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[CSSWG] Minutes TPAC F2F 2013-11-11 Mon III: DigiPub Joint Meeting

From: Dael Jackson <daelcss@gmail.com>
Date: Wed, 20 Nov 2013 07:29:29 -0500
Message-ID: <CADhPm3u=0gKfmYsbg=T3YuGV9NOQbHZYvCHX5oANubz=23k1MA@mail.gmail.com>
To: www-style@w3.org
DigiPub Joint Meeting
---------------------

  - The DigiPub group met with the working group to present some of the
         work they've been doing, especially on pagination and page
         breaks.
  - There was a request for a list of priorities broken down by market,
         preferably with examples.
  - Possible issues that were discussed included multi-page spreads,
         headers and footers, splitting images, and internal
         cross-references.

=====FULL MINUTES BELOW======

DigiPub Joint Meeting
---------------------
  ScribeNick: fantasai

  Markus: This interest group is charged with producing reqs and use
          cases for the digital publishing industry for the open web
          platform -- things digital publishing wants to do that web
          platform can't do yet.
  Markus: Pagination is really important, obviously.
  Markus: The point of this meeting is to go over our progress, and get
          feedback on it.
  Markus: Our question is, how should we structure this, document this,
          what do you need?
  Markus: Here's our draft of pagination, which Dave Cramer (dauwhe) has
          been working on.
  Markus: Sits in context worth mentioning quickly.
  Markus: Most of you know about JLREQ, which was worked on for 5 years
          before published.
  Markus: There are other similar documents within i18n starting up,
  Markus: This document is going to be LatinReq,
  Markus: To capture publishing requirements for Western typesetting.
  Markus: It will be used to draw concrete requirements for CSS.
  Fantasai: http://www.w3.org/TR/pagination/

  dauwhe: ...
  dauwhe: Looked at JLREQ, realized modeling it on that was impossible.
  dauwhe: This is just beginning of what we hope to achieve.

  dauwhe: We want to describe what print publishing has been doing for
          last 100s of years.
  dauwhe: And then see what is useful for digital books.

  <Jirka> URL is http://w3c.github.io/dpub-pagination/
  <astearns> http://w3c.github.io/dpub-pagination/index.html

  dauwhe: For this document, I just started writing some introductory
          material and then diving in to start describing, even in
          simplest cases, what the rules are publishers working with on
          books and what kinds of things do we care about.
  dauwhe: That brings up a lot of the issues we need to deal with.
  dauwhe: Simple example here of a fake edition of Moby Dick to
          illustrate widows/orphans.
  dauwhe: It brings up the concept of what exactly is a page in context
          of an open web platform;
  dauwhe: Concern with position of this particular line in the page,
          concept of concept of spread.
  dauwhe: CSS has a setting for saying how many lines it's ok to leave
          at top of page, but in most UAs if you set that, what it does
          is it moves a line from the previous page,
  dauwhe: Which horrifies the publishing community by having two halves
          of the spread not aligning.

  dino: What do they want?
  dauwhe: The first step is to go back earlier in that particular
          chapter and make some changes that will make the problem go
          away.
  dauwhe: First thing we would try is making the previous spread
          shorter.

  dino: What do you do if it's the first page of the chapter?
  dauwhe: Chapter usually starts a bit down the page, might shift it up
          a little.

  ChrisL: These are all manual interventions. You need rules for a
          formatter.
  dauwhe: Think this problem is mostly solvable, conceptually.
  dauwhe: A large aspect of the labor going into producing traditional
          books is solving these kinds of issues.
  ChrisL: First point, if it's not solvable automatically, then CSS
          can't do it either.
  ChrisL: If it is solvable and CSS can do it, then this saves costs
          because can be done automatically.
  dauwhe: We want to follow good craft of layout.
  dauwhe: If we have that automatic solution and apply that to digital
          books, will be huge increase in quality of things out there.

  Markus: Also, the scope of what we're trying to do with this is both
          hard-copy formatting, which is a lot of the work that Dave
          does, to prepare (using HTML+CSS in this case) paper copies.
  Markus: But it's also dynamic pagination in reading systems, which ...
  Markus: Is a huge overlap for publisher
  Markus: The cost of doing these recalculations; offline it's okay if
          it takes a few minutes, but in dynamic ebook environment not
          so okay.
  dauwhe: I don't have sense of algorithms for that.
  dino: I wanted to do a lot of these in iBooks, but it's hard to do.
  dauwhe: Yeah, everything prior in the document is sort of in scope, so
          searching lots of possibilities.
  dino: Even handling widows and orphans as we do requires backtracking,
        which we don't like to do,
  dino: Going back more than one page / column ... :(

  SteveZ: A question comes up, is there a level of degradation that
          people can live with in the e-environment that wouldn't be
          acceptable in print environment, but would be good enough?
  SteveZ: Good enough beats out best.
  [dauwhe grumps about Kindle]
  dauwhe: I have higher expectations. I don't want to give up without
         trying.
  dauwhe: I want to raise the standards of the digital world to match
          what's possible in print.

  dauwhe: Other issues ...
  dauwhe: Common example in novels ... I'm calling them space breaks
  <astearns> http://w3c.github.io/dpub-pagination/index.html#space-breaks-and-ornaments
  dauwhe: A blank line or two where the thought changes or scene
          changes.
  dauwhe: At the page break, it looks like misalignment, so if it falls
          at the page break you put in visible element, like asterisks.
  dauwhe: So you want to know if element is at top or bottom of page, to
          change its appearance. That's a whole class of things that
          want to change.
  dauwhe: I dream of :top-of-page pseudo-elements, e.g., to address a
          whole class of issues here.
  dino: I'm sure our team would love that as well.

  dauwhe: As we said, we're just getting started with this effort.
  dauwhe: Filling in some of these sections just to learn how to work
          with this, what level of detail is appropriate.
  dauwhe: Would love to know what you guys would find helpful,
  dauwhe: What can we do for you, to help make this move forward.

  dino: Priorities would be an important thing.
  dino: For you as the industry to say what is hugely important,
  dino: Especially if you have data to back that up,
  dino: And break it down market by market,
  dino: e.g. maybe widows isn't important in Korean.
  dauwhe: Talking with others about similar issues in traditional
          Chinese, e.g. don't want just one character in a column,
  dauwhe: You want a minimal amount of content on a page,
  dauwhe: etc.
  dauwhe: Want to minimize disruptions as reader goes from one page to
          another.

  dauwhe: So expect lots of commonalities among writing systems.
  Markus: Request was for, prioritization of all these things, and also
          locale breakdown.

  dino: We're often told by Japanese publishers, if you don't support
        this type of annotations or whatever, it's a showstopper.
  dino: It would be great to get similar types of priorities.
  dino: To give another example, italics or obliques in Japanese
        vertical text.
  dino: Possibly it's very uncommon and therefore we don't need to spend
        so much time on it.
  dino: So would be helpful to know how many people are actually
        impacted by this.

  * Bert thinks of a slider to set the time/quality tradeoff. As
         computers get faster, the search algorithm can search deeper
         and find better layouts, even in real time renderers. And
         authors can add metadata to indicate which aspects are most
         importan to get right in a given document.

  SteveZ: One other thing you hit upon is, some things the known
          algorithms involve backtracking.
  SteveZ: Whereas other things, like asterisks, which don't really force
          backtracking.
  SteveZ: So to an extent knowing tech used to implement is useful thing
          to identify as well.
  astearns: I don't think you need to prioritize everything in the
            document against each other, but to surface the highest-
            priority items.

  fantasai: With regards to how much detail, more detail is always
            better.
  dino: Examples are great.
  dino: e.g. looking at your example, I think we implemented widows
        incorrectly.
  [dauwhe notes that books with short dialog are hard to page, 1-line
          paragraphs are great, 3-line paragraphs are really hard]
  dauwhe: 3/4 of a line stranded on top of page is not so bad as half a
          hyphenated word.
  dauwhe: You see that in ebooks often, it's noticeably bad.

  dino: Would also like to see examples of inline images. Never know
        what to do there.
  dino: Obviously you never want to split an image across a page, people
        say that's bad.
  dino: But at what point is it better to put on the page by itself,
        etc.?
  dsinger: Might shift it down by some lines.
  fantasai: float: inline; ?

  dauwhe: Something that comes up a lot in higher-ed textbooks are an
          elaborate series of rules for placement of images and
          ancillary text. How far can they move away from their
          reference? What are best practices for stacking floats?
  dauwhe: Want to document these and similar issues.

  Markus: On the topic of issues to cover or not, we're discussing scope
          at high level.
  Markus: I want to ask this, are there things that we should focus on
          or omit that would help right now?
  Markus: What topics would you like us to prioritize?

  SteveZ: One that's currently under discussion is footnotes and their
          treatment in various columnization strategies would be useful.
  SteveZ: Another I noticed is captions. Number of different strategies
          for handling captions, especially when they're not around the
          image.

  ChrisL: Another thing would be things which are used in print but are
          also used not in print, and would therefore benefit everyone.
          Things that books do better but everyone would appreciate.
  ChrisL: That would help generate interest for implementers not focused
          on books.
  dauwhe: I worked on custom publishing system for textbooks where there
          were a lot of internal cross-references, e.g. "in next chapter
          we find x", but there's no next chapter, what do you say?
  dauwhe: Lots of interesting things to look at there.
  dino: It would be interesting to get feedback on what digital book
        publishing concepts translate to the world without pagination.

  dino: What then do you do with footnotes?
  fantasai: position: sticky!
  ChrisL: One characteristic is not just that it's scrollable, but also
          dynamic. You can just pop-up the reference, right there where
          you're reading it, rather than at the bottom of the page where
          you're not.
  ChrisL: But then you need to be able to share the markup.
  fantasai: Stickily-positioned elements overlap, so that wouldn't fly
            for multiple footnotes.
  dino: Would also help for [...]
  <TabAtkins> We need to fix the overlap issue for normal stickypos
              anyway.
  <hober> TabAtkins: it's a feature, not a bug.
  <TabAtkins> hober: Not quite. Having stickypos be able to push other
              stickypos out of the way is what's needed some times, but
              other times you want to stack them.
  * fantasai thinks she agrees with Tab
  <hober> TabAtkins, fantasai: I suspect wanting things-with-funky-
          layout to avoid other things-with-funky-layout is orthogonal
          to the form of funky layout.
  <TabAtkins> Frex, lots of <h1>s on a page with no <section> elements,
              overlapping *kinda* works, but not really - transparent
              backgrounds or different heights ruin it. You want them to
              push each other out of the wya.
  * fantasai disagrees and agrees with Tab
  <TabAtkins> But you want an <h2> to stack under the <h1>, and be
              pushed away by the following <h2> or <h1>.
  * sgalineau supports Ted's position:funky proposal

  Bert: It would be helpful also to know fallbacks: If you cannot get
        the thing X that you really want, then what are alternative
        solutions that would be acceptable?
  dauwhe: If I can't get a unicorn, can I get a pony?

  Markus: Back to pagination
  Markus: Spreads,
  Markus: Showing 2 pages at same time,
  Markus: Very often in textbooks, they have boxes that occupy two pages
          of spread, e.g. an image.
  Markus: Are spread behaviors something to go into detail on, or not?
  dauwhe: ....
  dauwhe: More print-specific than other things here,
  dauwhe: That apply to paginated view in ebook reader.
  dauwhe: On the other hand, spreads are kind of like columns, so who
          knows?
  SteveZ: You still have issue of figures that cross.
  SteveZ: Is there much of a difference then?
  Liam: If you think of a spread as a unit you're looking at at the same
        time, and consider brochures,
  Liam: Then you might have a 6-page spread,
  Liam: So have to think a little beyond 2-page spreads.
  * fantasai liam++
  dauwhe: See things like that in online learning, having things
          side-by-side, proves to be a useful concept.

  r12a: Spread .. differences in printing material.
  dino: Are you asking are footers and headers and gutters important in
        ebooks? Yes.
  fantasai: Well, gutters wouldn't be, but footers and headers would be.
  dauwhe: Headers/footers help reader identify context within a long
          work. Transcends type of media used to render the work.
  * fantasai position: sticky!

  [dauwhe side discussion of gutters and how to chop things like maps so
          they look good when printed and bound]

  SteveZ: I think you've given us a good beginning, and I strongly
          encourage you to keep going.
  SteveZ: Everything so far is valuable.
  dauwhe: I'm in both WGs, so it's easy to talk to me. I appreciate any
          comments/criticisms/whatever.
  dauwhe: I look forward to really interesting arguments on what pages
          are...

  r12a: Any ideas on how XSL technologies map into things needed here?
  r12a: Can it say anything about what CSS is doing?
  Liam: Not so easy to answer...
  Liam: Going forward, during paris f2f, we asked about possibility of
        starting a task force to do paged media work.
  Liam: There was approval for that, but expected in the next couple
         weeks with regards to a task force within CSS WG,
  Liam: To discuss paged media things.
  Liam: The bigger question is in regards to XSL:FO, we closed that
        working group.
  Liam: Partly that was because we have many people interested in CSSWG
        and almost no one joining XSL WG.
  Liam: ...
  Liam: Hopefully we will be pushing forward on areas of CSS that do
        these things.
  [silence]

  dauwhe: So, we're eager to continue on this work and will do what we
          can to help CSSWG.
  dauwhe: Thank you for your time and attention.
  Bert: Before we close, what's the next step? Can we have more often
        joint sessions?
  Bert: To keep up to date on each others progress?
  dauwhe: Maybe we can work out some communication method or status
          update between the groups.
  Markus: ...
  Markus: We can do somehting like today, but more focused on a
          particular issue / area.

  [dauwhe invites people to join DigiPub IG]
Received on Wednesday, 20 November 2013 12:29:57 UTC

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