> clearly encapsulated in each clause, even if it does admit multiple
> ways to produce a given value.  That is, something like this:
>
> <bg-position>  = [
>    [<percentage>  |<length>  | left | center | right ] ||
>    [<percentage>  |<length>  | top | center | bottom ]
> |
>    [ center | [[ left | right ] [<percentage>  |<length>  ]?] ]&&
>    [ center | [[ top | bottom ] [<percentage>  |<length>  ]?] ]
> ]
>
> Here, I have collapsed the 1-value clause into the two-value clause by
> using ||.  By switching to this operator rather than concatenation,
> I've also made it cover the fact that you can put vertical keywords
> before horizontal keywords.  In the 3/4-value clause, I've added an
> additional set of brackets to make the binding explicit.

Unfortunately, your grammar is technically incorrect. If you are using
the two-value form with either <percentage> or <length>, it must be
in horizontal-then-vertical order. Your grammar admits '50% left',
which is invalid per CSS2.1.

I'm not against changing the grammar to be more understandable, but I
won't change it to be less correct.

Filed as ISSUE-212
   https://www.w3.org/Style/CSS/Tracker/issues/212

~fantasai
Received on Tuesday, 20 December 2011 03:54:54 GMT

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.3.1 : Tuesday, 26 March 2013 17:20:47 GMT