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Re: [css3-multicol] unknown available width and shrink-to-fit

From: Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@opera.com>
Date: Sun, 4 Nov 2012 23:56:28 +0100
Message-ID: <20630.62108.143767.101612@gargle.gargle.HOWL>
To: Simon Sapin <simon.sapin@kozea.fr>
Cc: bert@w3.org, fantasai@inkedblade.net, Rossen.Atanassov@microsoft.com, www-style@w3.org
Also sprach Simon Sapin:

 > > I agree that it could be helpful to replace the term "available-width"
 > > in the spec.
 > 
 > It is defined in the spec as the used width. I’ll just assume we have 
 > renamed the variable to "used-width". I think that everyone agrees on 
 > that much.

The multicol spec is internally consistent as it stands, but the term
"availablble-width" is used differently in CSS 2.1, so it may be
better to find a new name. If we choose 'used-width' we get this definition:

  used-width: if the used width of the multi-column element has
    not been determined when the 'column-count' and 'column-width' must
    be determined (e.g., if it is floating with a 'width' of 'auto' as
    per CSS 2.1 section 10.3.5) this variable is unknown, otherwise it
    is the same as the used width of the multi-column element.

Also, I'd like to replace the somewhat fuzzy parenthesis with a
specific list of items in CSS 2.1 that causes this variable to be
unknown.

 > * We have have little interop on A:
 > http://lists.w3.org/Archives/Public/www-archive/2012Nov/att-0006/multicol-intrinsic.html

It seems that the differences you get is due to 

 - including prefixes (implementations that require prefixes are not mature)
 - testing the shrink-to-fit algorithm  (which isn't descibed in the multicol spec)

Here are some tests that only tests what's described in the multicol
spec itself.

  http://people.opera.com/howcome/2012/tests/multicol.html#pseudo-algorithm

For these, I get interoperability between three shipping
implementations: IE, Opera, Prince. 

Speaking both as editor and implementor, I'm therefore against
changing the algorithm (bar the clarification described above).

Cheers,

-h&kon
              Håkon Wium Lie                          CTO °þe®ª
howcome@opera.com                  http://people.opera.com/howcome
Received on Sunday, 4 November 2012 22:57:11 GMT

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