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

From: Håkon Wium Lie <howcome@opera.com>
Date: Mon, 29 Oct 2012 16:27:29 +0100
Message-ID: <20622.41057.609329.428689@gargle.gargle.HOWL>
To: Simon Sapin <simon.sapin@kozea.fr>, bert@w3.org, fantasai@inkedblade.net, Rossen.Atanassov@microsoft.com
Cc: www-style@w3.org
Also sprach Simon Sapin:

 > Ok, proposed change:
 > 
 > * Remove the definitions of the available-width and shrink-to-fit
 >    variables. (The whole <ul>.)
 > * Replace
 >      # There are two other variables in the pseudo-algorithm:
 >    with [1]
 >      | In this pseudo-algorithm, the <code>used-width</code> variable
 >      | is the used width of the multi-column element, as per CSS 2.1
 >      | section 10.3.
 > * Remove lines 03 to 10 of the algorithm.
 > * Replace remaining occurrences of the available-width variable
 >    in the algorithm by used-width.

I agree that it could be helpful to replace the term "available-width"
in the spec. More specifically, I we should define -- in a foolproof
manner -- what "available-width = unknown" means. If we can agree to
that, I believe we can agree that:

  - line 03-04 make sense
  - there should be a way to enter lines 06-07
  - line 09-10 also make sense

So, what should replace "available-width = unknown"?

Some options:

  - available-width is unknown when width is 'auto' and the element is a float
  - available-width is unknown when width is 'from-column', 'intrinsic' (or some other new value)
  - introduce a new property?

Other options?

Another way to phrase the above is that we'd like to preserve a way to
set the exact number of columns and the exact width of columns,
without making the element float (which seems arbitrary).

However, in most cases authors would like for columns to fill the
available space in a graceful manner. So, we're on the edge. Arguably,
calc() can be used to express this. E.g.:

   column-count: 4;
   column-width: 20em;
   column-gap: 2%;
   width: calc(4*20em + 3*2%);

But calc() is not quite here yet. And cascading may give us somewhat
arbitrary results.

-h&kon
              Håkon Wium Lie                          CTO °þe®ª
howcome@opera.com                  http://people.opera.com/howcome
Received on Monday, 29 October 2012 15:28:15 GMT

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