W3C home > Mailing lists > Public > www-style@w3.org > May 2012

Re: [css-wywiwyg] browser interpretation of css

From: Tab Atkins Jr. <jackalmage@gmail.com>
Date: Fri, 4 May 2012 18:33:32 -0700
Message-ID: <CAAWBYDATkrLNCJzXyXGG8Q2M8LXssA8Zq_SueZTprk57cbd+fw@mail.gmail.com>
To: Rik Schaaf <coolcat_the_best@hotmail.com>
Cc: "www-style@w3.org" <www-style@w3.org>
On Thu, May 3, 2012 at 4:02 PM, Rik Schaaf <coolcat_the_best@hotmail.com> wrote:
> How can we make sure that a piece of css code is interpreted the same way in every browser without additional code?
>
> Even this question is wrong, because style and layout shouldn't be a matter of interpretation or recommendation, but of rules and protocols. What you write is what you get. How can it be that my webpage looks different in several browsers? This difference should be eliminated.
>
> Is there an explanation why css uses only recommendations and not strict protocols? If it is about browser specific css which wouldn't be possible, then I don't agree: a part of the protocol could be prefix or suffix extentions. A browser pre-/suffix would be registered and documented. (a bit like the moz or webkit prefixes, but for a different purpose)
>
> One of the problems is that css is embedded deeply into the browser software, so changes to css recommendation are dependent on browser updates. Separation of the browser and the software that processes the css could be a solution. The browser should only be the frame around the content. The content itself should be processed by a company indipendent standard, the web standard.

I'll attempt to break down your email into several questions, so I can
answer each of them independently.  ^_^

1. How can you make sure that a single piece of CSS works the same way
in every browser?

You can't, unfortunately.  CSS grows over time, and so do browsers.
If we introduce new CSS properties, old browsers won't understand
them.  You have to either rely solely on very basic "old" CSS that
everyone understands, or design your site to respond well to different
browsers with different levels of support.  There are many ways to do
that, which you can learn about by searching for good web design
tutorials.

2. Why does CSS use "recommendations" rather than strict protocols?

You're attaching too much meaning to the term "recommendation".  The
W3C, for reasons that are both ancient and boring, uses the word
"Recommendation" instead of "Standard" for the documents it produces.
The difference doesn't mean anything, though - we definitely produce
standards.

~TJ
Received on Saturday, 5 May 2012 01:34:26 GMT

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